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.

Thursday, October 30, 2008

MEG WITHERS and TOM GOFF—Sacramento Poetry Center Oct. 27, 2008

Meg Withers reads from the first section [The Book of Denial] of her book The Communion of Saints

Tom Goff reads "Left Hand"

Tom Goff reads "What Scent"

Friday, October 24, 2008

2nd and 4th Saturday Poetry Workshops

Sat, 11/8 10-11:00
SPC 2nd and 4th Saturday Poetry Workshop

Facilitated by Emmanuel Sigauke and Frank Dixon Graham
located at South Natomas Community Center
(next door to South Natomas Library)

2921 Truxel Road, Sacramento, CA.
Bring 10 copies of your one page poem.

Contact or for info: grahampoet@aol.com


Dan Bellm reads "Sacrifice: Birdland 1954"

Dan Bellm reads "The Portal"

Terry Ehret reads "Cupid and Psyche in the City of Light"

Terry Ehret reads "The World in Need of Braiding"

Gillian Wegener reads "In a Rapidly Expanding City"

Gillian Wegener reads "Funderwoods"

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

KATY LEDERER and REBECCA MORRISON at SPC on Friday Oct. 24, 2008

Katy Lederer and Rebecca Morrison

Special Date — Friday, Oct. 24, 2008 — Special Date
Host: Tim Kahl
1719 25th Street at HQ for the Arts

Katy Lederer is the author of the poetry collection, Winter Sex (Verse Press, 2002) and the memoir Poker Face: A Girlhood Among Gamblers (Crown, 2003), which Publishers Weekly included on its list of the Best Nonfiction Books of the Year and Esquire Magazine named one of its eight Best Books of the Year. Her second poetry book, The Heaven-Sent Leaf will be out with BOA Editions in the fall of 2008.

Katy Lederer's poems and prose have appeared in The American Poetry Review, Boston Review, Harvard Review, GQ, and elsewhere. She has been anthologized in Body Electric (Norton), From Poe to the Present: Great American Prose Poems (Scribner), and State of the Union (Wave Books), among other compilations.

Educated at the University of California at Berkeley and the Iowa Writers' Workshop, she serves as a Poetry Editor of Fence Magazine. Her honors and awards include an Academy of American Poets Prize, fellowships from Yaddo, MacDowell, and the New York Foundation for the Arts, and a Discover Great New Writers citation from Barnes & Noble's Discover Great New Writers Program.

Lederer currently works at the D.E. Shaw group, a proprietary trading firm based in New York City.

Me, a Brainworker

Me, a brainworker toiling in pristine white hallways.
Abnormal, aboriginal, endemic to this site.
Some people sell their wares outside.
In the pulsating light of Times Square they are singing.
In their noses and nipples, the glinting of rings.
Let us call them unoriginal.
Let us call them all these awful things.
The busy unoriginals are throwing out their trash,
But on this lovely parchment they are writing priceless poems.
They suppose that by such rendering they'll be remembered after death.
They suppose that by such influence their souls will sing eternally.
In the hallways, we are killing time,
Its blood now thick and lurid on the freshly painted walls.

Rebecca Morrison (aka Eskimo Pie Girl) graduated summa cum laude from UC Davis. She has published 5 chapbooks. She was the former VP of the Sacramento Poetry Center, was one of the founding editors of Poetry Now, and is currently one of the hosts for the SPC reading series. She has been the editor of eskimopie.net for 7 years. She has been running the 3rd Sunday Writer's Group with Nancy Wallace since 1995. She has given over a 100 readings and has read her poetry in Sacramento, Davis, Boston, New York, Los Angeles, Seattle, San Francisco, Lodi, Stockton, Reno, Auburn, Nevada City, El Dorado Hills, New Hampshire, Fresno and elsewhere

