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Antoinette Brim-Bell of West Haven is Connecticut’s eighth poet laureate. She is the author of three full-length poetry collections: These Women You Gave Me, Icarus in Love, and Psalm of the Sunflower. She is a Cave Canem Foundation Fellow and an alumna of Voices of Our Nations Arts Foundation (VONA). Antoinette will be a featured guest at Woodbury Public Library’s Celebrating Poetry day on April 29.  EPISODE EXTRAS Antoinette Brim-Bell's website Celebrating Poetry Day - Woodbury Public Library - April 2 Antoinette Brim-Bell - The Poetry Foundation Capital Community College --- Send in a voice message:
Laurel S. Peterson is a community college English professor whose poetry has been published in many literary journals. She has two poetry chapbooks--That’s the Way the Music Sounds (Finishing Line) and Talking to the Mirror (Last Automat)--as well as two full-length collections–Do You Expect Your Art to Answer? and Daughter of Sky (Futurecycle). She has also written two mystery novels, Shadow Notes and The Fallen (Woodhall). Laurel is on the editorial board of Inkwell magazine, and the Norwalk Public Library Board. Laurel served as Norwalk's poet laureate from April 2016 to April 2019. EPISODE EXTRAS Laurel Peterson website Laurel Peterson on Amazon --- Send in a voice message:
Melissa Studdard is the author of five books, including the poetry collections Dear Selection Committee and I Ate the Cosmos for Breakfast, the poetry chapbook Like a Bird with a Thousand Wings, and the young adult novel Six Weeks to Yehidah. Her work has been featured by NPR, PBS, The New York Times, The Guardian, Ms. Magazine, and Houston Matters, and has also appeared in a wide variety of periodicals, such as POETRY, Kenyon Review, Psychology Today, New Ohio Review, Harvard Review, New England Review, and Poets & Writers. She is a professor in the Lone star System. EPISODE EXTRAS Melissa Studdard Website Melissa Studdard on Amazon Lone Star College System --- Send in a voice message:
Dennis Barone, professor emeritus at the University of Saint Joseph, was born in New Jersey. He attended Bard College and the University of Pennsylvania. In 1992 he became the Thomas Jefferson Chair in American Studies, The Netherlands. In 1997, Dennis received the America Award in Fiction for Echoes. He received the first faculty scholarship award at the University of Saint Joseph in 2016. He has published 27 books as author or editor, including Garnet Poems: An Anthology of Connecticut Poetry Since 1776 (Wesleyan UP 2012), Beyond the Red Notebook: Essays on Paul Auster (U of Penn P 1995), Beyond Memory: Italian Protestants in Italy and America (SUNY P 2016), New Hungers for Old: One Hundred Years of Italian American Poetry (Star Cloud 2012), Second Thoughts (prose, Bordighera P 2017), Frame Narrative (poetry 2018), Walkers in the City ( a COVID poetry chapbook anthology Rain Taxi 2021), A Field Guide to the Rehearsal (poetry 2022). EPISODE EXTRAS Find Dennis's books on Amazon Learn more about Dennis Barone on his website --- Send in a voice message:
Pegi Deitz Shea, two-time winner of the CT Book Award, has published more than 500 works of poetry, nonfiction, fiction, and children's books. She founded and directs Poetry Rocks, and was the inaugural Poet Laureate of Vernon. She is president of the CT Coalition of Poets Laureate. EPISODE EXTRAS Pegi Deitz Shea website Connecticut Coalition of Poets Laureate Vernon, Conn. --- Send in a voice message:
Jessica Cuello is poetry editor at Tahoma Review and has been a French and English teacher in the public schools for 27 years. Her books include Liar (Barrow Street 2021), Yours Creature (JackLeg 2023), Hunt (Word Works 2017), and Pricking (Tiger Bark 2016). Cuello was the recipient of The 2018 New Ohio Review Poetry Prize, The 2013 New Letters Poetry Prize, and a 2015 Saltonstall Writing Fellowship. In 2014 she was awarded The Decker Award from Hollins University for outstanding secondary teaching. EPISODE EXTRAS Jessica Cuello's Website The Bird Girl on Interim Poetics Laundromat with Single Mother in Missouri Review Out, Out by Robert Frost on The Poetry Foundation Tahoma Literary Review --- Send in a voice message:
