Past Readers

Mary Lou-Taylor

Thursday January 21, 2016 at 7 p.m

Mary Lou is a poet,former teacher, editor and reviewer–she has poems in many small presses.  Her publications include a poetry book, “The Fringes of Hollywood”, Jacaranda Press, San Jose, CA, 2002; “Cotton and Spirit, an anthology, Frog on the Moon Press, Cupertino, CA, 2006; and “The Call: An Anthology of Women Writers”, Dragonfly Press,Columbia, CA, 2009.  She was editor of the Abby Niebauer Memorial competition judged by Jane Hirshfield.  She serves as a trustee of the Center of Literary Arts at San Jose State University and is a member of the Santa Clara Branch of NLAPW.   During her artist residency at Montalvo Arts Center in Saratoga, California, Mary Lou put her second book together, “Bringing Home the Moon, now published by Aldrich Press, 2015.

Nils Peterson

Thursday, December 17, 2015 at 7 p.m

As per our Christmas tradition, Nils Peterson, Poet Laureate Emeritus of Santa Clara County read from his selection of Christmas poetry and wonderment.

Nils Peterson is Professor Emeritus at San Jose State University where he taught in the English and Humanities Departments. He has published poetry, science fiction, and articles on subjects as varying as golf and Shakespeare. A chapbook of poems entitled Here Is No Ordinary Rejoicing was published by No Deadlines Press, a collection of poems entitled The Comedy of Desire with an introduction by Robert Bly was published by the Blue Sofa Press, and a collection of poems entitled Driving a Herd of Moose to Durango appeared in 2005. He was nominated for a 2005 Pushcart Prize. His newest book of poetry, A Walk to the Center, was published in 2011 by Poetry Center San Jose.

Jerry Dyer

Thursday, November 19, 2015 at 7 p.m

"I was drawn to poetry for many reasons, personal, political, and philosophical. Poetry is arguably the most democratic of art forms, cousin to song-writing, spoken word performances, riddling, joke telling. No special equipment is needed, nothing more than a writing tool and a surface to record it on. A good memory can even substitute on occasion for pen and paper. More importantly, poetry gives everyone a chance to shape the meaning of his or her existence, to respond to experience by creating an experience in return. It is especially pertinent that poetry is made to be shared, a gift to readers or listeners.

Poetry is but a branch of the river of words that fill my life. I’ve been leading this riparian existence since early childhood. My dad was in the U.S. Army, so I moved constantly (and continued moving), so early on I developed companionship with the voices that came between covers of books, magazines, even newspapers. My life work has been language and literature teaching: from 7th grade through 12th, for over 30 years,on and off, English, ESL, German, poetry.

For almost a decade, the most important community for my life of poetry has been the Willow Glen poetry gathering, and communion with San Jose and Bay Area poets. Life there (less geographical than intentional) allows me to make connections that go so much deeper than the time together would suggest. Sharing words can be so much more than even breaking bread together, or maybe it’s an example of sharing spiritual bread. Time shared within the world of poetry blends all the forms of love that I know, from the ludic joys of sharing the play of sounds and images, all the way to agape, the love that will care for others, with no regard for what it receives in return."

 

Kelly Cressio-Moeller

October 2015

Lynn Knight

September  2015

Christine Richardson

August 2013

Christine Richardson is the co-host of the Third-Thursday poetry readings at the Willow Glen Branch Library. She worked in elementary education for thirty-four years, promoting programs in self -esteem and conflict resolution. She holds an M.A. in clinical psychology. She has been writing poems for over 30 years, keeping them in binders like birds in an aviary. Someday she will be moved to consider releasing them into the open sky.

Timothy Myers

July 2013

Tim J. Myers read from his new book of poetry out from BlazeVox, Dear Beast Loveliness: Poems of the Body.

