Events from 2011

100,000 Poets for Change

Listen the Joseph Lease, Gloria Frym and Donna de la Perriere as they read for this event.September 24.

Micah Ballard

Micah Ballard's recent books include Waifs and Strays (City Lights Books, 2011), Parish Krewes (Bootstrap Press, 2009), Poems from the New Winter Palace (Arrow as Aarow, 2010) and Evangeline Downs (Ugly Duckling Presse, 2006). He co-edits Auguste Press and Lew Gallery Editions, is on the editorial board for the Contemporary Poetry Series at UNO Press, and works for the MFA in Writing Program at the University of San Francisco.

Listen to Micah Ballard read with Garrett Caples. October 16th.

Bill Berkson reads the Poetry of Frank O'Hara and Edwin Denby

Apart being widely acknowledged as one the world’s best dance critics ever, Edwin Denby (1903-1983) was a magnificent poet. In themselves, his sonnets and longer lyric poems, short plays, libretti (The Second Hurricane, for one, with music by Aaron Copland), many of which remain in print thanks to the 1998 Yale edition of Dance Writings and Poetry, represent that “civilized wonder” Denby himself said that poetry might best aspire to.

Along with the photographer Rudy Burckhardt and the painter Willem deKooning, Frank O’Hara (1926-1966) was one of Denby’s closest friends. In 1957, perhaps acknowledging a prompt toward the immediacy of his own just then emerging “I do this I do that” poems, O’Hara wrote of Denby’s art that it had “the classical gift of giving, in the present tense.”

Poet, critic and Professor Emeritus at the San Francisco Art Institute, Bill Berkson’s recent books include Portrait and Dreams: New & Selected Poems; For the Ordinary Artist; Sudden Address: Selected Lectures; Lady Air; and Not an Exit, with drawings by Léonie Guyer. In 1978, with Joe LeSueur, he co-edited Homage to Frank O’Hara.

Berkson will read and comment upon selections from O’Hara’s and Denby’s poetry and prose, including at least one of O’Hara’s longer poems “In Memory of My Feelings,” a range of Denby’s sonnets both early and late and passages from his dance criticism and the two remarkable essays on deKooning.

Listen to the event. August 31st.

Bill Berkson and Clark Coolidge talk about Philip Guston

Born in New York in 1939, Bill Berkson is a poet and critic who has lived in Northern California since the early ’70s. He is Professor Emeritus at the San Francisco Art Institute, where he taught art history and literature for many years. A corresponding editor for Art in America, he has contributed to such other journals as Artforum, Aperture and His most recent books include Portrait and Dream: New & Selected Poems; BILL, a words-and-images collaboration with Colter Jacobsen; Lady Air; Not an Exit with drawings by Léonie Guyer; a new collection of his art writings, For the Ordinary Artist; and Parties du corps, a selection of his poetry in French translation. He was the 2006 Distinguished Mellon Fellow at the Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture and received the 2008 Goldie for Literature from the San Francisco Bay Guardian. Portrait and Dream won the Balcones Prize for Best Poetry Book of 2010.

Poet Clark Coolidge is the editor of Philip Guston: Collected Writings, Lectures, and Conversations (The Documents of Twentieth-Century Art). He has taught at the Naropa Institute and the American Academy in Rome (1985-85). He has read his work locally and internationally in France, London, Scandinavia, and Russia. In 1993, he co-founded the MIX poetry and jazz group with David and Tina Metzer. Among his other collaborations are Supernatural Overtones (1990) with Ron Padgett, On the Pumice of Morons (1993) with Larry Fagin, and other pieces with Philip Guston, Bernadette Mayer, and Keith Waldrop. He lives in Petaluma, California.

Listen to Bill Berkson and Clark Coolidge discuss Philip Guston, one of the most intellectually adventurous and poetically gifted of modern painters. June 8th.

Avery Burns

Born in 1961 in Roseville, CA, Avery Burns currently lives with his family in Concord, CA. During the daylight hours he works in the San Francisco Financial District at a Multi-National Bank, while at night he has a clear view of Venus out the bedroom window. Avery continues into his second decade of hosting occasional readings and art shows at Canessa Park Gallery in San Francisco. He also continues to work on lyric& books, an outgrowth of a small poetry magazine lyric& published during the 90's. There is also the distinct possibility of another issue of 26 Magazine (a founding co-editor and published from 2000-2007). One full length collection - The Idler Wheel (Manifest Press 2001). Chapbooks include - for (g.e. press 2010), aethers (seeing eye books 2001), A Duelling Primer (2nd Story Books 2000), Ekistic Displays (a+bend press 2000). Poems from a manuscript ambulatory refrains recently appeared in letterbox, and on Italian poet Nanni Cagnone's web-site.

