Tuesday, August 15, 2017

Cassandra Dallett features August 21

8/21/2017 Cassandra Dallett hosted by Bruce


(Need a prompt? "Skin" -- you don't have to use that word.)



Cassandra Dallett lives in Oakland, CA. Cassandra is a two-time Pushcart nominee and Literary Death Match winner. She has been published online and in many print magazines, such as Slip Stream, Sparkle and Blink, Chiron ReviewStone Boat Review, and Great Weather For Media and reads often around the San Francisco Bay AreaA full-length book of poetry Wet Reckless was released on Manic D Press May 2014. In 2015 she authored Bad Sandy (Lucky Bastard Press),Pearl Tongue (Be About It Press), The Water Wars (Pedestrian Poets Series), On Sunday, A Finch (Nomadic Press) which was nominated for a California Book Award, and most recently Armadillo Heart (Paper Press) with MK Chavez.

Tuesday, August 8, 2017

Avotcja features 8/14


8/14/2017 Avotcja hosted by Jim
(Need a prompt? "Walk around your block " -- you don't have to use those words.)




Avotcja has been published in English & Spanish in the USA, Mexico & Europe, and in more Anthologies than she remembers. She is an award winning Poet & multi-instrumentalist who has opened for Betty Carter in New York City, Peru's Susana Baca at San Francisco’s Encuentro Popular & Cuba’s Gema y Pável, played with Rahsaan Roland Kirk, Bobi & Luis Cespedes, John Handy, Sonido Afro Latina, Dimensions Dance Theater, Black Poets With Attitudes, Bombarengue, Nikki Giovanni, Los Angeles' Build An Ark, Dwight Trible, Diamano Coura West African Dance Co., Terry Garthwaite, Big Black, The Bay Area Blues Society & Caribeana Etc. Shared stages with Sonia Sanchez, Piri Thomas, Janice Mirikitani, Diane DiPrima, Michael Franti, Jayne Cortez, & with Jose Montoya's Royal Chicano Air Force & is a Bay Area icon with her group Avotcja & Modúpue.  Avotcja was the opening act for the legendary Poet Pat Parker the last three years of her life. She both composed & performed the film score for the Danish documentary MuNu. Her Poetry &/or music has been recorded by Piri Thomas, Famoudou Don Moyé (of The Art Ensemble Of Chicago), Bobby Matos Latin Jazz Ensemble, & performed by The Purple Moon Dance Project, and was the 1st Poetry performed by New York's Dance Mobile. She's appeared at The Lorraine Hansberry Theater in S. F., The Asian-American Jazz Festival in Chicago, as well as The Asian-American Jazz Festival in San Francisco.  She's been featured 5 times at Afro-Solo, twice at San Francisco's Carnival, The Scottish Rite Temple & Yoshi's in Oakland & San Francisco, Jose Castellar's play "Man From San Juan", Club Le Monmartre in Copenhagen Denmark, Stanford University, at San Francisco’s Brava Theater For The Arts with Cine Acción, New York's Henry Street Settlement Theater and The Women On The Way Festival in San Francisco. Avotcja a is popular Bay Area DeeJay & Radio Personality, and the founder/Director of "The Clean Scene Theater Project (AKA) Proyecto Teatral De La Escena Sobria". She continues to teach Creative Writing, Storytelling & Drama in Public Schools & thanks to the California Arts Council she was also an Artist in Residence at the Milestones Project & San Francisco Penal System. Avotcja is a proud member of DAMO (Disability Advocates Of Minorities  Organization), PEN Oakland, California Poets In The Schools,  IWWG & is an  ASCAP recording artist.

Tuesday, August 1, 2017

8/7 features David Alpaugh

8/7/2017 David Alpaugh hosted by Jan
(Need a prompt? "Spiral or Gyre " -- you don't have to use those words.)






David Alpaugh has been a booster of Bay Area poetry for many years as a publisher, poetry reading host, and publications director for the Ina Coolbrith Poetry Circle. He is a popular performer, noted for his with and humor and has been featured at northern California venues more than 150 times. His first collection, Counterpoint, won the Nicholas Roerich Poetry prize from Story Line Press. Journals that have published his poetry include Able Muse, American Journal of Poetry, Berkeley Poetry Review, Evergreen Review, Exquisite Corpse, Light, Mudlark, Poetry, Rattle, Runes, Spillway, Wisconsin Review, and Zyzzyva. His controversial essays on “Po-Biz” have appeared in The Chronicle of Higher Education, Poets & Writers, Rattle, and Scene4. He is one of the 50 contemporary poets included by Dana Gioia in the Heyday Press anthology California Poetry from the Gold Rush to the Present and he has been a finalist for Poet Laureate of California. He teaches literature and writing at the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute (OLLI) and for the UCB Extension.


Tuesday, July 25, 2017

Other People's Poems Guessing Game 7/31

7/31/2017 Maverick Night  hosted by Jan 

OPPS (Other People's PoemS)   




Bring 2 of your poems, we mix all up in a bag, grab one blind, everyone tries to guess whose it is.   Always fun.

