Sunday, February 17, 2019

Join Nathanael Tagg at GoggleWorks Center for the Arts March 7th, 2019


Berks Bards is excited to welcome Nathanael Tagg! Join us at GoggleWorks Center for the Arts to hear selected poetry. Following his reading, we'll allow ANYONE to step up to the mic and read what moves them.

When: March 7th, 2019 at 6 pm
Where: GoggleWorks Center for the Arts Studio 420
201 Washington Street Reading PA 19601


Read Nathanael Tagg's Bio below:


Nathanael Tagg has an MFA in creative writing from Rutgers, where he was a Truman Capote Literary Trust fellow. He is an associate professor at Cecil College. His first book, a collection of poems entitled Animal Virtue, was published by WordTech Editions in March 2018. His writing has appeared in Barrow Street, Colorado Review, Cimarron Review, Confrontation, Pleiades, and many other magazines. It employs humor, nature imagery, poetic form, and allusions—especially the biblical or literary—to explore the challenges of living well in times of personal, spiritual, or environmental trouble. He lives with his wife and their nine-month-old daughter in Lancaster, PA.

Read a sample poem from Nathanael below:


Our Baby Deepness


Really? Yes, science proves the virgin birth
of Komodo dragons, caused by the holy spirit
of loneliness. Often, a most mammal-like lizard

—call her Mary; look in her eyes (somebody
is home)—must have swum to paradise,
an island with everything she needs, bar

a mate. Evolution—call him Evo—
couldn’t brook this (no nativity) forever
and said, “No mate? No problem. Voila:

you’re pregnant.” Science contests every miracle?
Destroys a sense of beauty and mystery? Really?
No spirituality without dualism and theology?  

To awe me, Jane, yours needn’t be a virgin birth
and won’t be, which your mom and I can confirm.
To the miraculous process, I’m peripheral.

Never mind another miracle: walking on water.
Oceanographer Sylvia Earle walked the ocean floor,
wore a pressurized suit, was reborn as Our Lady

Deepness, who says, “Kids don’t start out killing;
they start out wondering.” Jane, you’ll
be curious (in both senses) like Jane Goodall

and become yourself by living among us—
among animals. Like you, like fetuses, in wetness
Earle lives, learns, grows. Mirroring the odyssey

of your mom, every woman with child, all expectant
parents (me too!), Earle, while pregnant,
descended in a submersible to explore the depths.



Learn more about Nathanael by visiting his website: http://www.nathanaeltagg.com


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Friday, January 18, 2019

Now Accepting BCTV One Minute Poem Submissions

It's time to tape one-minute poems at Berks Community Television!
Are you interested in reading/performing a short poem to broadcast on BCTV throughout the month of April as part of Bard Fest 2019?

These tapings will be broadcasted live on BCTV and can be later found online at BCTV.org

To submit your poem digitally, first read the submission instructions here:
TinyURL.com/BCTVInstructions
As always, your $10.00 contribution (checks made out to Berks Bards) helps Berks Bards defray the expense of this event. Or pay ahead via PayPal at TinyURL.com/BerksBards
Only 22 slots are available this year and these are strictly on a first come, first served!
If you have questions please email Marilyn Klimcho
*Please include your name and contact information with your submission.
*Please write BCTV 2019 ONE MINUTE on the regards line.

Wednesday, January 9, 2019

Berks Bards' Song Challenge to Ryan Marie Rettew

Submit up to five lines of your original poetry to klimcho@msn.com by Monday April 1, 2019.

Singer/Songwriter Ryan Marie Rettew will use your words as inspiration to create up to 4 songs that will be revealed on Berks Community Television's Poets' Pause at 7 p.m. on Wednesday  November 13, 2019.

Limit three submissions of five lines each per person.

Please include your name and contact information with your submission.
Please write Song Challenge 2019 on the regards line.

Monday, January 7, 2019

Join David Nazario at GoggleWorks Center for the Arts February 7th, 2019



Berks Bards is excited to welcome David Nazario! Join us at GoggleWorks Center for the Arts to hear selected poetry. Following his reading, we'll allow ANYONE to step up to the mic and read anything that moves them.

