Brookline Poetry Series

The Brookline Poetry Series meets once a month on Sunday afternoons, September through May, normally in Hunneman Hall at the Brookline Village Library (361 Washington St., Brookline, MA 02445). Usually, one or two established poets read, followed by an open mike. You may contact the organizers via email at brooklinepoetry@minlib.net. Please put “Brookline Poetry Series” in the subject heading. Please do not send written correspondence in care of the Library.

Timing of performances:

  • 1:30 PM • Doors open
  • 1:45 PM • Open mic sign-up
  • 2 – 4 PM • Poetry readings

N.B. Usually the third Sunday of the month. On rare occasions, this may vary to accommodate holidays or special Library events, so be sure to check the Library Calendar or this page before attending. (Also, all meetings are held at the Brookline Village if possible, but on very rare occasions we have had to move to the Coolidge Corner Location because of a scheduling conflict.)


Featured Readers


January 21, 2018     Steph Burt, with opener Laurie Rosenblatt

Steph (also Stephen and Stephanie) Burt is Professor of English at Harvard and the author of several books of poetry and literary criticism, including The Poem Is You (Harvard University Press, 2016) and Advice from the Lights (Graywolf, 2017). Her poems, reviews, essays and articles have appeared in many journals across the English-speaking world, among them The Nation, ALH, The Believer, Boston Review, ELH, the New York Times Book Review, The London Review of Books, PN Review, Rain Taxi, and the Times Literary Supplement. When she is not writing about, or writing, poetry, she has been known to write about comic books, pop music, science fiction, and women’s basketball. She lives in Belmont with her spouse and two children.

 

Opening Poet:

Laurie Rosenblatt is the author of one full-length book of poetry, In Case (Pecan Grove Press, 2013), and two chapbooks, Blue (University of Toledo Press, 2012) and A Trapdoor, a Rupture, Something with Kinks (Finishing Line Press, 2017). Her collaboration with the painter Richard Raiselis, Cloud 10, was produced by Gallery NAGA in Boston in 2012. Individual poems have appeared in Salamander, The Common, Harvard Review, Borderlands: Texas Poetry Review and elsewhere. 

 

February 18, 2018 Featured poet: David Ferry

David Ferry is an acclaimed American poet and translator. Ferry’s translations of some of the world’s major works of poetry, including The Odes of Horace, and both The Eclogues and Georgics of Virgil, are known for their fluency and grace. In addition to his lauded translations, Ferry is a prize-winning poet in his own right. His poetic works include Dwelling Places (1993) and Of No Country I Know: New and Selected Poems and Translations (1999), which won the Lenore Marshall Prize, the Bingham Poetry Prize, the Rebekah Johnson Bobbitt National Prize for Poetry from the Library of Congress, and was a finalist for the L.L. Winship/PEN New England Award and the New Yorker Book Award. Bewilderment: New Poems and Translations (2012), won the National Book Award for Poetry. Reviewer April Bernard calls his recent translation of Virgil’s Aeneid (2017) a “marvel throughout.”

 

 

 

Opener: Wendy Drexler

Wendy Drexler’s third poetry collection, Before There Was Before, was published by Iris Press in March 2017. A three-time Pushcart-Prize nominee, her poems have appeared or are forthcoming in Barrow Street, Ibbetson Street, J Journal, Nimrod, Prairie Schooner, Salamander, The Mid-American Review, The Hudson Review, The Worcester Review, and the Valparaiso Poetry Review; featured on Verse Daily and WBUR’s Cognoscenti; and in the anthologies Blood to Remember: American Poets on the Holocaust and Burning Bright: Passager Celebrates 21 Years. Wendy’s first children’s book, Buzz, Ruby, and Their City Chicks, coauthored with Joan Fleiss Kaplan, was published by Ziggy Owl Press in 2016. She grew up in Denver, Colorado, and now lives with her husband in Belmont, MA. She’s currently in training to be certified as a poet-in-residence in the Boston public schools. Her website is wendydrexlerpoetry.com.

 

 

March 18, 2018 Featured poet: Angie Estes

Angie Estes is the author of five books, most recently Enchantée (Oberlin College Press, 2013), winner of the 2015 Kingsley Tufts Poetry Prize. Her previous book, Tryst (Oberlin, 2009), was selected as one of two finalists for the 2010 Pulitzer Prize. Chez Nous, also from Oberlin, appeared in 2005, and her second book, Voice-Over (Oberlin, 2002), won the 2001 FIELD Poetry Prize and was also awarded the 2001 Alice Fay di Castagnola Prize from the Poetry Society of America. Her first book, The Uses of Passion (1995), was the winner of the Peregrine Smith Poetry Prize. She  is the recipient of many awards, including a Guggenheim Fellowship, a Pushcart Prize and the Cecil Hemley Memorial Award from the Poetry Society of America.