Tim is a writer, songwriter, storyteller, and senior lecturer at Santa Clara University in Silicon Valley. His children’s books have won recognition from the New York Times, Kirkus, NPR, the Smithsonian, Nickelodeon, and others. He’s published over 120 poems, won a first prize in a poetry contest judged by John Updike, has two books of adult poetry out, won a major prize in science fiction, has been nominated for two Pushcart Prizes, and has published much other fiction and non-fiction for children, adolescents, and adults. His Glad to Be Dad: A Call to Fatherhood won the inaugural Ben Franklin Digital Award from the Independent Book Publishers Association, was featured on the Parents Magazine website, quoted on Disney’s BabyZone, and made #5 on Amazon’s “Hot New Releases in Fatherhood”—he won the West Coast Songwriters Saratoga Chapter Song of the Year award—and he won the 2012 Society of Children’s Writers and Illustrators Magazine Merit Award for Fiction. His website is at http://www.timmyersstorysong.com/. And he can whistle and hum at the same time.

Bob Dickerson

June 2013

Actual birthplace and birthdate unknown. Clue thought to reside in Bible. Book of Amos. Discovered as abandoned, mewling infant in an alligator preserve in Louisiana bayou. Moved to Memphis. Learned to shake hips like Elvis. Thank you, ma’am. First book read was Animal Farm. Nightmares persist. First song heard was Julie London’s “Cry Me a River.” Tears persist. First poem read was “Notes Toward a Supreme Fiction.” Confusion persists.

Inspired to unlock secrets of trochaic trimeter by sixty year-old English teacher, ex-mistress of Vachel Lindsay. Mumbo jumbo. Are you washed in the blood of the lamb? Played basketball at Duke. Covered Pistol Pete Maravich, who scored at will. Expelled. Flunked out. Doesn’t matter. Ended up marching against war and accompanying MLK on the James Meredith march from Memphis to Jackson. Meredith was shot and wounded. King became one of the most important figures in my life. Joined hippie commune in Ozarks. Discovered sex and money don’t just destroy couples. Also discovered teepees are hard to keep erect in tornadoes. In lieu of working for the man, performed death scenes from novels and movies (spoiler alert): Bonnie and Clyde, Dr. Zhivago, Anna Karenina, Bambi’s mom. Thumbs up from Siskel and Ebert. Joni Mitchell asked me to open for her Blue tour. I’m stage left below the hanging sitar in Scorsese’s The Last Waltz.

Resumed academic career at UW-Madison, leading English department hoops team known as Yahoos to two intramural championships. Wrote film criticism for Satellite Dish, sports articles for Racquetball magazine, restaurant reviews for Memphis magazine. Ran afoul of publisher when I suggested the catfish I had been served had once been a regular on the TV show Sea Hunt. (Restaurant was advertiser.) Promptly became an avid reader of Marx (both Groucho and Karl) giving up journalism for teaching. Never regretted it one day of my life. Ha. Have corrupted thousands of students, many now living in anti-capitalist, punning conclaves scattered around the world where they play banjos, write haiku, do silly walks while smoking cigars, and indulge in deviant social behavior. Frequently for comic effect.

In last six years I’ve decided to write poetry intended to impress and annoy my friends. I’m still waiting for former to happen. About to retire from De Anza College where I served as chair of English department. Whoop-de-doo. Best thing about teaching English is they pay me to talk about books. Quite the perk. Friends say they would pay me not to talk about books. Either way I win.

Married, daughter, dog, mortgage, cable TV, bad poetry, the full catastrophe. Proud Medicare cardholder. Available for bar mitzvahs and wakes.

David Denny

May 2013

A native Californian, David Denny grew up in the suburban beach communities of Orange County. His father, an Eisenhower Republican, was a steel salesman and his mother, a New Deal Democrat, worked as a church secretary. He studied theater at Golden West College and Cal State Long Beach, acting in several plays. As an undergraduate, he came under the influence of Gerald Locklin and the Long Beach school of “stand up” poets. He moved north for a short time, earning an MFA in creative writing at the University of Oregon. There he studied with the devoted students of Theodore Roethke and rubbed shoulders with such literary notables as Ken Kesey and William Stafford.