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

Elaine Brown features July 24th

7/24/2017  Elaine Brown    hosted by J.D
(Need a prompt? "Key" -- you don't have to use that word.)




Elaine Brown – “E Spoken”

I have been writing ever since my Mother and siblings taught me how to hold a pen. I grew up listening to the stories my Grandmother and Mother would tell me about my family and their struggles wondering how I could change things. So, history and writing became my passion. I have been writing Free Style Poetry for almost 30 years combining past and present issues that affect our daily lives; motivating people to change their mindsets.

GOING FISHING

I feel like it’s Easter Sunday
The way we have gathered here today
So Please  allow me to take you to Church
I mean I do believe that one day
Black lives will matter
But the fact of the matter
When the word Nigger
Has more status then God
Then we need to do more than just march
Concerned with all the negative
Allowing media to raise our kids
And hate has become the foundation of our lives
The truth is the farthest thing from our minds
We’re so quick to defend the lies
And our future is hooked on these lines
That we have cast out!
So I’m Going Fishing!

Tuesday, July 11, 2017

Rose Mark features July 17th

7/17/2017 Rose Mark hosted by Bruce 
(Need a prompt? Explore how the sunset farts -- you don't have to use those words.)

Rose Mark’s curiosity has led her into many worlds.  Food, travel, behavioral shaping, interior design and erotica are just some of topics she has explored in her writing. In her book “Tasting Life”, published by Redhead Press, readers can enter into her love life with food through stories, poems and recipes. Her poems have been included in “Oakland Neighborhoods” and “Dirty Old Women”. Her latest book, “Interior Design for Small Dwellings” published by Routledge is slated to be on the shelf in 2018.  

Tuesday, July 4, 2017

Nadine Lockhart features July 10th

7/10/2017  Nadine Lockhart   hosted by Jim 




Nadine Lockhart received her MA and MFA from Arizona State University. She is currently working toward her PhD; for which she received the Lattie and Elva Coor Fellowship for Building Communities toward her research on the ability of poetry to transform into continued relevancy through hybridity and cultural relativism. This is serious stuff. Lockhart is an editorial assistant for Poetry Flash, a Berkeley-based literary review and calendar.


Self-Portrait with Shakespeare

 When you come for me I’m at the bottom
of a steep drive that I will climb each day
for the next year. And I’m mouthing your name
because I can’t hold it. You don’t want me
to hold it, don’t know it’s somewhere inside
like a pattern, a template from which you
rise—your voice, you love to hear how your sound
cuts across the air, pushes all other
conversation from the room, bench-presses
my world, throws it over the balcony
where I stand in heels tossing rotten food
onto treetops while reciting Shakespeare’s
better lines, “He who steals my purse, steals trash.”


                                                --Nadine Lockhart

Tuesday, June 27, 2017

Connie Post features July 3rd

7/3/2017 Connie Post  hosted by Jan
(Need a prompt? "Cold Mountain" -- you don't have to use those words.)



Connie Post served as Poet Laureate of Livermore, California  (2005 to 2009). Her work has appeared dozens of journals, including  Calyx, Comstock Review,Cold Mountain Review  Slipstream,Spillway Spoon River Poetry Review, Valparaiso Poetry Review and Verse Daily. She has written seven books of poetry.   Her first full length Book “Floodwater” (Glass Lyre Press 2014) won the Lyrebird Award.  Her other awards include the Caesura Award and the 2016 Crab Creek Review Poetry Award.

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Johanna Ely features 6/26 (Monday), 7pm


6/26/2017 Johanna Ely hosted by  hosted by J. D. 
(Need a prompt? "The Lower" -- you don't have to use those words.)



Johanna Ely is a retired teacher who has been published in several anthologies and online journals including, 



After the Storm

Sunlight,
wind,
children’s voices
in the alley.
Everything outside is
sharp and clear again,
a new lens with which to
look through and view
the silent green mountain
as close as my hand.
All the swollen grey clouds
blown off the surface of sky,
the wind’s breath really
a giant sigh of relief
to see blue again,
the promise that nothing
lasts forever-
not the rain,
not sorrow.

Johanna Ely

Tuesday, June 13, 2017

Friday, May 26, 2017

5/29/2017 Poetry Express "Challenge"

5/29/2017  Challenge: -- use the following opening line: "It’s Very Strange…." bring your completion of this into a poem. hosted by J. D. 

Tuesday, May 16, 2017

5/22/2017 Jeremy Cantor Features


5/22/2017 Jeremy Cantor    hosted by J. D. 
(Need a prompt? Read Jeremy's poem below and riff on it..)




Jeremy Cantor began writing shortly before retiring from a career in laboratory chemistry.  He has made and tested engine oil additives, detergents and pharmaceuticals, driven a forklift, worked in a full-body acid-proof hazmat suit, tried to keep his fingers working in a walk-in freezer at -40°F and worked behind radiation shielding. He prefers writing.

His debut collection, Wisteria From Seed, with a foreword by former Boston Globe Arts/Classical Music correspondent Michael Manning, was published in 2015 by Kelsey Books.  He is currently working on his second volume of poetry.

