Archive for March, 2010

KIRK JUDD: April 15 at Monongalia Arts Center

Monday, March 29, 2010

kirkjudd.jpgMORGANTOWN, W.Va. — Poet, performance artist and West Virginia Writers, Inc. founding member Kirk Judd will be featured with Morgantown Poets at 7 p.m. Thursday, April 15, at Monongalia Arts Center (MAC).

The event is free and open to the public. The MAC is at 107 High Street, downtown Morgantown (beside Hotel Morgan).

Judd has performed poetry across West Virginia at fairs, concerts and festivals for the past 30 years. The author is internationally known for his performance work combining poetry and old time music.

Judd is the author of two collections of poetry, “Field of Vision” and “Tao-Billy.” He’s a coeditor of the widely acclaimed anthology, “Wild, Sweet Notes: 50 Years of West Virginia Poetry 1950 – 1999.”

The author is a founding member of Allegheny Echoes, Inc., dedicated to the support and preservation of WV cultural heritage arts. As part of a cultural heritage exchange with the Ulster-American Folk Park in Omagh, Northern Ireland, Judd has presented his original poetry with Allegheny Echoes staff members and musicians on the BBC and in a highly successful performance tour across both Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland.

Judd was also a member of the Appalachian Literary League and a former president of West Virginia Writers, Inc., the statewide writing organization. The poet has lived, worked, trout fished and wandered around in West Virginia all of his life.

Public parking is available near the MAC in the parking garage at the corner of Pleasant and Chestnut streets and at the city lot behind 142 High Street (enter off Spruce). The MAC is accessible to individuals with special mobility requirements; schedule ahead at least seven days prior to the event by calling 304-292-3325, or write to monartscenter.

— Ted Webb



Thursday, March 25, 2010

I once had a notion to have poetry readings not in bookstores or schools, but in places like gas stations, unlikely places where people wouldn’t be expecting poetry.

Thanks go to Mountain Line Transit Authority’s marketing officer Maria Smith and interim marketing assistant Jeff Fisher for their Poetry on the Move project in Morgantown. It hits the streets today, Thursday, March 25. Riders will be entertained and some of us will get some attention to our poems from people who hadn’t planned on seeing poems on a bus.

I happily read Mountain Line’s e-mail yesterday, because, you see, I lived in Morgantown for more than 10 years and had sent five tiny poems for the project:

Continue reading »


Friday, March 19, 2010

Frank X Walker, a founding member of the Affrilachian Poets, will visit WVU for a reading in the Rhododendron Room, 7 p.m., Monday, March 22. This is an event that had been rescheduled after a big February snowstorm. Click here to read WVU’s press release.


Kentucky Poet Laureate Gurney Norman, is scheduled to read from his work in Room 125, Cherry Hall, Western Kentucky University, 7 p.m., Thursday, March 25. Free and open to the public. It is sponsored by the Creative Writing Committee of the English Department.

SAL BUTTACI: On The Authors Show

Friday, March 19, 2010

salbutacci_small.jpgAn interview with poet Sal Buttaci on The Authors Show can be heard today, March 19, at

Click on the above site, then click on the box that contains the show.

Buttaci taught English for many years before retiring and moving to West Virginia, home of his beloved wife Sharon.

You can visit him online at, The Poem Factory and elsewhere. He is constantly writing new poems and stories, and his work has appeared in many publications including The New York Times, USA Today and elsewhere here and overseas.

Buttaci has read aloud for MountainWord before, and I’ve written about him on at least six other occasions (just type Buttaci in the MountainWord search box). His latest book, “Flashing My Shorts,” is a colllection of micro-fiction, 164 short stories, and it is available at where it has received 28 customer reviews so far.



Tuesday, March 16, 2010


Thanks to Beth Wellington via APPALNET listserv, I know now that Frog Creek Books has an online presence taking shape:

Online, you’ll arrive at a place that looks like the image above, only larger, of course.

Details on how to contact, as listed on the Web site:



Telephone: 1-304-346-5222 or 1-800-395-7074

Mailing address: Frog Creek Books
800 Smith Street
Charleston, WV 25301



Friday, March 12, 2010

Mike Sublette at Frog Creek Books, Capitol Market, Charleston, W.Va., says he won’t be open after next week, that mikesublettesmall.jpghe’s closing Frog Creek. Vacation? No, he said, he’s closing permanently on March 20. Books on West Virginia are marked down. He’s not sure what his next step will be. Maybe he’ll do something else, he said, something online. Watch for him on Facebook and elsewhere. Mike, MANY of us love Frog Creek Books, just so ya know. I was there Friday to buy a copy of Rick Steelhammer’s new book, but it was sold out there. Maybe Taylor Books still has copies. Frog Creek carried some books you just couldn’t always find in the big commercial book stores — Frank Walker‘s poetry, for example. In fairness, though, Borders offered some of Frank’s books for sale last fall during the W.Va. Book Festival.