For the past two decades he and his wife Jill, a prominent choral conductor and music teacher, have lived in Cupertino. They are the proud parents of two talented children and the guardians of a persnickety cat named Molly Bloom. In 2007, he completed an MAT degree from Fuller Theological Seminary and occasionally fills-in as a chaplain or substitute pastor. In his most persistent daydream, he is a Benedictine monk in an abbey in the French countryside. In real life, Denny teaches in the English Department at De Anza College and is nearing the end of a two-year term as Cupertino’s Poet Laureate. He is also the recipient of an Artist Laureate award this year from the Arts Council of Silicon Valley. He is former editor of Bottomfish magazine. His poems and short stories have appeared in numerous literary magazines and journals, including Atlanta Review, California Quarterly, Iodine Poetry Journal, Pearl, and The Sun, among others. His chapbook, Plebeian on the Front Porch, was published by Finishing Line Press in 2012. When not writing or teaching, he can often be found watching classic movies from the balcony of the Stanford Theatre in Palo Alto.

You (and Friends)

April 2013

April was National Poetry Month. To celebrate this, Willow Glen has a longstanding tradition of making everyone the featured poet. Indeed, all who attend the April reading were invited to read one poem from their favorite poet, as well as one of their own poems. This traditional has proven very rewarding and a lot of fun.

Matthew Zapruder

March 2013

Matthew Zapruder is the author of three collections of poetry, most recently Come On All You Ghosts (Copper Canyon 2010), a New York Times Notable Book of the Year. His poems, essays and translations have appeared in many publications, including Tin House, Paris Review, The New Republic, The New Yorker, Bomb, Slate, Poetry, and The Believer. He has received a Guggenheim Fellowship, a William Carlos Williams Award, a May Sarton Award from the Academy of American Arts and Sciences, and a Lannan Literary Fellowship. He lives in Oakland, and works as an editor for Wave Books, and teaches as a member of the core faculty of UCR—Palm Desert’s Low Residency MFA in Creative Writing. His new book of poems, Sun Bear, is forthcoming in 2014.

Pushpa MacFarlane

February 2013

Pushpa MacFarlane is one of our own. In recent years, she has made poetry her preoccupation. She writes and breathes poetry. She enjoys reading at open mics, creates and maintains blogs for some of her poetry friends, and videotapes local poetry readings whenever she gets a chance. She designed and edited “Remembering,” a remarkable anthology of poems read at Willow Glen Books, published by Jacaranda Press in 2011. “It’s my best portfolio,” she says. When this independent bookstore in San Jose closed, the poetry reading segued into the Willow Glen Public Library where Pushpa continues to share poetry and connect with her fellow poetry enthusiasts. She is a founding member of the WGPP and is the chief editor for WGPP Volume 3.

Robert Sward

January 2013

Robert Sward has taught at Cornell University, the Iowa Writers’ Workshop and UC Santa Cruz. A Guggenheim Fellow, he was chosen by Lucile Clifton to receive a Villa Montalvo Literary Arts Award. His more than 20 books include: Four Incarnations (Coffee House Press), Rosicrucian in the Basement, The Collected Poems, and God is in the Cracks (Black Moss Press, Canada), now in its second printing. His latest, New & Selected Poems, 1957-2011, is being published by Red Hen Press.

Born and raised in Chicago, Sward served in the U.S. Navy in the combat zone during the Korean War and later worked for CBC Radio and as book reviewer and feature writer for The Toronto Star and Globe & Mail while living in Canada. Sward now lives in Santa Cruz with his wife, visual artist Gloria Alford.

“Here is Robert Sward, now in his 60s, still fresh, ingenuous, and funnier than ever. His life–and what a life!–is an open book. You can read it all here. What’s more you will want to call your friends and read poems to them over the phone. I know. I’ve done it.”– Pulitzer Prize winner Carolyn Kizer

Nils Peterson

December 2012

As per our Christmas tradition, Nils Peterson, Poet Laureate Emeritus of Santa Clara County read from his selection of Christmas poetry and wonderment.

Nils Peterson is Professor Emeritus at San Jose State University where he taught in the English and Humanities Departments. He has published poetry, science fiction, and articles on subjects as varying as golf and Shakespeare. A chapbook of poems entitled Here Is No Ordinary Rejoicing was published by No Deadlines Press, a collection of poems entitled The Comedy of Desire with an introduction by Robert Bly was published by the Blue Sofa Press, and a collection of poems entitled Driving a Herd of Moose to Durango appeared in 2005. He was nominated for a 2005 Pushcart Prize. His newest book of poetry, A Walk to the Center, was published in 2011 by Poetry Center San Jose.

