Monday, January 1, 2007

April 10 Poetry Festival: Martha Collins, Louisa Solano, Joan Houlihan

April 10 7PM Annual Poetry Festival--Poetry Month--

Readers will be:

Martha Collins
Martha Collins was born in Omaha, Nebraska, in 1940. She earned a B.A. at Stanford University and holds a Ph.D. from the University of Iowa.

Collins is the author of a book-length poem, Blue Front (Graywolf, 2006), as well as four other books of poetry: Some Things Words Can Do (1998); A History of a Small Life on a Windy Planet (1993); The Arrangement of Space (1991), winner of the Peregrine Smith Poetry Competition; and The Catastrophe of Rainbows (1985).

She has also published a chapbook, Gone So Far (2005); CO-translated two collections poems from the Vietnamese, The Women Carry River Water by Nguyen Quang Thieu (1997) and Green Rice by Lam Thi My Da (2005); and edited a volume of essays on Louise Bogan (1984).
In Blue Front, Collins dissects a horrific lynching that occurred in her hometown when she was a child. In a review in Booklist, Janet St. John writes: "Collins carefully examines the event and its aftermath, especially the effect on her father who later seeks a home in an all-white community. She then extends her thoughtful scrutiny to incorporate newspaper accounts, photographs, personal accounts, and history to expose the way racism permeates all layers of society. Collins employs a staccato, matter-of-fact tone that strikes like a sledgehammer at persistent, if hidden, hate. More than worthy as poetry, Blue Front is also a powerful statement about America and a potent reminder of humankind's terrible potential.

Louisa Solano

Louisa Solano owned the Grolier PoetryBookstore from 1974 till 2006 when she retired. Virtually everyone inmodern American letters has visited the Grolier Poetry Bookshop in Harvard Square Cambridge. The Grolier Poetry Bookshop is the "oldest continuous book shop" devoted solely to the sale of poetry and poetry criticism, was founded in 1927 by Adrian Gambet and Gordon Cairnie; the subsequent owner, Louisa Solano, a 1966 graduate of Boston Universityand bookstore habitué since 1955, took over operation of the store in1974 after Cairnie's death. Louisa will read from her favorite patron poet's poems.

Joan Houlihan

Joan Houlihan is the author of HAND-HELD EXECUTIONS (2003) and winner of the Green Rose Award from New Issues Press for THE MENDING WORM, forthcoming in spring, 2006. She writes a series of essays called the BOSTON COMMENT that focuses on contemporary American poetry and appears regularly on Web del Sol. She is editor-in-chief of Perihelion and senior poetry editor of Del Sol Review.

Ms. Houlihan is founding director of the CONCORD POETRY CENTER in Concord, Massachusetts.

Open mic to follow