Listen to Avery Burns read with Tiff Dressen. August 30th

Garrett Caples

Oakland poet Garrett Caples is the author of two full-length collections, The Garrett Caples Reader (1999) and Complications (2007), as well as the Wave Books pamphlet, Quintessence of the Minor: Symbolist Poetry in English (2010). He's a contributing writer to the SF Bay Guardian and an editor at City Lights Books, where he curates the Spotlight poetry series. He's co-editor of the forthcoming Collected Poems of Philip Lamantia (California) and recently blogged for Harriet at

Listen to Garrett Caples and Micah Ballard. October 26th

Cheetah Chrome

Cheetah Chrome is a founding father of punk rock. Though he initially gained fames as the guitarist of Cleveland's notorious Dead Boys, he helped lay the groundwork for subversive alternative music in the mid-'70s with the ferociously experimental band Rocket from the Tombs (RFTT). Since that time he's followed his solo muse, accompanied a range of other artists, reunited with his old mates in RFTT,and formed a new band, Batusis, with fellow rock revolutionary Sylvain Sylvain. He's Also been honored as an extraordinary player who helped invent the pummeling sound of punk guitar.

Listen to Cheetah Chrome discuss his book A Dead Boy's Tale with Bob Pfeifer and Mike Hudson. February 22nd.

Civilization and Its Discontents with Sasha Lilley and David McNally

Capitalism is stumbling, empire is faltering, and the planet is thawing. Yet many people are still grappling to understand these multiple crises and to find a way forward to a just future. Into the breach come the insights of *Capital and Its Discontents*, which cut through the gristle to get to the heart of the matter about the nature of capitalism and neoliberalism, capitalism's vulnerabilities at this conjuncture—and what can we do to hasten its demise.

Through a series of incisive conversations with some of the most eminent thinkers and political economists on the left—including David Harvey, Ellen Meiksins Wood, Mike Davis, Leo Panitch, Tariq Ali, and Noam Chomsky—acclaimed broadcaster Sasha Lilley's Capital and Its Discontents illuminates the dynamic contradictions undergirding capitalism. The left luminaries in *Capital and Its Discontents* look at potential avenues out of the mess—as well as wrong turns and needless detours—drawing lessons from the inner workings of capitalism, the history of post-colonial states in the Global South, struggles against imperialism past and present, the eternal pendulum swing of radicalism, the corrosive legacy of postmodernism, and the potentialities of the radical tradition. Join Sasha Lilley and one of the conversants,David McNally (author of the recently published Global Slump), for an evening of discussion of capitalism in crisis, neoliberalism, the left, and how we might extricate ourselves from this mess.

Listen to this event. April 13th.

The Cork Literary Review

Autumn 2011 sees the launch of the Cork Literary Review Volume XIV, showcasing poetry from writers on both sides of the Atlantic. Volume XIV of this seminal Irish review, edited by Eugene O'Connell, is a deluxe 400-page hardback edition, celebrating 25 years of Bradshaw Books Publishing in Ireland. Highlights from Volume XIV include interviews with the Irish Ambassador, James J. Sharkey, a childhood friend of Seamus Heaney; and Liadain O'Donovan, the daughter of Frank O'Connor. The review will also feature the inaugural American section, edited and introduced by the poet Brian Turner.

Since it first appeared in 1994, the Cork Literary Review (Bradshaw Books) has evolved from a slim anthology of winning competition entries, into a widely respected, high-end literary journal. Down through the years, it has featured contributions from a host of noted Irish poets and writers, among them, Seamus Heaney, Paul Durcan, Thomas McCarthy, Frank McGuinness, Jean O'Brien, Ian Wild, Brian Turner, Medbh McGuckian, Sheila O'Hagan, Eugene O'Connell, William Wall, John McAuliffe, Mary Rose Callan and Roderick Ford.

