Brookline Poetry Series

The Brookline Poetry Series is pleased to offer an all-virtual reading series for 2020-21. We have a stellar line-up for the series this year, which will take place via Zoom at our usual time, the third Sunday of each month, from 2:00-4:00, September through May. Our invited poets will read, starting at 2:00, followed by an open mic. Sign-up for the open mic will be available at 1:45 in the chat box.

Each month, you will receive a Zoom invitation in your email for the reading.  Click on the link in the email and follow succeeding instructions to access the reading.

In order to receive the link for each reading, you must be on the Brookline Poetry Series mailing list. To get on the list, you may contact the organizers via email at Please put “Brookline Poetry Series” in the subject heading. Please do not send written correspondence in care of the Library.


Featured Readers

September 20, 2020
Martha Collins & Lynn Powell

A photo of Martha CollinsMartha Collins’s most recent collection of poetry is Because What Else Could I Do (Pittsburgh, 2019), which won the William Carlos Williams Award. She has published nine earlier books of poetry, including Admit One: An American Scrapbook, White Papers, Blue Front, and the paired volumes Day Unto Day and Night Unto Night. She has also published four volumes of co-translated Vietnamese poetry and co-edited a number of volumes. Founder of the Creative Writing Program at U.Mass.-Boston and former Pauline Delaney Professor of Creative Writing at Oberlin College, Collins currently lives in Cambridge, Massachusetts. Her website is

A photograph of Lynn PowellLynn Powell has published three books of poetry—Old & New Testaments, The Zones of Paradise, and, most recently, Season of the Second Thought—and a book of nonfiction, Framing Innocence.  Her honors include a National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship, the Felix Pollak Prize in Poetry, the Brittingham Prize in Poetry, the Studs & Ida Terkel Award from The New Press, and four Ohio Arts Council Excellence Awards.  Powell teaches in the Creative Writing Program of Oberlin College, where she is the founding director of Oberlin WITS (Writers in the Schools).

October 18, 2020
Vievee Francis & Chloe Garcia Roberts

A photograph of Vievee FrancisVievee Francis is the author of three books of poetry: Blue-Tail Fly (Wayne State University Press, 2006), Horse in the Dark (winner of the Cave Canem Northwestern University Poetry Prize for a second collection, Northwestern University Press, 2016) and Forest Primeval (winner of the Hurston Wright Legacy Award and the 2017 Kingsley-Tufts Poetry Award). Her work has appeared in numerous print and online journals, textbooks, and anthologies, including PoetryBest American Poetry 201020142017, and Angles of Ascent: A Norton Anthology of Contemporary African American Poetry. She has been a participant in the Cave Canem Workshops, a Poet-in-Residence for the Alice Lloyd Scholars Program at the University of Michigan, and teaches poetry writing in the Callaloo Creative Writing Workshop (USA, UK, and Barbados). In 2009 she received a Rona Jaffe Writer’s Award, and in 2010, a Kresge Fellowship. She serves as an associate editor of Callaloo and an associate professor of English and Creative Writing at Dartmouth College in Hanover, NH.

A photo of Chloe Garcia RobertsChloe Garcia Roberts is the author of  The Reveal (Noemi Press, 2015) which was published as part of the Akrilika Series for innovative Latino writing, and translator of Li Shangyin’s  Derangements of My Contemporaries: Miscellaneous Notes (New Directions), which was awarded a PEN/Heim Translation Fund Grant. She also translated a collected poetry of Li Shangyin (NYRB Poets). Her essays, poems, and translations have appeared in the publications BOMB, A Public Space, Kenyon Review and Gulf Coast, among others. She lives in Boston and is managing editor for Harvard Review.

