WCW—Anton Yakovlev and Yuyutsu Sharma—September 4

September 4, 7 PM—The Williams Center, Rutherford, NJ

Poetry in translation reading


The Williams Readings hosted by The Gang of Five in Rutherford, NJ, celebrate National Translation Month featuring poets and translators Anton Yakovlev (Russian) and Yuyutsu Sharma (Nepalese).

Please join us on Wednesday September 4th, 2019, 7:00 PM at the Williams Center, One Williams Plaza in Rutherford, NJ, to hear Anton and Yuyutsu.

About our features:

Anton Yakovlev‘s Russian translations have appeared in National Translation Month, Exchanges, The Stockholm Review of Literature, Lunch Ticket, KGB Bar Lit Mag, and elsewhere. The Last Poet of the Village, a book of translations of Sergei Yesenin, is forthcoming from Sensitive Skin Books in October 2019. Yakovlev’s poetry chapbook Chronos Dines Alone (SurVision Books, 2018) won the James Tate Poetry Prize.

Praise for Anton’s work:
“When Keats read George Chapman’s translation of Homer, he felt like an astronomer when “a new planet swims into his ken.” This is how I felt in reading Anton Yakovlev’s superb translations of some poems by Sergei Yesenin. Yesenin is an icon of early 20th century Russian poetry, communicating the vastness of Russia as a country and a culture, but he is not well known in the Anglosphere. Yakovlev’s translations strike this non-Russophone reader as a triumph of craft in combining a “peasant” simplicity that seems deeply and authentically Russian with piquant, always-tasteful touches of idiomatic American speech. These versions are a gift to readers of English in bringing across the quality and qualities of an original and unforgettable artist.”
—Daniel Brown, author of Taking the Occasion and What More?

Yuyutsu Sharma is a world-renowned Himalayan poet and translator. He is the recipient of fellowships and grants from The Rockefeller Foundation, Ireland Literature Exchange, Trubar Foundation, Slovenia, The Institute for the Translation of Hebrew Literature and The Foundation for the Production and Translation of Dutch Literature.

He has published ten poetry collections including, The Second Buddha Walk, A Blizzard in my Bones: New York Poems, Quaking Cantos: Nepal Earthquake Poems, Nepal Trilogy, Space Cake, Amsterdam and Annapurna Poems. Three books of his poetry, Poemes de l’ Himalayas (L’Harmattan, Paris), Poemas de Los Himalayas (Cosmopoeticia, Cordoba, Spain) and Jezero Fewa & Konj (Sodobnost International) have appeared in French, Spanish and Slovenian respectively. In addition, Eternal Snow: A Worldwide Anthology of One Hundred Twenty-Five Poetic Intersections with Himalayan Poet Yuyutsu RD Sharma has just appeared.

Currently, Yuyutsu Sharma is a visiting poet at Columbia University and edits Pratik: A Quarterly Magazine of Contemporary Writing.

Please note: We must now pay $100 per month rent for the use the Williams Center for our readings. This is in addition to the $100 per month rent the Red Wheelbarrow workshop must pay for the use of their space in the Williams Center.

We need your help to survive and continue to hold our monthly readings. We will be asking for donations. A $5 per person donation is suggested. If we all contribute, we can pay the rent!

You can follow everything about the Red Wheelbarrow Poets at these sites:
Blog – https://redwheelbarrowpoets.wordpress.com
Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/RWBPoets
Twitter – @RWBPoets.

RWB Workshop Poem of the Week—July 30

Frank Rubino

Changing a Battery

1.
My brother-in-law Laszlo who was the family engineer
and Hungarian, rewired our furnace ignition during Hurricane Sandy.
Working with laconic deliberation, 
connecting the leads with his needle-nose pliers 
and voltage gauge according to the rehearsed steps in his mind, 
he reconfigured our ignition switch to draw power not from the dead house feed,
whose riverside PSE&G sub-station transformer the Passaic had flooded,
but from a green extension cord he passed through the basement window. 
I daisy-chained it to my other cords from Christmas to reach across the street. 
The guy who lived there, Dr. Paul Wicherburn, 
suffered from a degenerative nerve disease
that was killing him over a ten year period,
but he was out of his wheelchair, 
and walked around back through the snow 
to show me where to plug into his generator 
to ignite my furnace and warm my house. 
A few days later, more snow fell, 
and the township plowed the street, 
ripping out Laszlo’s extension cord,
and inside our house it was cold again. 
We felt like squatters, running the dark hallways in our headlamps and parkas, 
and saw our breath indoors, and felt the itch of our armpits in our dirty clothes.