Why I Could Never Be a Saint

My desire bounds through the daffodils
like a jackrabbit.
I hoard memories and moments like marbles,
never giving them to those less fortunate.
My ecstasy is not reserved for God,
I throw it away
carelessly in the afternoon
to an emerald hummingbird.
I gorge myself
on carnal sensations,
burning myself in the mid-day sun,
drunk on robin song.
I offer devotions
to the glorious morning,
already rich and brilliant.
I supplicate
in front of its opening golden petals.
I forsake the path
for the open fields and forest,
sacrificing all thoughts
of the promised land
for a temporary handful of lavender.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

November Calendar of Literary Events

Sacramento Area Literary Events; November, 2008

Mon, 11/3 [Camille Norton hosts]: Jan Beatty @spc, 7:30 pm

Tues, 11/4, 7:30 pm and every Tuesday: SPC Poets' Workshop @ the Hart Cntr, 27th/J sts. Danyen@ 530-756-6228 FREE bring 15 copies of your one page poem to be read/critiqued.

Tuesday, 11/4 and Every Tuesday 7 p.m. - "Life Sentence" poetry reading and open mic. The Coffee Garden, 2904 Franklin Blvd., Sac. http://www.myspace.com/lifesentenceshow

Wed, 11/5, 8:40 pm Mahogany Poetry Series, and every Wed night at Queen Sheba restaurant @ 1704 Broadway, with Khiry Malik Moore, open mic and feature.

Wed, 11/5, The Bistro, 3rd and F Streets in Davis, 1st and 3rd Wednesdays. Free. 530.756.4556 aojones@ucdavis.edu
http://www.bistro33.com/bistro33_davis for schedule

Thurs, 11/6 and every Thurs 8pm, Open Mike and featured poet at Lunas Café -- Feature TBA

Friday, 11/7, 7:00 - 9:00 pm, 1719 25th Street at HQ for the Arts. Free & Family-Friendly. Featuring Bob Stanley, Rebecca Morrison, Jenny Jiang, & Jeff Knorr. Hosted by Cynthia Linville.

Sat, 11/8 and every 1st Sat- Rhythm N Rhymes: open mike, webcast & filmed for public TV @ Butch N Nellie's, near corner of 19th & I. myspace.com/RNRshow

Sat, 11/8 10-11:30, SPC 2nd and 4th Saturday workshop facilitated by Emmanuel Sigauke and Frank Dixon Graham located at South Natomas Community Centernext door to South Natomas Library, 2921 Truxel Road, Sacramento, CA. Bring 10 copies of your one page poem. contact or for info: grahampoet@aol.com

Mon, 11/10 [Emmanuel Sigauke hosts]: Edward Mycue and Nancy Keane @spc, 7:30pm

Wed, 11/12, 7:30 PM: Rattlesnake Press releases a new rattlechap from Red Fox Underground Poet Wendy Patrice Williams (Some New Forgetting); a littlesnake broadside from South Lake Tahoe Poet Ray Hadley;a 2009 calendar from Katy Brown (Beyond the Hill: A Poet’s Calendar) as well as Conversations, Vol. 4 of B.L. Kennedy’s Rattlesnake Interview Series.@ The Book Collector, 1008 24th St., Sacramento. Free; refreshments and a read-around will follow; bring your own poems or somebody else's. Info: kathykieth@hotmail.com

Mon, 11/17, 730pm Ann Privateer and Edythe Schwartz will read at the SPC HQ 1719 25th St., Sac followed by an open mike.

Fri, 11/21, 7:30 to 9:00 The OtherVoice, sponsored by the UU Church of Davis presents the dynamic husband/wife team, Susan and Joseph Finkleman. @ the church library located at 27074 Patwin Road. Refreshments and Open Mike follow so bring along a poem to share.