November 15, 2020
Gabrielle Calvocoressi & Tanya (Tingyu) Liu

A photo of Gabrielle CalvocoressiGabrielle Calvocoressi is the author of The Last Time I Saw Amelia EarhartApocalyptic Swing (a finalist for the LA Times Book Prize), and Rocket Fantastic, winner of the Audre Lorde Award for Lesbian Poetry. Calvocoressi is the recipient of numerous awards and fellowships including a Stegner Fellowship and Jones Lectureship from Stanford University; a Rona Jaffe Woman Writer’s Award; a Lannan Foundation residency in  Marfa, TX; the Bernard F. Conners Prize from The Paris Review; and a residency from the Civitella di Ranieri Foundation, among others. Calvocoressi’s poems have been published or are forthcoming in numerous magazines and journals including The Baffler, The New York TimesPOETRYBoston ReviewKenyon ReviewTin House, and The New Yorker. Calvocoressi is an Editor at Large at Los Angeles Review of Books, and Poetry Editor at Southern Cultures. Works in progress include a non-fiction book, The Year I Didn’t Kill Myself, and a novel, The Alderman of the Graveyard. Calvocoressi teaches at UNC Chapel Hill and lives in Carrboro, NC, where joy, compassion, and social justice are at the center of their personal and poetic practice.

A photo of Tanya (Tingyu) LiuTanya (Tingyu) Liu was born in Huaian, China, grew up in Miami, and currently works in Boston in biotech. She has been published in The Normal School, Four Way Review, Borderlands, Bodega, and elsewhere, as well as various scientific journals for her neuroscience research. She has degrees from Pomona College and MIT. Aside from poetry, Tanya enjoys trail running and learning Spanish.

December 20, 2020
Allison Adair & Joshua Coben

A photo of Allison AdairAllison Adair’s collection The Clearing was selected by Henri Cole for Milkweed’s Max Ritvo Poetry Prize. Her poems appear in American Poetry ReviewArts & LettersBest American PoetryKenyon Review, and ZYZZYVA, among other journals; and have received the Pushcart Prize, the Florida Review Editors’ Award, and the Orlando Prize. Originally from central Pennsylvania, Allison now lives in Boston and teaches at Boston College.

A photo of Joshua CobenJoshua Coben’s first book, Maker of Shadows (Texas Review Press, 2010), won the X. J. Kennedy Poetry Prize. His second collection, Night Chaser (David Robert Books, 2020), was a finalist for the Vassar Miller Prize, the New American Poetry Prize, and the Donald Justice Poetry Prize. His poems have appeared or are forthcoming in Atlanta Review, The Cincinnati Review, College English, Pleiades, Poet Lore, Poetry Daily, Salamander, and elsewhere. A St. Louis native and Dedham resident, he has worked in public elementary schools as a classroom teacher and school librarian. Visit him online at

January 17, 2021
Frannie Lindsay & Christine Tierney

A photo of Frannie LindsayFrannie Lindsay’s sixth volume, The Snow’s Wife, was released this fall by Cavankerry Press. Her previous titles are If Mercy, Our Vanishing, Mayweed, Lamb, and Where She Always Was. Her honors include the Benjamin Saltman Award, the Washington Prize, the May Swenson Award, and the Missouri Review Prize, as well as fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts and the Massachusetts Cultural Council. Lindsay’s work has appeared widely in such journals as The Atlantic Monthly, The American Poetry Review, The Yale Review, Field, Plume, The Adroit Journal, and the 2014 Best American Poetry Anthology.  She teaches workshops on the poetry of grief and trauma at the Cambridge Center for Adult Education. She is a classical pianist.

A photo of Christine TierneyChristine Tierney’s ( poems and flash fiction have appeared in Fourteen Hills, Poet Lore, PMS, The Tusculum Review, Permafrost, LEVELER, Sugar House Review and elsewhere. Her first book, chicken+lowercase=fleur is due out in 2021 from Lily Poetry Review Books. She holds an MFA from The University of Southern Maine’s Stonecoast Writing Program, and a BA in film from Emerson College. Her work has been nominated for Best of the Net, a Pushcart Prize, and the Best New Poets Anthology. She is employed as an afterschool director. She is a funk and disco lover, and also a wannabe comedian.

February 21, 2021
Jeffrey Harrison & Roger Reeves

A photo of Jeffrey HarrisonJeffrey Harrison is the author of six full-length books of poetry, most recently Between Lakes, published by Four Way Books in September 2020. His previous book, Into Daylight, won the Dorset Prize and was published by Tupelo Press in 2014, and Incomplete Knowledge (Four Way, 2006) was a runner-up for the Poets’ Prize. He has received fellowships from the Guggenheim Foundation, the National Endowment for the Arts, and the Bogliasco Foundation, among other honors. His poems have appeared widely in magazines and journals, as well as in Best American Poetry, The Pushcart Prize volumes, and other anthologies, and been featured regularly on The Writer’s Almanac, American Life in Poetry, Poetry Daily, and other online or media venues.

