See you in 2020.
First session will be Monday, January 6th.
Happy New Year !
Monday, December 23, 2019
Monday, December 16, 2019
12/23/19 Aileen Cassinetto hosted by Gary
Aileen Cassinetto is the first Asian-American appointed to the post of Poet Laureate of San Mateo County. Having grown up in the Philippines during Martial Law, she seeks not only to make poetry more accessible to people in their everyday lives, but to advocate for social justice and diversity. Widely anthologized, she is the author of the poetry collections, Traje de Boda andThe Pink House of Purple Yam Preserves & Other Poems, as well as three chapbooks through Moria Books’ acclaimed Locofo series. Aileen is also the publisher of Paloma Press, an independent literary press established in 2016 which has released 17 books to date.
Hate is lead-wrapped
follows a corkscrew path
all 1/25th of a human heart
to tear apart skin, sinew
bone, prized tissue
rips as it leaves
a bleeding vessel that is
the weight of someone’s love.
Monday, December 9, 2019
12/16/19 Andrena Zawinski hosted by Bruce
Photo Credit: Don Dutra
Andrena Zawinski’s latest poetry collection, Landings, is from Kelsay Books (Hemet, CA). She has published two previous full collections of poetry: Something About (Blue Light Press, San Francisco, CA), a PEN Oakland Josephine Miles Award recipient, and Traveling in Reflected Light (Pig Iron Press, Youngstown, O), a Kenneth Patchen competition winner. She has also authored four chapbooks and is editor of Turning a Train of Thought Upside Down: An Anthology of Women’s Poetry (Scarlet Tanager Books, Oakland, CA). Her poems have received accolades for free verse, form, lyricism, spirituality, and social concern. She founded and runs the San Francisco Bay Area Women’s Poetry Salon and is Features Editor at PoetryMagazine.com.
In Landings, Zawinski presents poems that embrace, in original ways and with deep-rooted emotional power, the worldwide condition of women, immigrants, and the working class alongside an abiding reverence for the natural world. Of this work, Jan Beatty says Zawinski is the necessary voice of the truth teller, speaking trouble among the beauty. Rebecca Foust lauds the collection as a book that offers wisdom and solace and one you will take comfort in reading again and again. Carolyne Wright goes on to say in these Landings, she embraces the richness of human experience and praises the courage of those who go on ‘living as if they could do anything.’
poem recited with images:
Sun spills silver stars of light along rippling summer waves.
A string of pelicans wing the horizon,
light in flight for all their heft.
Children squeal and squirm inside their plastic inflatable.
One slips over the side, feigns drowning, splashing and kicking,
holding onto his crying sister, jumps back in to tickle her side––
all of them then swimming in giggles and smiles in frolic and fun,
family picnicking at the shore, waving from bright beach towels.
Other children, roped onto rafts in flimsy life jackets, float in
from Aleppo across the Aegean away from bombs and bullets
to find a way out, forge a way in, whole families cattled
by smugglers, squeezed in dozens deep. But those who slip
into this dark sea cannot be rescued with innocent teasing and mirth.
A three-year-old washes up onto the beach face down on the sand,
limp body leaden in his father’s arms,
water lapping the wounded shore.
Reunion Dallas Review, Vol 6, 2017. Univ. of Texas, Dallas, TX
Monday, December 2, 2019
12/9/19 Becky Bishop White hosted by Jim
The east coast, the SF Bay Area, and Lake Tahoe are threaded throughout the poetry of Becky Bishop White. An emerging poet, Becky won the 2019 First Prize in the Benicia Love Poetry Contest for her poem, Flying Start, and was Second Place winner for an unpublished poem, Ghost Fleet, at the 2019 Solano County Fair. Becky lives in Benicia with her husband, author James W. White, who is her very best friend.
ALIGNMENTTo try to set a problem rightrequires courage. Some mightthink to leave or just poutin silence, but to talk it outor try for a hug is huge.You are no longer fugitivefrom your best self.You have broken the spellthat makes you think ‘other.’But it’s not really anotherwho aligns with you.Here is what is true:The soul who makes peace is nearerto the person in the mirror.© Becky Bishop White