Saturday, May 19, 2012

Tonite May 19 Greek-American Writers' Association at The Cornelia Street Cafe

Tonight, May 19th, I have the pleasure of reading with Larissa Shmailo, Tom Fink, and Penelope Karageorge at The Cornelia Street Cafe.  Greek-American Writers Association hosted by Dean Kostos. 6 p.m. - 7:30 p.m..  Doors open at 5:45 p.m..

Poets Wear Prada Logo

Writers Fink, Hoffman, Karageorge, Shmailo 
in Greenwich Village 
Saturday Evening May 19th 

The Greek-American Writers’ Association presents four poets, Tom Fink, Roxanne Hoffman, Penelope Karageorge & Larissa Shmailo, Saturday evening May 19th, at The Cornelia Street Cafe in Greenwich Village. For reservations or more info: 212.989.9319. 


PRLog (Press Release) - May 16, 2012 - The Greek-American Writers’ Association presents four writers, Tom Fink, Roxanne Hoffman, Penelope Karageorge & Larissa Shmailo, Saturday evening May 19th, at The Cornelia Street Cafe in Greenwich Village. Convening every third Saturday of the month, almost twenty years, for poetry, prose — music, occasionally, and song — the series, with Dean Kostos — his latest book, “Rivering,” soon to be published by Spuyten Duyvil Press — as host, is one of the longest running at the cafe.

"Like the lyre-plucking, ode-spouting Mediterraneans before them, Dean Kostos and a host of writers with Greek heritage give voice to their verses in front of a crowd." writes "TimeOut New York." Doors open at 5:45 p.m. Showtime from 6:00 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. The Cornelia Street Café is located at 29 Cornelia Street (off Bleecker, West of Sixth Avenue) in Greenwich Village. Cash-only $7 admission at the door includes a drink. By subway take the A, C, E, F, D trains to West 4th Street, exiting at West 3rd or the Broadway Local #1 to Sheridan Square. From New Jersey take the NJ PATH to Christopher Street. Please call 212.989.9319 for reservations or additional information.

Thomas Fink
Thomas Fink is the author of seven books of poetry, including "Peace Conference" (Marsh Hawk, 2011) and "Autopsy Turvy" (Meritage, 2010), a collaboration with his daughter, Maya Diablo Mason. His work appears in "The Best American Poetry 2007" (Scribner’s). "A Different Sense of Power" (Fairleigh Dickinson, 2001) is his most recent book of criticism, and in 2007, he co-edited "Burning Interiors: David Shapiro’s Poetry and Poetics." Fink’s paintings hang in various collections.

Penelope Karageorge
A freelance journalist, Penelope Karageorge writes frequently about film and theatre. She is the author of a crime novel, "Murder at Tomorrow" (Walker Publishing), "Stolen Moments" (Pinnacle Press) and a poetry collection, "Red Lipstick and the Wine-Dark Sea" (Pella Publishing). Her short stories have been published in journals as diverse as "Mouth Full of Bullets" and "The Charioteer." Penelope began her career as a "Newsweek" reporter, interviewing luminaries including Bette Davis and Cary Grant. She was publicity director of "People" magazine. She's currently developing her original film script, a romantic comedy set on the Greek island of Lemnos, "Drinking the Sun."

Roxanne Hoffman
Roxanne Hoffman worked on Wall Street, now answers a patient hotline for a New York home healthcare provider. Her words can be found, on and off the net, in "Amaze: The Cinquain Journal," "Clockwise Cat," "Danse Macabre," "The Fib Review," "Hospital Drive," "Lips Magazine," "Lucid Rhythms," "Mobius: The Poetry Magazine," "The New Verse News," "The Pedestal Magazine" and "Shaking Like a Mountain"; the indie flick "Love and the Vampire" starring Dave Gold and Rick Poli; and several anthologies including "The Bandana Republic: A Literary Anthology by Gang Members and Their Affiliates" (Soft Skill Press), "Love After 70" (Wising Up Press), and "It All Changed in an Instant: More Six-Word Memoirs by Writers Famous & Obscure" (Harper Perennial). She started the small literary press Poets Wear Prada with her late husband in 2006, and continues to runs it with the poet, fiction writer and translator Jack Cooper. Her elegiac poem "In Loving Memory" with illustrations by Connecticut artist Edward Odwitt was published as a chapbook in 2011.

