Tomorrow, June 4th at 7:30 p.m., the Collected Poets Series features the poetry of Massachusetts’ current Poet Laureates, Lesléa Newman of Northampton and Gertrude Halstead of Worcester, at Mocha Maya’s, 47 Bridge St., Shelburne Falls, MA. Eve Rifkah will be reading Ms. Halstead’s work in absentia .
Lesléa Newman is the author of 57 books for adults and children, including her latest poetry collection, Nobody’s Mother; her latest novel, The Reluctant Daughter; and children’s books, such as The Boy Who Cried Fabulous, and Heather Has Two Mommies. Her literary awards include poetry fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts, Massachusetts Artists Foundation, the James Baldwin Award for Cultural Achievement, and three Pushcart Prize nominations. Nine of her books have been Lambda Literary Award finalists. Currently, she is the Poet Laureate of Northampton, MA
Gertrude Halstead was born in Germany in 1916. She escaped to France where during the war she was interned in the south of France. She volunteered to work as an interpreter and subsequently was allowed to be released. Halstead eventually made it to Portugal where she was able to get passage on the last ship leaving for the United States. She is a member of John Hodgen’s writing workshop. Halstead’s work has appeared in Sahara, Diner VOX, Amoskeag , Nimrod, and Columbia Poetry Review. Her first collection is memories like burrs, ( Adastra Press, 2006). She has twice been nominated for the Pushcart Prize. She is the current Poet Laureate of Worcester, MA.
Eve Rifkah was founding editor of the literary journal Diner and co-founder of Poetry Oasis, Inc. Her first chapbook is At the Leprosarium. Her book Dear Suzanne is forthcoming from Word Tech and a second book, Outcasts, is forthcoming from Little Pear Press.
For more information about this month’s poets or to read selections of their work, please visit the Collected Poets Series website.