Listen to Eugene O'Connell, Brian Turner, Joseph Wells read from their work. November 8th.

David Darlington


Photo by Phoebe Wong

David Darlington is the author of four books: In Condor Country (1987), Angels' Visits (1991) (published in paperback as Zin), The Mojave (1996) and Area 51 (1997). He is a frequent contributor to Food & Wine, Bicycling, and the San Francisco Chronicle. He has won a National Magazine Award (2009, for Public Interest), and a James Beard Award (2008, for Writing on Spirits, Wine or Beer).


Amber Di Pierta

Amber DiPietra lives and works as an advocate and peer counselor in the Bay Area disability community. She is also an energy worker and teacher of expressive somatics. Read more about Write To Connect (life writes for radical and everyday embodiments) and her palmetry practice at . Poems and prose pieces by Amber have appeared in Make, A Chicago Literary Magazine, Mirage Period[ica], Tarpaulin Sky, Mrs. Maybe, the Somatic Engagement Anthology, the Beauty Is a Verb anthology, Monday Night and TRY!. Her chapbook Waveform is a long collaborative poem co-written with Denise Leto, published by Kenning Editions. Amber also veers toward performance art with the Olimpias Collective, Axis Dance and recently, a solo piece she did at the Museum of Modern Art in San Francisco.

Listen to Amber Di Pietra read with Denise Leto. October 18th.

The Exegesis of Philip K. Dick

The Exegesis of Philip K. Dick is a book containing the published selections of a journal kept by science fiction writer Philip K. Dick, documenting and exploring his religious and visionary experiences. Dick's wealth of knowledge on the subjects of philosophy, religion, and science inform the work throughout. Editors Pamela Jackson and Jonathan Lethem talk about the years of poring through the 80 boxes of journals and notes left by the author to create this massive tome.

Also participating in the panel event were Laura Leslie and Isa Dick Hackett, Mr. Dick's daughters, and journalist Erik Davis.

Listen to the event. November 22nd.

Watch the event on Litseen.


Tiff Dressen

Tiff Dressen lives in Oakland, works at UC Berkeley and peregrinates in between. Her lifelong pursuit is the synchronization of her left and right brain. She makes little books of poetry on occasion and frequently finds herself meditating on the color of Ionian sea and the Ionian sky. She is currently reading the The Hart Crane Voyages by Hunce Voelcker, an excellent copy of which she found at Moe's.

Listen to Tiff Dressen read with Avery Burns. August 30th

Patrick Dunagan

Patrick James Dunagan lives in San Francisco and works at Gleeson Library Geschke Center for the University of San Francisco. A graduate of the Poetics Program New College of California, his writings have appeared in: Amerarcana, Art-voice, Big Bell, Chain, Critical Flame, Fulcrum, Jacket, ON, Polis, Rain Taxi, SF Bay Guardian, The Poetry Project Newsletter, Try!, and Vanitas. Recent chapbooks include: from Chansonniers (Blue Press, 2008), Spirit Guest & Others (Lew Gallery Editions, 2009), Easy Eden w/ Micah Ballard (PUSH, 2009) and her friends down at the french cafe had no english words for me (PUSH, 2010).

About There are People Who Think That Painters Shouldn't Talk: A Gustonbook

GUSTONBOOK is a workman's notebook of sorts sketched out in response to years spent contemplating the work and life of painter Philip Guston in relation to the ongoing world, i.e. exhibitions, books on/about Guston, other books/art works amid daily walks, drinks, and talks. More explorations than explanations, the entries contained situate the eye of memory as witness to the immediate surrounds of now: day to day, hour by hour, the concern never (always) changing. As Guston once said, gesturing out the window, “Who wants that? And you can't have it anyway.”

Listen to Patrick James Dunagan discuss There are People Who Think That Painters Shouldn't Talk: A Gustonbook with Julien Poirier. March 23rd

Steven Farmer

Of Steven Farmer's Glowball (theenk Books, NY, 2010), Sianne Ngai says: "Is the word 'glow' now permanently ominous? What is the future of aesthetic enchantment in the society of the spectacle? In a book where poems become exploding dandelion heads of the spreadsheet and situation room, Steve Farmer radically estranges us from our present as if it were the future's past. Glowball est a praeclarus quod perago libri! ". Recent correspondence featuring work based on constrictive methods can be found online at Others Letters/Wild Horses of Fire. See also the Oakland Poetic Labor Project, where he and other artists spoke on the subject of labor and its impacts on the practice of writing.