When: February 7th, 2019 at 6 pm
Where: GoggleWorks Center for the Arts Studio 238
201 Washington Street Reading PA 19601

Read David Nazario's Bio below:

David Nazario’s career as an author, speaker, and educator gives him the opportunity to do what he loves and call it work. In addition to speaking at high schools and colleges throughout the Tristate region, David contributes to Here In My City and Reading Eagle newspaper, and works part-time as a college adviser and adjunct professor at Reading Area Community College. He released his first book, 'Make Love Your Religion: How To Put Love First & Succeed at Doing What You Love' (SDJ Press) in April 2018. David earned his B.A. in Literature with a minor in Journalism from West Chest

Read a sample poem from David below:

Coffee Breaks In Cuba

Coffee breaks in Cuba provide welcomed albeit unnecessary shelter from the rain
Cool drops splash against a tattered window pane
Horns blair and the drum beats
The viejo with silk in his tone sings, not too sweet
Oh so strong
The perfect combination
The perfect song
Across the way palm trees sway transforming the pleasant into bliss
Coffee breaks in Cuba are heaven with each sip

Tuesday, November 13, 2018

Join Larew & Czarnecki at GoggleWorks Center for the Arts December 6th, 2018


Berks Bards is excited to welcome Hiram Larew and Michael Czarnecki! Join us at GoggleWorks Center for the Arts to hear selected poetry. Following their reading, we'll allow ANYONE to step up to the mic and read anything that moves them.


When: December 6th, 2018 at 6 pm
Where: GoggleWorks Center for the Arts Studio 420
201 Washington Street Reading PA 19601


Read Hiram Larew's Bio below: 

Larew's work has appeared most recently in Little Patuxent Review, Contemporary American Voices, FORTH, vox poetica, Poetry Super Highway, Poets & Artists, Every Day Poems, Lunaris Review (Nigeria), Amsterdam Quarterly, and The Wild Word.  His fourth collection is due out this year from Foothills Publishing House.  He’s been nominated for four Pushcarts, is a member of the Shakespeare Folger Library’s poetry board, and organizes several events in Prince George’s County, MD and beyond including Poetry X Hunger and The Poetry Poster Project. He is a global hunger specialist, and lives in Upper Marlboro, MD … and he’s very, very short.  On Facebook at Hiram Larew, Poet.


Read a sample poem from Hiram Larew below:

ACHILL SOUND


When the roads curve like sound
And dip as if lifting to bow
Whenever all thoughts round or cluster
Or when hearts call down
Is Ireland


And as rich when poor was
Or as wise as bare heads in snow seemed
And as twigs so frail broke into song
Ans as true as any blight could be
Was Ireland


So when sand laps the senses
Or salt drips the edges as dreams
Whenever hope streams through such heavens
And moss comes home
Or hearts beam down
Is Ireland.


- Hiram Larew




Read Michael Czarnecki's Bio below:

Michael Czarnecki is a poet, oral memoirist and small press publisher originally from Buffalo, NY. He founded FootHills Publishing in 1986 and since then FootHills has released over 400 chapbooks and books of poetry. In 1994 Michael gave up other work to devote his time and life to poetry. Since then he has made his living solely through the creative word. In the last 25 years he has given hundreds of featured readings throughout the country. His Poems Across America Tour in 2013, a 14-week journey, featured a reading in each of the 48 contiguous states.

Michael has published 17 books, the two most recent being YOU and Ten Days in Huntington Wildlife Forest. When not out on the poetic road Michael lives on a 50-acre homestead in the northwest portion of the Susquehanna Watershed in NY.
More information about Michael can be found on his website: www.foothillspublishing.com/poetguy/index.html


He also posts a new photograph and new spontaneous poem everyday on his Facebook page: www.facebook.com/michael.czarnecki.35


Read a sample poem from Michael Czarnecki below:

What’s Next


next step


             just follows


last step
            it can't be


                            otherwise


step with gratitude


               step with light


                              step with love


in doing so


             next step


                        will be exactly


                                             right step
- Michael Czarnecki

Monday, October 15, 2018

Join Cat Mahony at GoggleWorks Center for the Arts November 1st, 2018



Berks Bards is excited to welcome Cat Mahony! Join us at GoggleWorks Center for the Arts to hear selected poetry. Following her reading, we'll allow ANYONE to step up to the mic and read anything that moves them.

