Archives for category: California Events


Paul Fericano is a poet, satirist, social activist and San Francisco native. His poetry and prose have appeared in publications and media outlets in the U.S. and abroad since 1971, including The Realist, The New York Quarterly, Krokodil (Moscow) and Charlie Hebdo (Paris). He is a recipient of the Prix de Voltaire (France) and the Ambrose Bierce Prize (San Francisco).

Ellaraine Lockie is a widely published and awarded author of poetry, nonfiction books and essays. Her newest collection, Love Me Tender in Midlife, has been released as an internal chapbook in IDES from Silver Birch Press. Ellaraine teaches poetry workshops, frequently judges poetry contests and serves as Poetry Editor for the lifestyles magazine, Lilipoh.

Art Beck’s poetry and essays have appeared in a wide range of literary journals, including Alaska Quarterly, OR, Artful Dodge, and Translation Review. His several collections of poetry and poetry translations include Luxorius Opera Omnia, a Duet for Sitar and Trombone (Otis College, Seismicity Editions), which was awarded the 2013 Northern California Book award for poetry in translation.

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Paul Fericano is a San Francisco native and author of several books of poetry and satire, including The One Minute President (w/Elio Ligi / Poor Souls Press, 1984) and five collections of poems. His latest, The Hollywood Catechism (Silver Birch Press, 2015), was a National Book Award nominee. Paul is the editor of YU News Service and author of A Room With A Pew, a blog on clergy abuse issues and the healing process.

George Guida is the Brooklyn-born author of seven books, including The Pope Stories and Other Tales of Troubled Times (Bordighera Press, 2012) and four collections of poems, including his latest two, Pugilistic (WordTech Editions, 2015) and The Sleeping Gulf (Bordighera Press, 2015) George teaches literature and writing at New York City College of Technology, and co-edits 2 Bridges Review.

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The fifth season of The Mission Poetry Series wraps up on Saturday, April 5, at 1 p.m. with “April Voices: Three Poets for the Spring of It” featuring Teddy Macker, Phil Taggart, and Friday Lubina.
WHAT: The Mission Poetry Series

WHEN: Saturday, April 5, 2014, 1 p.m.

WHERE: Antioch University, 602 Anacapa Street, Santa Barbara, California, 93101


MORE: Refreshments, poets’ works for sale, complimentary broadsides


Teddy Macker is a writer, teacher, orchardist, and gardener, and lives with his wife and daughter on a small farm in the foothills of Carpinteria, California. His writing—poems, translations, essays, and short stories—appears in the Antioch Review, New Letters, Orion, The Massachusetts Review, The Sun, and various anthologies. Among his honors is the Reginald S. Tickner Creative Writing Fellowship of the Gilman School in Baltimore. He lectures in the College of Creative Studies at the University of California, Santa Barbara, where for years he shared an office with friend and fellow poet, Barry Spacks.


Phil Taggart served for nine years as the poetry editor of Art Life, and is currently co-editor and publisher of Askew, a literary journal he founded with his wife, poet Marsha de la O. He received a Champion of Mental Health Award from the Turning Point Foundation for his work promoting the understanding of mental disorders, and an Individual Artist’s Grant from the City of Ventura where he lives and serves as a Cultural Affairs Commissioner. Phil’s most recent book of poetry is Rick Sings (Brandenburg Press), and his two previous collections are Opium Wars (Mille Grazie Press) and Cowboy Collages, an art book in collaboration with Texas artist Ann Harithas.


Friday Lubina‘s poetry has appeared in ARTLIFE Limited Editions, Dance of the Iguana, Caffeine, ASKEW Poetry Journal and the 2011 anthology, A Bird Black As The Sun – California Poets on Crows & Ravens. In 2009, she became assistant editor for ASKEW, and in 2012, she edited The SpiritLife of Birds by Maia (Adder’s Tongue Press.) Friday has been a host of Ventura’s Annual Erotic Poetry Event for over a decade and hosted the poetry series, “Friday on Saturday” for several years. She emceed the Ventura County Arts Council’s Art Stars Awards and in 2013, joined their board. She has lived in Ventura for nearly twenty-five years, actively championing the arts and local businesses.


Author Paul Fericano, whose poetry appeared in the Silver Birch Press Summer Anthology and will be featured in the upcoming Silver Birch Press Bukowski Anthology, will read and perform his work at Bird & Beckett Books and Records in San Francisco on Sunday, September 8th, with a program starting at 2 p.m.

Entitled “Italian-American Writers Read Their Work,” the event — in addition to Fericano — will feature readings by Giovanna Capone, Jennifer Lagier Fellguth, George Guida, Tommi Avicolli Mecca, and James Tracy, and will be hosted by Laura Roberto, co-chair of the Berkeley City College of Arts and Culture.

According to the Bird & Beckett website, “These writers share an Italian-American background that has had a hand in shaping their work. Several have devoted their attention largely to poetry, plays, and fiction, while Avicolli, Mecca, Tracy, and Fericano have long track records as activists as well…”

WHAT: Italian-American Writers Read Their Work

WHO: Giovanna Capone, Jennifer Lagier Fellguth, Paul Fericano, George Guida, Tommi Avicolli Mecca, and James Tracy

WHERE: Bird & Beckett Books and Records, 653 Chenery St., San Francisco, CA, 94131, 415-586-3733,

WHEN: Sunday, September 8, 2013 at 2 p.m.

by James Montgomery (1771-1854)

A joyous creature vaulted through the air, 
The aspiring fish that fain would be a bird, 
On long, light wings, that flung a diamond-shower 
Of dew-drops round its evanescent form, 
Sprang into light, and instantly descended…

PHOTO: Will Parson Photography, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED (

EDITOR’S NOTE: Riding the train up and down the California coast yesterday, I was greeted and treated by the sight of the magnificent California Brown Pelican. These majestic birds ride the waves in graceful lines like surfers — and put on quite a show at sunset. If you want to see something that will take your breath away — no, I’m not talking about Johnny Depp in THE LONE RANGER — watch this surfing pelican video at youtube. I promise it will make your day!


