Contact: Isobel Schneider (Tel: 510-981-6150)
AL YOUNG, California Poet Laureate Emeritus, along with four other poets will present POETRY PAST AND PRESENT at the Berkeley Public Library, Central Branch, Sunday, June 23, 2013, 2:00pm. They will be reading original work and the work of celebrated poets of the past. There will also be an open mic session giving attendees an opportunity to read their original poems coupled with poems by their favorite poets. POETRY PAST AND PRESENT will also feature poets Rafael Jesús González , Avotcja Jiltonilro, Kirk Lumpkin, and Ava Bird. The poets will read their original work as well as work by poets from across the centuries including Federico García Lorca, Gwendolyn Brooks, Denise Levertov, Rainier Maria Rilke, Nicolás Guillén, e.e. cummings, Jayne Cortez, Henry David Thoreau, Kabir, Robert Graves, Robinson Jeffers, Pat Parker, Hafiz, Diane di Prima, and Rumi. Audience members are invited to sign up for an open mic reading when they arrive at the event. Each person will be allowed up to 5 minutes to read one original poem and one poem written by a poet whose work they admire. Readers are reminded that this is a family event. Al Young was California’s Poet Laureate in 2005. He was recently honored in Berkeley by the declaration of Al Young Day, February 5, 2013. His most recent book is Coastal Nights and Inland Afternoons: Poems 2001-2006. His poetry and prose have been translated into many languages. Rafael Jesús González is Professor Emeritus and founder of Laney College’s, Department of Mexican and Latin-American Studies. His most recent book of poetry is La musa lunática/The Lunatic Muse. Avotcja Jiltonilro is a poet and also leads the award winning band, Modupue. She is a D.J. at KPFA and KPOO radio stations. Her most recent book of poetry is With Every Step I Take. Kirk Lumpkin is a poet, performer, lyricist, environmentalist, and cultural worker. Ava Bird is a poet and prose writer who in addition to her books has published articles, poetry, recipes, reviews and photographs in a wide variety of journals and publications. The program will take place at the Berkeley Public Library, Central Branch, 2090 Kittredge St., Berkeley, on Sunday, June 23, 2013, 2:00pm, in the 3rd floor, Community Meeting Room. The Central Library is open Monday, noon-8 p.m., Tuesday, 10 a.m.-8 p.m., Wednesday through Saturday, 10 a.m.-6 p.m., and Sunday afternoons from 1 p.m.-5 p.m. For questions and accessibility information, call 510-981-6195, TTY 510-548-1240, http://www.berkeleypubliclibrary.org.