2.
I figured my son’s no-start was connected 
to the alternator they had replaced 
without analyzing the root cause. 
When we popped open his hood, 
his battery looked shot, 
with sea-green corrosive salt crusting the posts. 

In my derelict Mazda was a new battery, 
and we could swap it into my son’s car, 
and we would start his car 
without bothering his Uncle Laszlo for once.
We had to knock all the corrosion off with a wrench,
and hope the nuts weren’t locked in with rust,
and hoist it out of the compartment 
to make room for the replacement, 

and it was then that my son’s great strength, 
his wide shoulders and broad chest,
filled me with gratitude for his youth, 
and I stopped faulting him 
for all the damages he had done to our various cars,
among which had been the disastrous 
front-lawn off-roading that left my Mazda 
with no working capacity except its battery charge. 

With his vigor, he extracted his dead battery— 
a fifty pounder shoed-in with a hidden bracket— 
and thudded it into the curb grass 
in front of Dr. Paul Wicherburn’s house, 
where we happened to be working,
as it had been a convenient place to roll 
his disabled vehicle in neutral— him pushing,
me steering. 

When his disease finally did kill him,
Paul’s wife, Molly, told me that Paul 
had loved to watch our family’s antics
on bad days, through the window, 
from his wheelchair.

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Blog – http://redwheelbarrowpoets.org
Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/RWBPoets
Twitter – https://twitter.com/RWBPoets

WCW—Hilary Sideris & Rick Mullin—August 7

For the regal month of August, the Gang of Five is excited to co-feature Hilary Sideris and Rick Mullin, two poets of great talent and majestic expertise.

Please join us on Wednesday, August 7th, 2019, 7:00 PM, at the Williams Center, One Williams Plaza in Rutherford, NJ, to hear them.

About our features:

Hilary Sideris’ poetry has appeared in numerous print and online publications. She is the author of Most Likely to Die (Poets Wear Prada), The Inclination to Make Waves (Big Wonderful), Un Amore Veloce (Kelsay) and, most recently, The Silent B (Dos Madres 2019).

The poet George Held wrote of her latest collection: “Do not read The Silent B unless you love John Donne, Cole Porter, and Richard Pryor; unless you dote on word-play, satire, and wit; unless you cherish the silent “b” in “dumb,” cognates for “fire,” and the leap from “gaffe” to “laugh”; and unless you feel for the dyslexic, the dysphemic, and the different.”

Rick Mullin’s poetry has been published in various journals and anthologies. He is the author of seven volumes of poetry and two chapbooks, including Soutine (Dos Madres Press), a biographical novel in verse written in terza rima, and his most recent collection, Lullaby and Wheel (Kelsay Books, 2019).

The poet Anton Yakovlev wrote of Rick’s poetry: “From the moment you read the first poems in Lullaby and Wheel, you know you are in the hands of a master. Rick Mullin’s voice is one of the most distinctive and recognizable in metrical poetry today, and this collection sees the poet at the top of his form. Effortlessly switching from the whimsical to the philosophical to the deeply personal to the fanciful and again to the personal, these profoundly enriching poems guide the reader through a whirlwind of emotions and mindsets, recognizable and startling in equal measure.”

Please note: We must now pay $100 per month rent for the use the Williams Center for our readings. This is in addition to the $100 per month rent the Red Wheelbarrow workshop must pay for the use of their space in the Williams Center.

We need your help to survive and continue to hold our monthly readings. We will be asking for donations. A $5 per person donation is suggested. If we all contribute, we can pay the rent!

You can follow everything about the Red Wheelbarrow, its events and poets at these sites:
Blog – https://redwheelbarrowpoets.wordpress.com
Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/RWBPoets
Twitter – @RWBPoets.

RWB Workshop Poem of the Week—July 2

MARK FOGARTY
IMPOSSIBLE TO WHISPER HER RACING MIND DOWN

Whenever you talk about stable housing,

I think of horses, she says.

When my mother was my age,

She used to break horses on the res,

What a badass! I could do it, too, bareback.

You make friends with the horse first,

She’s cantering around, spooked,

You whisper in her ear how beautiful she is,

She with her straight hair and you with your angled,

You lean your hair against hers, and she knows.