Sat, 11/22, 10-11:30, SPC 2nd and 4th Saturday workshop facilitated by Emmanuel Sigauke and Frank Dixon Graham located at South Natomas Community Centernext door to South Natomas Library2921 Truxel Road, Sacramento, CA. Bring 10 copies of your one page poem. contact or for info: grahampoet@aol.com

Mon, 11/24 [Tim Kahl hosts]: Connie Post and Janet Smith at SPC, 7:30 pm

Coming Soon:

Indigo Moor and
Jeanne Wagner
will read their poetry
in midtown Sacramento,
for the SPC, Location TBA,
Monday, December 29, 2008 @ 7:30pm

Thursday, October 16, 2008


Dan Bellm, Terry Ehret and Gillian Wegener
of Sixteen Rivers Press
Monday, Oct. 20, 2008 at 7:30 PM
1719 25th Street

Dan Bellm’s third book of poetry, Practice, came out from Sixteen Rivers Press in March 2008. His first, One Hand on the Wheel, launched the California Poetry Series from Roundhouse Press; his second, Buried Treasure, won the Poetry Society of America’s DiCastagnola Award and the Cleveland State University Poetry Center Prize. His work has appeared in Poetry, Ploughshares, Threepenny Review, Best American Spiritual Writing, and Word of Mouth: An Anthology of Gay American Poetry. He is also a widely published translator of poetry and fiction from Spanish. He lives in San Francisco.

Every seventh year you shall practice remission of debts.
Deuteronomy 15:1

How simple it ought to be, to practice compassion
on someone gone, even love him, long as he’s not
right there in front of me, for I turned to address him,
as I do, and saw that no one’s lived in that spot
for quite some time. O turner-away of prayer —
not much of a God, but he was never meant to be.
For the seventh time I light him a candle; an entire
evening and morning it burns; not a light to see
by, more a reminder of light, a remainder, in a glass
with a prayer on the label and a bar code from the store.
How can he go on? He can’t. Then let him pass
away; he gave what light he could. What more
will I claim, what debt of grace he doesn’t owe?
If I forgive him, he is free to go.

First evening prayer

It is possible
even in the darkness —

no, it is
more possible —

that is when your messenger
comes to me,

who has walked unappearing beside me
like starlight in the day,

angel that lives in the dust
of the earth, and knows

the distance of time, and the terrible
space between one human

and another,
that can hardly be crossed —

in the dark the messenger
cries, lift

your eyes up —
what I am dreaming I am seeing,

it is coming to be —
and climbs a coil, a rope,

a spinning ladder
that is the way

into day
in the night,

a place of God I didn’t know,
here at the foot of it,

the root of the tree,
not for me to ascend

but to pray to you in the dark,
that you have brought down

the infinite to me
when my head lay on a stone,

one earth wheeling
among the millions of your stars.

Terry Ehret is a poet and teacher, as well as one of the founders of Sixteen Rivers Press, a nonprofit, shared-work publishing collective representing poets of the San Francisco Bay Area watershed. She has published three collections: Lost Body (1993), Translations from the Human Language (2001), and most recently Lucky Break (2008). Literary awards include the National Poetry Series, the Commonwealth Club of California Book Award, and the Nimrod/ Hardman Pablo Neruda Poetry Prize. In 1997, as the writer-on-site at the Oakland Museum of California, she created a poetry audio tour for the Gallery of California Art; and from 2004-2006, she served as Sonoma County Poet Laureate. She has taught writing at San Francisco State and Sonoma State Universities, California College of the Arts, Santa Rosa Junior College, and with the California Poets in the Schools Program. She currently leads private workshops in Sonoma County, California, where she lives with her family.

Sample Poems from Lucky Break

Lucky Break

A white marble wheel

has many uses: travel,

for example, or shaping clay;

a simple lathe but, like any tool,

needing balance. Else

the center, which is empty,

cannot hold, lets loose

its own purpose,

fragments flying untethered

from any force centripetal,

explodes its form, stone

wheeling, broken

into clavicle and pelvis,

petal and wing,

like disaster,

like the first creation:

joy and death spilling

from the cracked jar — ah!

the thing it isn’t and

ah! the thing it yet

might be.

What It’s About

with thanks to Allen Ginsberg

Spring is about standing in the dark under the darker eucalyptus

and feeling the future like an ache in the throat,

in the lungs like drowning,

like waiting in silence for the bombs to fall.

Bombs are about who’s lying and who’s counting, and counting

is about numbers we agree to. Agreeing

is about investing your money in the same things.

