Photos and Friends from the Beat Museum Poetry Festival

What a fun event. Last weekend I was invited to read at the SF Beat Museum 7th Annual Poetry Festival. What a blast. Here are some photos of the event, with some of the lovely poetry people I met.

Terry Adams was the MC and the photo above shows me in the Literature Bathtub with Terry! I’ve know Terry since 1986, through our long association with Waverly Writers in Palo Alto, but I think this is the first time we’ve shared a bath.

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Here’s Erica Goss with the bathtub full of books.

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I took a selfie with some famous beat women writers.

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Another shot of beautiful Erica with more women writers.

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Some great decor in the museum, behind and upstairs from a funky little bookstore.

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Erica and I hanging out with Allen Ginsberg. I bought a copy of the poster and am going to put an “e” between the “o” and “t”.

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Maurine Killough, Erica Goss, Bob Dickerson, and Sarah Kobrinsky (the Emeryville Poet Laureate)

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Gwynn O’Gara, fellow teacher at California Poets in the Schools and former Poet Laureate of Sonoma County, with the current Poet Laureate of Pacifica, Dorsetta Hale.

 

Loving Day Reading Photos

Almost a month later, I’m finally getting around to posting photos.

The second in my series of “Unsung Holiday” poetry readings, the Loving Day reading (June 12, 2014) was a lovely event — we had a great turnout and the venue was perfect. Here is a photo of me with my featured readers, (left to right) Michael Cross, (yours truly, Jennifer Swanton Brown), Erica Goss, and Bob Dickerson.

I opened the reading with Natasha Trethewey‘s poem about her parents interracial marriage, “Early Evening, Frankfurt Kentucky” — which of course has the important quality of not mentioning their races. When she was born in 1966 her parents’ marriage was illegal in Mississippi. Her birth certificate listed her mother’s race as “Colored” and her father’s as “Canadian.”

This photo is “of me in my element” taken by my friend Ellen.

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The Euphrat Gallery at De Anza College is a great place for a poetry reading and the staff there were friendly, helpful, attentive and smart. Just what you need when you’re a nervous M.C.

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Joining Erica (second from the left) in this photo are (left to right) Amanda Williamsen, Dave Denny, and Adrian Kolb. Amanda (who was a featured reader at the April Fool’s Day event) read a riotous poem during our open mic session. Dave Denny, is of course, my friend and Cupertino’s first PL, and Adrian is a member of the Cupertino Library Commission and the captain of my Poetry Posse — without whom most Cupertino PL events would be a mess or non-existent.

Behind us is a whirling sculpture of nails — a remarkable work of art. I wish I had jotted down the name of that De Anza student artist.

“Loving Day” Poetry Reading June 12, 2014

June 12 is “Loving Day” (every year) and this year I’ll be hosting the second poetry reading in my Unsung Holidays series. (Remember April Fool’s Day?)

“Loving Day” is an annual celebration held on June 12, the anniversary of the 1967 United States Supreme Court decision Loving v. Virginia which struck down all anti-miscegenation laws remaining in sixteen U.S. states citing “There can be no doubt that restricting the freedom to marry solely because of racial classifications violates the central meaning of the equal protection clause.”  According to the official website, there are official celebrations all over the world every year. This year, in Cupertino, we’re having a poetry reading.

I will be hosting, but the poems will belong to my three featured readers:

The reading will be at the Euphrat Museum, on De Anza College campus. 7-9 pm, open mic to follow. We hope you will join us!