You ask her permission to swing up on top,

Feel the rocket strength of her between your legs

Where I am strong, too, where I carry my people’s beauty.

Then you grab her by the mane

And ride, fast, through the long, green grass of the res.

And then you slow, slow until it’s logical to get down again.

Except for the horseshit, she says, I don’t think I would mind stable housing.

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Blog – http://redwheelbarrowpoets.org
Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/RWBPoets
Twitter – https://twitter.com/RWBPoets

RWB Workshop Poem of the Week—June 24

Susanna Lee
Trusting Detritus


My favorite log of all time had pale green lichen over almost all of it
but was basically solid and dry.
I could find it every time I scavenged for firewood behind our campsite at Stokes.
It pointed the way back.

It had fallen on level ground.
I could trust it not to fall apart or teeter when I walked the length of its spine.
It would always be a pirate’s gangplank for me when I needed one.
Bits of lichen would break off under my sneakers, but always grew back.

My kids laughed at the ridiculous notion a person could get lost in the woods,
or would come to love the peculiar way detritus gathers meaning over time.
Trusting detritus seemed like crazy talk, I guess,
easy advice to discard.

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Blog – http://redwheelbarrowpoets.org
Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/RWBPoets
Twitter – https://twitter.com/RWBPoets

WCW—Jim Klein—July 3

It is a special honor this July for the Gang of Five to present Jim Klein. The Godfather of the Red Wheelbarrow offers you some poetry you can’t refuse as he showcases his new book, The Preembroidered Moment

Please join us on Wednesday July 3rd, 2019, 7:00 PM at the William Carlos Williams Center, One Williams Plaza in Rutherford, NJ, to hear Jim read. 

About our feature:

Jim Klein is editor-in-chief of The Red Wheelbarrow and the moderator of The Red Wheelbarrow Workshop—Rutherford’s iconic poetry workshop that has met weekly since 2005. Jim’s poetry has been published in Beloit Poetry Journal, Berkley Poetry Review, College English, The Wormwood Review, and in numerous other publications. In 2007, Jim’s manuscript I Didn’t Know If I Was Afoot or on Horseback was a finalist in the Anthony Hecht Award Competition and in the Sawtooth Poetry Prize. Jim is the author of Blue Chevies (White Chicken Press, 2008), To Eat Is Human Digest Divine (White Chicken Press, 2010), and the chapbook, Trinis Talk Like the Birds (Errant Pigeon Press, 2011). 

Please note: We must now pay $100 per month rent for the use the Williams Center for our readings. This is in addition to the $100 per month rent the Red Wheelbarrow workshop must pay for the use of their space in the Williams Center. 

We need your help to survive and continue to hold our monthly readings. We will be asking for donations. A $5 per person donation is suggested. If we all contribute, we can pay the rent! 

You can follow everything about the Red Wheelbarrow, its events and poets at these sites:
Blog: https://redwheelbarrowpoets.wordpress.com
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/RWBPoets 
Twitter: @RWBPoets.

Gainville Reading Series Starts 11th Year with Mary Ma and Acoustic Joe!

Mary Ma and Acoustic Joe

The Magic Circle series returns to GainVille Café Friday, June 28 as we begin our 11th year (!) of poetry and music in Rutherford. Our poetry feature will be MARY MA, author of the chapbook Windows, Mirrors. Mary is a disabled, queer, non-binary writer and educator and a member of the Red Wheelbarrow Poet’s’ poetry workshop.

Our musical guest will be guitarist ACOUSTIC APOTHECARY JOE DELGIODICE, who has played in our open many times and in the Tribe of Uncles.

Also featuring the Red Wheelbarrow Poets’ Bring-Your-A-Game open mic.
A $9 cover includes coffee/tea, dessert.

7 PM, GainVille Café
17 Ames Avenue
Rutherford
201-507-1800

RWB Workshop Poem of the Week—June 4

Della Rowland
The Undertaker


If you were 22, newly married, uniformed, and ready 
to ship out with your unit but found yourself 
under a clean white sheet coughing up TB blood, 
then rehabbing with your bride at your bedside
in a slim skirt and fuck-me pumps, 
her photo in the wallet you meant to take with you to the front,
the one of her with her dark wavy hair swooped up off her forehead, 
wrapped in a snood at the nape, a gardenia behind her ear like Billie, 

you might feel the living’s guilt when three quarters 
of that bonded unit was killed right off the boat ramp.

