Hosted by Harris Gardner,
and Lucy Holstedt
6:20 Zoom opens, Greetings
6:30 Martha Collins
6:50 Writers Without Margins:
Introductions by Cheryl Buchanan,
Reading by Martin Rodriguez and Stratusfier
7:10 Q & A with the poets
7:25 music by Stan Strickland
7:40 Christle Rawlins-Jackson,
8:00 Tomas O'Leary
8:20 Q & A with the poets
8:35 wrap up
Martha Collins has published ten volumes of poetry, most recently Because What Else Could I Do (Pittsburgh, 2019), which won the Poetry Society of America’s William Carlos Williams Award. She founded the creative writing program at UMass-Boston and served as Pauline Delaney Professor of Creative Writing at Oberlin for ten years. Her website is marthacollinspoet.com
Cheryl Buchanan (Writers Without Margins) is an attorney who learned the power of storytelling and silence-breaking when she worked for a decade on over 500 cases of childhood sexual abuse in Los Angeles. She earned her MFA at Emerson College and has taught in a wide range of university and college classrooms. In 2018, she was the recipient of the National Association for Poetry Therapy’s Social Justice Award and in 2019 she co-produced the award-winning documentary film, In Their Shoes: Unheard Stories of Reentry & Recovery together with Wahl Street Productions.
Martin Rodriguez (Writers Without Margins) graduated from Harvard College in 1980. His poems have been on exhibit at Boston’s City Hall and published in the Paterson Literary Review. He lives in Quincy, Massachusetts.
Stratusfier (Writers Without Margins) Rapper, Poet, Old Soul, and Positive Thinker, is a soul-traveling artist that uses rap and poetry to condense light after exploring his own darkness. He has been a coach for the 2016 UMass Boston CUPSI team. He has been published in Oddball Magazine. His features include events hosted at Comic-Con, hosted by Rapping with the Writers, held at The Monson Free Library, and hosted by Untitled Open Mic. He is also a workshop leader with Writers Without Margins. He can be followed on Instagram @thestratusfier; his music can be found on Soundcloud by searching Stratusfier; on Facebook his name is Arthur Stratusfier Williams; You can also like and follow him on his Facebook page, The Stratusfier.
MUSIC: Stan Strickland.
Singer, saxophonist, flutist, actor, Stan Strickland has performed extensively throughout the United States, Europe, New Zealand and the Caribbean. . He has performed with the Boston Pops, the Village People, Aretha Franklin, and jazz greats Yusef Lateef, Pharoah Sanders, Herbie Mann, and opened for Miles Davis, Sonny Rollins, and The Bare Naked Ladies. Stan is an associate professor of voice at Berklee College of Music and executive co-director of Express Yourself, a multi-cultural arts agency that serves mentally ill youth through the Department of Mental Health.His one-man show Coming Up For Air, An Auto-Jazzography received the prestigious Eliot Norton Award in theatre for best solo performance.
Christle Rawlins-Jackson is a Boston-based poet, visual artist and communications expert. Her poetry is featured in the award winning Documentary 'Black N Black'" This is what she says about her poem "Baobab," performed in the 2017 Boston National Poetry Month Festival: "Whether it is through a song, a poem, or a quilt, it is my mandate to remember and honor my ancestors. I’ve had the good fortune to live and work in Ghana, West Africa, but it is along the way from Accra to Benin that I saw the sacred Baobab trees that dominate the landscape. We traveled to the site of the slave fort where a memorial now stands to all who were taken from the shores of Ouidah. These celestial trees that live up to 2000 years, must have quietly watched as people were captured, marched to the dungeons, and sold." In 2019 Christle was featured in the Women Musicians Network Concert at Berklee, reading her poem “Cape Coast Castle” set to original dance by Marianne Harkless Diabate and piano by Lucy Holstedt.
Tomas O'Leary is a poet, translator, music-maker, singer, artist, and expressive therapist. His New & Selected Poems from Lynx House Press: "In the Wellspring of the Ear." Previous books of poetry: "Fool at the Funeral," "The Devil Take a Crooked House," & "A Prayer for Everyone." A teacher for many years — (college, high school, elementary, adult ed) — he has worked for the past couple decades with folks who have Alzheimer's, playing Irish accordion and eliciting cognitive and emotional responses through songs, stories, poems, & free-wheeling conversation.