Money is about money and also about what you don’t have.

Not having is about pain and pain is about being broken each year,

being broken by promises by grace by the bursting

seed-pods of deceit

and telling ourselves we will heal or if we cannot

telling ourselves it’s our place to be stupid and broken.

Our place is about three cars in the driveway

and streetlights and sidewalks

and sidewalks are about what’s worth protecting.

Protection is about terror and destruction and inevitable suffering

and suffering is always

about birth, about stains and mystery

and mysteries are always about the silence

the aweful, chilling silence that fills the right now before

whatever is about to happen happens.
March 18, 2003

How Words Began

Crab: from Old German krabben, originally Greek graphein, “to write”

Some say it began with a crab

scuttling sideways and clickety across the rocks —

across glistening gray-black sand. And a man

standing on the rocks and following,

first with his eyes, then with his feet,

the marks indented and dimpling the wet

tongue of the shore. A man wanting much

to hold the sun still, to lock the

here and missing here and missing sea.

A man turned over and over by the ends

of feelings, the light fleeing and returning,

the deep-in-the-bones ache pulling the living

from the dead each spring. Just such a man, kneeling

in the black-gray graphite sand, traced

with his finger the memory

of crab, of ragged claws, of urgent

return to salt.

House and Universe

To mount too high or descend too low is allowed in the case of poets who bring earth and sky together.

The first walls are a great animal sleeping inside the sound of the heart. Sound of the rain. Breath.

The second walls are far, like what is near in a fever. So far away there is no sense of wall, only odors and voices, and the very smallness of the self.

The third walls take you back to the first. To sleep. To dreams. And these are the walls you eventually fall through. This is when you learn what your lungs are for and how alone you are inside your pain.

The fourth walls are everywhere, and you can move among them, listening to the talk of a green bird in a cage. Or you lie on your back and turn them upside down and spend the evening alone and calling. Inside these walls are the spaces that might be yours. One day you make a little version of the world on a scale you can lean above. You stand in the hall with the green bird in the cage beside you, opening and closing the gate you’ve made in this world, and this is when you begin to know who you are.

The fifth walls are full of ghosts. When you sleep inside these walls it is hard to know which world you are walking in. These walls are old, and they are where your dreams will come from for a long time. Inside these walls you carry an invisible thing you don’t yet know how to name, even when it greets you, resting its cold hand on your back as you climb the stairs. You don’t speak of it, but each time you come back inside these walls, it moves close to you.

Inside the sixth walls you take your books, turning over each page where the invisible thing you carried home from the ghosts takes on voices and shapes and tells you stories about yourself. These walls are old and high, and here you discover how small a woman is supposed to be, and how big your ghosts are. You begin to write back to them and all the empty space you find you can fill with what you want to say,

and saying makes around you the seventh walls. Words that pull the white peaks of the sky together, a roof the rain now beats down on, that the creek rises beside. House of wind. House of water. Sound of the heart. The rain.

Fears in Solitude

Coleridge, alone and afraid, wanted to

cry out. Instead he grew angry

at the way politicians juggled the name

of God. Instead he grew sick

of the owlet atheism hooting in the twilight.

Instead he took long walks in the country

with William and Dorothy, packed his books

and left England to take long walks in Germany

with Kant and Goethe. Everything hurt him.

Everything he loved turned away. In his sleep,

a wind was blowing, and it brushed the strings

of his fears. Waking, he moved among

the shadows of figures that shone bright

in those dreams. If there is a God, he thought,

we are His severed hands, playing

a brutal music He cannot stop,

and cannot help but hear.

Gillian Wegener is the author of The Opposite of Clairvoyance, published by Sixteen Rivers Press in 2008. She’s had poems published in numerous journals, including Runes, English Journal, americas review, and In the Grove. A chapbook, Lifting One Foot, Lifting the Other was published by In the Grove Press in 2001, and she was awarded top prizes by the Dorothy Sargent Rosenberg Foundation for 2006 and 2007. Wegener works as a junior high English teacher in California’s Central Valley. She lives with her husband and daughter in Modesto.