Sally Ashton, Santa Clara County Poet Laureate

November 2012

Sally Ashton, current Santa Clara County Poet Laureate, is the author of three poetry collections, most recently Some Odd Afternoon. Her many honors include a fellowship from Arts Council Silicon Valley, a residency at Montalvo Arts Center, and several Pushcart nominations. Sally teaches at San Jose State University, blogs at poetlaureateblog.org, and is Editor-in-Chief of DMQ Review.

Sally was a board member of Poetry Center San Jose for many years, putting on its California Poets Festival in 2006 and 2007. Sally is a regular with Nils Peterson for the annual Valentine’s Day poetry presentation and has lead several poetry workshops. In Summer 2011, Sally taught in the Dzanc Books International Literary Program in Lisboa, Portugal.

You (and Friends)

October 2012

A reprise of the April Poetry Month reading, where everyone is the featured poet. Indeed, all who attend the reading were invited to read one poem from their favorite poet, as well as one of their own poems.

Marjorie Manwaring

September 2012

Marjorie Manwaring lives in Seattle, where she is a freelance writer/editor, co-editor of the online poetry and art journal the DMQ Review, and editorial board member for Floating Bridge Press. Her work has most recently appeared in Sentence, on failbetter.com, and in numerous anthologies. Her work has also been featured on KUOW Public Radio. She assisted Sally Ashton with the California Poets Festival in 2007.

Marjorie’s chapbook What to Make of a Diminished Thing was published by Dancing Girl Press in Spring 2012, and a full-length poetry collection will be published by Mayapple Press in February 2013. She was a Jack Straw Writers Program fellow in 2010 and has been awarded writing residencies through the Whiteley Center at Friday Harbor on San Juan Island and Artsmith on Orcas Island.

David Swanger, Santa Cruz Poet Laureate

August 2012

David Swanger is the second Santa Cruz County Poet Laureate. Swanger has received fellowships in poetry from the National Endowment for the Arts and the California Arts Council. He has written a book about poetry, The Poem as Process, a book about aesthetic education, Essays in Aesthetic Education, as well as four books of poems. His most recent book of poems, Wayne’s College of Beauty, won the John Ciardi Prize in Poetry, and was a finalist in Fore Word’s Book of the Year Awards.

José Luis Gutiérrez

July 2012

José Luis Gutiérrez is a San Franciscan poet. His work has appeared in Spillway, Eratio, Margie, Letterbox, DMQ, Verse Daily, Jet Fuel Review, Otis Nebula and is forthcoming in Reunion: The Dallas Review, Thrush Poetry Journal, Spittoon and the Mutanabbi Street Anthology due out 2012 through PM Press.

Len Anderson

June 2012

Poet and retired physicist Len Anderson’s was May’s featured reader. His second collection of poems, Invented by the Night, was published by Hummingbird Press in November, 2011. He is also the author of Affection for the Unknowable, and a chapbook, BEEP: A Version of the History of the Personal Computer Rendered in Free Verse in the Manner of “Howl” by Allen Ginsberg.

Len was born in Menlo Park, grew up mostly in Los Altos, studied in Berkeley, worked at Measurex Corporation in Cupertino for 17 years, and is a major part of the Bay area poetry scene. He and his wife moved to Santa Cruz in 1998, where he helped found Poetry Santa Cruz and currently serves as Secretary-Treasurer.

John Landry

May 2012

John Landy has edited Patmos Press, publishing chapbooks by Everett Hoagland, Robert Lax, and others. He was co-editor of the anthology No End To Fall River (1984) and has served as New Bedford, Massachusetts, poet laureate. His poems have appeared in many journals and include many translations. He has served as a contributing editor for the 50th anniversary anthology of Beatitude, New College Review, and The Newport Review. His book who will prune the plum tree when i’m gone/quién va a podar los ciruelos cuando me vaya was published by Editorial Cuneta in Chile in February 2010.

