Featured Reader, September 2016

Christine Richardson, introduced the featured poet, Erin Redfern, with these words:


Picture ocean swells as, “ribbons of candy trails”, the sea with “its throat of salt and blue, the setting sun casting, “its blister of light against the ocean’s rim” and be amazed as I was to see these original and vivid images all within a single stanza of a single poem, “Gidget Builds an Igloo”. This unique gift of imagery resides in tonight’s featured reader, Erin Redfern.  Of course for those of you who have heard Erin share her poems here at this podium, or have read her poetry in workshops or other settings already know that what I say is true.

Others outside of our poetry community have recognized Erin’s talent as well. Surely the editors of the many online and print journals who have published her work for over a decade can attest. One of the judges for the Poetry Society of America for which Erin is the recipient of the 2016 Robert H. Weiner Memorial Award, said, “I found Erin Redfern’s vibrant and protean poems, packed with telling details, immediately engaging: they’re acrobatic, dynamic, richly populated – a rightful heir to C.K. Williams’ roving and inclusive work in Tar.”

Not only is Erin generous to the reader in her poetry, she has been generous to our PCSJ community with her time and expertise: graciously subbed for me as host at this reading; co-edited the 2015 edition of Caesura, and lead groups at Poets at Play.

Erin’s chapbook entitled, Spellbreaking and Other Life Skills will be published in November. The poems in this chapbook have been described as emanating  “lyrical brilliance in a compact collection.”

We do have to wait until then to actually hold this volume in our hands, but tonight we are fortunate to perhaps get a preview of some of those poems and others from the head and heart of this talented poet.

Please welcome Erin Redfern.

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