Monday, January 19, 2015

Get Uncorked!

Experimental poet and artist Brandon Stroud is spearheading a new talk series this Thursday evening at Corks Wine Bar in Willoughby:

Brandon Stroud and Corks Wine Bar present ‘UNCORKED,’ a Speaker Series bringing together the areas most inspired thinkers and doers across various fields to share diverse opinions, profound insights and fascinating discussion on a broad scope of topics and issues [both local and global]. Come join a community of curious souls and become engaged with each other and ideas worth spreading  Q&A to follow each lecture.

Topic of the Evening: THINGS UNSEEN


  • Gadi Zamir (Artist / Owner of Negative Space Gallery in Cleveland)
  • Doug Baker (Principal of Shore Middle School)
  • Geoffrey A. Landis (Scientist and Author)
  • Cathi Weber (Ghost Hunter from Downtown Willoughby Ghost Walks)
This event is FREE
 Corks Wine Bar • 4084 Erie Street • Historic Downtown Willoughby, OH
Thursday, January 22 at 7:30PM

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Bottom Dog Press/ Larry Smith

More Nature Photo-Poems in the Zen spirit.
New form for me...Photo + Poem
Try one.
Photos by Brian Smith/ Words by Larry Smith

Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Lyrical Rhythms is officially Cool

The twice-monthly "Lyrical Rhythms" poetry open mike gets a shout-out at Cool Cleveland.  First and third Tuesdays at the Grog Shop, 8pm.

Not a reading I usually make-- anybody want to do a review?

Friday, December 26, 2014


Looking for your Cleveland poem fix?

 The second annual Best Cleveland Poem Competition was held on Sunday, June 1, 2014 at the Willoughby Brewing Company.  #ThisIsCLE features contest highlights including poems by Geoffrey Landis, Theresa Göttl Brightman, Jeffrey Bowen, Mary Turzillo, JP Armstrong, Anita Herczog, Danya Eichhorn, Michael Murray, Steven B. Smith, Frannie Lograsso, S. Renay Sanders, two-time Best Cleveland Poem winner Dianne Borsenik and competition emcee Ray McNiece.

The book is 40 pages, perfect bound, 6x9" and a steal at only $10 from Crisis Chronicles Press, 3344 W. 105th Street #4, Cleveland, Ohio 44111.

  • The book will have a release party at the Monday at Mahall's reading, Monday January 5th, 7:30 pm. Mahall's 20 Lanes, 13200 Madison Avenue, Lakewood

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Another Winter in The City

Photo- Winter One, by Smith
Winter One, by Smith
In time for Christmas, here's the 2014-2015 Winter issue of Kathy Smith's 'zine of poetry and art, The City Poetry, with poetry, art, and haiku from some of your favorite local (and not so local) poets and artists, including Smith, PM Pope, Mary Weems, Mary Turzillo, Joanne Meincke, Bonnie Thompson, Holly Jensen, Renay Sanders, Geoffrey Landis, Lady, Bree, Heather Ann Schmidt, KE, John Swain, Daniel Bellinger, Wendy Shaffer, Agram Bigsby, Jim Deuchars, Cyrus Taylor, Jayce Renner and Dianne Borsenik.
A festival of light.

Sunday, December 21, 2014

Bring on the Dark

photo by Neil Herbert
The winter solstice issue of the New York Times had an essay about darkness by Clark Strand.  The whole essay is lyrical, but I seem to be seeing poems everywhere these days, so I pulled this sonnet out of it:

Bring on the Dark

There is, of course, no need to fear the dark,
much less prevail over it: not that we could.
Look up into the sky on a starry night,
if you still can, and you will see that there is
a lot of darkness in the universe.

There is so much, it simply has to be
the foundation of all that is.
The stars are only an anomaly
 the planets an accident.

Is it evil or indifferent?
I don’t think so.
Our lives begin in the womb
and end in the tomb.
It’s dark on either side.

--(after Clark Strand)

I hope you all have a happy solstice, and wish you all the best in your celebration of the festival of lights, and darkness.