Larissa Shmailo
 Larissa Shmailo has been published in "The Unbearables Big Book of Sex," "Barrow Street," "Fulcrum," "Rattapallax," "Drunken Boat," "Big Bridge," "Mad Hatters Review," "Naropa’s We" among other publications. Larissa translated the Russian Futurist opera "Victory over the Sun" by A. Kruchenych for the original English-language production performed at the Brooklyn Academy of Music, archived at the Smithsonian, the Los Angeles County Museum, and the Museum of Modern Art. Her CD, "Exorcism" won her the 2009 New Century Music Awards for spoken word with music. "The No-Net World," an earlier CD, is heard frequently on the radio and internet. She has published three books of poetry, "In Paran" (BlazeVox), "A Cure for Suicide" (Cervena Barva Press), and the e-book "Fib Sequence" (Argotist Ebooks).

Host Dean Kostos of the Greek-American Writers' Association Reading Series
Host Dean Kostos of the Greek-American Writers' Association Reading Series
Dean Kostos is Pushcart Prize nominee and a recipient of a Yaddo fellowship. He is the authors of "Last Supper of the Senses" (Spuyten Duyvil), "The Sentence That Ends with a Comma" (Painted Leaf Press), and "Celestial Rust" (Red Dust Books). He is also the editor of "Pomegranate Seeds: An Anthology of Greek-American Poetry" and co-edited the anthology "Mama’s Boy: Gay Men Write About Their Mothers." His work has also appeared in "Barrow Street," "The Dos Passos Review," "Rattapallax," "Red Rock Review," "Southwest Review," "Vanitas," and on Oprah Winfrey’s Web site

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

The Phoenix Rises at Scalinatella on Mother's Day, May 13

This coming Sunday, Mother's Day, May 13th, I will be reading in Greenwich Village at 4:00 in the afternoon at Scalinatella (formerly the Scali Caffe) on Bleecker Street for Michael Graves's Phoenix Reading Series. In honor of Mother's Day, I am sharing several pieces about motherhood and my own mother. Two other guest writers will be featured, Rose Bernal and Michael Labombarda.  I am not familar with Mr. Labombarda nor his work, and am most anxious to meet and hear him.  For a long time, I have been a fan and follower of Ms. Bernal, and so I strongly encourage you to come for this rare opportunity hear her read several of her fine works.

Phoenix Reading Series
Sundays at 4PM
@ Scalinatella
245 Bleecker Street
(west of Carmine)
New York, NY 10014
(212) 255-5353
Michael Graves

Michael Graves, author of four poetry collections, the most recent, “In Fragility” from Black Buzzard, hosts this every Sunday afternoons series at Scalinatella, 245 Bleecker Street (west of Carmine), (212) 255-5353, from 4:00 PM until 6:00 PM. An open reading follows the featured guest writers. There is an $8 food/beverage minimum plus a suggested $3 donation.

Take the 1 train to Christopher Street-Sheridan Square; alternatively the A, B, C, D, E, or F train to West 4th Street and exit at the West 3rd Street exit. 

For more information about the series, please contact Host Michael Graves by email to

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

At the Jujo 6pm Sunday May 6th: Vanessa Hidary & Roxanne Hoffman

Come to the Jujo this Sunday. The Hebrew Mamita Vanessa Hidary and I will be performing from 6-8pm on May 6th at the JujoMukti Tea Lounge, located at 211 E. 4th St., between Aves. A & B, in Manhattan. $5 Admission buys you a pot of tea and a spot on "unplugged" open. Hosted by David Lawton. Directions: Subways F, M (2nd Avenue & Houston); 6 (Astor Place; 8th St and 4th Ave.); Bus 14A from Union Square (3rd St stop and Ave. A).

"Mixed communities. Different backgrounds. Contrasting styles. Two lovely female poets come together to represent the state of the art with good humor and sex appeal." -- David Lawton


The Hebrew Mamita Vanessa Hidary

Here's a little bit about my co-feature: VANESSA HIDARY aka The Hebrew Mamita, Native New Yorker, solo performer, writer has been featured on HBO's Def Poetry Jam and recently published her first book "The Last Kaiser Roll In The Bodega." Visit her at

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Exit Strata's "30/30/30: Inspiration, Community and Tradition"

Lynne DeSilva-Johnson, whom I  had the pleasure of meeting at the Annual Chapbook Festival earlier this month, invited both my co-editor at Poets Wear Prada -- Jack Cooper -- and myself to participate in Exit Strata's "30/30/30: Inspiration, Community and Tradition" celebration of National Poetry Month. Each day a different poet shared their thoughts regarding another with a poem by their poetry muse and one inspired.

Jack's inspiration was Hala Alyan who has been recently making the rounds on New York poetry circuit, reading this April for both David Lawton at his At the Jujo Reading Series and for Puma Perl at her D-Day Reading at the Bowery Poetry Club.  Jack's praises for Hala with his and her poems can be found at:  Hala has a book forthcoming from Three Rooms Press later this year.

