Monday, April 01, 2019

your april foolish annogram

So much to share. First, thanks to translator Chen Du, my poetry appears this month in the Chinese journal Yan He (“Yan River”). The Books Movie also features my reading from Free Ferry (Upper Hand Press, 2017); on Wednesday, writer Vinny Dacquino interviews me on his TV program One on One; and on Sunday, Yorktown Poet Laureate John McMullen and I kick off National Poetry Month on his radio show. But wait! There’s more….

A Gathering of Regional Poets

Come hear a dozen poets inaugurate the Hudson Highlands Poetry Reading Series, April 13 at 2pm, at the Desmond-Fish Library in Garrison. I am delighted to read with Sallie Bliumis-Dunn, Suzanne Cleary, Ann Lauinger, Jo Pitkin, and Margo Taft Stever; and to meet T.R. Hummer, Heller Levinson, Mary Newell, Kathleen Ossip, Sean Singer, and Edwin Torres. Thanks to Mary Newell for organizing this special event!

Dr. George Kraus
Sundays with George

I am equally honored to read with poet Kristin Prevallet and share the podium again with Margo Taft Stever at the Sundays with George Series at the Shames JCC on the Hudson, April 28 at 1:30pm. Hosted by poet Dr. George Kraus, the readings are always lively. Hope to see you there!

Enchantment of the Ordinary

So thrilled to be in the anthology, Enchantment of the Ordinary (Mutabilis Press). Isn't that what poets routinely do, find enchantment in the ordinary? Thanks to editor John Gorman for welcoming a Yankee into this celebration of Texas poets. I am honored to be in such a delightful volume with wonderful poets Michael Baldwin, Jim Lavilla-Havelin, and Linda Simone. Read it and you will be enchanted too.

The Hero

Thanks to poet and publisher Eric Greinke, one of the first reviewers of my Sanguinetti translation Hence this cradle (Seismicity Editions, 2007), who commented on the latest, The Hero (Chax Press, 2018): The Hero coaxes the reader on as it resists him. One searches for something to ground it, but it keeps us on the border between narrative and free association. The reference points brought up a vague idea of a story about a day after I finished it, kind of a ghost story. A combination of Finnegans Wake and the poetry of Artaud. The hero is the reader.

NEA Fellow Kerrin McCadden on John Mac Radio

Kerrin McCadden
Thanks to John McMullen for allowing me to crash his interview with this gifted poet. I loved learning how a French Symbolist, Celtic grandparents, and liturgy helped shape McCadden's poetry. She is the author of Landscape with Plywood Silhouettes (New Issues, 2014), which received the 2013 New Issues Poetry Prize as well as the 2015 Vermont Book Award. I can’t wait for her follow-up book!

Jeanette Briggs Spins Favorites

Jeanette Briggs
Great to hear Jeanette Briggs’s selections featured last month on the RetroRadio Friday 
Drive with Host Kenny O'Boyle on WFDU. Jeanette played It's a Beautiful Day’s "White Bird"; Tommy James and the Shondells’ "Crystal Blue Persuasion"; the Win-
stons’ "Color Him Father" ; and surprised Michael and me by dedicating Cream’s "White Room” to us!

New Releases

Ned Balbo, 3 Nights of the Perseids (University of Evansville Press)

Vincent Dacquino, Patriot Hero of the Hudson Valley (The History Press)

Pauletta Hansel, Coal Town Photograph (Dos Madres Press)

Katherine M. Hedeen and Víctor Rodríguez Núñez, editors, In The Drying Shed Of Souls: Poetry From Cuba's Generation Zero (The Operating System)

Heller Levinson, Un- (Black Widow Press) 

C.M. Mayo, Meteor (Gival Press)

Margo Taft Stever, Cracked Piano (CavanKerry Press) and Ghost Moose (Kattywompus Press)

Estha Weiner, at the last minute (Salmon Poetry)

Marta Zelwan, trans. Victoria Miluch, Śnienie / Dreaming (The Operating System)

Rosemary Potatoes

It’s spring, and you may be eating a lot of asparagus and artichokes, or at least that’s my wish for you. Here’s something delicious to accompany them from Ayurvedic Cooking for Westerners (Lotus Press, 1995) by Amadea Morningstar:

6 cups boiling water
6 medium red boiling potatoes or 8 new potatoes
1 Tablespoon chopped fresh rosemary
2 Tablespoons chopped fresh onion or leek
3 Tablespoons olive oil
1 teaspoon salt
white or black pepper

Wash potatoes, and pare out any eyes. Put in boiling water and cook until done, about 30 minutes. In large skillet, sauté onion or leek in olive oil. Drain and slice potatoes, keeping the peel on. Put them in skillet with onion or leek, and cook for 5-10 minutes. Add rosemary, salt, and pepper. Important: Cook until “a tad crispy.” You can also mash all the ingredients to make patties, place on a cooking sheet, and bake 10-15 minutes in a 350-degree oven.