So you have trouble shifting,
have trouble, are troubled,
you can’t quite manage how to make the leap,
even if it is not a leap really, but just a step,
or not even that, maybe a sitting up rather
than a lying down. Yes, if you have trouble
because you imagined her face so differently,
and now she is in front of you and her hair
is not even close to the fine perfection
you carried in your mind, not the auburn
you had pictured, and her eyes are misaligned
but so slightly it’s not worth mentioning. And
now she is in front of you, right here in front of you,
and you are married, and in the other room
of this house that you always thought would be
bigger and more rustic, in the other room, there is
a child whom you assumed would play the cello,
or at least the guitar, but mostly the kid
seems to stare out the window. The kid is a dreamer.
And that wasn’t the plan. And you go off to work
every day and stare at yourself staring back at yourself
in the train window and are surprised because,
boy-oh-boy, is it hard to make the shift between
all that you imagined (you were a dreamer) and
all that really is, and could that really be you...
the guy with the tie and the crow’s feet and the glasses
in which there is an even smaller reflection of you
staring back in disbelief.


The woods are oaks and spread their woody fingers over us.
Paint peels on the aging signs, this one a toothy squirrel
holding up a paw: You must be this tall to ride alone.
The girl running the carousel is a madonna, that serene.
Tickets are 10 for 10 dollars and curl in the hand like a pet.
Music falls out of the smaller trees, splashes and evaporates.
You must be this tall to ride alone on the child-sized roller coaster,
the tilt-a-whirl, on mini airplanes, on dervishing tea cups hot to the touch.
The bumper cars are broken, heaped together in a junkyard pile, and
the painted eyes on the squirrel are the almost-blue of skim milk.
The boy running the roller coaster can’t stop looking at the carousel madonna
while her horses lift up and down, leather reins worn to brittle strips.
The airplanes have names like Thunderbird and Thundercloud and
there’s no waiting in line here. Two kids on that ride, one on this.
Under the roller coaster, weeds with feathery leaves bend and flower.
Music falls out of trees and into our laps, a little sticky, a little cool.
The rides click and whir, creak to stops, jolt to starts.
The oaks spread their woody fingers and pattern the pavement.
The roller coaster boy has left his post and whispers his plans
into the carousel girl’s benevolent ear. She smiles, still serene, and
takes the curled ticket of a child who runs to find the perfect horse,
who cannot imagine a more shining moment than this.

Friday, October 10, 2008


In association with the worldwide effort organized by the Internationales Literaturfestival Berlin, a devoted crowd turned up at the Sacramento Poetry Center to celebrate the life and work of internationally-recognized Palestinian poet Mahmoud Darwish.

Shining brightly on the wall via an LCD projector was this handbill designed by Richard Hansen who unfortunately could not attend the event.

Many of the readers commented on the issues of struggle with identity in Darwish's work. His identity as a Palestinian born in al-Birwa in Western Galilee had been stripped from him as a result of Israel's non-recognition of individuals who had fled the area during the 1948 siege (when Darwish was 7 years old). This oppression impacted him throughout his life, lived largely in exile after he graduated from high school. His unofficial status resonated with many Palestinians who experienced the same fate. His statement in a poem written in 1962 "Put this in your record: I exist" served as a battle cry and galvanized his reputation. He served as an example of Palestinian identity in his refusal to accept the non-status conferred upon him by the state of Israel.

In much of his work Darwish makes claims of identity only to have them be undermined later in the work. There is little denying that in these undermined assertions of identity his experience is similar to those whose lives go unnoticed, those who are impoverished, those who have been detained, those who continue to fight to have their interests be acknowledged.

In spirit and in word, readers at the Sacramento Poetry Center did their best to pay homage to Darwish's persistent struggle.

