Two Poetry Events in Boston and Salem this Weekend: Mass Poetry and Janaka Stucky

Mass Poetry Festival 2015 LogoThe Mass Poetry Festival takes place in Salem during the first weekend in May — just in time to cap off National Poetry Month. Founded in 2009, the festival creates a sort of clearinghouse for the many poetry events and societies in Boston and the surrounding areas. Every year, the festival saturates downtown Salem in readings, workshops, and open-air performances celebrating the written and spoken word. This year’s headliners include Rita Dove, Jorie Graham, Richard Hoffman, and Marge Piercy. The weekend boasts approximately 100 different events and the cost of attendance will fit even a starving poet’s budget: $15.

To see a schedule and purchase a festival button, visit

Book Cover and Event Poster for Janaka Stucky's The Truth Is We Are PerfectIf you like your poetry with tattoos and music, I recommend the release party for Janaka Stucky’s full-length book, The Truth Is We Are Perfect. Janaka’s first chapbook Your Name Is the Only Freedom reignited the fire in my own belly and remains one of my prize possessions — excellent text aside, Brave Men Press created a beautiful book. The founder of Black Ocean Press, Janaka has a loyal following in the Boston area. The event, which includes both poetry and music, happens at the Brattle Theatre on Saturday May 2 at 9pm. More information Facebook and the poet’s website. And then there’s this, posted on the Facebook event yesterday morning:

Friends, I’ve felt increasingly conflicted about all the self-promotion this week during so much suffering and unrest. As a result, the other performers and I have agreed to donate all proceeds from ticket sales to a relief fund for those affected by the earthquake in Nepal. Furthermore, I will personally be donating $5 to the ACLU in Baltimore for every book sold at the event on Saturday. I hope you’ll join us in supporting others, through your attendance or in your own way.

Boston Area Poetry Readings for April 2015

Photo of crocuses again a backdrop of snow
Photo of crocuses by Tejvan Pettinger CC-licensed via Flickr

April is National Poetry Month. Combined with the advent of spring (and hopefully the disappearance of the last of the snowbanks), that means a massive number of readings in the Boston area. It all culminates with the Mass Poetry Festival, which runs from Thursday April 30 through the first weekend in May.

The April listings are more than ample, but I couldn’t resist giving a shout-out to Janaka Stucky, one of my favorite Boston poets, who will be reading tomorrow evening (Wednesday, March 25, 2015) along with Nicole Terez Dutton, Danniel Schoonebeek, and Jackie Eugene Wang at The Harvard Advocate, 21 South St., Cambridge, MA.

Wednesday, April 1, 7 – 9 pm
Emily Ferrera, James B. Nicola, and Zvi A. Sesling
with Open Mic
Raytheon Room, Wayland Public Library
5 Concord Road
Wayland, MA
Free and open to the public

Wednesday, April 1, 7:30 pm
Veronica Golos
Gloucester Writers Center
126 East Main Street
Gloucester, MA

Continue reading “Boston Area Poetry Readings for April 2015”

An Early Back to School for Poets in Boston: Poetry World Cup in Cambridge, Other Readings in Massachusetts

This summer I took a break from some of the work of poetry (yes, anything can become work if you do it too much). My comrade-in-words Daniel Bouchard, who runs a mailing list of readings in the Boston area, also took some time off.

Here’s the clarion call of the end of summer, starting TOMORROW, August 8, with a rather breath-taking lineup of poets at the Boston Poetry World Cup in Cambridge. You can see Mr. Bouchard himself reading at 7:32 pm. If you miss him, try for Janaka Stucky at 8:06pm. Or on Saturday, catch long-time poet and workshop leader Tom Daley at 1:32pm.

I feel like a bad feminist, not being able to call out any of the many fine female poets on the line-up. Please remedy my ignorance in the comments.

I’ll be up at Singing Beach this Saturday with a bunch of witches, so I’ll miss out on all the literary fun. Sunday, I’ll be looking at real estate listings and weeping softly with my partner. All is not lost, though. Many other readings are scheduled for August, including Black Ocean Press‘s BASH series at Brookline Booksmith for next Friday, August 15. Other events range from Plymouth to Northampton. Scroll down or click this link to jump past the marathon lineup.


Boston Poetry World Cup in Inman Square, Cambridge (Fri-Sun August 8-10)
Friday August 8th at the Lilly Pad, Cambridge Street in the heart of Inman Square, just down from 1369 Coffee House.
Saturday and Sunday August 9-10 Outpost 186 (former site of New Words Bookstore)
Free and Open to the Public (but we will pass the hat)
Millions of poets read for 8 minutes and then we go to penalty kicks

FRIDAY Lilly Pad

7:00 Jim Dunn
7:08 January O’Neil
7:16 Jonathan Papas
7:24 Stefania Heim
7:32 Daniel Bouchard
7:40 Jordan Davis
7:58 Andrew K. Peterson
8:06 Janaka Stucky
8:14 Prageeta Sharma
8:22 Christina Davis
8:30 Whit Griffin
8:38 Patrick Herron
9:02 Chloe Roberts
9:10 Martha McCullough
9:18 Michael Peters
9:26 J D Scrimgeour
9:34 Natalia Raha
9:42 Joshua Savory