Creative Opportunities

Edwin Torres
Edwin Torres writing workshop, four Saturday mornings in April, email

Pedestal is accepting poetry submissions from May 6 – May 26

Poetry Readings / Literary Events

Vijay Seshadri
Curley’s Diner, April 2, 7:30pm, Zilka Joseph

Bernard’s Inn, April 4, 12 noon, Pamela Hart, author of Mothers Over Nangarhar (Sarabande, 2019), three-course luncheon and reading, $35

Esther Raushenbush Library, April 5, 10:30am, Vijay Seshadri

Julia L. Butterfield Memorial Library, April 6, 3pm, poets Jo Pitkin, Lucia Cherciu, and Raphael Kosek

Westchester Poetry Festival, April 6, 1-4:30pm, Victoria Chang and others

Sarah Bracey White
Ossie Davis Theater, April 7, 3pm, Sarah Bracey White is one of a dozen writers performing original pieces on the subject of "My Library” for Read 650, $10

Katonah Library, April 7, 4pm, Major Jackson, $10

Mahopac Library, April 8, 6:30pm, Mahopac Poetry Workshop members read and open mic

Nyack Library, April 10, 7pm, the River Writers Circle members read
Heller Levinson

Barat House, April 11, 7pm, Terry Dugan, Katherine Flannery Dering, and Alex Lindquist

Desmond-Fish Library, April 13, 2-4pm, Ann Cefola, Suzanne Cleary, Sally Bliumis-Dunn, T.R. Hummer, Ann Lauinger, Heller Levinson, Mary Newell, Kathleen Ossip, Jo Pitkin, Sean Singer, Margo Taft-Stever, and Edwin Torres inaugurate the Hudson Highlands Poetry Reading Series

John C. Hart Library, April 13, 2pm, Yorktown Poetry Workshop members read

Hudson Valley Writers Center, April 19, 7pm, open mic

Chappaqua Station, April 26, 7pm, Jerry T. Johnson and guests celebrate National Poetry Month

Maureen Pilkington
Split Rock Books, April 26, 7pm, Heller Levinson launch of Un- (Black Widow Press)

Shames JCC on the Hudson, April 28, 1:30pm, Ann Cefola, Kristin Prevallet, and Margo Taft-Stever read in the Sundays with George Poetry Series; hosted by Dr. George Kraus

McNally Jackson, May 1, 7pm, Maureen Pilkington and Kevin Pilkington

ʼRound the Net

Racoco Productions Director Rachel Cohen on the debut of the Times-endorsed TILT, a live performance/construction swirling movement, wood, live music, tap dance, pinball, and Don Quixote

Poet Kwame Dawes on winning the $165K Windham-Campbell Prize

Poet Terry Dugan on work accepted into Cut Poems from Air: Poetry Inspired by Gwendolyn Brooks (Atrocious Poets)

Poet and YA author Pamela Laskin on winning the Leapfrog International's 2019 Contest for her YA novel Why No Bhine-Or Why No Good-Bye, forthcoming this fall from Leapfrog Press


Asturias Public Television News

Poet and artist Meg Lindsay on her poem, “What They Don’t Tell You” appearing in Pulse; and her work being featured in the upcoming RiverArts Studio Tour on April 27-28


Books Movie Producer María Luisa López on La Fonoteca de Poesía being highlighted on Public Television News in Asturias, Spain


Poet Mary McCray for this podcast on digital lit with indigenous sci-fi writer Brian Hudson

Art historian and translator Beth Gersh-Nešić on the launch of the André Salmon blog and for this fantastic interview with New Wave director Agnès Varda

Richard Wright (1908-1960)
HBO Films for a new version of Richard Wright’s Native Son

Photographer and poet Michael Holstein on this video of his reminiscences of mid-century Miami

Poet and translator C.M. Mayo on winning the Gival Poetry Prize for Meteor (Gival Press, 2019)

Cellist and music archivist Jay Shulman for this Times article on Lawrence Ferlinghetti

Poet and artist Linda Simone for this blog on secrets of book promotion and this MoMA map of connections between abstract artists

Filmmaker Fran Sisco on winning Best LGBT Documentary for “Happy Trans Girl Like Me,” at the Cutting Room International Short Film Festival

Many people are surprised to find a recipe here. I think of annogram as a physical space, and I want to welcome readers with something good to eat as well as to read. So get out your fork, and after you’ve had your fill, as Virginia Woolf suggests, you are ready for pen and paper. 