Jeremy's poems have appeared or are forthcoming in ISLE (Interdisciplinary Studies in Literature and the Environment, published in conjunction with Oxford University Press), The Naugatuck River Review, Glassworks, The Bicycle Review, Pirene's Fountain, Poetalk, and other journals. His poem "The Nietzsche Contrapositive," was awarded first prize in the Grey Sparrow Journal's 2014 Poetry and Flash Competition and appeared in Grey Sparrow's annual, Snow Jewel.   He was a semi-finalist in the competition for the 2016 Dartmouth Poet in Residence at The Frost Place in Franconia, New Hampshire.

​Wisteria from Seed

"Almost no one grows wisteria from seed,"
I told my sons.
"This one has a healthy set of leaves
so it ought to flower
in about ten years."

I'm sixty now.

A botany professor showed our class
a bamboo plant.  He said,
"This flowers every forty years.
I won't be here to finish the experiments
I might start now.
If any of you are planning graduate studies,
please see me after class.
I've got some ideas I'd like to try."

I never thought myself a man of faith
yet I grow wisteria from seed
while others study bamboo,
plant vineyards,
grow olives,
raise children.

© 2013 by Jeremy Cantor

All rights reserved

Tuesday, May 9, 2017

Joyce E. Young features 5/15/2017

5/15/2017 Joyce E. Young hosted by Jim
(Need a prompt? Convey a meaning without saying it; use imagry instead -- you don't have to use those words.)


Joyce E. Young currently lives and writes in Berkeley, California. She has read at venues as diverse as The M.H. de Young Museum, Intersection for the Arts, La Peña Cultural Center, Art & Soul Oakland, and Smith College, just to name a few. She has taught with California Poets in the Schools, The Museum of Children’s Art, The Oakland Museum of California, the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco and Youth Speaks. She was also an English teacher for the Mills College Upward Bound Program for 3 years. She is the founder and facilitator of Write in Peace. She has received grants from the California Arts Council and the Ludwig Vogelstein Foundation. She was awarded a Writers on Site residency through Poets & Writers, Inc. and has also been awarded writing residencies at Hedgebrook, Soapstone and Vermont Studio Center. Her work has most recently appeared in riverbabble, New Voices of the American West, and Temba Tupu! (Walking Naked): The Africana Woman’s Self-Portrait. She works privately as a writing consultant and with student writers at John F. Kennedy University. She is currently writing Parallel Journey, a novel, essays and poetry with her muse, President Cindy.

President Cindy’s Counter-offer 2017 (Excerpt)

Why worry my spleen, my mad?
I deserve a better gig
than holding these cinders

Fire has a purpose, but
not one I am always
able to understand.

I love to hold a torch,
which is not the same
as carrying a torch.

My mind swirls orange, red,
yellow, flame-like.
30 mph winds sweep through.

Fire’s wake requires tearing down
or rebuilding. Your choice.
I’ll wait; hold a cup of water.

Drink it slowly as you consider
my offer. Your hair is gray,
You don’t have much time.

Let me help you.

Tuesday, May 2, 2017

Juan Sequeira & Son Juan Carlos Sequeira feature 5/8/17



5/8/2017 Juan Sequeira & Son Juan Carlos Sequeira hosted by Jim

(Need a prompt? "Over Troubled Waters" -- you don't have to use those words.)






Juan R. Sequeira M.D. was born in Nicaragua. He was raised in the Mission District of San Francisco. He earned a Bachelor of Science degree from the University of San Francisco and obtained a Medical degree from the University of California at San Francisco. He is a practicing Physician. He has a lifelong interest in poetry. His work  appeared in Alive, Black Bear Review, Blue Unicorn,

California Poets, Carquinez Poetry, Mobius, Poet Talk, San Fernando Poetry, ZYZZYVA among others. Two collections, Marimba Dreams 1999, and Jaguar Footsteps 2006. 2017 1st place BAPC contest 2nd place Poets Dinner.


A Memory

My mother worked
behind a splintered counter
under the volcano breath
of the gold brushed sun

her thorn pierced hands
poured water into glasses
shaved melting ice blocks
served tropic fruit drinks
to sweat painted shoppers

lullaby nights by candlelight
raised me from crib playground
to the spring nest of her arms
kissed the leaves of my feet and

rocked me to the rosebud of sleep
  Juan Carlos Sequeira is a 13 year old boy who has been writing poetry for 3 years. He is a resident of Pleasant Hill and attends Christ the King Catholic School where he currently stands as a 7th grade student. He has been influenced to write poetry by his father and has been taught by him ever since he heard his first poem. He says he goes outside, inhales, and feels the breeze enter and escape his lungs. After that, he sits down, and looks around for a few minutes to absorb and observe the world’s beauty. Then will he be able to write poetry to express the world and his great love for it. Poetry has always seemed simple for him, as long as he is exposed to the great outdoors, in the presence of God’s creation.  


My Night Light


Your light dances around my shelter room

my heart feels protected under your cotton shade

happiness fills me as I look up

to glistening mirrors shining on my star

your metallic structured light

spilling on my barrier windows

I look to see the moon past my shudders 



and I realize it is safe to close my eyes