John Stanizzi in March

Stanizzi  PhotoThe Guilford Poets Guild presents poet John Stanizzi for their Second Thursday Poetry Series event on Thursday, March 12, 7 p.m. at the Guilford Free Library, 47 Park Street, in the Community Room in Guilford. The reading will be preceded by an open mic from 7 to 7:30 p.m.

John L. Stanizzi is the author of the chapbook, Windows. His full length collections are Ecstasy Among Ghosts, Sleepwalking, Dance Against the Wall (www.antrimhousebooks.com), & After the Bell, (www.bigtablepublishing.com). His poems have appeared in Prairie Schooner, The New York Quarterly, Tar River Poetry, Rattle, Passages North, The Spoon River Quarterly, Poet Lore, The Connecticut River Review, Freshwater, and many other publications. Twice nominated for the Pushcart Prize, in 1998 Stanizzi was named The New England Poet of the Year by The New England Association of Teachers of English. John has been a judge for the Connecticut Poetry Out Loud Program, the 2011 Connecticut Book Award for Poetry, and the Sunken Garden Poetry Award for Adult Writers. He is the coordinator for Hill-Stead Museum’s Fresh Voices Poetry Competition for high school poets. He taught for many years at Bacon Academy where he also directed the theater program. He has read at many venues throughout Connecticut, including The Sunken Garden Poetry Festival, RJ Julia Booksellers, and the Arts Café Mystic. His newest collection, Hallelujah Time!,poems based on the music of Bob Marley, will be out next month. He is currently an adjunct professor at Manchester Community College. He lives with his wife, Carol, in Coventry, Connecticut.

The reading is free and open to the public.  Refreshments are served.  For more information email us at gpoetsguild@gmail.com.

Holiday Roundtable

marylou collected poemsThe Guilford Poets Guild invites all local poets and lovers of poetry to come to their annual Holiday Roundtable on Thursday, December 11, 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. at the Greene Art Gallery, 29 Whitfield Street, Guilford. This year we are celebrating the work of longtime Guilford Poets Guild member Marylou Walsh. Members of the Guild will be reading poems from the book of her Collected Poems, published by the Guild earlier this year. During the open mic we invite you to read a poem (your own or simply beloved by you) reflecting the warmth and community of this season. We also encourage you again this year to bring a new (or very gently used) favorite children’s book whose place in your heart you can share during the open mic. At the end of the evening, these books will be wrapped for donation to the Branford Community Dining Room. The reading is free and open to the public.  Refreshments are served.  For more information email us at gpoetsguild@gmail.com.

Guilford Poets Guild Trio in November

Audrey Fitting-Gwen Gunn-Margaret Iacobellis

Audrey Fitting, Gwen Gunn, Margaret Iacobellis

The Guilford Poets Guild presents three poets from their own membership (Gwen Gunn, Margaret Iacobellis, and Audrey Fitting) for their Second Thursday Poetry Series event on Thursday, November 13, 7 p.m. at the Greene Art Gallery, 29 Whitfield in Guilford. The reading will be preceded by an open mic from 7 to 7:30 p.m.

Gwen Gunn has had poems published in Connecticut Poets at Work, The Guilford Anthology, Connecticut River Review, Fresh Ink, and Caduceus.  She was an assistant editor at Sachem Publishing and co-edited the poetry magazine Embers.  She has participated in poetry readings in Connecticut and New York.  Her latest chapbook, “Tastes,” will be available at the reading.

One of the original members of the Thimble Island Poets, Margaret Iacobellis has been a member of the Guilford Poets Guild and the CT Poetry Society since 1999.  Currently working on her fourth book of poetry,  Margaret has written about history, relationships, families and the wonders of ocean-viewing, whether it be from the eyes of early settlers first viewing our rock-bound coast or from the vantage point of Floridian sun-worshippers. Her poems have been published in The Guilford Anthology, Connecticut River Review, Long River Run, Caduceus, New River Poets and Connecticut River Review. She is currently working on a collection entitled “Salt Water Fantasies.”

Audrey Fitting credits her membership in the Guilford Poets Guild as her major source of encouragement. Her poems have appeared in The Guilford Anthology, Caduceus, Martha’s Vineyard News, and Connecticut Review. In 2013 she published a collection of her poems, copies of which she will bring to the reading.

The reading is free and open to the public.  Refreshments are served.  For more information call 453-8836.