Until next time,

Monday, February 18, 2019

your february annogram

The Hero Emerges

Woo-hoo!  Fresh box of books!
What a thrill to start off the year with the debut of The Hero (Chax Press)! By contemporary French poet Hélène Sanguinetti, The Hero is my translation of her book-length poem exploring the absurdities of war. Charles Alexander designed a volume that is as beautiful to hold as it is to read. And we are delighted that Small Press Distribution highlighted The Hero in its ALL NEW SPD RECOMMENDS.

Translation for Writers

Know a minimum of another language?  You can enrich your own writing and publishing credits through translation. Sarah Lawrence Professor Ann Lauinger, Art Historian Beth Gersh- Nešić, and I will discuss literary translation this Sunday, February 24, at 4pm, at Bronx River Books in Scarsdale. Learn about the many opportunities in this growing field. Come join us! Free and open to everyone.

Brine Salt and Vinegar Translation Contest

Jean-Marie Gustave Le Clézio

Rajiv Mohabir selected my translation from Vers les icebergs (Mercure de France, 2014) as a runner-up in the 2018 Brine Salt and Vinegar Translation Contest.  Vers les icebergs, by Nobel Prize winner Jean-Marie Gustave Le Clézio, is a stunning meditation on poetry and specifically the poem “Iniji” by Henri Michaux. Thanks to Mercure de France for permission to translate and publish this selection.

More poetry published

So excited to have my poem, “Kin”, appear in the Texas-themed Enchantment of the Ordinary (Mutabilis Press, 2018); “Blue Moon” in Celestial Musings: Poems Inspired by the Night Sky (Independent Publisher, 2018), “Haunted” and “Blue Moon” in Vitamin ZZZ’s 40 Winks issue and, just in time for Mardi Gras, “Matinée” in Gris-Gris. Look for more Sanguinetti translated in the upcoming AMP, the literary journal of Hofstra University.

Cubism at the Centre Pompidou  

Robert Delauney, City of Paris, 1912
Wish you could fly to Paris to see the blockbuster Le Cubisme S’Expose? No need—intrepid Art Historian, Beth Gersh-Nešić, did so in January. Her Bonjour Paris review, a breath-taking survey of Cubism, features images you’ve never seen, and provides historical context for what we now take as the iconic threshold to Modernism. Learn about the Cubists’ belief “in the fluid intersection of everyday life and art, what Apollinaire called the poetry of circumstance.Mais oui! Brava, Beth!

Andy Warhol – From A to B and Back Again

Shot Marilyns, 1964
What is it about Warhol (1928–1987) that is uniquely American? His work anticipated our obsessive celebrity culture, elevating and mocking it at once. This exhibition at the Whitney—the first US retrospective since 1989—reconsiders his work in the light of new research and scholarship. My husband Michael once saw him deeply considering a sofa at B. Altman’s—framing its image with his hands from different angles. Art was found everywhere. Through March 31st.

Poesía Recitada

Sylvia Plath (1932-1963)
You may have seen me reading Free Ferry (Upper Hand Press, 2017) in the Books Movie—an international vehicle for spoken poetry such as “Célébrations” by French poet and literary critic Jean-Luc Pouliquen. The free Poesía Recitada subscription also includes English speakers sharing poets such as such as Sylvia Plath and Oscar Wilde. Something about spoken poetry mesmerizes, and you can read the filmed text as you listen. Take a moment to treat yourself.

Creative Opportunities

Kevin Pilkington
Praise Poem Workshop for Brooklyn Poets starts in March – register here

Submit poems before March 10 to – see complete details

Poetry Workshop with Alan Shapiro, Katonah Library, May 4, 10-3: $125  email

Writers Retreat, Jimmy Santiago Baca, June 19-20, Albuquerque, register here

Kevin Pilkington teaches Poetry for Publication, Maine Media College, August 4-10. 

Private Poetry Workshops online with Arthur Vogelsang – see details here

C and R Press seeking editorial interns – email

New Releases

Rachel Cloud Adams, Space and Road (Semiperfect Press, 2019)

Michael Baldwin, The Quantum Uncertainty of Love (Shanti Arts Press, 2019)

Ann Cefola, trans., Hélène Sanguinetti, The Hero (Chax Press, 2018)

Suzanne Cleary, Crude Angel (BkMk Press, 2019)

Terry Dugan, I’m the Reason the Kids are Dead (The Moonstone Press, 2019)

Michael Heller, Constellations of Waking (Dos Madres Press, 2019)

Alex Poteet, Carnivores (L and S Press, 2018)

Nahid Rachlin, A Way Home (Ravenna Press, 2018)

Tina Rahimi, trans., Mehdi Navid, The Book of Sounds (The Operating System, 2019)

Linda’s Shrimp Fried Rice

Poet and artist Linda Simone sends the most delicious recipes my way, and this is one. Fast and delicious. Enjoy!