Hurry, So Cal residents, before it’s sold out — Esotouric’s “Haunt’s of a Dirty Old Man: Charles Bukowski’s Los Angeles,” Saturday, July 13th from noon – 4p.m. The four-hour tour focuses on Bukowski’s great passions: writing, women, and Los Angeles — and visits the canonical locations of his life and myth: the Postal Annex Terminal where he gathered the material for Post Office, the De Longpre apartment where he experimented with marriage and fatherhood, one of his favorite bars and liquor stores, and many other spots. Along the way, host Richard Schave and guests will explore the people and ideas that made up the warp and weft of Buk’s rich inner life. Price: $58. For reservations, visit

Photo: Charles Bukowski standing in front of his Mercury Comet and his apartment on Carlton Way in Los Angeles, 1970s, by Tina Ewing, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.


Come one, come all — if you are in the San Francisco, California, environs or plan to visit — to the David Dondero Record Release Show on June 5, 2013 (it’s free!). If you haven’t heard of singer/ songwriter/ guitarist David Dondero — like Bob Dylan, a native of Duluth, Minnesota, and like Dylan named one of the “Best Living Songwriters” by National Public Radio‘s Robin Hilton, who called Dondero “a brilliant artist” — do yourself a favor and check out this amazing performer/poet.

If you’re a fan of Tom Waits, Daniel Johnston, and other original bard/troubadours, you’ll  feel as if you’ve discovered a new planet in the indy folk/rock universe when you start to listen to David Dondero. Check out “#Zero with a Bullet” at

WHAT: David Dondero Record Release Show for Golden Hits Vol. 1

WHO: David Dondero with special guests Tom Heyman and Rymodee

WHEN: Wednesday, June 5, 2013, 8 p.m.

WHERE: Rite Spot Cafe, 2099 Folsom St. (at 17th St.) San Francisco, California, 94110


David Dondero‘s lyrics will appear in the upcoming Silver Birch Press Summer Anthology — available in June 2013. Stay tuned for more information.

CAPTION… THOMAS PYNCHON’S EVIL TWIN: “Mud-wrestle in my underwear on national TV while holding up a copy of my new book? NO PROBLEMO!”

Credit: New Yorker cartoon by Roz Chast, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

Reclusive novelist Thomas Pynchon celebrated his 76th birthday on May 8th, 2013. Since the 1960s, Pynchon has been pretty much a phantom — except in terms of his writing and voiceovers on episodes of The SimpsonsBest known for his novel GRAVITY’S RAINBOW (1973), which won the 1974 National Book Award for Fiction, Pynchon touches on a wide range of subject matter in his work — including history, science, art, and mathematics. Many consider his work difficult, dense, and complex — which is exactly what Pynchon’s fans love about his writing.

Pynchon aficionados have found a way to bring the private author into the open by celebrating “Pynchon in Public Day” on the author’s May 8th birthday.  A recent article by Carolyn Kellogg in the L.A. Times outlines the “rules” for the event — including reading a Pynchon book “in a conspicuously public place.” 



Ellaraine Lockie — author of the Silver Birch Press poetry release COFFEE HOUSE CONFESSIONS — is featured in WOMEN WRITE RESISTANCE: Poets Resist Gender Violence (Hyacinth Girl Press, February 2013) edited by Laura Madeline Wiseman. The collection includes work by over 100 women poets. 

This generous and ambitious anthology is a gathering of necessary and affirming poems written by some of the best poets writing in America today.” Kwame Dawes, author of DUPPY CONQUEROR (Copper Canyon Press, 2013) and editor of PRAIRIE SCHOONER

The first California reading — and first national reading — to celebrate the book’s release will feature appearances by Ellaraine Lockie, Judy Westhale, Rebecca Foust, and Dawn McGuire. (Details below.)

WHAT: Reading to celebrate the release of WOMEN WRITE RESISTANCE, an anthology of poetry about resisting gender violence. 

WHEN: Saturday, May 11th at 7 p.m.

WHERE: Frank Bette Center for the Arts, 1601 Paru Street, at Lincoln Avenue, Alameda, California 94501, 510-523-6957,

by Laure-Anne Bosselaar

amidst swirling wine
and flickers of silver guests quote
Dante, Brecht, Kant and each other.
I wait in the hall after not
powdering my nose, trying to re-
compose that woman who’ll
graciously take her place
at the table and won’t tell her hosts:
I looked into your bedroom
and closets, smelled your
“Obsession” and “Brut,” sat
on your bed, imagined you
in those spotless sheets, looked
long into the sad eyes of your son
staring at your walls from his frame.
I tried to smile at myself
in your mirrors, wondering if you
smile that way too: those resilient
little smiles one smiles
at one’s self before facing the day,
or another long night ahead —
guests coming for dinner.
So I wait in this hall because
there are nights it’s hard
not to blurt out Stop! Stop
our babble: Pulitzer, Wall Street, sex,
Dante, politics, wars, have some Chianti…
let’s stop and talk. Of our thirsts
and obsessions, our bedrooms
and closets, the brutes in our mirrors,
the eyes of our sons.
There is time yet — let’s talk.
I am starving.