Frank Graham reads "Passport"

Soren Kahl reads "Psalm Three"

Zaid Shlah reads from Memory For Forgetfulness

William O' Daly reads "Drought"

Rosalie Amer reads "Two Olive Trees"

Carmela Ruby reads "Here the Birds' Journey Ends"

by Mahmoud Darwish

Here the birds’ journey ends, our journey, the journey of words,
and after us there will be a horizon for the new birds.
We are the ones who forge the sky’s copper, the sky that will carve roads
after us and make amends with our names above the distant cloud slopes.
Soon we will descend the widow’s descent in the memory fields
and raise our tent to the final winds: blow, for the poem to live, and blow
on the poem’s road. After us, the plants will grow and grow
over roads only we have walked and our obstinate steps inaugurated.
And we will etch on the final rocks, “Long live life, long live life,”
and fall into ourselves. And after us there’ll be a horizon for the new birds.

(Translated, from the Arabic, by Fady Joudah.)

Poets read many of Darwish's works in English from Fady Joudah's translations from the Arabic in The Butterfly's Burden and Memory For Forgetfulness translated by Ibrahim Muhawi. Some even read some original pieces written for the event:

The Ringtones of Palestine

Is the dream then what forgetfulness chooses? — Mahmoud Darwish

The surplus births of Nablus yearn
to possess any kind of dawn,
yet they are told they threaten
the garden with their ringtones,
their rats’ instincts to chew through
cement walls. Just one rat in
the garden will kill the chickpeas’
peace. Then the aroma of cardamom
fails in the alleys; faces
the clouds cannot model
disappear into a lengthy silence . . .
a phone interrupts. It is The Star of
the East singing something she
promised to the Arab poor.
Another phone plays the song
a piano in Tel Aviv made
when it visited Ramallah.
It visits me here where I belong to
the land of the price of petroleum,
weighed down by my worries
about being able to consume . . .
Maybe I forget what I’m searching for
when I stop in front of the display
cases. Maybe I forget how to dream
in color. Maybe I will never find
the perfect shade of blue for this
room, but it is patient with me.
One dream attaches to another,
and they occupy my memory of
everything I’ve neglected.
One dream attaches to a distant music,
a ringtone in someone’s pocket
rehearsing its tune, the song of
everyone whose homeland
has been surgically removed.

by Tim Kahl

Snatches of audio (his recital of "The Mask Has Fallen") and video were played to lend Darwish's presence to the proceedings, and all who attended left heartened by the notion that one important dissident voice had been honored and that for one Sunday evening Sacramento did not feel so isolated.

Thanks to all who came and those who participated.

Wednesday, October 08, 2008


Home-town favorite Susan Kelly-DeWitt read before a packed SRO house at the Sacramento Poetry Center. the reading was a long overdue "launch" reading for her book The Fortunate Islands.

She started the reading with Czeslaw Milosz's "In Music." She then read from her own body of work: "Inventing Anna," "Middle Mountains," "Credo," "Corporal Blood," "The Day Gandhi Died," "Whiskey Nights," "Migraine," "The Snail," "How Will My Soul Get Free?" "Country Ghost," "Amherst."

Then she fielded some questions and read some poems from some of her upcoming manuscripts: "Three Nights," "How the River Sleeps (inspired by Kathleen Lynch)," "Shadow Box Cross (for Maggie Jimenez)," "O Keefe's Jack-in-the-Pulpit #2," "Tabletop Zen Garden: Eight Stones," "Morro Bay Sketch," and "Gatherer's Alphabet."

Susan Kelly-Dewitt reads "Tabletop Zen Garden: Eight Stones"

Susan Kelly-Dewitt reads "Morro Bay Sketch"

Susan Kelly-Dewitt reads "Gatherer's Alphabet"

Tuesday, October 07, 2008

Halloween Poetry Bash

a special reading produced by the
sacramento poetry center workshop
Halloween Poetry Bash
with Joe Wenderoth
and other funky poets

A Party and Poetry Reading
Hosted by Frank Graham
and the Sacramento Poetry Center
Friday -- October 31, 2008: 7pm – 9pm,
Acceptable for Most Children and the Weak of Heart -- After 9pm, this Reading Continues Until Hell Visits this Earth with a Burning Fury
1719 25th St. (between Q and R streets)
Free * Open to the Public * Refreshments
contact: grahampoet@aol.com for more info