Listen to Steve Farmer read with Ron Silliman. March 30th

Jeff Fort

To celebrate the Aurora Theatre's production of David Farr and Gisli Orn Gardarsson's new adaptation of The Metamorphosis we have invited scholar and translator Jeff Fort to discuss Kafka's work. Jeff Fort has a Ph.D. in comparative literature from UC Berkeley--and says that he would have finished much sooner if he hadn't spent so much time browsing at Moe's. He is an assistant prof. at UC Davis now, in the French department and has published a study of Kafka, " The Man Who Could Not Disappear " in The Believer. Jeff is just finishing a book on "the imperative to write" in Kafka, Blanchot, and Beckett.

Listen to Jeff Fort and director Mark Jackson discuss Kafka and the Metamorphosis. July 1st.

Gloria Frym

Gloria Frym is both a poet and a short story writer; her books of poems include Homeless at Home and By Ear her story collections include Distance No Object and How I Learned. She teaches at California College of the Arts.

Listen to Gloria Frym from 100000 Poets for Change.

Tess Gallagher

Tess Gallagher is the author of eight volumes of poetry, including Dear Ghosts, Moon Crossing Bridge, and My Black Horse. Her Midnight Lantern: New and Selected Poems will be published October 2011 from Graywolf Press. A Path to the Sea, translations of Liliana Ursu’s by Adam Sorkin, Ms. Gallagher and Ms. Ursu are forthcoming in July 2011. Her The Man from Kenvara: Selected Stories was published in fall 2009. In 2008 Blackstaff Press in Belfast published Barnacle Soup—Stories from the West of Ireland, a collaboration with the Irish storyteller Josie Gray, available in the US from Carnegie Mellon. Distant Rain, a conversation with the highly respected Buddhist nun, Jacucho Setouchi, of Kyoto, is both an art book and a cross cultural moment. Gallagher is also the author of Amplitude, Soul Barnacles: Ten More Years with Ray, A Concert of Tenses: Essays on Poetry, and two collections of short fiction: At the Owl Woman Saloon and The Lover of Horses and Other Stories. She wrote the preface for Beyond Forgetting, an anthgology of poems about Alzheimer’s. She has also spearheaded the publication of Raymond Carver’s Beginners in Library of America’s complete collection of his stories published Fall 2009. Jonathan Cape published Carver’s Beginners as a single volume in the UK in fall 2009. She spends time in a cottage on Lough Arrow in Co. Sligo in the West of Ireland where many of her new poems are set, and also lives and writes in her hometown of Port Angeles, Washington.

Listen to Tess Gallagher read from her book Midnight Lantern. November 7th

John Gibler


John Gibler is a writer based in Mexico and California, the author of Mexico Unconquered: Chronicles of Power and Revolt (City Lights Books, 2009), and a contributor to País de muertos : Crónicas contra la impunidad (Random House Mondadori, 2011). He is a correspondent for KPFA in San Francisco and has published in magazines in the United States and Mexico, including Left Turn, Z Magazine, Earth Island Journal, ColorLines, Race, Poverty, and the Environment, Fifth Estate, New Politics, In These Times, Yes! Magazine, Contralínea, and Milenio Semanal.

Listen to John Gibler discuss his book To Die in Mexico. July 12th.

David Gitin

From his Poets’ Theater days in the Haight-Ashbury through travels round the world, to creative collaboration with musicians and artists, David Gitin comes to us both simplified and amplified. This book, his tenth, includes new poems and early unpublished ones in addition to favorites. David’s roots lie in his uncompromising search for truth and music. Early mentors and deep friendships range from Allen Ginsberg, Robert Creeley, George Oppen, and Larry Eigner, to Michael McClure. John Cage called David’s work “beautiful.” After decades in California, David now lives in Key Largo, Florida.

Listen to David Gitin read with George Mattingly. March 9th.

David Lance Goines

Artist and writer David Lance Goines was born in 1945 in Grants Pass, Oregon, and is the oldest of eight children. He attended the University of California at Berkeley as a Classics major, but in his second year was expelled as a consequence of his participation in the Free Speech Movement. Though later readmitted, he had by then lost his taste for higher education and in 1965 apprenticed with a Berkeley printer, becoming in the fullness of time a journeyman of that Art and Mystery. He is the author of five books, collaborated on three, and his work has been the subject of six others.