According to the Williamson Daily News, Albert Browning of Delbarton, W.Va., and near Holden Beach, N.C., has published a new book of poems. Read all about it.


The Area Agency on Aging District 7 in Ohio
is having its 28th Annual Senior Citizens Art Show and Essay/Poetry Contest, June 7-11. Read about it in the Ironton Tribune.

Read about Colleen Anderson‘s upcoming writing workshops at W.Va. Writers blog
or at Mother Wit online. Colleen was recently a judge at Poetry Out Loud, W.Va. Finals, at the Culture Center in Charleston.


THE POETIC SENSIBILITY: Two great writers with ties to West Virginia

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Here are two great writers with poetic sensibility, both very different, but with ties to West Virginia.

Read Wil Haygood‘s “Sweet Thunder: The Life and Times of Sugar Ray Robinson.” Reviewer Gerald Early calls it “one of the best biographies of a boxer ever written.”

Wil used to work at the Gazette. After leaving here, he embarked on an amazing career. He wrote a string of award-winning books and worked at the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, The Boston Globe, and now at The Washington Post. Listen to an interview with Wil, on the Research Channel.

My wife Nancy went to Columbus last year to be a guest as Wil was honored and visited by friends virtually from all over the world.

Yesterday morning, I was playing around with a new app on my iPhone called Press Reader. I beamed up a March 8, 2010, Washington Post, and on Page One, there was a story by Wil Haygood in New York about problem politics centered on Rep. Rangel and New York Gov. Paterson.  Wil’s writing has a poetic flair, a gentle touch; it entertains and sticks with you long after you put the book down, or the news story.


Pinckney Benedict, native of Greenbrier County, W.Va., is the featured author in the Winter 2010 issue of Appalachian Heritage, and in celebration of that, he will read at Berea College, Loyal Jones Appalachian Center Gallery, Berea, Ky., 8 p.m., Friday, March 12. Come at 7:30 p.m. for refreshments. For more information, call 859-985-3559.

He teaches creative writing at Southern Illinois University, Carbondale, Ill.

Why Pinckney on a poetry blog? Well, his work is fed, by turns, with the fiction writer’s poetic sense of beauty, the strange and the dangerous.

Try out “Town Smokes,” a collection of nine stories.



Tuesday, March 2, 2010

elizabeth-savage.jpgThis just in, verbatim, from Ted Webb of Morgantown Poets:

MORGANTOWN, W.Va. – Author, educator and poetry editor Elizabeth Savage will be featured with Morgantown Poets at 7 p.m. Thursday, March 18, 2010, at Monongalia Arts Center (MAC).

The event is free and open to the public. The MAC is at 107 High Street, downtown Morgantown (beside Hotel Morgan).

Savage is an associate professor of English and co-director of women’s studies at Fairmont State University where she has been on the faculty since 2001. She is also the poetry editor for Kestrel: A Journal of Literature & Art.

Continue reading »


Monday, March 1, 2010

Get ready now for National Poem In Your Pocket Day coming up Thursday, April 29, 2010. Click here to read about it at

Pick out a few poems you love, poems that would fit in your pocket, poems short enough to readily remember and share. Here’s one just about everyone knows.:


The fog comes
on little cat feet.
It sits looking
over harbor and city
on silent haunches
and then moves on.

–Carl Sandburg


What are some of your favorite poems? Please add your comment.


POETRY OUT LOUD: Poetry recitation finals Saturday

Monday, March 1, 2010

POETRY OUT LOUD: 2 p.m., Saturday, March 6, 2010. Students from around the state will participate in the poetry recitation contest. Chris Sarandon will emcee the event and Nikki Giovanni will serve as guest speaker.
Norman L. Fagan Theater of the Culture Center, State Capitol Complex. Call Jeff Pierson at 304-558-0240 for more information. Read Sara Busse’s preview story in The Charleston Gazette.

Please write a short poem or post a comment below. Share an event, a book title, a worthwhile web link…. Thanks.