You (and Friends)

April 2012

April was National Poetry Month. To celebrate this, Willow Glen has a longstanding tradition of making everyone the featured poet. Indeed, all who attend the April reading were invited to read one poem from their favorite poet, as well as one of their own poems. This traditional has proven very rewarding and a lot of fun.

Lee Rossi

March 2012

Lee Rossi is the author of four books of poetry including Ghost Diary and Wheelchair Samurai. His poems, reviews and interviews have appeared widely in such journals as The Harvard Review, The Sun, Poetry Northwest, Chelsea, The Beloit Poetry Journal, and The Southern Poetry Review. He is a staff reviewer and interviewer for the online magazine Pedestal. He lives in the San Francisco Bay Area.

Rossi is campaigning to install a Tomb of the Unknown Poet in Westminster Abbey, dedicated to “all those who have labored in Poetry’s vineyards without tasting any of her grapes.”  He has graciously volunteered to be its first occupant.

Wild Violets Haiku Gala

February 2012

February’s reading ws our first all-Haiku event, with four featured poets reading from Wild Violets, the Yuki Teikei Haiku Anthology for 2011.

PATRICIA J. MACHMILLER writes. Mostly she writes poems. Long poems. Or short. Very short. Haiku. Sometimes she writes essays. Once she wrote a poetic journal. Once a poetic performance. It was performed-once. She lives here. In Silicon Valley. Where she worked. Once. She is a charter member—almost—of the Yuki Teikei Haiku Society.

JOAN ZIMMERMAN is the editor, along with Jerry Ball, of Wild Violets, the 2011 Yuki Teikei Haiku Society’s Membership Anthology. Her haiku and tanka have been published internationally (including Australia, Germany, and the  UK). She is co-editor & contributor for “Poetry at Ariadne’s Web.” Born in Northwest England, she wrote her first poems in attempts to avoid exercising or helping with household chores. She likes chocolate. She lives in Santa Cruz.

JUDITH SCHALLBERGER enjoys writing haiku and tanka poetry and collaborated in the design of the Yuki Teikei Haiku anthologies, Wild Violets (2011)  and Autumn Deepens (2010) and is a very active member of Yuki Teikei. She is a graduate of SJSU, School of Art and a former ceramicist. Her haiku have been published in Mariposa, Notes from the Gean, Remembering: Poems  Read at Willow Glen Books, Haiku Society of America, and Yuki Teikei Anthologies.

CAROL STEELE writes haiku and lyric poems. She has been a member of Yuki Teikei since 2000, is a past president and the soon-to-be editor of the GEPPO, Yuki Teikei’s bi-monthly study-newsletter. She also enjoys flowers and the study of ikebana, traditional Japanese flower arranging.

Kathy Issac-Luke

January 2012

Kathie was born in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. She has a Master’s degree in Nursing, and during her work in that field she visited a number of countries. Her poetry, which reflects her travels as well as her Louisiana origins, has been published in various journals and anthologies.

Her short story has recently appeared in The Call: An Anthology of Women’s Writings, published by Dragonfly Press. She was formerly a program coordinator for Poetry Center San José, where she edited the journal Cæsura for five years. Her poetry collection, Chrysalides, was published in 2010 by Dragonfly Press and was nominated for the 2011 Independent Publisher Book Award in poetry.

She and her husband now live in the Sierra foothills of California.

Nils Peterson

December 2011

As per our Christmas tradition, Nils Peterson, Poet Laureate Emeritus of Santa Clara County read from his selection of Christmas poetry and wonderment.

Nils Peterson is Professor Emeritus at San Jose State University where he taught in the English and Humanities Departments. He has published poetry, science fiction, and articles on subjects as varying as golf and Shakespeare. A chapbook of poems entitled Here Is No Ordinary Rejoicing was published by No Deadlines Press, a collection of poems entitled The Comedy of Desire with an introduction by Robert Bly was published by the Blue Sofa Press, and a collection of poems entitled Driving a Herd of Moose to Durango appeared in 2005. He was nominated for a 2005 Pushcart Prize.

His newest book of poetry, A Walk to the Center of Things, came out in June 2011, published by Poetry Center San Jose.