In 1968 he founded Saint Hieronymus Press in the same Berkeley printshop where he had learned his trade. There he has remained, designing his work and printing it by both letterpress and photo-offset lithography.

His artwork has been reproduced in numerous professional publications, including American Illustration, Communication Arts, Graphis, How, Print, and Step-By-Step Graphics.

His writing and artwork have been the recipients of many awards, most notably the 1983 American Book Award for his book, A Constructed Roman Alphabet . His artwork is represented in both public and private collections.

His artwork has been exhibited in more than one hundred one-man and group shows, both national and international.

Listen to David Lance Goines discuss his book The Poster Art of David Lance Goines. January 26th

Mike Hudson

Mike Hudson was founder and lead singer of legendary Cleveland punk band the Pagans. In a prose style reminiscent of Hunter Thompson and William Burroughs, Hudson paints a stark insider's portrait of a life lived outside society's boundaries. In Diary of a Punk: Life and Death in the Pagans, Hudson, co-author of last year's highly successful Niagara Falls Confidential, has turned out a classic rock and roll memoir that dishes the inside dope on the groundbreaking American punk rock movement and many of its top stars.

Listen to Mike Hudson discuss his book Diary of a Punk with Cheetah Chrome and Bob Pfeifer. February 22nd.

Joseph Lease

Joseph Lease’s critically acclaimed books of poetry include Broken World and Human Rights. His work has been featured on NPR and published in The AGNI 30th Anniversary Poetry Anthology, VQR, Bay Poetics, Paris Review, and elsewhere. The title poem from Broken World appeared in The Best American Poetry, edited by Robert Creeley and David Lehman. Originally from Chicago, Lease lives in the Bay Area and chairs the MFA Program in Writing at California College of the Arts in San Francisco.

Listen to Joseph Lease reading from his book Testify. April 12th.

Denise Leto

Denise Leto is a San Francisco Bay Area poet, writer, and Senior Editor at the University of California, Berkeley. Waveform, a collaborative chapbook written with poet Amber DiPietra, is out from Kenning Editions. Her selected poetry, reviews, and essays have appeared or are forthcoming in Beauty is a Verb, Cinco Puntos Press; Somatic Engagement, Chain Link Book Series; Puerto del Sol; Wildhorses on Fire: Other Letters; The Wolf Magazine: Arts Council of England; Aufgabe; 26: A Journal of Poetry and Poetics; The Seneca Review; Xantippe; Unsettling America: An Anthology of Contemporary Multi-Cultural Poetry, Penguin; MELUS: The Journal for the Society of Multi-Ethnic Literature in the US; and Featured Poet on Kelsey Street Press Blog, May 2011. She was guest editor for the journal Sinister Wisdom; co-founder of Three Guineas Press; a Fellow for the University of Michigan’s Research and Practice Symposium on Movement, Somatics, and Writing; and an Honorary Fellow and Artist in Residence at Djerassi Resident Artist Program as well as a former fellowship juror. She has presented her work at readings, conferences, and multi-media art performances most recently at “Breaking Ranks: Human/Nature,” at the Headlands Center for the Arts in Marin, California and at the Subterranean Art House for the event “Feminist Embodiment, Somatics, and Disability Poetics.” Among other projects, she is currently working on a docu-book, Day Jobs: What Poets, Writers, Artists, and Dancers Do for Living.

Listen to Denise Leto read with Amber Di Pietra. October 18th.


Paul Madonna

Paul Madonna produces the strips All Over Coffee in the San Francisco Chronicle and on, and Small Potatoes on In 2007 the first book collection of All Over Coffee was published by City Lights Books, and is currently in its fifth printing. In 2009 Paul launched the artbook series Album, and the second volume is scheduled for the fall of 2011. Paul's work has been reprinted in various book collections and publications, and exhibited in museums, galleries, restaurants and cafes. Paul is the comics editor on and also teaches drawing at the University of San Francisco. In 1994 he received a BFA from Carnegie Mellon University, and that same year was the first (ever!) Art Intern at MAD Magazine, for which he proudly received no money.

