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Poets Look at Paintings 2015

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

About the event:

Join the Poetry Center of Chicago for a revival of Poets Look at Paintings. The original event in 1973 marked the beginning of the Poetry Center and we’re thrilled to have culled a top-notch line up of poets from an open call for submissions. These poets will each read one ekphrastic poem that wowed us in the submission review process. Admission is free and open to the public in the Garland Room on the first floor of the Chicago Cultural Center.


Christopher Kempf
Nissa Holtkamp
Tiffany Austin
Natasha Mijares
Sarah Ann Winn
Virginia Bell
Paul Asta
Natania Rosenfeld
Naoko Fujimoto

City-Wide Graduate Student Reading 2015

Friday, April 3, 2015


Hannah Keene, The School of the Art Institute of Chicago

“fortunes wrapped around a wounded nest” by Hannah Keene

Excerpt from a reading of two poems by Hannah Keene for HI typ/O 11 at The Side Project Theatre, July 2014.

Josh Fisher, DePaul University


Hannah Brooks-Motl, University of Chicago

download (2)

Jim Davis, Northwestern University


Teresa McMahon, Columbia College

teresa mcmahon

More info about this event⇒

American Poets Reading 2002

Wednesday, September 18, 2002
American Poets Reading
Jenny A. Burkholder, Deborah Cummins, Janice Harrington, and John Mann


The patient was taken to the operating room
reliving 10th grade,
how they chased warm gin with milk.

– Jenny A. Burkholder, “Deconstructing the Right Breast”

Continue reading this poem⇒

He sits beside his wife who takes the wheel.
Clutching coupons, he wanders the aisles
of Stop & Save. There’s no place he must be,
no clock to punch. Sure,
there are bass in the lake, a balsa model
in the garage, the par-three back nine.
But it’s not the same.
Time the enemy then, the enemy now.

– Deborah Cummins, “At a Certain Age”

Continue reading this poem⇒


Evening, and all my ghosts come back to me
like red banty hens to catalpa limbs
and chicken-wired hutches, clucking, clucking,
and falling, at last, into their head-under-wing sleep.

– Janice Harrington, “Shaking the Grass”

Continue reading this poem⇒


The body captures the rhythm. A kind
of lilt to the step. Never a tread. You
are looking for ladders to the world.
Hooks. Sometimes it is like holding on
to the strap in a swaying subway.

– John Mann, “Mr. Mann Finds a How To Manual”

Continue reading this poem⇒

More info on Jenny A. Burkholder⇒

More info on Deborah Cummins⇒

More info on Janice Harrington⇒

More info on John Mann⇒

American Poets Reading 2003

Thursday, March 6, 2003
American Poets Reading
Traci DantDuriel Harris, Patricia McMillen, and Andrew Zawacki


I come
from a family
that twice names
its own.
One name
for the world.

– Traci Dant, “A Twice Named Family”

Continue reading this poem⇒


Gilded, the jaw forgets
fracture at the pointer’s tip
(red jaw, forgotten rings
inadvertent discord, picked up,
thrown into anger). To say
I feel like breaking something

– Duriel Harris, “self portrait in relief”

Continue reading this poem⇒


Listen to Patricia McMillen read her poem, “Fill ‘Er Up” on GLT’s Poetry Radio⇒


If it be warfare, let it be mistress
and midnight up that slope,
not reticent in a weather
of withdrawal, its salmon-roe tint,
the shabby grass it grazes

– Andrew Zawacki, “Any Other Eviction, Than The Frequent”

Continue reading this poem⇒

More info on Traci Dant⇒

More info on Duriel Harris⇒

More info on Patricia McMillen⇒

More info on Andrew Zawacki⇒

A Formal Feeling Comes 1998

Wednesday, April 29, 1998
A Formal Feeling Comes: A program celebrating multi-formalism
Debra Bruce, Annie FinchJohn Frederick Nims, Paulette Roeske, and Cin Salach
Beginning of the A Formal Feeling Comes broadside series.

Beginning of the A Formal Feeling Comes broadside series.

Buy the A Formal Feeling Comes broadside series⇒


he smells like leather and mint and the El that shot
him through the city. Now he slips
his headstrap off, his black patch. But not
for them–the ones who heaved at him and swung
their taunt: Let’s see what’s under there.

– Debra Bruce, “The Fitting”


is the sound of my loud carrying life a knell
far across your small ocean? Do you share
the secret that the months keep hidden there?

– Annie Finch, “Three Generations of Secrets”

Glossies of Eden? The slim beached curled
Between rocks and the frill of foam–that’s when
There’s thunder of tunnels and the underworld.

John Frederick Nims, “from the rapido: la spezia-genova”


You have given me
too much: two pearls, two moons ascending–
luminous, miraculous,
like your two hands as I see them in dreams.

– Paulette Roeske, “Too Much”

cin salach

This is what I was afraid of:
This paper   this though   lines
dividing white space     lines dividing
This exhaustion     this futility
this game or promise.

– Cin Salach, “specifically”

More info on Debra Bruce⇒

More info on Annie Finch⇒

More info on John Frederick Nims⇒

More info on Paulette Roeske⇒

More info on Cin Salach⇒

Mixed Bag Series 1999

Wednesday, January 27, 1999
Mixed Bag Series – 5 Chicago Performance Poets
Nina Corwin, Kent Foreman, Regie Gibson, Maria McCray, and Marvin Tate
Cover of the Mixed Bag broadside series.

Cover of the Mixed Bag broadside series.

Buy the Mixed Bag broadside series⇒


She learned the meaning of industry
From Sunday school sermons on
Protestant virtue,
the third little pig,
the spider not the fly,
and the squirrel putting up supplies
for the barren season–

– Nina Corwin, “Lady Sisyphus”


It is the law:
seasons, best selling books and empires
come and go.
Babies are born to die,
bridges are built to one day fall
and shoes wear out.

– Kent Foreman, “It is the Law”


Amazon of song
valkyrie riding astride blue horses
of chanted mystery
you who assassinate
the killer of your
children’s dreams

– Regie Gibson, “Poet Woman”

Billie sang!     the truth of blooming blood blossoms
the bottomless search-seek for love,
the pitless people, pillaging, plagiarizing,
picking apart

– Maria McCray, “Holliday & Well Worth a Celebration”

she wants to reclaim her body
change it back to its original shape
like when she danced, you know she use
to dance, in the middle of a drum circle

– Marvin Tate, “Blue eggs for a blue poet”

More info on Nina Corwin⇒

More info on Kent Foreman⇒

More info on Regie Gibson⇒

More info on Maria McCray⇒

More info on Marvin Tate⇒