1 lb. Trader Joe’s Red Argentinian frozen shrimp
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
2 Tablespoons sesame oil, divided
3 cups cooked rice (best made a day ahead)
1 small organic white onion, chopped
1 cup organic mushrooms, sliced
1 organic red pepper, seeded and sliced
2-3 Tablespoons tamari sauce (more or less to taste)
3 eggs, lightly beaten
2 Tbsp chopped green onions

Preheat large skillet to medium heat. Add vegetable oil, 1 tablespoon sesame oil and shrimp to skillet, and salt and pepper. Cook shrimp 2-3 minutes. Remove with slotted spoon and set aside. Add white onion, red pepper, and mushrooms; sauté until tender. Slide veggies to side, and pour beaten eggs on other side. Using spatula, scramble eggs. Once cooked, mix eggs with veggies. Add rice and shrimp. Pour tamari sauce and 1 tablespoon sesame oil on top. Stir and heat rice and veggie mixture. Add chopped green onions.

Poetry Readings / Literary Events

Laurel Peterson
Norwalk Open Mic, Rene Soto Gallery - March 1, 7pm

Norwalk poets, including Laurel Petersen, in Oysterville: Poems read at Norwalk Library – March 2, 2pm 

HVWC Open Mic - March 15, 7pm, $5

Abrons Arts Center, March 28-April 7, TILT premiere swirls movement, wood, live music, tap dance, pinball, and the story of Don Quixote featuring music by Lynn Wright and tap dancer Heather Cornell, early tickets $25

Zinc Bar, Saturdays at 4:30pm, $5; February 23, Eileen Myles, Korakrit Arunanondcahi; March 2, Erica Hunt, Sean D. Henry-Smith; March 9, Constantina Zavitsanos; March 16, Ser Serpas, Park McArthur; March 23, Quinn HarrelsonMarch 30, Diamond Stingily, TBA

ʼRound the Net

Julia P. Howard
Chax publisher and poet Charles Alexander on his invitation to the 7th Annual Chinese/American Association for Poetry & Poetics in Wuhan, China

Poet Llyn Clague for his poem “Tough” published in Avalon Literary Review

Translator Chen Du for poems in Dead Mule and Lunch Ticket

Poet Terry Dugan for this article on the poetry of black women by Patricia Spears Jones

Poet Gary Glauber for work in Our Poetry Archive, Cirrus Poetry Review, Blognostics, and Event Horizon

Poet Julia P. Howard for her feature interview in Small Orange Poetry Journal
Cindy Hochman

Independent bookstore owners Mark Fowler and Jessica Kaplan for this article on Bronx River Books

First Literary Review – East Editor Cindy Hochman on her Duotrope interview

Yorktown Poet Laureate John McMullenfor two stories on Wattpad, a poem on Raven’s Perch, article on why you need to join a writing group and 100 best sites for writers – thanks, John! 

Melville House for this article on Wattpad and its new publishing division

William Carlos Williams
New York Public Library for their top picks

Poets and Writers for this video of Rafael Campo on William Carlos Williams

Novelist Nahid Rachlin on her new book, A Way Home(Ravenna Press, 2018), and LinkedIn interview

Believe in Tidal Forces

Memoirist Sarah Bracey White says, “When the tide comes in, the boats all rise.” And it feels that way for friends with new books—I rejoice in their talent and perseverance: Terry Dugan (I’m the Reason the Kids are Dead), Linda Simone (The River Will Save Us), Mary McCray (Cowboy Meditation Primer), Suzanne Cleary (Crude Angel), Rachel Cloud Adams (Space and Road), Natasha Nesic (The Miracle on 98th Street), Susana Case (Erasure, Syria), John McMullen (Live at the Freight House), Nahid Rachlin (A Way Home), Pamela Hart (Mothers Over Nangarhar), Sally Bliumis-Dunn (Echolocation) and Michael Baldwin (The Quantum Uncertainty of Love). And to come: Maureen Pilkington (This Side of Water), Cindy Hochman and Bob Heman (The Number 5 is Always Suspect), Beth Gersh-Nesic (Pablo Picasso and Andre Salmon: The Painter, The Poet, and The Portraits), Janet Kaplan (Ecotones), Margo Stever (Cracked Piano and Ghost Moose), and Ruby Silvious (Reclaimed Canvas).  

If you’ve been writing for a month, a year, or all your life, keep writing, and keep believing.

Until next time,