Listen to Paul Madonna discuss his book All Over Coffee 2: Everything Is Its Own Reward. May 10th

George Mattingly

George Mattingly is a book designer, writer of fiction, essays and poetry, photographer, one-time letterpress printer & typographer. Editor of the literary magazine Search for Tomorrow (1969–1974) and founder of Blue Wind Press (1970–) which has published William S. Burroughs, Ted Berrigan, Anselm Hollo, Lorenzo Thomas and David Gitin (among others). Author of Darling-Bender (1970) and Breathing Space (1975) and the forthcoming new & selected, a while (2011).

Listen to George Mattiingly read with David Gitin. March 9th.


David Meltzer

A poet at age 11 and child performer on radio and TV, David Meltzer began his literary career during the Beat heyday in San Francisco and early on took his poetry to jazz for improv wonders which he continues to astound listeners with today. He is the author of many volumes of poetry including The Clown, The Process, Arrows: Selected Poetry, 1957 – 1992, No Eyes: Lester Young, Beat Thing, and David's Copy. This June, City Light's will publish his forthcoming book, When I Was A Poet, as # 60 in their Pocket Poet's Series. As well he has published fiction, numerous anthologies and essays including Two-Way Mirror: A Poetry Notebook and has edited numerous anthologies such as Reading Jazz, Writing Jazz, and San Francisco Beat: Talking with the Poets among others. David Meltzer composed, performed and recorded as a singer/songwriter during the 60s and 70s; albums include Serpent Power and Poet Song. He taught in the Humanities and graduate Poetics programs at the New College of California in San Francisco for 30 years and is now writing, reading and performing on tour and in the Bay Area. Visit the website at

Listen to David Meltzer read with Julie Rogers. June 29th

Milvia Street Journal

The 2011 edition of Milvia Street, Berkeley City College's literary journal, wil be celebrated this night. All the contributors are BCC students, recent alumni and faculty.

This year's Milvia Street Readers: Inna Nopuente, Harry Gold, Pamela Brenman, Aisha Stone, Jim Barnard, Carla Kandinsky, Celine Gard, Victoria Chames, Margo Iserson, Amy Rich.

Listen to the event. May 3rd.

Omnidawn Night

This annual publisher's night features authors reading from their newly published books. Included tonight are kathryn l. pringle reading from fault tree, Richard Meier reading from In the Pure Block of the Whole Imaginary, Virginie Lalucq reading from Fortuno Samano and Norma Cole reading from Win These Posters and Other Unrelated Prizes Inside.

Listen to the event. September 19th


Bob Pfeifer

In association with Chicago's Smog Veil Records, Power City Press presents Bob Pfeifer's University of Strangers. Pfeifer is best-known for his pioneering indie band Human Switchboard. In his first novel he blends fact and fiction, a real-life murder trial and a shadowy cadre of truth-seekers. Includes a drop card to download new songs by the Tabby Chinos.

Listen to Bob Pfeifer discuss his book University of Strangers with Cheetah Chrome and Mike Hudson. February 22nd.

Julien Poirier

Julien Poirier started in San Francisco in 1970, grew a few inches in Berkeley (he lives there now) and then moved to New York City where he went to school, taught poetry and other things to public school kids in the 5 boroughs, helped start the Ugly Duckling Presse Collective, and edited New York Nights newspaper to make endless war stink worse. His books include Absurd Good News (Insert Press, 2006), the newspaper novella Living! Go and Dream (Ugly Duckling Presse, 2005) and the newly released "omniscooter" El Golpe Chile ño (available at ).

Listen to Julien Poirier discuss There are People Who Think That Painters Shouldn't Talk: A Gustonbook with Patrick Dunagan. March 23rd

Kevin Power

Kevin Power's resume is impressive. He is Chair of American Literature at the Universidad de Alicante, he has been visiting professor throughout the Americas: Instituto Superior de Artes, Havana; University of Buffalo; University of San Diego; Universidad de Tucman, Argentina; universidad de Medellin, Colombia. He has been curator of many exhibitions the past 33 years, such as Julian Schnabel in Madrid, Puerto Rico: Los 90 at the Instituo de American in Granada, While Cuba Waits, in Los Angeles and la Bienal de Valencia. He has written catalogs on David Salle, Markus Lupertz, Carmen Laffon, Alex Katz, Georg Baselitz, Manuel Ocampo, Anselm Kiefer, Georg Immendorf and Emily Cheng, among others.