 

Opener: Nausheen Eusuf

Nausheen Eusuf is a PhD candidate in English at Boston University and a graduate of the Writing Seminars at Johns Hopkins. Her poetry has appeared in The American Scholar, Southwest Review, Salmagundi, PN Review, Literary Imagination, World Literature Today, and other journals. Her first collection of poems, titled Not Elegy, But Eros, was recently published by NYQ Books (US) and Bengal Lights Books (Bangladesh).

 

April 15, 2018 Double Feature: Andrea Cohen and Lloyd Schwartz

Andrea Cohen’s poems have appeared in The New YorkerThe Atlantic MonthlyPoetryThe Threepenny Review, and elsewhere. Her most recent book of poems is Unfathoming (Four Way Books 2017). Other books include Furs Not Mine, Kentucky Derby, Long Division, and The Cartographer’s Vacation. Cohen directs the Blacksmith House Poetry Ser

ies in Cambridge, MA and the Writers House at Merrimack College.

 

Lloyd Schwartz teaches in the MFA program at UMass Boston. He’s a Pulitzer Prize-winning critic and an Elizabeth Bishop scholar. His latest collection of poems is Little Kisses (University of Chicago Press, 2017).

 

 

May 20, 2018 Double Feature: Martha Collins and Gail Mazur

Martha Collins is the author of nine books of poetry, including the recently published Night Unto Night, which is a sequel to Day Unto Day (2014). Her other works include a trilogy of books that focus on race: Admit One: An American Scrapbook (2016), White Papers (2012), and the book-length poem Blue Front (2006). Collins has also published four volumes of co-translated Vietnamese poetry and has won numerous awards for her work. Founder of the Creative Writing Program at U.Mass-Boston and Pauline Delaney Professor of Creative Writing at Oberlin College for ten years, she is currently editor-at- large for Oberlin’s FIELD magazine and one of the editors of the Oberlin College Press.

Gail Mazur is author of seven books of poetry, including They Can’t Take That Away from Me (University of Chicago Press, 2001) finalist for the National Book Award; Zeppo’s First Wife: New and Selected Poems (Chicago, 2005), winner of The Massachusetts Book Prize and finalist for the Los Angeles Times Book Prize and the Paterson Poetry Prize; Figures in a Landscape (2011); and Forbidden City (Chicago, 2016). Her poems have been widely anthologized, including in several Pushcart Prize Anthologies, the Best American Poetry, and Robert Pinsky’s Essential Pleasures. She has received fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts, the Bunting Institute of Radcliffe College, and the Radcliffe Institute. She was for 20 years Distinguished Senior Writer in Residence in Emerson College’s graduate program and is now visiting faculty in Boston University’s MFA Program in Creative Writing. She teaches a week-long aummer workshop at the Fine Arts Work Center in Provincetown where she has served for many years on the Writing Committee. In 1973, Mazur founded the Blacksmith House Poetry Series in Harvard Square, which she ran for 29 years. She is a longtime resident of Provincetown and Cambridge where she lived with her husband, artist Michael Mazur.

 

 

 


The Brookline Poetry Series was founded in the spring and summer of 2001 by our friend and fellow poet Diane Collins Ouellette. Diane died of cancer several months into the series, and, with her husband Berred’s support, we continued. We are guided by her original mission: a quality venue for local poets, both published and yet-to-be published; a place for a multiplicity of poetic voices; a series particularly dedicated to featuring the work of Brookline poets.

In the years since, we have featured the best contemporary voices in American poetry, as well as many fine local poets.

We are dedicated to providing a forum for poets of all experience to listen and read their work. In 2005, the Boston Globe named us the Best in Boston for our open mike.

We welcome all Boston-area poets to our series.

Since March 2008, the series has been held at the Public Library of Brookline.

Brookline Poetry Series Co-Directors: Ann Killough, Tam Lin Neville, Susan Jo Russell, Aimée Sands

Contact: poetry@brooklinelibrary.org  Please put “Brookline Poetry Series” in the subject heading. Please do not send written correspondence in care of the Library.