Ken Cormier in October

Cormier 2014 v2The Guilford Poets Guild presents poet Ken Cormier for their Second Thursday Poetry Series event on Thursday, October 9, 7 p.m. at the Greene Art Gallery, 29 Whitfield in Guilford. The reading will be preceded by an open mic from 7 to 7:30 p.m.

Ken Cormier is the author of Balance Act (Insomniac Press) and The Tragedy in My Neighborhood (Dead Academics Press). His live, multi-media performances have been described as “a William Burroughs exorcism through a Karaoke machine.” Ken also makes radio fiction and documentary pieces, many of which have aired on public-radio affiliates around the US and on the BBC. He teaches Creative Writing at Quinnipiac University in Connecticut. www.kencormier.com

The reading is free and open to the public.  Refreshments are served.  For more information call 453-8836.

Another Paintings and Poetry Event

Paintings & Poetry: A Tour in Verse. Florence Griswold Museum, Old Lyme, Sunday, September 14, 2 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. Join local poets as they present poems inspired by the works of art on view in the exhibitions, The Art of the Everyman: Folk Art from the Fenimore Art Museum and Thistles and Crowns: The Painted Chests of the Connecticut Shore. A light reception with the poets will follow the event. Included with museum admission.

Kate Rushin in September

Kate%20Rushin%20B&W_bigThe Guilford Poets Guild presents poet Kate Rushin for their Second Thursday Poetry Series event on Thursday, September 11, 7 p.m. at the Greene Art Gallery, 29 Whitfield in Guilford. The reading will be preceded by an open mic from 7 to 7:30 p.m.

Kate Rushin is an award-winning, Connecticut poet/educator with training in theater and radio. She has taught at Wesleyan University, The Oddfellows Youth Playhouse and The Greater Hartford Academy of The Arts where she was dramaturge for the production of “A Raisin In The Sun.” Rushin has featured, twice, at The Sunken Garden Poetry Festival at The Hill-Stead Museum in Farmington, where she is also an artist/instructor in The Hartford Poetry Outreach Program. Her poem, “My Lord, What A Mourning,” in honor of the life of the contralto and long-time Danbury resident, Marian Anderson, was commissioned by The New Haven International Festival of Arts and Ideas/ Connecticut Freedom Trail Poetry Project. She has read her work on NPR and WNPR. Rushin serves on The James Merrill House Committee in Stonington, CT, and has twice served as judge for Connecticut Poetry Out Loud.

The reading is free and open to the public.  Refreshments are served.  For more information call 453-8836.

Media Coverage of the Youth Poet and Poet Laureate Event

Jane Ulrich, Guilford Poets Guild member has written a terrific summary of our final event, which was published in the Guilford Courier (here is a link). And here is the article as it appeared:

bildeGuilford poets, past and present, were recently honored in an event held in conjunction with the 375th anniversary of Guilford, and co-hosted by the Guilford Free Library and the Guilford Poet’s Guild. Winners of the the Guilford High School Poetry Contest sponsored by the Guilford Poets Guild were announced and awarded prizes, presentations were made on Guilford’s past poets, and Gordy Whiteman was awarded the position of First Poet Laureate of Guilford.

The student winners and their winning poems are: Emma Nanamaker, “Blue Heron,” first prize; Pierre Weber, “The Bear House,” second prize; Ana Blanchet, “Sheltered,” third prize; Josh Stern, “A Sonnet for Guilford,” runner-up; Katie Ellman-Aspnes, “Sunset,” runner-up; and Annie Jonathan, “Where We Come From,” the Gordy Whiteman Prize.

Gwen Gunn gave a brief history of notable poets who have lived in Guilford, reading short selections from the work of S. Ward Loper, Harry Durant, Andrew Benton, Carrie Chatfield, and Mary Bishop Bullard, going back in time to the most famous, Fitz-Greene Halleck.

Julianna Harris spoke about Fitz Green Halleck, a well-known American poet of the early 1800s, who was born in Guilford and who is buried at Alderbrook Cemetery. He was read by Abraham Lincoln in the White House, met Charles Dickens, and his statue on the Literary Walk in Central Park stands alongside such luminaries as Shakespeare, Burns, and Sir Walter Scott.

The evening culminated in the award of the title Poet Laureate of Guilford to Gordy Whiteman, presented by First Selectman Joe Mazza and the Board of Selectmen.

Here is a link to the video of A Celebration of Guilford in Verse.