Celebrating over 30 years as an arts organization.

The Center hosts readings, workshops, lectures, and publishes a variety of poetry publications. SPC is located in the R25 Arts Complex located on the corner of R & 25th Streets in midtown Sacramento.

Sacramento Poetry Center memberships support a variety of local poetry programs, publications, readings, and events. Members receive a free subscription to Tule Review and Poetry Now. Please send your check for $30 or more to SPC, 1719 25th St., Sacramento, CA 95816. Fixed incomes are $15.

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

PETER GRANDBOIS at SPC on April 23, 2007

Peter Grandbois arrived at the SPC tanned and rested after his recent talk at the San Francisco Public Library, but still a little on edge in preparation for his public lecture on Thursday the 26th for the appearance of Sherman Alexie and Leslie Marmon Silko for the California Lectures series.

Peter read a brief section from his book The Gravedigger that he had not read before in public. It featured the hero, Juan Rodrigo, the gravedigger, who realizes that he is going to fall in love with his 3rd wife, Rosalita. The image that cements this feeling for Juan Rodrigo is Rosalita doing something rather rude to her former husband’s grave. [See Chapter 8.]

He also read a new short story, one which he had not read aloud in public before. It was a story that he described as being a little different for him. It didn’t fall into the usual category of “magic realism” or “surrealism” which much of his work could be labeled as. Instead, Grandbois described the piece as “American funhouse hyper-realism.” Employing his usual mode of listening to music while he writes in order to set the mood for the world he is entering, “Wait Your Turn” [17:04] came to life while Grandbois was listening to Sinatra.

Monday, April 16, 2007



SPC Writers’ Conference 2007
All events at 1719 25th Street, Sacramento

April 20 - Friday night reading and reception 7-9pm
Heather Hutcheson, Andy Jones, Danny Romero, Brad Henderson.
Free to the public

April 21 - Saturday workshops 9am to 4pm
$35 conference fee for all day Saturday
8:30 – 9:00 Coffee and muffins

9:00 – 9:45 Panel Discussion –
Andy Jones, Camille Norton, Gail Entrekin, Danny Romero

10:00 – 11:45 Small workshop sessions:
Andy Jones/Brad Henderson
Gail Entrekin – “The Taste of Poetry”
Camille Norton – "The Muse of History: Writing the Past into the Present."
Heather Hutcheson – “Where Poems Begin”
Tim Kahl – “The Speaking Voice as Poetic Tool”

12:00 – 1:00 Lunch break

1:00 – 1:20 X - Sac City Ethnic Theatre Workshop)

1:30 – 2:45 Afternoon workshop sessions
Danny Romero – Writing Memoir
Angela Dee Alforque – Performing Spoken Word

3:00 – 4:00
Participants group reading and celebration.

SPC Writers’ Conference Presenters

Angela Dee Alforque is an assistant professor at Sacramento City College, and is the director of !X – the Sac City Ethnic Theater Workshop. Angela also serves on the Academic Senate at SCC. She received her MA from CSU Sacramento in Multi-Cultural American History & Performance.

Gail Rudd Entrekin teaches English and creative writing at Sierra College in Grass Valley. Her collections of poems include Change (Will Do You Good), from Poetic Matrix Press, which was nominated for the California Book Awards, You Notice the Body (Hip Pocket Press, 1998), and John Danced (Berkeley Poets Workshop & Press, 1984). Poetry Editor of Hip Pocket Press since 2000, she is also editor of the web page Women’s Writing Salon at www.nevadacountyartscouncil.org and producer of the Women’s Writing Salon reading series at Jason’s in Grass Valley.

Heather Hutcheson earned a BA in English from UC Davis and an MA in Creative Writing from CSU Sacramento. Her master’s project was a book-length collection of poetry, Risk Poetry. Heather spends the majority of her time outside of the classroom working to promote the arts in Sacramento. She teaches creative writing workshops for families, and, for nine years, she volunteered as the Managing Editor of Poetry Now, a monthly poetry publication. Heather has had her fiction and non-fiction published nationally and has won several awards for her poetry.

Brad Henderson (AKA, beau hamel) has published his poetry and fiction in Dominion Review, Blue Unicorn, Hayden's Ferry Review, California Quarterly, and other journals. He holds an M.F.A. in creative writing from University of Southern California, and is the author the Phi Kappa Phi Award winning novel, Drums, (John Daniel/Fithian Press 1997) and the dual chapbook of poetry, Split Stock, (Natsoulas Press 2006), co-written with Andy Jones. Henderson currently teaches writing full-time at University of California, Davis. He is co-editor of the forthcoming poetry anthology, Disturbing Minds: Poems of Desire & Desire [2008] with a foreword by Dana Gioia. He is also one of the co-founders of UC Davis' new critical-poetic school of "literary hauntedness." Brad recently completed the manuscript for his second book of poetry, Secret Cowboy at the Raw Bar, which explores addiction-ism, as well as "the American Dream" and "the American West" as tainted modern myths.