Casey FitzSimons

November 2011

Casey FitzSimons’ poetry appears in print and online in Fresh Hot Bread, The Prose-Poem Project; flashquake, Leveler, EarthSpeak; The Newport Review, and others. She has been a finalist in the River Styx and Writecorner Press poetry competitions. She has collected her works annually in chapbooks, most recently Altering the Lay of Land (2010) and Forgetting My Errand (2009).

Casey is an Army brat, having lived in Brazil and Germany, and derives some content inspiration from moving seventeen times by the age of seventeen. She has taught high school and college math, practiced law, and done significant pro bono work in fair housing. She has a master’s degree in Fine Arts from San Jose State University and taught art in San Francisco for many years, publishing her studio drawing book, Serious Drawing, with Prentice Hall, and reviewing many exhibitions for Artweek. She is a frequent reader at San Francisco Bay Area venues. About being a poet, Casey says, “My father was a Milton scholar, so what chance did I have?”

She lives in Redwood City near her daughter, son-in-law, and three granddaughters. When not writing poetry, Casey tutors children and adults in reading and mathematics in Redwood City and Half Moon Bay, and plays fingerpicking blues guitar.

Dean Rader

October 2011

Dean Rader has published widely in the fields of poetry, American Indian studies, and popular culture. His debut collection of poems, Works & Days, won the 2010 T.S. Eliot Poetry Prize, judged by Claudia Keelan. In 2009, Kelly Cherry selected his poem “Hesiod in Oklahoma, 1934” for the prestigious Sow’s Ear Review Prize and in 2008, his poem “Frog Loses Sleep Puzzling Over Parallel Universes” won the Crab Creek Review Poetry Prize. Other poems have appeared or will appear in Cincinnati Review, Berkeley Poetry Review, Quarterly West, Colorado Review, Poet Lore, Salamander, POOL, Connecticut Review and many others.

He is the author of a best-selling textbook on writing and popular culture, The World is a Text (with Jonathan Silverman), which just went into its fourth edition. With poet Janice Gould, he co-edited Speak To Me Words: Essays on Contemporary American Indian Poetry (University of Arizona Press, 2003), the first collection of essays devoted to Native American poetry. Most recently, he curated a special issue of Sentence that focused on recent American Indian prose poetry. His newest scholarly book, Engaged Resistance: American Indian Art, Literature, and Film from Alcatraz to the NMAI is forthcoming in 2011 from the University of Texas Press. He holds a Ph.D. in Comparative Literature from the State University of New York at Binghamton.

Rader has served on the editorial board for Studies in American Indian Literatures and is currently on the editorial staff of DMQ Review. A former executive committee member of the Commonwealth Club’s Inforum, Rader now serves on the poetry jury of the California Book Awards. He blogs about the intersection of literature, culture, politics and media at The Weekly Rader, and he reviews poetry regularly for The Rumpus and The San Francisco Chronicle, where he also writes a regular column for the City Brights Section. Rader is a professor of English at the University of San Francisco.

A Native of Western Oklahoma, Rader lives in San Francisco with his wife Jill and their son Gavin.

Erica Goss

September 2011

Erica Goss’s poems, articles, and reviews have appeared in many journals, most recently Hotel Amerika, Pearl, Main Street Rag, Rattle, Eclectica, Blood Lotus, Cafe Review, Zoland Poetry, Comstock Review, and Perigee. Her chapbook, Wild Place, will be published in 2011 from Finishing Line Press. She won the first Edwin Markham Poetry Prize in 2007, judged by California’s Poet Laureate Al Young, and was nominated for a Pushcart Prize in 2010. Erica teaches creative writing and humanities in the Bay Area and is a contributing editor for Cerise Press. She holds an MFA from San Jose State University.

Nick Butterfield

August 2011

Nick Butterfield has attended the Willow Glen Poetry Readings since it’s early inception in the mid 1990’s, recalling Bill and Jean Emerson’s hosting of the monthly event at the Willow Glen Bookstore. Nick and many other enthusiastic poets alike have contributed to the newly published Willow Glen Book Store Poetry Anthology, Remembering. Nick still comes regularly to the Willow Glen Poetry Readings.

