I am very grateful to the editors of Iron Horse Literary Review for selecting my poem “Rendering the Pose” as the winner of the 2019 Trifecta poetry contest. Poetry Editor Geffrey Davis’ book Revising the Storm from BOA Editions is one of my favorite collections of recent years, which made this news especially meaningful. “Rendering the Pose” is the longest poem I have written, and I worked on it (on and off) for about five years. I look forward to sharing it come June when the poem is published alongside the winners of the fiction and non-fiction categories.
I am very honored to share that my poem, “Type Two” has been selected by Kyle Dargan for the 2018 edition of Best New Poets, just out from University of Virginia Press. The poem was originally published in Ruminate Magazine as a finalist for the 2018 Janet McCabe Poetry Prize. There are so many good poems in the anthology, and I am humbled to be in such great company.
On Thursday, January 24th, I had the honor of reading as part of the Poetry Flash reading series at Moe’s Books to celebrate the publication of “Fire & Rain: Ecopoetry of California”, an anthology published at the end of 2018 by Scarlet Tanager Books. The anthology includes poetry legends like Gary Snyder, Brenda Hillman, Camille T. Dungy, Jane Hirshfield, Dana Gioia etc… as well as poems from many lesser known writers from around California, including my poem “Scavengers”. For the reading, I had the good fortune to read alongside Bay Area poets Tiffany Higgins, Jeanne Wagner, and Lucille Lang Day, who is also one of the editors of the anthology. I have great respect and admiration for Joyce Jenkins and Richard Silberg, who have run the Poetry Flash reading series since 1986, and are two of the kindest, most encouraging people I have met in the poetry community.
I am very honored to share that Indiana Review has nominated by poem, “Prayer for the Instant City” for a Pushcart Prize. The poem will appear in issue 40.2, which should be out in the world sometime before the end of the month. I love the work of Taylor Johnson, the other poet nominated, check out more of their fantastic poems here: http://www.taylorjohnsonpoems.com/about/
My poem, “The Woodpecker’s Tongue” was recently published in Waccamaw, a journal based at Coastal Carolina University. The poem was inspired by listening to a radio interview with the author Walter Isaacson who wrote a biography of Leonardo da Vinci. In the interview, Isaacson describes some of the wonderful, strange fragments in DaVinci’s notebook, one of which was “Describe the woodpecker’s tongue”, which seemed like an excellent prompt for a poem.
I had the honor of reading at the historical New Dominion Bookshop in Charlottesville, Virginia on November 16, 2018 with Lauren Markham and T.R. Hummer. I especially love this poem by T.R. Hummer, “As for the Housefly” which he read that evening. A special thanks to Sarah Crossland who coordinates the reading series!
I am honored to share that the editors of Harpur Palate have selected my poem "The Hermitage at Laurel Dell" as the winner of the 2018 Milton Kessler Memorial Prize, which is named after the late poet and professor Milton Kessler. The poem imagines the life of a hermit, Emil Barth, who lived off the grid in a meadow on Mt. Tamalpais in California in the early part of the 20th century. Growing up, I frequently hiked past a place called "Barth's Retreat", the ruins of his dwelling, and was always intrigued by this enigmatic figure. Research revealed few details about his life. You can read the poem by clicking below.
Today begins a month long residency at the Jentel Artist Residency program located near the town of Sheridan in Northern Wyoming. Along with five other artists, I will have the chance to take in the winter landscape and work on poems without interruption. I am very grateful to the Jentel staff and everyone who makes this residency possible --the gift of time and space is a truly a special thing!
I am honored my poem "The Book of Indecision" has been included in Issue 15 of The American Poetry Journal. A special thank you to editors Theresa Senato Edwards and Hannah Craig, who have been so supportive of all the contributors to this issue. I am especially honored the poem has been nominated for a Pushcart Prize. For an interesting (and spirited!) debate about Pushcart Prize nominations, this blog post by John Fox, and the comments that follow are well worth a read.
I had the pleasure of reading in San Francisco as part of the Bazaar Writers Salon at the Bazaar Cafe in the Richmond District, not far from where I grew up. The other readers included Will Brewer (who read from his stunning new book, I Know Your Kind), Dominic Russ-Combs, Cintia Santana and Glori Simmons. It was a truly wonderful evening and a great way to welcome in Fall in the Bay Area.
I am honored to have a poem in the Contemporary Poetry Series from Corbel Stone Press, a UK based press I greatly admire edited by Autumn Richardson & Richard Skelton. Throughout 2017, the press published limited edition pamphlets exploring human relationships to the natural world. The theme of the issue my poem "How Egrets Stay Clean" appears in is "Nature and Regeneration". Not only are there many beautiful poems in the issue, but the pamphlets themselves are true works of art, with great care taken in the production of the object and the presentation of each poem.
Quiet Lightning is an incredible San Francisco based literary non-profit that works tirelessly to promote writing and writers in the Bay Area. I was honored to participate in their June 5 reading/literary mix-tape in San Francisco at the Clarion Music Center in Chinatown. Learn more about Quiet Lightning here and check out a live recording of the show here.
On March 23, I had the pleasure of reading alongside Maxine Hong Kingston, Earl Kingston, Joe Lamb, Maysa Ibrahim, and Martin Wagner at Octopus Literary Salon, as part of the al-Mutanabbi street collective. The project takes its name from and examines al-Mutanabbi Street in Baghdad, a winding street about one thousand feet long, noted for its many bookstores and outdoor bookstalls where people gathered as a great humanitarian center. Named after the famous classical Arab poet Abu at-Tayyib al-Mutanabbi (915–965 CE), it has been a thriving center of Baghdad’s bookselling and publishing for many years. On March 5, 2007, a bomb went off in the centuries old Al Mutanabbi Street book sellers district in Baghdad. The explosion took the lives of thirty people and destroyed a large portion of the neighborhood. The book sellers, who survived, rebuilt their stores and are once again in business. They sell works by Sunnis, Shiites, Christians, and Jews, children's books, and progressive publications from around the world.
I am honored to be named a 2017 Artsmith Fellow alongside Peter Kline, Melissa Mathewson, Jennifer Moore and Krista Varela. I very much look forward to heading to the San Juan Islands in the beginning of 2017 to dive into a group of poems that have been looking for some time and space.
I am looking forward to reading with this group of talented folks in downtown San Francisco as part of Litquake and the Yerba Buena Gardens Festival.