extended hiatus

Due to expanded commitments to my small press, I've been forced to cut down on some other projects. I would be delighted if someone else came forward to carry on this blog. Meanwhile, I hope some of the links and contacts herein are of some use.



Reading of Elizabeth McFarland's poems: Philly: 5/27/08

Tuesday, May 27, 6pm: Moonstone Poetry Series is honored to have Dan Hoffman and Elaine Terranova present Over the Summer Water by Elizabeth McFarland.

Elizabeth McFarland (1922-2005) brought poetry into the lives of millions. As poetry editor of The Ladies' Home Journal from 1948 to 1962, she published some 900 poems by authors like Maxine Kumin, Randall Jarrell, W.H. Auden, John Updike, Anne Morrow Lindbergh and Marianne Moore. While much of what she published is not considered the best work of those poets, she tended to select their most accessible, uplifting poems and turned many of the top poets of her day into household names. She also published 70 of her own poems. Hoffman thought of herself as writing and publishing poetry that appealed directly to readers' emotions. She was dismayed by both the modernist tradition, whose lyrics reflected T.S. Eliot's injunction of impersonality, and by the confessional school that became increasingly popular in the later 50's, free verse by poets like Robert Lowell and Anne Sexton, which represented what Hoffman considered tabloid topics, like sexual abuse, insanity, alcoholism and suicide. Focusing primarily on domestic subjects, the poems Hoffman published were essentially conservative; they were designed to affirm rather than to disturb the reader's life and to illuminate the beauty rather than to reveal the horror or emptiness of the everyday. By the time she left L.H.J. in 1962, the style of poetry she favored was out of vogue, and poetry itself disappeared from women's magazines.

Throughout her life, however, she continued working quietly on her own verses--one of which her husband is having inscribed on a plaque under a cherry tree in a favorite grove on the Swarthmore campus. The poems in Over the Summer Water are gathered by her husband, Daniel Hoffman, whose preface illuminates their distinctive lyric virtues and her exceptional editorial career.

Elizabeth McFarland's poetry will be read by Dan Hoffman and Elaine Terranova, who will also discuss her life and works.

Dan Hoffman served as Consultant in Poetry to the Library of Congress from 1973 to 1974 (now called the Poet Laureate) and is a Chancellor Emeritus of The Academy of American Poets. From 1988 to 1999 Hoffman was Poet in Residence at St. John the Divine, where he administered the American Poets' Corner. Until 1996, Hoffman was Felix E. Schelling Professor of English at the University of Pennsylvania.

Elaine Terranova, the author of three books of poems, The Cult of the Right Hand, which won the Walt Whitman Award, Damages and The Dog's Heart. Her poems have appeared in The New Yorker, The American Poetry Review, and Prairie Schooner. Her awards include a fellowship from the National Endowment for the Arts. She lives in Philadelphia and teaches writing at the Community College of Philadelphia.

Kevin Clark & Richard Kahn: Pottsville: 5/17/08

Saturday, May 17th, 1-4 PM: Richard Kahn & Kevin Clark will read their poetry at All Things Good, 209 West Market Street in Pottsville. [Click here for an online event schedule.]

Richard Kahn studied at the prestigious Institute of the Open Road, graduating by not distinguishing himself any more than absolutely necessary after having taken classes in the lower classes of five continents. He was generously endowed with many chairs as he hitchhiked about. Bloomsburg University then filled in some of the many missing pieces in his education, and then Bucknell filled in a few more. He teaches at an upriver institution for law flouting juveniles who live by far harsher rules. Richard Kahn sometimes feels like a poet, and he likes the feeling. He hopes the feeling will last even though he knows that it is in the nature of feelings to come and go.

Kevin Clark is a Pittsburgh-born poetry and fiction writer; he currently teaches English at Luzerne County Community College. Kevin performed his multimedia, interactive "Love and Other Silly Notions" last February for an audience in Huntingdon, PA. The project explores love's frailties and flirtations, as well as its fantasies and fulfillments.

Richard Kahn: Bloomsburg: 5/13/08

Tuesday, May 13, 7:30 pm: Richard Kahn is the featured poet at the River Poets reading at Phillips Emporium, Main Street in Bloomsburg. [See his profile in the May 17 posting.]

Barbara Daniels & Therese Halscheid: Philly: 5/13/08

Tuesday, May 13, 6pm:

Moonstone Poetry Series presents Barbara Daniels and Therese Halscheid.

Barbara Daniels' book, Rose Fever, will be available in March 2008 from the Cherry Grove imprint of WordTech Press: http://www.cherry-grove.com/. She received two Individual Artist Fellowships from New Jersey, completed an MFA in poetry at Vermont College, and was awarded a full fellowship from the Geraldine R. Dodge Foundation to the Vermont Studio Center.

Therese Halscheid was awarded a 2003 Fellowship for Poetry from New Jersey State Council on the Arts. She has three poetry collections, Powertalk (1995), Without Home (Kells, 2001) and Uncommon Geography (Carpenter Gothic, 2006). Her writings, poetry and prose, have appeared in numerous magazines, including Rhino, New Millennium Writings, Faultline, and 13th Moon. She teaches creative writing in varied settings, including Atlantic Cape Community College, NJ, as well as being a visiting writer in schools through NJ State Council on the Arts. She is poet-in-residence for the Camden County Cultural & Heritage Commission and coordinates their poetry series: An Evening of Poetry at the Hopkins House. She has been an artist in residence at Acadia National Park, ME, and has received a Dodge Fellowship to the Vermont Studio Center, June 2005.

Hosted by Justin Vitiello, followed by an open reading