Friday, December 12, 2014

Shopping Away from the Malls

Coventry Christmas - Passport to Peru.  Photo by Geoffrey A. Landis

It's coming up fast toward Christmas!  When it comes time to look for holiday gifts, instead of hitting the big-box stores and being mauled at the malls, take a thought to check out some of the local independent stores in your neighborhood.

Our town is full of quirky little shops.  I can't even name all of my favorites--

Coventry-- the whole thing, from the library up to Mayfield.  Start out at Mac's Backs, take a lunch at Tommy's, then check out the toys at Big Fun, which has all that stuff you saw advertised in the back of comic books but your parents woudn't let you buy.  Did you know they were named by Playboy as one of the “coolest stores” in all of America? Then browse the street-- Passport to Peru (OK, I admit it: that's where I did my shopping this year.  Don't tell my family, it's a surprise), and around to City Buddha*, for cool stuff.

Over to the west, in Berea try the Shoppe for gifts, and then wander over to Kidforce Collectables to shop for the younger set, and check out their games and comics. Then, if you're over 21, stop for a craft beer at Cornerstone Brewing on the Triangle. Hey, a growler of Seven is always the right thing to bring to a Christmas pot-luck!

Over to the east, check out the arts, antiques and consignment shops in the Larchmere area, starting with Loganberry Books.

Gordon Square: stop for a movie at the Capitol, and right next door you're find Guide to Kulchur.

And don't forget street fairs and festivals. This week, Coventry Holiday Festival is December 13.

And that's barely more than the surface-- there are thousands more. Look, this year, when black Friday comes, make a resolution: don't shop in the big boxes. They don't need your business. Go for the independents. Support your neighborhoods!

What's your favorite?

For a different view, see:

*What makes City Buddha unique? Interview.

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Page A Day Poetry

Writing Knights just released their anthology of 365 poems: a poem a day for 2015, including eight of mine. Check it out here: https://www.createspace.com/4927522

Monday, December 1, 2014

Authors in December!

Coventry snowflake. Photo by Geoffrey A. Landis
December's here!
Joanna Conners points out: Lots of author readings in December.

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Indies First Celebration at Bookstores Around Town This Weekend

Christmas at Mac's. Photo by Geoffrey A. Landis 2014.
November 29 is the "Indies First" celebration: a nationwide bookstore extravaganza.  Need to start your shopping for holiday gifts? Skip the black Friday malls-- you can get your gift-shopping done, and meet local authors at the same time. 

Joanna Connors writes about the Indies First Celebration, pointing out that bookstores all around Cleveland are participating:
Mac's Backs – Books on Coventry
1820 Coventry Road, Cleveland Heights, 216-321-2665, macsbacks.com
Mac's Backs will have holiday refreshments and nine local (or native) authors on hand throughout the day on Saturday, Nov. 29.
Each author will hold court for an hour, signing books and suggesting titles, starting at 10 a.m. In order of appearance, they are: Deanna Adams, Anne Trubek, Ben Small, Jane Turzillo, Les Roberts, Shelley Costa, Tricia Springstubb, Joyce Brabner and John Paulett.
Loganberry Books
13015 Larchmere Blvd., Shaker Heights, 216-795-9800, loganberrybooks.com
Loganberry will host authors on Friday, Nov. 28, and Saturday, Nov. 29, during the Larchmere Holiday Stroll. Starting each day at noon, authors will chat and sign books for an hour each. On Friday, look for (in order of appearance): Suzanne McGinness, Les Roberts, Jennie Jones and Derf Backderf. Saturday, look for (in order): Tricia Springstubb, Laura and Barney Taxel, Gail Ghetia Bellamy and Charlie Mintz.
The Learned Owl
204 N. Main St., Hudson, 330-653-2252, learnedowl.com
On Saturday, Nov. 29, The Learned Owl will offer refreshments and special deals on featured titles. Author Nancy Christie will sign books from 1 to 3 p.m. And you can enter a raffle to win a Christmas Story Leg Lamp, with proceeds going to the Hudson Food Pantry.
Appletree Books
12419 Cedar Road, Cleveland Heights, 216-791-2665, appletree-books.com
Appletree will give away special Indies First tote bags, emblazoned with the motto "Shop Small," to purchasers.
Fireside Book Shop
29 N. Franklin St., Chagrin Falls, 440-247-4050, firesidebookshop.com
On Friday, Nov. 28, from 1 to 3 p.m., local author Sandy Philipson and illustrator Jenny Campbell will sign the new chapter book, Wings. On Saturday, Nov. 29, from 1 to 3 p.m., local editor Laura Gorretta will sign the revised version of Chagrin Falls: An Ohio Village History.

