Welcome — thanks for visiting. You’ve come to the right place for the biography of Grace Paley and my other writing, which includes poems, essays and stories about Chicago’s pre-Roe underground abortion service, now called JANE. You’ll find links to those on this site, and you can read a poem, essay or story right now; listen to a reading on SoundCloud or Oregon Poetic Voices; watch a video of a reading at the Ledding Library’s Pond House in Milwaukie, Oregon; or listen to KBOO Community Radio’s Poetry and Everything.
Poetry and Everything’s May show on KBOO Community Radio featured readings, by Patrick Bocarde and me, of poets from Sappho to Chrystos (and more! — as marketing consultants would urge us to exclaim). In June, Evie Shockley will be our guest (6/24/19) — and you can listen to the show online anytime from anywhere.
Many Happy Returns! I’m happy to tell you that two of my books recently came out in new editions; both were sparked by determination to be of use in our national horrorshow. You can order both directly from the publisher.
First, there’s a new edition of Grace Paley's Life Stories. This biography, now published by Portland’s Eberhardt Press (with a new design, new cover, new preface, many text edits), maintains its focus on Grace's fiction and activism, and the relationship between them. Grace isn't here anymore, but her life is a model for us right now, in the streets and on the page. I’ll be adding some events here — check ‘em out!
Second, 4th Period English came back in the spring of 2018. It’s a collection of poems written in the voices of high school students talking (and, of course, arguing) about immigration. The first edition sold out a while back; now Eberhardt Press has brought out a new edition, and we're thinking about the collection's obvious value as performance; everybody who’s using the book can get the teaching/performance notes free (check out the book page on this site, get the book direct from the publisher, online).
And now for something completely different: Visit the JANE page on this website to find many links to texts, audio, and video about reproductive justice, motherhood decisions, and abortion access — including lots of info about the pre-Roe underground in Chicago, a history that may be of use now, as we seek and engage in serious thought and action.
Listen to an interview at THE ABORTION DIARY podcast - Melissa Madera’s valuable collection of first-person stories. We talked for a long time about many things (Chicago's underground abortion service, my abortion, lots more) and she did a great editing job.
Listen to a story at BEAR WITNESS, the show produced by Erin Yanke and Moe Bowstern at Portland’s Jack London Bar. That event was the first time I included my cancer experience in my art, and I'm happy to say it went well. Here's an audio clip, hosted by Portland’s KBOO Community Radio; it includes Moe’s brief intro and her thoughtful, useful words at the end.
For info about + links to recently published and forthcoming work in journals and zines, online and on paper, check out Selected Works.
As the song says, you must remember this ........ Shop at your local, independent bookstores; support the reading and writing community you love. In Portland, Oregon, amazingly/luckily, there are several good ones!