Come in your Silly, Scary or Sexy Costume

Friday, October 03, 2008

Sacramento Poetry Center

Susan Kelly-DeWitt
A reading for The Fortunate Islands

Monday Oct. 6, 2008 at 7:30 PM
Host: Tim Kahl

Susan Kelly-DeWitt is the author of a full-length collection, THE FORTUNATE ISLANDS (Marick Press) and five previous chapbooks: A CAMELLIA FOR JUDY (Frith Press, 1998), FEATHER’S HAND (Swan Scythe Press, 2000), TO A SMALL MOTH (Poet’s Corner Press, 2001), Susan Kelly-DeWitt’s GREATEST HITS (Pudding House, 2003), THE LAND (Rattlesnake Press, 2005) and a letterpress collection, THE BOOK OF INSECTS (Spruce Street Press, 2003). Her most recent chapbook, CASSIOPEIA ABOVE THE BANYAN TREE appears online as Mudlark 33 and will be released in an expanded print version from Rattlesnake Press in September, 2007.

Her work has been included in national and regional anthologies such as CLAIMING THE SPIRIT WITHIN (Beacon Press), I’VE ALWAYS MEANT TO TELL YOU, LETTERS TO OUR MOTHERS (Pocket Books), TO FATHERS: WHAT I’VE NEVER SAID, AN ANTHOLOGY OF LETTERS TO FATHERS (Story Line Press), O TASTE AND SEE (Bottom Dog Press), HIGHWAY 99 (Heyday Books), and WORDS AND QUILTS (Quilt Digest Press, 1996); her poems have appeared in Poetry, Prairie Schooner, New Letters, North American Review, Rosebud, Cutbank, Nimrod, Women’s Studies Quarterly, Iris, Comstock Review, Oxymoron, Yankee, Runes, Poet Lore, Smartish Pace, Cimarron Review, Spoon River Quarterly, Hawaii Review and Passages North, among many others. Her short story “The Audience” is forthcoming as an illustrated chapbook (Spring 2007) from Uptown Books. She has been featured on Writer’s Almanac and Verse Daily; her other honors include a Wallace Stegner Fellowship from Stanford University, The Chicago Literary Award from Another Chicago Magazine, the Bazzanella Award for Short Fiction and a number of Pushcart nominations. She is a member of the National Book Critics Circle and the Northern California Book Reviewers Association; her essays, interviews, reviews and creative non-fiction have appeared in Poetry Now, Small Press Review, Perihelion and GARDENING AT A DEEPER LEVEL (Garden House Press, 2004); she also has reviews forthcoming in Poetry Flash.

Over the years she has worked as a freelance writer and poetry columnist for the Sacramento Bee and Sacramento Union, as the editor of the on-line journal Perihelion and the print journal Quercus; she has been a California Poet-in-the-Schools, the program director of an arts program for homeless women, an educator, and an artist in the prisons. She lives in Sacramento, California, where she is an editor of Swan Scythe Press, an exhibiting visual artist and an instructor for the University of California, Davis Extension.

Red Hills and Bone

In the Lotus Garden Restaurant,
a man overturns the cluttered table
for six where his family is gathered.
He grabs the lip

Of the table and flips it quickly, like
a child flips a bug, so the underbelly
of rough pine appears but the napkins
vanish, so the tablecloth’s

lilies clamp their petals and the scooped
China moons, heaped with noodles and exquisite
fish, swim to the floor, so the chopsticks
un-X themselves from the thick

dragon plates and the glassware shatters,
so the tea in its rice-seed cups spatters
jasmine over the stunned waiter’s shoes.
This is the precise moment —

as the man’s face pulses with sudden
rage; as the throng in the restaurant
swivels its many faces burning in unison
toward them, one blank questioning

sun; as the waiters in their spotless
white aprons begin to flutter and circle
like scavenging gulls — this is exactly
the moment when the family climbs

the blood red hills, determined
to disappear into them, to leave no trace —
erasing themselves like soft wood chips
into fire; leaving the fury of the man

far behind; leaving him alone
to inhabit his desert
skull’s wildness
like a vestigial bone.