“I wrote my first poem when I was 13 years old next to a newly planted apple tree in my backyard in Boulder Colorado.” The poem was called “My Darkened Room.” Nick draws from his life experiences as a Nurse and Nurse Practitioner in the emergency room and community clinics and homeless projects in Santa Clara County for the last 25 years. Also, an avid Cross Country runner with the Spartan Running Team and a long distance traveler ranging from Papua New Guinea to Mt. Sinai, Peru, Guatemala to the China Wall Marathon in 2006 and Running with the Bulls in Pamplona Spain in 2003. “I include Death Valley National Park experiences as one of my favorite places to write about.”

Nils Peterson

July 2011

Nils Peterson is the former Poetry Laureate of Santa Clara County and is Professor Emeritus at San Jose State University where he taught in the English and Humanities Departments. He has published poetry, science fiction, and articles on subjects as varying as golf and Shakespeare. A chapbook of poems entitled Here Is No Ordinary Rejoicing was published by No Deadlines Press, a collection of poems entitled The Comedy of Desire with an introduction by Robert Bly was published by the Blue Sofa Press, and a collection of poems entitled Driving a Herd of Moose to Durango appeared in 2005. He was nominated for a 2005 Pushcart Prize. His newest poetry book came out in June 2011, published by Poetry Center San Jose.

Keith Ekiss

June 2011

Per Michael Collier: “Pima Road Notebook, Keith Ekiss’s remarkable first collection, contrasts the finite imagination of the American dream with the enduring serenity and mystery of the Sonoran Desert, where the ridiculous–fairways and greens–compete with the sublime–saguaros and palo verdes. No one has written poems with such a dispassionate and calm eye about the Cadillac desert as Ekiss. Free of sentiment and dream trance, Ekiss is a fair witness to one of America’s most sundered lands.”

Keith Ekiss is a former Wallace Stegner Fellow and Jones Lecturer at Stanford University and the past recipient of scholarships and residencies from the Bread Loaf and Squaw Valley Writers’ Conferences, Santa Fe Art Institute, Millay Colony for the Arts, and the Petrified Forest National Park. He lives in San Francisco. His poems, and his translations of the Costa Rican poet Eunice Odio, have appeared in Gulf Coast, Harvard Review, New England Review, Modern Poetry in Translation, The Christian Science Monitor, and elsewhere. Pima Road Notebook, his first book, is recently out from New Issues Poetry & Prose.

Harry Lafnear

May 2011

Harry Lafnear is a founding member of the Association of Poetry Podcasting, and of the Willow Glen Poetry Project. He is also the Assistant Treasurer of Poetry Center San Jose. Harry an award winning poet and a showcased poetry performer. His work has been featured on IndieFeed Performance Poetry, Cloudy Day Art, Slam Idol, PoetGuru, and in Poems About Santa Clara County. His audio podcast, The Everyday Muse, was syndicated on BZoO Worldwide Radio Online. Professionally, Harry has co-authored the classic Time Bandit video game series, plotted data from the Upper Atmosphere Research Satellite, and run a Las Vegas sign shop specializing in fine-art giclée. His present occupation also mixes technology and art: Harry is a technical publications expert and graphic designer for IBM. His new chapbook is Tracing the Line. Harry lives in Milpitas, California, with his spouse, Stephen.

You (and Friends)

April 2011

April was National Poetry Month. To celebrate this, Willow Glen has a longstanding tradition of making everyone the featured poet. Indeed, all who attend the April reading were invited to read one poem from their favorite poet, as well as one of their own poems. This traditional has proven very rewarding and a lot of fun.

Tim Myers

March 2011

Tim Myers is a writer, songwriter and professional storyteller living in Santa Clara, California, where he teaches in the Education and English departments at Santa Clara University. His essay in the Kyoto Journal, “Glimpsing Tokyo,” was nominated for a Pushcart Prize. He’s published over 110 poems (South Carolina Review, Rattle, Northeast), has a chapbook out from Pecan Grove Press (That Mass at Which the Tongue Is Celebrant), and won a national poetry contest judged by John Updike. He also has articles in Media Ethics and New York State History, has placed stories with Indy Men’s, The MacGuffin, ELF, and The Bryant Literary Review, and won a prize in an international science fiction contest. His children’s book Basho and the River Stones is a Junior Library Guild selection, his Tanuki’s Gift got an excellent boxed review with art in the New York Times, and his Basho and the Fox, a New York Times bestseller and Smithsonian Notable Children’s Book, was also read aloud on NPR. He has ten children’s books out and one on the way.

