Interview with Poet Tom Daley, Author of House You Cannot Reach

Photograph of Tom Daley's Book House You Cannon Reach, displayed on a desktop with other items

I first met Tom Daley at a reading at the Zeitgeist Gallery in Cambridge, Massachusetts. I’d moved to Boston a few years before, thrilled at the rich, diverse poetry scene and itching to dive in. Unfortunately, I hadn’t factored in the years it would take to acclimate to Boston’s notoriously chilly culture, or the way that living with my girlfriend would stifle my ability to write poetry, which requires a self-knowledge and candor incompatible with my struggles to reconcile our difficult relationship.

Photograph of poet Tom Daley
Poet Tom Daley. Photo credit: Devin Altobello

A few months after I moved from Brookline to Cambridge, I began dipping my toe in the literary waters. It was then that I discovered Regie Gibson’s reading series at the Zeitgeist and met Nicole Terez Dutton, who was just about to embark on a graduate program at Brown University. Nicole was one of the featured performers — I particularly remember the persona poems about her black ancestors. Tom Daley, a thin, greying man in tweeds, epitomized the sort of intellectual one might expect to find in Concord, the land of Thoreau’s Walden Pond. He read a poem in praise of Nicole, and the warmth and intensity of the piece stayed with me for more than a decade. I recently reconnected with Tom via Facebook and was thrilled to read his new collection House You Cannot Reach: Poems in the Voice of My Mother and Other Poems, published in 2015 by FutureCycle Press. He took the time to answer some questions about his work and his life.

Continue reading “Interview with Poet Tom Daley, Author of House You Cannot Reach”

Boston Area Poetry Readings for December 2015

These listings are compiled by Daniel Bouchard. Friday, December 11 is the very last of the BASH Reading Series by Black Ocean Press at Brookline Booksmith. And make sure to check out the Brookline Public Library on Sunday, December 20, where the open mic is as high-quality as the featured reader.

Thursday, December 3, 7 pm
David Miller, Sandra Storey and open mic
Rozzie Reads
Roslindale House
120 Poplar Street
Roslindale, MA Continue reading “Boston Area Poetry Readings for December 2015”

Poetry to Get You Through the Holidays – in Boston, Anyway

First Night Ice Sculpture -- Boston Customs House
Last year’s First Night sculpture is still relevant for a few weeks or so

Here’s the latest list from my informant at MIT. Please comment or contact me if you’d like information on how to be added to his mailing list.

I’m a member of two workshops (three if you count Toni Amato”s Write Here Write Now in Somerville — I’m not often able to make the Wednesday workshops but Toni is one of my mentors and the two of us meet regularly). One of them I run. In the other, I have the luxury of being a student. And in that second one, the “host poem” of our closing session for this term was by Gary Whited, who headlines this Friday (tomorrow!) at the Chapter and Verse series in Jamaica Plain. I’ve never met the man but appreciate his work. Word on the street is that he incorporates poetry into his day job as a psychotherapist.

If you’ve already got plans on Friday, Mr. Whited makes an appearance at the Brookline Public Library’s monthly open mic in January — details below.

I’m also calling out the Small Animal Project, a regular reading series held in a space that’s near and dear to me. Until the mid 2000s, it was the back room of the New Words Bookstore and home to a feminist/queer monthly open mic. Perhaps someone in Camberville can tell me if Small Animal Project does justice to New Words’ legacy.

Friday, December 13, 7:30 pm
Gary Whited and Mary Bonina
Chapter and Verse Series
Loring-Greenough House
12 South St.
Jamaica Plain

Sunday, December 15, 2 – 4 pm
Afaa Michael Weaver and Larissa Pienkowski
Brookline Poetry Series
Brookline Public Library
Main Branch in Hunneman Hall
Open mike sign-up: 1:45 pm

Monday, December 16, 8 pm
Tamiko Beyer, Jenny Browne, and Kate Greenstreet
Small Animal Project
Outpost 186
186 1/2 Hampshire St

Sunday, January 19, 2-4 pm
Susan Becker and Gary Whited
Brookline Poetry Series
Brookline Public Library
Main Branch in Hunneman Hall
Open mike sign-up: 1:45 pm

February 13, 6 pm
Rowan Ricardo Phillips
Katzenberg Center, 3rd Floor
871 Commonwealth Avenue
Boston University

Sunday, February 16, 2-4 pm
Elaine Terranova and Justen Ahren
Brookline Poetry Series
Brookline Public Library
Main Branch in Hunneman Hall
Open mike sign-up: 1:45 pm

Feed the Hungry Heart on Feb. 22

Reasons you should come to Feeding the Hungry Heart at Prose on Feb. 22 at 7pm:

1) It’s all about the food. $15 gets you a vegetarian buffet of fresh, local food that will rock your socks off. Prose is one of the best restaurants in Boston, and $15 is an amazing deal. Dinner at Prose usually runs more like $40 a person

2) It’s all about the writing. Our featured readers will rock the socks off of anyone who still has them on after sampling the buffet.

3) It’s all about the community. Reaching Productions creates spaces that celebrate and support artists no matter what their level of experience. If you sign up for the open mic, you can expect people to applaud you. And that applause will rock your socks off.

4) It’s all about me! I’m organizing this event solo. As the date gets closer, I get the “what if I throw a party and nobody comes?” jitters. Be a pal and show up just for me. And for the food, writing, and community.

RSVP on Facebook by clicking this link

Or, comment below.