Saturday, November 22, 2014

Lake Erie Ink teen open Mic December 13

If you want to hear what younger poets are about, here's your chance.  Lake Erie Ink is sponsoring an open Mic for teen poetry on December 13 at 1854 Coventry Road [formerly Phoenix, next to Bodega], part of the Coventry Holiday Fest.

'Tis the season!
  • Lake Erie Ink (located right next to the Coventry library), is a "writing space for youth" with programs and creative expression opportunities for young people in the Greater Cleveland area.
  • Programs
  • Coventry Holiday Fest facebook page
"We believe in the transformative power of creative expression."

Tuesday, November 11, 2014


Cleveland's Belt magazine is getting some ink!
"Belt is a small independent publishing house that tells stories of the industrial (and post-industrial) Midwest, from Pittsburgh to St. Louis. It published its first book, Rust Belt Chic: The Cleveland Anthology, in 2012, and it launched an online magazine last fall that grew out of the Cleveland Anthology and a successful kickstarter campaign."
"...The result is a selection of stories and essays that often offer fresh insight into regional issues and challenges and that stoke smart conversation. Discerning readers in Greater Cleveland are not the only ones to notice. The Paley Center for Media has chosen Belt Magazine to present at its "The Next Big Thing in Media and the Innovation Economy" conference..."
"'We see ourselves doing independent Rust Belt journalism, and we're the only ones doing it.' Apparently, tiny Belt is seen as big enough to disrupt."
"The Slumlords We Love," by Robert Langellier

Kurt Landefeld and JACK'S MEMOIRS: OFF THE ROAD, A NOVEL will be featured at the Beat Reading 7 pm Wed. Nov. 12th at Mac's Backs Books...Join the poets and readers who connect with the Beat Movement as it lives on.Bring a favorite Beat poem to share.

Saturday, November 8, 2014

Bree's first novel Pigskin In a Blanket

Green Panda Press announces its first work of full-length fiction. Pigskin in a Blanket is an existential-buddhist-romantic-comedy written by the formerly Cleveland poet Bree (now Kentuckian) in a period of six weeks that followed a string of curses. the novel is set in Cleveland, OH. it features Anya, who marries her twice-senior plastic surgeon and schemes to become the woman people take most seriously, and former Browns player Harry who might just be some kind of poet; he battles an obscure liver disease while slinging meats and cheeses for a local purveyor. 260 pgs TP.

the book plus shipping is $12 via paypal to greenpandapress@gmail.com and comes with a copy of Bree's latest paperback poetry Some Hiatus: Tucky Poems.

or order thru amazon or the link below. thanks! read and pass along.....

luv and hugs, Bree

Saturday, November 1, 2014

John Burroughs is coming to Sandusky for the Coffeehouse Reading Series
Sponsored by the Firelands Writing Center and Bottom Dog Press.

Friday, October 31, 2014

Happy Halloween!

Happy Hallowe'en!

For your spooky poetry pleasure, here's a cat ghost poem by John Philip Johnson:

And, once again, for those of you who do your ghosting with poets on Hallowe'en night, the annual Hallowe'en show of Ray McNiece and Tongue & Groove is at the Barking Spider, 8pm, at 11310 Juniper.
Tyrael.  Photo by Geoffrey A. Landis
photo by Geoffrey Landis

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Billy Collins Gives Ya Tips on How Ta Write Poetry!

