Poets of Franklin County

Poets of Franklin County: Fred Pelka

Friday, December 5, 2014

In Easthampton poet Fred Pelka’s poem “Clots,” pricked fingertips toughen as they heal until they are “hard as elevator buttons,” allowing an unusual transcendence in the poem’s last lines. “You’re nothing without your scars,” the poem asserts. Pelka’s new full-length book of poems, “A Different Blaze,” was recently published by Hedgerow Books, an imprint of Levellers Press, a publishing house formed by the worker-owners of Collective Copies in Florence and Amherst. One inspiration Pelka cites for “Clots” is a photography exhibit by Alan Brightman called “Ordinary Moments” that he saw back in the early 1980s. Brightman’s photographs showed people with disabilities doing ordinary things, Pelka … 0

“Clots,” a poem by Fred Pelka

Friday, December 5, 2014

“Clots” You say stitches limit a person but dig deeper. You’ll see how they release as well as bind. Isn’t there a tranquility in that — a lovely still presence of wounds, salty as the moon ascending, drawing each tide behind it like a skirt? You’re nothing without your scars. There’s a whole mortal world to embrace where each pricked fingertip will grow … 0

Poets of Franklin County: ‘The Light We Leave’

Friday, November 21, 2014

What happens when images and words are given the chance to interact, not in a hierarchical way — say, an image illustrating a passage of text, or a caption explaining the content of a photograph — but in a way that invites conversation? Two Bement teachers, Amie Keddy of Wendell and Deborra Stewart-Pettingill … 0

“Senses,” a poem by Amie Keddy

Friday, November 21, 2014

“Senses” “Nothing can cure the soul but the senses.” — Oscar Wilde The shiplap summer house screened us, together drinking tea I cupped the jar with both hands trusting its insulation to hold you from me. I did not touch your auburn hair or stroke your jaw so … 0

Poets of Franklin County: Tommy Twilite

Friday, November 14, 2014

If you’ve been attending poetry readings in this valley long enough, chances are you’ve heard of Tommy Twilite. He’s the host of the Twilite Poetry Pub on Tuesdays, 8 to 9 p.m. on Valley Free Radio, WXOJ 103.3 … 0

Paradise Pond: a poem by Tommy Twilite

Friday, November 14, 2014

Paradise Pond when sun diamonds refract off the water ripples like clear sparkling blood every swirl of color spins into the late afternoon sun that sinks into distance unmoved and recedes like butter into a crescent moon against a sky of night dying in the afterglow to become … 0

Poets of Franklin County: Claire Blatchford

Friday, November 7, 2014

Shelburne writer, poet and teacher Claire Blatchford lost almost all of her hearing suddenly at age 6, as a result of the mumps. “Imagine your hearing being switched off with one quick flick of fate,” she writes in … 0

Poets of Franklin County: Greenfield Annual Word Festival

Friday, October 10, 2014

Want to read your poems to members of Franklin County’s eclectic literary community? Want to take a stab at storytelling (no notes!) in front of a live audience? Or maybe you’d like to just relax and listen to … 0

Poets of Franklin County: Daniel Hales

Friday, October 3, 2014

So begins the poem “: prayer” by Greenfield poet Daniel Hales: “Once we stop praying to anomalies and impossibilities is when bad luck starts.” And it continues: “The headlights lit up the backyard/climb the ailanthus/and for some reason … 0

Poets of Franklin County: ‘Dear Lady Heroin’

Friday, September 26, 2014

Editor’s note: This is the last in a series of columns by Trish Crapo on poetry that explores aspects of addiction. In her first column, Crapo wrote about the loss of her niece Aria to a heroin overdose. … 0

Poets of Franklin County: Soul Chant

Friday, September 19, 2014

Editor’s note: this is the second in a series of columns by Trish Crapo on poetry that explores aspects of addiction. Readers can find links to her first column on our website: www.recorder.com Ashley Sims died at the … 0

Poets of Franklin County: What if I were inconsolable?

Friday, September 12, 2014

Editor’s note: this is the first of a series of columns by Trish Crapo on poetry that explores aspects of addiction. Showing your poems to other people can be tricky. What if whoever’s reading your poem hates it? … 0

Poets of Franklin County: The houses that Emily Dickinson built

Friday, August 15, 2014

Walk or drive down Silver Street near Greenfield High School and you’ll see that three new houses have cropped up on what used to be a wide, grassy lawn. No, it’s not a sudden housing boom but an … 0

Poets of Franklin County: The things that mothers do that are amazing

Friday, May 9, 2014

Adrie Lester has her hands full. Quite literally, in that as she walks down the hall toward my downtown studio she is holding the hand of her toddler son, Gabriel, as well as carrying bags of supplies for … 0

2014 Poet's Seat Poetry Contest: A diversity of voices

Friday, May 2, 2014

A woman recalls her fighter-pilot father teaching her to drive, swallows fly in the rafters of an old milking barn, a young man wrestles his father to the floor for the last bowl of ice cream. These are … 0