Cheryl Dumesnil

February 2011

Winner of the 2008 Agnes Lynch Starrett Poetry Prize, Cheryl Dumesnil is the author of In Praise of Falling, editor of Hitched! Wedding Stories from San Francisco City Hall, and co-editor, with Kim Addonizio, of Dorothy Parker’s Elbow: Tattoos on Writers, Writers on Tattoos. Her poems have appeared in Nimrod, Indiana Review, Calyx, and Many Mountains Moving, among other literary magazines. Her essays have appeared on literarymama.com, hipmama.com, mamazine.com and in Hip Mama Zine. For over fifteen years she has taught creative writing at universities, conferences, K-12 schools, and in private settings. She lives in the San Francisco Bay Area with her wife and their two sons.

Tamam Kahn

January 2011

For our first reading of the new year, our featured reader will be San Rafael poet/author Tamam Kahn whose latest book, Untold: A History of the Wives of Prophet Muhammad, is a prosimetrum (prose with lyric poetry embedded in the narrative). This non-fiction/poetry writing provides a vehicle for presenting history that hasn’t been told to most of us – the story of the wives of Prophet Muhammad. Tamam is also the editor of The Sound Journal.

Nils Peterson

December 2010

Nils Peterson is the current Poetry Laureate of Santa Clara County and is Professor Emeritus at San Jose State University where he taught in the English and Humanities Departments. He has published poetry, science fiction, and articles on subjects as varying as golf and Shakespeare. A chapbook of poems entitled Here Is No Ordinary Rejoicing was published by No Deadlines Press. A collection of poems entitled The Comedy of Desire with an introduction by Robert Bly was published by the Blue Sofa Press, and a collection of poems entitled Driving a Herd of Moose to Durango appeared in 2005. He was nominated for a 2005 Pushcart Prize.

Connie Post

November 2010

Connie Post served as Poet Laureate of Livermore, California from 2005 – June 2009. Her work is widely published and has appeared in such journals as Calyx, Kalliope, Cold Mountain Review, Chiron Review, Comstock Review, DMQ Review, Dogwood, Iodine Poetry Journal, Main Street Rag, White Pelican Review, RiverSedge, Up The Staircase, and The Toronto Quarterly. She was the winner of the Cover Prize for the Spring 2009 issue of The Dirty Napkin and the winner of the 2009 Caesura Poetry Awards from Poetry Center San Jose. She runs a popular reading series in the Bay Area – the Valona Deli Second Sunday Series. Her new book Trip Wires (Finishing Line Press) will be out in June 2010.

Ken Weisner

October 2010

Ken Weisner is a poet, teacher, and editor living in Santa Cruz. He has published poetry in journals including The Antioch Review, Seneca Review, The Brooklyn Review, and Berkeley Poetry Review; recent poems have appeared in The Music Lover’s Poetry Anthology from Persea Books, Sam Hamill’s Poets Against the War website, and on Garrison Keillor’s The Writers Almanac. His first full length collection, The Sacred Geometry of Pedestrians, was published in 2002 by Hummingbird Press. His 2010 volume, Anything on Earth, was also published by Hummingbird. Weisner won numerous awards for his fifteen years as editor of Quarry West magazine, published out of Porter College at the University of California at Santa Cruz. He now edits Red Wheelbarrow, De Anza College’s literary journal. Born and raised in Oakland, Weisner has a B.A. from Oberlin College, an M.F.A. from the Iowa Writers Workshop, and a Ph.D in Comparative Literature from U.C. Santa Cruz where he also taught writing for many years. For over a decade, he was active as a Poet-in-the-Schools throughout the Central California Coast. Ken teaches full time at De Anza College in Cupertino, where he is currently English Department Chair. He is also a French horn player, baseball aficionado, husband to the pianist and potter Kit Birskovich, and father to two grown sons.

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