SATURDAY Outpost 186

12:30 Jim Behrle
12:38 Kevin McClellan
12:46 Suzannah Gardner
12:54 Suzanne Mercury
1:00 Bridget Madden
1:08 Laryssa Wirstiuk
1:16 Chris Rziglaniski
1:24 Jessica Bozek
1:32 Tom Daley
1:40 Karen Locascio
1:56 Alyssa Mazzerella
2:06 Betsy Gomez
2:14 Kythe Heller
2:22 Ewa Chrusciel
2:30 Christine Hamm
2:38 Matt Wedlock
2:54 Thera Webb
3:02 Lewis Feuer
3:10 Steve Subrizi
3:18 Allen Bramhall
3:26 Amy Lawless
3:34 Molly McGuire
3:50 Hassan Sakar
3:58 Boyd Nielson
4:06 Krysten Hill
4:14 Mick Carr
4:22 Amelia Bentley
4:30 Chuck Stebleton
4:56 Mitch Manning
5:04 Dan Wuenshel
5:12 Elizabeth Tobin
5:20 Lloyd Schwartz
5:28 Martha Collins
5:36 Tanya Larkin


7:00 Kimberly Lyons
7:08 Audrey Mardavich
7:16 Ben Mazer
7:24 Paige Taggert
7:32 Mairead Byrne
7:40 Mark Lamorueux
7:48 Lori Lubeski
8:06 Brendan Lorber
8:14 Maria Damon
8:22 Princess Chan
8:30 Cheryl Clark Vermuelen
8:38 Jess Mynes
8:46 G.L. Ford
8:54 Drew Boston
9:10 Mitch Highfill<
9:18 Jed Shahar
9:26 Ryan DiPetta
9:34 Michael Gottlieb
9:42 Guillermo Parra
9:50 Christina Strong
9:58 Douglas Piccinnini
10:14 Filip Marinovich
10:22 Douglas Rothschild

SUNDAY Outpost 186

1:00 Christopher Rizzo
1:08 Margo Lockwood
1:16 Chris Siteman
1:24 Don Wellman
1:32 Amish Trivedi
1:40 Kate Wisel
1:56 Gilmore Tamny
2:06 Patrick Doud
2:14 Joel Sloman
2:22 Nathaniel Hunt
2:30 Leopoldine Core
2:38 Fred Marchant
2:54 John Mulrooney
3:02 Joe Torra
3:10 Gerrit Lansing
3:18 Carol Weston
3:26 Michael Franco
3:34 Joel Sloman
3:50 Ryan Gallagher
3:58 Trace Peterson
4:06 Dan Pritchard
4:14 Christopher Sawyer-Laucanno
4:22 Ruth Lepson
4:30 Chris Schlegel

Non-marathon readings:

Sunday, August 10, 3 – 4:30 pm
Rhina P. Espaillat, Bill Plante, Alfred Nicol, Skye Wentworth, Edith Maxwell, Harris Gardner and Chris Bryant
read from the poetry of John Greenleaf Whittier
Victorian garden of the Whittier Home Museum
86 Friend Street
Amesbury MA

Sunday, August 10, 3 pm
Diana Der-Hovanessian, Fred Marchant, and Afaa Michael Weaver
New England Poetry Club
Longfellow National Historic Site
East Lawn, 105 Brattle St.
Cambridge MA

Friday, August 15, 7 pm
Donald Dunbar, Rachel Springer Dunbar, and Andrew Morgan
BASH Reading Series
Brookline Booksmith
Harvard and Beacon Streets
Coolidge Corner
Brookline MA

Saturday, August 16, 3:30 pm
Joyce Rain Anderson and Martin Willits, Jr.
The Brockton Poetry Series
Fuller Craft Museum
455 Oak Street
Brockton MA

Wednesday August 27, 7:30 pm
Joan Houlihan, Daniel Tobin, Doug Holder and Fred Marchant
Hastings Room Reading
One-Year Anniversary Seamus Heaney Memorial Reading
First Church Congregationalist
11 Garden Street
Harvard Square
Cambridge MA

Tuesday, September 9, 7 pm
Jessica Fjeld, Josh Cook, and Lauren McCormack
U35 Reading
The Marliave
10 Bosworth Street
Boston MA

Friday, September 12, 7 pm
Noah Eli Gordon, Sommer Browning, and Kendra DeColo
BASH Reading Series
Brookline Booksmith
Harvard and Beacon Streets
Coolidge Corner
Brookline MA

Friday, September 12, 7 pm
Marjorie Perloff, Adam Kirsch, and Philip Nikolayev
Grolier Poetry Book Shop
6 Plympton Street
Cambridge MA

Sunday, September 14, 1 pm
Barbara S. Carlson, Vincent Dorio, Chuck Harper, Susan Mahan, Tim Reed, and Elizabeth Quinlan
9th Annual Poetry Showcase
In Conjunction with the
Annual Plymouth Juried Art Show
The Plymouth Center for the Arts
11 North St. Downtown Plymouth off Rt 3A
Plymouth MA

Tuesday, September 16, 7:30 pm
Lucie Brock-Broido
Weinstein Auditorium,
Wright Hall
Smith College, Northampton MA

Wednesday, September 17, 7 pm
Matthea Harvey, Fanny Howe, and Katie Ford
Graywolf Poetry Night
Brookline Booksmith
Harvard and Beacon Streets
Coolidge Corner
Brookline MA

Sunday, September 21, 6 pm
Carol Dine
Brookline Booksmith
Harvard and Beacon Streets
Coolidge Corner
Brookline MA

Friday, September 26, 7 pm
Umit Singh Dhuga, Ben Mazer, and Todd Swift
Grolier Poetry Book Shop
6 Plympton Street
Cambridge MA