October Calendar of Events!

Wed, 10/1, 8pm Mahogany Poetry Series, and
every Wed night at Queen Sheba restaurant
@ 1704 Broadway, with Khiry Malik M., Slam,

Wed, 10/1, Th e Bistro, 3rd and F Streets in Davis,
1st and 3rd Wednesdays. Free. 530.756.4556
aojones@ucdavis.edu http://www.bistro33.
com/bistro33_davis for schedule

Thurs, 10/2 and every Th urs 8pm, Open Mike and
featured poet at Lunas Café -- Feature TBA

Sat, 10/4 and every 1st Sat- Rhythm N Rhymes:
open mike, webcast & fi lmed for public TV
@ Butch N Nellie’s, near corner of 19th & I.

Tues, 10/7, 7:30 pm and every Tuesday: SPC
Poets’ Workshop @ the Hart Cntr, 27th/J sts.
Danyen@ 530-756-6228 FREE bring 15 copies
of your one page poem to be read/critiqued.

Every Tuesday 7 p.m. - “Life Sentence” poetry reading
and open mic. Th e Coff ee Garden, 2904
Franklin Blvd., Sac. http://www.myspace.com/

Wed, 10/8, 7:30 PM Rattlesnake Press will release
a new rattlechap from MOIRA MAGNESON
(He Drank Because) and a littlesnake
broadside from HATCH GRAHAM (Circling of
the Pack) Refreshments and a read-around will
follow; bring your own poems or somebody
else’s. Info: kathykieth@hotmail.com/. Th e
Book Collector, 1008 24th St.,Sacramento

Fri, 10/10, 7:00pm Second Friday Poetry Reading
at Th e Vox (gallery & cafe) 19th & X Street,
Sacramento. Free & Family-Friendly Featuring
Kathy Keith, James DenBoer, Andy Jones &
more. Hosted by Cynthia Linville.

Sat, 10/11 10-11:30, SPC 2nd and 4th Saturday
workshop facilitated by Emmanuel Sigauke
and Frank Dixon Graham located at South
Natomas Community Center next door to
South Natomas Library 2921 Truxel Road,
Sacramento, CA. Bring 10 copies of your one
page poem. contact or for info: grahampoet@

Fri, 10/17, 7:30, Th e Other Voice presents Ray
Coppock and Deborah Thomas. Refreshments
and open mike follow. UU Church of Davis

Wed. 10/22 4:10 PM FRANK DAVEY poet/critic/theorist
UC DAVIS Reading in Voorhies 126
Sponsored by: Departments of English, and Theatre and Dance

Monday 10/24 SPC Presents Katy Lederer and Rebecca Morrison. Host: Tim Kahl
7:30 PM 1719 25th Street

Sun, 10/26, 11am, El Camino Poets meet at the
Ethel Hart Senior Center @ 27th and J streets
for a poetry workshop. Bring 8 copies of your
poems for critique. All poets welcome

Monday., 10/27 SPC Presents Meg Withers and Tom Goff. Host: Tim Kahl
7:30 PM 1719 25th Street

Thursday, Oct. 30, 8 PM, Rattlesnake Press will
hold a reading at Luna’s Cafe to release two
SpiralChaps to honor and celebrate Luna’s,
including a new collection of art and poetry
from B.L. KENNEDY (Luna’s House of Words);
and an anthology of Luna’s poets, artists and
photographs (La Luna: Poetry Unplugged at
Luna’s Café) edited by FRANK ANDRICK.
Luna’s Café, 1414 16th St., Sacramento. Info:

Halloween Poetry Bash -- October 31,
2008, begins at 7pm at the SPC HQ 1719
25th St., Sacramento with Poet and UC Davis
Professor Joe Wenderoth