On the evening of April 14th, I attended a reading at the Sacramento Poetry Center. It was a cold night in California. Bright colorful blankets were provided–such a nice cozy touch. Perhaps all poetry readings should include blankets.
Anyway, the reading was by the students in the UC Davis Creative Writing Program, with a featured reading by Pam Houston, the Director of the program, to benefit The Tomales Bay Writers’ Workshops. Poetry students read their poetry. Of the fiction students, some read poetry and some read fiction. The host for the evening was Kate Asche, a poet and graduate of the UC Davis program, a board member at the center, and the coordinator of The Tomales Bay Writers’ Workshops. Kate also read one of her poems.
Sometimes in the Open, the beautiful collection of poems from California’s Poets Laureate, edited by Bob Stanley, was for sale. The cover painting, “The Passing Wisdom of Birds,” is by Robin Eschner.
The book contains poems by Kay Ryan, Carol Muske-Dukes, Al Young, and Lawrence Ferlinghetti, among others.
One of the others is Doug Stout. Here’s the beginning of his poem, “to be in a poem:”
to be in a poem
is to accept an invitation
to walk, swim or fly in the path
the poet has made
Another other is Barry Spacks. Here’s the end of his poem, “Writing:”
We students ardently
scribbled that down:
“no notes,” we wrote,
The book is:
“Dedicated to the poet who waits in the crowd,
thinking about reading out loud for the first time.”