A photo of Roger ReevesRoger Reeves earned his PhD from the University of Texas, Austin, and is the author of King Me (Copper Canyon Press, 2013), winner of the Larry Levis Reading Prize, the PEN/Oakland Josephine Miles Literary Award, and a John C. Zacharis First Book Award. He is the recipient of a Whiting Award and two Pushcart Prizes, as well as fellowships from Cave Canem, the National Endowment for the Arts, the Poetry Foundation, and Princeton University. An associate professor of poetry in the English Department at the University of Texas, Austin, his second collection of poetry is forthcoming from W. W. Norton.

March 21, 2021
Cynthia Cruz & Nabila Lovelace

A photo of Cynthia CruzCynthia Cruz is the author of six collections of poems: Guidebooks for the Dead (Four Way Books, 2020), Dregs (Four Way Books, 2018), How the End Begins (Four Way Books, 2016), Wunderkammer (Four Way Books, 2014), The Glimmering Room (Four Way Books, 2012) and Ruin (Alice James Books, 2006). She is also the editor of Other Musics, an anthology of contemporary Latina poetry (University of Oklahoma Press, 2019). Disquieting: Essays on Silence, a collection of critical essays exploring the concept of silence as a form of resistance, was published by Book*hug in the spring of 2019. The Melancholia of Class, her second collection of critical essays, an exploration of melancholia and the working class, is forthcoming from Repeater Books in 2021. Cruz co-edits the multi-disciplinary online journal, Schlag Magazine. Cruz teaches at the City University of New York and in the MFA Writing Program at Columbia University, is a mentor in the Low Residency MFA Writing Program at IAIA and a visiting writer in the MFA Writing Program at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst.

A photograph of Nabila LovelaceNabila Lovelace is a first-generation Queens born poet, her people hail from Trinidad & Nigeria. Sons of Achilles, her debut book of poems, is out now through YesYes Books. You can currently find her kicking it in Tuscaloosa.

April 18, 2021
Steven Cramer & Nathan McClain

A photo of Steven CramerSteven Cramer’s sixth poetry collection, Listen, was published in 2020 by MadHat Press. He is the author of five previous collections, most recently Clangings (2012) and Goodbye to the Orchard (2004),  which won the Sheila Motton Prize from the New England Poetry Club and was named an Honor Book in Poetry by the Massachusetts Center for the Book. Recipient of two grants from the Massachusetts Cultural Council and a National Endowment for the Arts fellowship, he founded and teaches in the Low-Residency MFA Program in Creative Writing at Lesley University.

A photo of Nathan McClainNathan McClain is the author of Scale (Four Way Books, 2017), a recipient of fellowships from Sewanee Writers’ Conference, The Frost Place, the Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference, and a graduate of MFA Program for Writers at Warren Wilson.  His poems and prose have recently appeared in Poetry Northwest, Zocalo Public Square, Green Mountains Review, Poem-a-Day, The Common, and The Critical Flame.  He teaches at Hampshire College.

June 6, 2021
Chen Chen & Tiana Nobile

A photo of Chen ChenChen Chen is the author of When I Grow Up I Want to Be a List of Further Possibilities, which was longlisted for the National Book Award and won the Thom Gunn Award, among other honors. His work appears in many publications, including PoetryPloughsharesThe New York Times Magazine, and The Best American Poetry (2015 and 2019). He has received a Pushcart Prize and fellowships from Kundiman and the National Endowment for the Arts. He teaches at Brandeis University. 

A photo of Tiana NobileTiana Nobile lives in New Orleans, Louisiana. She is a Pushcart Prize nominee, a Kundiman fellow, and a recipient of a Rona Jaffe Foundation Writer’s Award. A finalist of the National Poetry Series and Kundiman Poetry Prize, her writing has appeared in Poetry Northwest, The New Republic, Guernica, and the Texas Review, among others. Her full-length poetry debut, Cleave, is forthcoming in Spring 2021 by Hub City Press. For more, visit

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. The 2020-21 series will be virtual. You must be on the mailing list to receive the link to the readings.

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

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