My inspiration: Nuyorican poet Urayoán Noel, author of three poetry collections – Hi-Density Politics(BlazeVOX, 2010), Boringkén (Ediciones Callejón/La Tertulia, 2008), and Kool Logic/La lógica kool (Bilingual Press, 2005); Assistant Professor of English at SUNY; a Bronx Council on the Arts fellow in poetry, as well as a Ford Foundation postdoctoral fellow at the Center for Puerto Rican Studies at Hunter College.  Read my essay, poetic samplings of his and mine, and watch a Youtube clip of his performance at

Many thanks to Lynne for organizing this online celebration of National Poetry Month,  with a daily post by a different poet celebrating  our "inspiration, community and tradition."

Monday, March 12, 2012

Mon 3/12: Peter Chelnik's Go-Cat-Go! Poetry Event 6:45pm Gracie's Corner Diner in Yorkville

Good News From Roxanne: A Reading Tonite in NYC & Publication Announcements!

March 12, 2009

Dear Friends,

I am reading tonight at Peter Chelnik's Go-Cat-Go! Poetry Reading & Open Mic tonight, Monday March 12th, in Yorkville. Peter is responsible for getting me to read my work in public. In 2003 I went to hear him read at The Back Fence at Dee Anne Gorman's invitation. I had never met him before. There was this big burly all-American guy at the mic wearing his trademark Pendleton plaid wool shirt, baseball cap, glasses, mustache. reading list poems and what lists he read. It sounded like jazz rants. No music. But he was making music with his words.And his words were filled with American people and American scenes. big and real just like him. He was terrific. Then after the reading broke up Bridgid Murnaham, the host and waitress, dragged Dee and me on to the stage to read from our notebooks while Peter , his brother and nephew cheered us on. So its my greatest pleasure to announce that I will be reading with Peter at his new venue tonight.

My birthday was last Friday March 9th so this also a be-late b-day party for me!

Here are the details regarding tonights reading:

Monday, March 12
6:45 pm
Peter Chelnik's GO-CAT-GO!
w. Roxanne Hoffman
Gracie’s Corner Diner
352 E 86th St
(between 1st Ave & 2nd Ave)
New York, NY 10028
Neighborhoods: Yorkville, Upper East Side
(212) 737-8505

FREE! Open Mic for Poetry
your food/beverage purchase helps support the venue

My work has been accepted for publication in two forthcoming anthologies:

Paws, Claws, Wings and Things: Poetry For and About Pets
(Local Gems Poetry Press, 2012), eds. Jillian Roath, Erica DeAngelo

The Waiting Room Reader: Stories to Keep you Company
(CavanKerry, 2013), ed. Rachel Hadas


Monday, February 27, 2012

Wed Feb 29 The Green Pavilion Poetry Event in Brooklyn


This Wednesday, Wednesday February 29th, Sadie Hawkin's Day, I will be reading & singing all about love in Brooklyn at the Green Pavilion Restaurant. Joining me will be poets Bernard Block and Hilary Sideris. There will also be an open mic.

Here are details followed by the Facebook event link:

DATE: Wednesday February 29, 2012
TIME: 7pm-9pm (Open Mic Signup starts at 6:45pm)

PLACE: The Green Pavilion Restuarant, 4307-18th Ave., Brooklyn, NY
ADMISSION: $5.00 food/drink minimum + $3.00 suggested donation.

DIRECTIONS: F train to 18th Ave. station. Last car coming from Manh, right staircase to street. You will be only about 1/2 block away from rest., same block you will be standing on.

The Green Pavilion Poetry Event, held the last Wednesday of every month, is hosted by Evie Ivy and Cindy Sostchen-Hochman.


About the featured poets:

HILARY SIDERIS has published poems in many journals, and in the anthologies "Pomegranate Seeds: An Anthology of Greek-American Poetry," and "Token Entry: Poems of the New York City Subway." Her first and third chapbooks, The Orange Juice is Over and Gold & Other Fish, have been published by Finishing Line Press, and her second chapbook, Baby, was published by Pudding House Press. She lives in Brooklyn and works for The City University of New York, where she develops programs for English language learners and first-generation college students.