Yeah, that's right-- Billy Collins!  And he's talkin' to you!
So you oughta listen.
Dozens of poets performed Friday at the Dodge Poetry Festival at Newark's New Jersey Performing Arts Center. Poet Yusef Komunyakaa and the Tomas Doncker Band were featured performers. (Naomi Nix | NJ Advance Media for NJ.com)

Monday, October 27, 2014

Russell Atkins: Celebrating the Living Legend

Diane Kendig reports from the East Cleveland Public Library event Russell Atkins: Celebrating the Living Legend.

R.A. with Honorary Doctorate

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Ready for Levyfest?

Friday is Ohio Poetry Day, and here in Cleveland, this year that means one thing: first day of Levyfest

Ready for Levyfest?
As an added bonus, if the weekend-long Levyfest isn't enough poetry for one city, on Saturday afternoon the East Cleveland Public Library is sponsoring a celebration of Cleveland legend Russell Atkins, with a reception following for poets to view some of the Atlanta University Center archival materials and share their own memories of Atkins and his work.

Friday, October 24th - 6-9 PM: An intimate reading and publishers' mixer at The Spotted Owl in Tremont - Join us for cocktails, poetry, and the release of the Renegade Flowers anthology! Stick around afterwards for cocktails and conversation!

Saturday, October 25th - 9:30AM - 5PM: Festival events at Cleveland State University's Michael Schwartz Library - Panels, readings, and discussions, including a curated tour of CSU's levy collections, documentary screening, and meet-and-greets!

Saturday, October 25th - 7:00PM - 10:30PM: The community reading series at Lava Lounge in Tremont, including readings hosted by The Writing Knights starting at 7:00pm (Knightmares Halloween show) and hosted by Deep Cleveland's Joshua Gage starting at 8 pm!

Saturday, October 25th - 7:00PM - Close: A knock-down, drag-out poetry experience at The Literary Cafe in Tremont hosted by the inimitable Steve Goldberg and Nick Traenkner, featuring several panelists and poets from the festival.

Sunday, October 26th - 10:00AM - 12:00PM: Levy memorial service at Edgewater park by the beach (Weather Permitting.)

On-Campus events at Cleveland State University's Michael Schwartz Library) for Saturday are listed here: http://engagedscholarship.csuohio.edu/levyfest/2014/campus/
Off-Campus events are listed here: http://engagedscholarship.csuohio.edu/levyfest/2014/community/

 Not all of the readings have been announced yet, but Joshua Gage has posted the line-up for the readings at Lava Lounge, 2061 West 10th Street, Tremont, on Saturday night.  Watch for:
  •  8:10 Mary A. Turzillo
  • 8:20 Jill Riga
  • 8:30 Geoffrey A. Landis
  • 8:40 Marissa Hyde
  • 8:50 John Burroughs
  • 9:00 Batya Weinbaum
  • 9:10 dan smith
  • 9:20 Elise Geither
  • 9:30 Ryan Sagert
  • 9:40 Marie Lillian Vibbert
  • 9:50 Vertigo Xi'an Xavier
  • 10:00-10:30 Open Mike
See you all there!

Wednesday, October 22, 2014


Laura Moe writes, Confessions of a Failed Poet.
"The title intrigues, the words themselves glitter the page, yet ultimately the poem is vapid; it is a mannequin in the store window wearing a great outfit you want to try on, and the first few lines seduce you, but in the end the zipper is stuck, or the pants are too short. Failed poems do not deliver on their promise... 

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Renegade Flowers: LevyFest 2014


"For the first time since 2006, Cleveland will be host to levyfest, which honors the city’s own alternative publisher and poet d.a. levy, as well as his contemporaries in the Mimeograph Revolution.  This festival will celebrate the history of small press publication and poetry in Cleveland and from around the world. It will include guest panels, readings, community and publishing events, and other programming" [info swiped from the HydeOut Press blog].

Here's the listing of On-Campus events (at Cleveland State University's Michael Schwartz Library) for Saturday, October 25th:

Information on Off-Campus events can be found at http://engagedscholarship.csuohio.edu/levyfest/2014/community/


The poet doesn't invent. He listens. ~Jean Cocteau