Listen to Kevin Power discuss his book Where You're at: Poetics and Visual Art. October 25th.


Kim Stanley Robinson presents Kenneth Rexroth's In the Sierra

Kim Stanley Robinson writes:

For me, just to set the stage, the thing to emphasize would be how much Rexroth made Bay Area culture through his work from the 1930s through the 1960s, with his newspaper columns, KPFA shows, literary salons and classes, and political activism. Of course the main thing was his poetry, which was published mostly by New Directions. James Laughlin, the publisher of New Directions, was a friend of Rexroth's, and they went to the mountains together, skiing and climbing and camping. Rexroth serves as one of Laughlin's talent scouts, alerting him to Gary Snyder, William Everson, Denise Levertov, and others.

Rexroth spent a couple months of almost every summer from 1927 to 1967 in the Sierra Nevada, and weekended at a shepherd's shack in Devil's Gulch north of Mount Tamalpais. This too was part of his impact on California culture. All his mountain poetry is collected in this new collection In the Sierra, published by New Directions. The new book also includes Rexroth's prose about the Sierra Nevada from his autobiography, newspaper columns, a camping guide he wrote for the WPA, and correspondence with James Laughlin.

Listen to the event with reading by Tom Killion, Carter Scholz and Ken Knabb. September 12th


Julie Rogers

Julie Rogers began writing at age 12 and reading her poetry in San Francisco cafes in the late 1970's. She has self-published five chapbooks, and in 2007 Vimala published her Buddhist hospice manual, ‘Instructions for the Transitional State'. Currently, her main focus is on several book-length manuscripts of poetry, one solicited by and recently completed for Wild Ocean Press. She has read on public radio and television and at many venues in Oregon and northern California. Her poems have been published in various anthologies such as Poets Against the War and most recently, Beatitude – Golden Anniversary 1959 – 2009. In the Afterward, editor Latif Harris wrote, “her poetry is beautifully lyric combining the inner and outer worlds in a seamless unity of visionary grace,” and is “following in the steps of Beat literature in its broadest sense.” Visit the website at

Listen to Julie Rogers read with David Meltzer. June 29th

Rachel Saunders

Rachel Saunders's The Blue Chair Jam Cookbook is the definitive jam and marmalade cookbook of the 21st century. In addition to offering more than 100 original jam, jelly, and marmalade recipes, master jam artisan Rachel Saunders shares all of her technical preserving knowledge, as well as her unique jam maker's perspective on fruit.

Rachel combines nostalgia with a modern, sustainable approach to creating fresh and vividly flavored preserves. The recipes are divided into chapters based on the seasons, and each chapter is organized by month and type of fruit. Sample recipes include Strawberry-Marsala Jam with Rosemary, Italian Lemon Marmalade, and Early Girl Tomato Jam.

Listen to Rachel Saunders discuss her book The Blue Chair Jam Cookbook. September 27th.

Ron Silliman

Ron Silliman has written and edited over 30 books, and had his poetry and criticism translated into 12 languages. Silliman was the 2006 Poet Laureate of the Blogosphere, a 2003 Literary Fellow of the National Endowment for the Arts and was a 2002 Fellow of the Pennsylvania Arts Council as well as a Pew Fellow in the Arts in 1998. He received the Levinson Prize from the Poetry Foundation in 2010. Silliman has a plaque in the walk dedicated to poetry on Addison Street, although he now lives in Chester County, Pennsylvania. The University of Windsor will have a symposium on his poem The Alphabet March 25 & 26, and his sculpture "Poetry" will be unveiled at the Text Festival in Bury, Lancashire at the end of April, where it will be part of the festival's museum exhibit over the summer before being permanently installed at the city center in the fall. A graduate of Albany High School, he first began to publish poetry while hanging out with the street people of Telegraph Avenue.

Listen to Ron Silliman read with Steve Farmer. March 30th.

Sylvie Simmons

Sylvie Simmons is one of the foremost journalists chronicling rock’n’roll. A winner of the ASCAP Deems Taylor Award for her liner notes to Leonard Cohen Live at the Isle of Wight 1970, she is the author of the biographies Serge Gainsbourg: A Fistful of Gitanes and Neil Young: Reflections in Broken Glass, and the short story collection Too Weird for Ziggy. She was born and raised in London, England and currently lives in San Francisco, California.