BERNARD BLOCK's poems have appeared in the NY Quarterly, the Minnesota Review, Colorado Review and other university presses. Published four chapbooks: Quest; Prometheus Returns; Portraits; and To Music. Born and raised in Bensonhurst, Brooklyn. He attended Cornell University and completed a B.A. in English and American Literature at Brooklyn College in 1965. Hitch-hiked out to California in 1965 and helped organize the Port Chicago Vigil outside the Port Chicago Weapons Station in the Bay Area. He moved to the Haight-Ashbury and was there for the January, 1967 Be-In, the Monterey Pop Festival and the 1967 "Summer of Love". Gave poetry readings at the I and Thou Coffee Shop, City Lights Bookstore and in Golden Gate Park. He returned to New York City and earned his living as a social worker for the NYC Special Services for Children for the next 25 years. Studied with the poet Colette Inez in the mid-1970's. Read at Speakeasy, poet Emilie Glen’s apartment, Henry St. Settlement and Cornelia St. Cafe. Recently he has read at Nightingale, Cornelia St. Café, Bowery Poetry Club, Green Pavilion, Brownstone Poets, Phoenix, SOB’s, TOMI Jazz (a Japanese jazz club), Asian American Writers' Workshop, Penny’s, StringPoet and Molloy College.

ROXANNE HOFFMAN worked on Wall Street, now answers a patient hotline for a New York home healthcare provider. Her work has been published widely in literary journals like “Amaze: The Cinquain Journal,” “Clockwise Cat,” “Danse Macabre,” “The Fib Review,” “Hospital Drive,” “Lucid Rhythms,” “Mobius: The Poetry Magazine,” “The New Verse News,” “The Pedestal Magazine,” and “Shaking Like A Mountain,” as well as in several anthologies including “The Bandana Republic: A Literary Anthology by Gang Members and Their Affiliates” (Soft Skull Press), “Love after 70” (Wising Up Press), and “It All Changes in an Instant: More Six-Word Memoirs by Writers Famous & Obscure” (Harper Perennial). Her vampire poetry can be heard during Dave Gold’s 2005 indie flick “Love and the Vampire.” She runs the small literary press Poets Wear Prada, since 2006. Her new chapbook "In Loving Memory" with illustrations to by Edward Odwitt was released December 2011.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

New from Black Buzzard Press: IN FRAGILITY by Michael Graves

'In Fragility' by Michael Graves
by Michael Graves
Black Buzzard Press
ISBN 0-978-938872-47-8
Soft Cover, 86 pp.

Praise for In Fragility:

"Emotion recollected in fragility, these poems lucidly etch the power of darkness that endures, that returns. These poems are amazingly lucid, which gives them a paradoxical power."

--ROBERT VISCUSI, author of the novel Astoria (American Book Award winner) and of the poem "Ellis Island"

"This grave book deals with such volatile elements as alcohol, sexual frustration, and apostasy. The reader will watch fascinated as Mike Graves burns his fuse down to the stick of dynamite he holds in his hand, for these poems approximate a searing self¬murder note addressed to any reader strong enough to peruse it. Only a poet as skilled and knowledgeable as Graves could render raw and repressed emotion with such acute control of form and diction, such range of allusion. But reader beware: you are about to take your own life into your hands."


"To adapt a phrase from James Joyce, whom Graves is influenced by, In Fragility offers readers the curve of multiple emotions. While traversing sentiments of aloneness and aloofness, and both objective and introspective, these poems are at once bleak, menacing, disturbing and humorous. They bespeak a stark sobriety often in conflict with itself and, through the effective use of metaphor and the recurrent theme of alienation, achieve a narrative coherence."

--A. NICHOLAS FARGNOLI, Dean of Humanities, Molloy College, Rockville Centre, NY, and President of The James Joyce Society.

Title Poem:


Speak to her
In fervent prayer
And fevered need
With brimming heart,
Shaking like a poisoned cup
And soft, sick gut,
Of where you rose
From nothingness
To nascent consciousness,
Inheritor of world
And family legacy,
Consuming time
And fragile self
That can't connect
Although it grow
In pain, organically,
Enthused by hope
And every false approach
Fear and circumstance allow

About the Author:

MICHAEL GRAVES is the author of a full-length collection of poems, Adam and Cain (Black Buzzard, 2006) and two chapbooks, Illegal Border Crosser (Cervana Barva, 2008) and Outside St. Jude’s (R. E. M. Press, 1990). In Fragility from Black Buzzard Press is his second full-length collection.

In two thousand four (2004), he was the recipient of a grant of four thousand five hundred dollars ($4,500.00) from the Ludwig Vogelstein Foundation. He is the publisher of the small magazine PHOENIX. Many years ago, he was a student of James Wright and organized a conference on James Wright at Poets House in 2004. And he became a member of P.E.N. a couple of years ago.

In addition to leading a James Joyce Ulysses’ Reading Group, he has published thirteen (13) poems in the James Joyce Quarterly and read from them and others of his poems influenced by Joyce to a gathering of the Joyce Society at the Gotham Book Mart.

Watch Michael Graves on at, an in depth interview and a reading. (Credit: Poetry Thin Air)