When: November 1st, 2018 at 6 pm
Where: GoggleWorks Center for the Arts Studio 420
201 Washington Street Reading PA 19601

Learn more about Cat Mahony before our event by reading more below:

Catherine Mahony, a writer of multiple genres, holds a Bachelor’s degree in professional writing from Kutztown University, and Associate’s degrees in communications and liberal arts from Reading Area Community College. Mahony is the winner of RACC’s Creative Writing Award for academic excellence for 2013 and 2014; her first chap book, Prior Restraints, was published that same year. You can also read Mahony’s award-winning poetry and fiction in “Lehigh Valley VanguardAgony and Ecstasy:Reflections of our LivesLayers of Language” “Legacy” and “Shoofly.” Her creative nonfiction has been published in “Rag Queen Periodical.” Mahony has facilitated creative writing workshops in Studio B, Boyertown PA; Pagoda Writer’s Workshop; Reading, PA; Caron Treatment Center, Wernersville, PA; and Berks County Prison, Leesport, PA. She is currently establishing her creative writing program, Ebonybloodletting76, which brings creative writing lessons with a therapeutic twist to the under-served community. Mahony believes writing saved her life. She was diagnosed with Bipolar as well as Borderline Personality Disorder by the age of 16, and is a recovering heroin addict. By exposing her vulnerabilities through brutally honest writing, Mahony hopes she can help others who also may be struggling. She currently lives in Eastern, PA. With her son Alex.
Visit https://cmaho582.wixsite.com/ebonybloodletting76/blog/ to learn more!

Below is a sample of Cat Mahony's poetry:

Sewn Shut

By Cat Mahony
Such a familiar face,
Lips and eyes sewn shut.
Such familiar hands,
Crossed politely over a still chest.
Her skin
as taut as an African drum.
Her dress
something she would not be caught dead in.
She is silenced.
She is flawless.
She is beautiful.
The viewers can’t see from my vantage point.
My back pressed against ceiling tile.
My hair entwined in lighting fixtures.
Their words echo in her mind,
Words like;
Lost, hopeless, and tragedy.
Such a familiar face.
Lips quivering and eyes kaleidoscopes of tears.
Such familiar hands,
Fidgeting nervously in pockets.
Her skin
As white as a water lily.
Her dress
Something she would not be caught dead in.
She is silent.
She is innocent.
She is a mirror.
The viewers can’t see from her vantage point.
Her back to the wall as medics hurried in.
Her hair matted to wet cheeks.
Words echo in her mind,
Words like;
Orphan, motherless, and tragedy.

Tuesday, September 4, 2018

Join Carl Kaucher at GoggleWorks Center for the Arts October 4th, 2018



Berks Bards is excited to welcome Carl Kaucher! Join us at GoggleWorks Center for the Arts to hear selected poetry. Following his reading, we'll allow ANYONE to step up to the mic and read anything that moves them. 


When: October 4th, 2018 at 6 pm 
Where: GoggleWorks Center for the Arts Studio 420
201 Washington Street Reading PA 19601

Learn more about Carl Kaucher before our event by reading more below:

Carl Kaucher of Temple, Pa has been previously published in “Big Hammer” – “Street Value” – “Mad Poets Review” – “Wavelength 14” – “Blue Collar Review” – 
Old Red Kimono” – North of Oxford – Duanespoetree and others. His new book Sideways Blues – Irish Mountain and beyond explores his experiences wandering urban spaces near his home and throughout Pennsylvania. The work reflects the amazing diversity of events that are happening all around us if only we slow down long enough to observe. Through his photography and writing, Carl exposes the miraculous beauty of the ordinary. He is photographing the overlooked places and documenting the chance occurrences that happen to him and by doing so gives us the opportunity to reflect upon those similar things happening in our lives also. He presents the work in hopes that it might inspire us to explore that dynamic world out side and beyond the touch screen.

Below is a sample of Carl Kaucher's poetry:



I am a Temple of free will and love creative entanglement and pale moon light. 

I have a spiritual flashlight and extra batteries if needed. 
My altar is alternative form meditated since before I was born. 
Sometimes I dream of silence and pray for it's return. 
Life is far simpler than I know when I let go of my self. 
Drifting on an empty street I am hoping to be filled with lost. 
In giving away, I am not taking. 
In living my way, I am not faking. 
My path abounds in the sounds of dissonance and syncopation as an alternating current spontaneously conducting me wild. 
It is the energy of my awakening from which I shall construct a lifestyle of rebellion based on feedback and distortion in a spiritual contortion like noise. 
I am a free spirited activist of roam and wander getting lost in the Alpha and Omega and through the prism of my style I shall wander for a while amidst the forgotten spaces to document the moments between memory and madness serenity and the still sweet compassionate chime of the sublime.