Listen to Sylvie Simmons discuss her book I'm Your Man: The Life of Leonard Cohen. September 21st.

Cole Swensen

A native of the San Francisco Bay Area, Cole Swensen is a poet and translator of French poetry, prose, and art criticism. She co-edited the Norton Anthology American Hybrid and is the founding editor of the small press La Presse). A 2007 Guggenheim Fellow, she has held residencies at Yale’s Beinecke Library, Temple University, the VSC, and elsewhere, and has taught at the University of Denver, the Iowa Writers’ Workshop, and, currently, Brown University. She divides her life between Providence, RI and Paris.

Listen to Cole Swensen read with Lindsey Boldt and Steve Dickison. October 28th.

Bryant Terry

Bryant Terry is a chef, food justice activist, and author of three books, including his latest The Inspired Vegan. He is also the host of Urban Organic, a new multi-episode web series. His interest in cooking, farming, and community health can be traced back to his childhood in Memphis, Tennessee, where his grandparents inspired him to grow, prepare, and appreciate good food. Bryant completed the chef's training program at the Natural Gourmet Institute for Health and Culinary Arts in New York City. He holds an M.A. in American History from New York University and a B.A. with honors in English from Xavier University of Louisiana. From 2008 to 2010, Bryant was a fellow of the Food and Society Policy Fellows Program. He lives and creates in Oakland, California, with his wife and daughter.

Listen to Bryant Terry discuss his book The Inspired Vegan. April 30th


Trinh Minh-ha

Born in Vietnam, Trinh T. Minh-ha is a filmmaker, writer, and composer. Her work includes: ten books, including Elsewhere, Within Here (2010), The Digital Film Event (2005), When the Moon Waxes Red (1991), Woman, Native, Other (1989); seven feature-length films (including Night Passage 2004, The Fourth Dimension 2001 and A Tale of Love 1996), which have been honored in numerous retrospectives around the world; several collaborative multi-media installations (including Old Land New Waters, 2007-2008, (3rd Guangzhou Triennale 2008) L’Autre marche (Musée du Quai Branly, 2006-2009), The Desert Is Watching (Kyoto Biennial, 2003); and Nothing But Ways (Yerba Buena,1999). She is Professor of Rhetoric and of Gender & Women’s Studies at the University of California, Berkeley.

Listen to Trinh Minh-ha discuss her book elsewhere, within here. February 17th.


Paul Vangelisti

Paul Vangelisti's many works of poetry include Days Shadows Pass (Green Integer, 2007), Agency (2003), Embarrassment of Survival: Selected Poems 1970-2000 (2001), Alphabets (1999), Nemo (1995), Villa (1991), Rime (1983), Another You (1980), Portfolio: With an Appendix, The Tender Continent (1978), among others.

He worked as an editor and reporter for The Hollywood Reporter before taking on the position of Cultural Affairs Director for the Los Angeles radio station, KPFK, where he was able to produce "Los Angeles Theater of the Ear," a program which broadcasted poetry readings by writers such as Samuel Beckett, Harold Pinter, Amiri Baraka, Kenneth Patchen, and others.

Vangelisti has edited several anthologies of poetry as well as the journals Invisible City and Ribot. His first Los Angeles based collection, Anthology of L.A. Poets (1972), was co-edited with Charles Bukowski and Neeli Cherkovski. He is also the editor of Italian Poetry After 1975 (Sun & Moon Press, 1995), New Polish Poetry (1986), Transbluency: The Selected Poems of Amiri Baraka/Leroi Jones 1961-1995 (1995), and the forthcoming Nuova poesia americana, an anthology of U. S. poetry from the 1960s to the present.

He has received numerous awards for his translations from Italian, including fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts as well as Italy's Flaiano Prize and the PEN USA Prize for Translation in 2006. In 2010, Vangelisti received the Raiziss/de Palchi Book Prize from the Academy of American Poets for his translations of Adriano Spatola, collected in The Position of Things: Collected Poems 1961-1992 (Green Integer, 2008).

Currently, Vangelisti lives in Los Angeles, CA, where he is Founding Chair of the Graduate Writing program at Otis College of Art and Design.

Listen to Paul Vangelisti read from his book Two. April 27th.