You might think you were always lucky 
and you’d have been the heads side of that coin flip 
to see who goes and dies, or stays and lives.

You might believe, having tricked death once with TB, 
that you could stay in that good grace 
by selling life after death in your three funeral homes, 
where a body is brought to look natural again, 
where the family would pay someone to take its bones back to earth.

You might hope that the grieving living would never forget you, 
your vividly empathetic eyes, your sudden chivalrous gestures 
as if to save a swaying vase from shattering on the floor,
like when you bolted from a chair to grab a tissue
and dab a mourner’s eye with the familiarity of kin.

You might wish to hear everyone who crowded your wake 
and gravesite proclaim their love 
and recount their particular memory of your kindnesses,
as if they knew how carefully you placed their dead 
on the porcelain table with a drain at one end, 
how you patted their hands after massaging the blood out, 
preserved their modesty with a white sheet.

As if they knew you saw each car-wrecked body that came to you
as a boy from off the battlefield, 
uniform in tatters,
whose smashed-up face and bloodied hands 
must be restored.

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Blog – http://redwheelbarrowpoets.org
Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/RWBPoets
Twitter – https://twitter.com/RWBPoets

RWB Workshop Poem of the Week—May 28

Mary Ma
How To Stay In New Jersey


It’s a small state but there’s room.             
Make room. Bring a map to your desk
and get to work:

Run a red marker over
all the parking lots you purged in. 
Black top tucked behind  
restaurants and schools. Sometimes 
you’d stay in the driver’s seat
until you found a trash can. 
Cross out the trash cans and dumpsters 
on the main stretch of town.

Tear away the town where you were raped
and the town where your rapist lives.
Be careful with the latter or you may tear 
your own town, too.

Be gentle, the state looks smaller.

Take a pencil and circle the spaces you can
survive.

Circle every place you tried to sleep
when you couldn’t go home. Mall parking lots,
pharmacy parking lots, coffee shops, bleachers.

Erase that last one. Cross the bleachers out instead. 
They remind you of your stalker. 
Note the driveway where he jumped inside 
your moving car.

Don’t forget the Petco where your ex’s twin 
brother works. All you know is one of them
called you a whore. One of them
didn’t want you to work with other men, 
but you can’t tell them apart so assume 
both are dangerous. Go ahead and cross out Route 17.

Move your home away 
from the tear on the page 
and try again.

There are new malls here. New restaurants. New streets.
You don’t really need to use parking lots
any more.

Now look at all the state that’s left: 

You’ll fit
somewhere. 
There’s room.

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Blog – http://redwheelbarrowpoets.org
Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/RWBPoets
Twitter – https://twitter.com/RWBPoets

WCW—Bridget Sprouls—June 5

For the sublime month of June, the Gang of Five is excited to feature Bridget Sprouls, an enchanting poet of great talent and expertise.

Please join us on Wednesday June 5th, 2019, 7:00 PM at the William Carlos Williams Center, One Williams Plaza in Rutherford NJ to hear Bridget.

About our feature:

Many poets these days are praised for building their own unique universes. And, in this age of extremely high standards, when every poet is expected to strive toward a wholly original, mature and inimitable vision, this praise is often not without merit. Bridget Sprouls takes universe-building to another level. Like gorgeously-detailed fractal panoramas, her virtuoso poetry contains not one but countless universes, not only on a book level, or on a poem level, but sometimes in every line. Never sacrificing authenticity, sincerity, or no-bullshit directness, her poems take the audience into sometimes-unexplored yet profoundly recognizable worlds that are always worth delving into and sometimes worth inhabiting indefinitely. Sprouls’ debut collection The Remaining Yearsmarks the arrival of an important new voice into the poetic Anglosphere.

Please note: We must now pay $100 per month rent for the use the Williams Center for our readings. This is in addition to the $100 per month rent the Red Wheelbarrow workshop must pay for the use of their space in the Williams Center.

We need your help to survive and continue to hold our monthly readings. We will be asking for donations. A $5 per person donation is suggested. If we all contribute, we can pay the rent!

You can follow everything about the Red Wheelbarrow, its events and poets at these sites:
Blog – https://redwheelbarrowpoets.wordpress.com
Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/RWBPoets Twitter – @RWBPoets.