Andy Jones teaches writing and literature classes at UC Davis. Andy also serves on the Campus Media Board and acts as Faculty Advisor to The Voice, the Undergraduate Medical Journal at UC Davis. His radio show "Dr. Andy's Poetry and Technology Hour" airs on KDVS, 90.3 FM, Wednesday afternoons at 5pm. In February, 2006, John Natsoulas Press published Andy’s book of poems Split Stock, which was co-authored with Brad Henderson.

Tim Kahl’s work has been published or is forthcoming in Prairie Schooner, American Letters & Commentary, Berkeley Poetry Review, Indiana Review, Limestone, Nimrod, South Dakota Quarterly, The Journal, The Spoon River Poetry Review, and dozens of other journals in the U.S. He has translated Austrian avant-gardist, Friederike Mayröcker; Brazilian poet, Lêdo Ivo; and the poems of the Portuguese language’s only Nobel Laureate, José Saramago. He also appears as Victor Schnickelfritz at the poetry and poetics blog The Great American Pinup (http://greatamericanpinup.blogspot.com/). His first collection entitled Possessing Yourself is forthcoming from Word Tech Press.

Camille Norton's book Corruption, was published by Harper Collins in 2005 and was the winner of the 2004 National Poetry Series Open Competition. She is Professor of English at The University of the Pacific, Stockton.

Danny Romero is the author of the novel Calle 10 (Mercury House). He teaches in the English Department at Sacramento City College.

Special thanks to:
Alliance Francaise
Members of the Sacramento Poetry Center
Sacramento Metropolitan Arts Commission

This event was partially funded with a grant from Poets and Writers,
which is supported by the James Irvine Foundation.

Monday, April 09, 2007

Reading for the Sacramento Poetry Contest Winners—April 9. 2006

Sacramento Poetry Contest Winners read from their works on Monday April 9, 2007

Do Gentry started the evening off and read “The Auction,” “Mirage,” and ”Travel Diary.”

Francis Kakugawa read “Sansei Woman”

Sansei Woman

I am generations of women
Looking in at layers of silk kimonos,
Muffled giggles, koto movements,
Knowing they can only be
Mere images of desire.
I am generations of women
Waiting to be dragonfly wings,
A maple leaf, spiraling snowflake,
A cherry blossom,
Released and detached from
Generations of cultural clasps.
I am generations of women,
Suppressed in thin yukata
Stuck ankle deep in rice fields,
Scarecrows on wooden stakes.
Denied, yet desiring wantonness
Beneath layers of silk.
I am woman,

Tom Goff read Independence Trail “Watercolors at Negro Bar” and “To an Afflicted one”

Barbara Jennings-Link read “Montana Wheat Field”

Theresa McCourt read “Along the Canal”

Then Julia Connor, the judge for the contest, talked about the selection process. She said it was the 4th one she has judged in the last 18 months. Upon first reading Connor said she made notes to myself about what was commendable in each piece. then she wondered whether she should just “total” the commendations. this seemed too formulaic to her, and poetry shouldn’t be formulaic. One of the big questions that nags her is what do you do with a largely narrative work vs. one that is not so narrative. Then one looks for jewels. But Connor said she didn’t want all rubies and diamonds. She was looking for different kinds of jewels. She was looking for a poem that said something very briefly, but said it completely. Paraphrasing Pound, Connor stated that poetry condenses things in our mind the way dreams do. The significance is built in the poem as opposed to being merely discursive in addition to the poem. This is what Cathleen Williams’s “Ferry” epitomized.

In choosing runner-up Marie Reynolds’s “Offseason” Connor said it used extremely adroit enjambment so that one line suspends itself until it is resolved in the next line. It tells a story, but it doesn’t say too much. Connor stated that of 4 recent contests that she judged, this one was the most difficult. That was a good sign for Sacramento Poetry, where there is a sound voice but also a diverse one. Connor was quick to note though that poetry is not competitive; it is inclusive. She added, “Try to leave out the parts of yourself that you have problems with, and you will defeat your work.”A poet should probably always put “One dark secret. One obsession. One thing of which I am ashamed” on the CV . And in the land of poetry one gets the job anyway.

Marie Reynolds then read “Offseason”

Cathleen Williams ended the evening with “Ferry” and “The State of California”