Tom Nicotera has taught poetry classes and workshops in Washington, D.C., including at Immaculata College and Georgetown University. Tom ran a poetry series in Takoma Park, Maryland, that included Beat writers such as Charles Plymell and Herbert Huncke. He also coproduced  a Jazz-Poetry Day on the Washington Monument Grounds in D.C. In Connecticut, Tom ran a poetry series at Susan's Cafe in Granby, and for 25 years, was involved as cofounder/coordinator of the Bloomfield Library's Wintonbury Poetry Series. He was editor of Charter Oak Poets II, an anthology of Hartford area poets, and was on the organizing committee for the 2001 Connecticut Poetry Festival at Middlesex Community College. He was a member of the performance poetry trio "Not Just Any Tom, Vic and Terri" and for four years produced the "Celebrate Bloomfield" Poetry Event featuring 17 Bloomfield poets. For several years, he was a mentor for the student poetry collaboration between the American School for the Deaf and the Greater Hartford Academy of the Arts. To earn money, Tom has worked as a Report Department Editor and Proofreader at the accounting firms Coopers & Lybrand in Washington, D.C., and Blum Shapiro in Connecitcut. In addition, Tom was a professional mime and juggler for six years, performing at deaf schools around the country, and street performing in Los Angeles, San Francisco, Baltimore, and New Orleans. He has a book of poems titled What Better Place To Be Than Here? (Kanona, NY: Foothills Publishing, 2016), and he has published poems in various journals, magazines, and anthologies. Contact Tom via email at to purchase his book. --- Send in a voice message:
Suzanne Frischkorn is a poet, essayist, and editor. She is the author of Fixed Star (JackLeg Press2022) as well as the books Girl on a Bridge and Lit Windowpane (both from Main Street Rag Press). Her chapbooks are American Flamingo, Spring Tide, Red Paper Flower, Exhale, and The Tactile Sense. She is the recipient of The Writer’s Center Emerging Writers Fellowship for Lit Windowpane and the Aldrich Poetry Award for her chapbook Spring Tide, selected by Mary Oliver. Suzanne earned an Individual Artist Fellowship from the Connecticut Commission on Culture & Tourism, and a 2023 SWWIM Residency at The Betsy Hotel – South Beach. Her poems have appeared in Copper Nickel, Ecotone, Indiana Review, The Los Angeles Review, North American Review, Tahoma Literary Review, Verse Daily, Conversation Pieces: Poems That Talk to Other Poems, part of the Everyman’s Library Pocket Poet Series (Knopf), Dear America: Letters of Hope, Habitat, Defiance, and Democracy (Trinity University Press 2020), NPR’s Poetry Moment podcast, and elsewhere. She is an editor at $ – Poetry Is Currency and serves on the editorial board. Her books are available on Bookshop, Barnes & Noble, Amazon, and Indiebound. EPISODE EXTRAS Suzanne Frischkorn website Purchase Suzanne Frischkorn's books Register for Suzanne's online reading at the Syracuse Writing Center on Jan. 27 --- Send in a voice message:
B. Fulton Jennes ("Barb") Jennes spent the first 25 years of her career as an advertising copywriter and freelance corporate writer and editor. After volunteering to run creative writing programs at her daughter's elementary school, she decided to pursue a teaching degree, leading to a 16-year second career as a public-school English teacher. Upon retiring in 2017, Jennes returned to her first love: poetry. She is Poet Laureate of Ridgefield, Connecticut, where she also serves as poet-in-residence at The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum. Her poems have appeared in The Comstock Review, Tupelo Quarterly, Connecticut River Review, The Night Heron Barks, Tar River Poetry, SWIMM, Anti-Heroin Chic, Pareidolia Literary, Extreme Sonnets II, and many other journals and anthologies. Her poem “Glyphs of a Gentle Going” was awarded the 2022 Lascaux Prize and is a nominee for the 2023 Pushcart Prize. Jennes’s collection Mammoth Spring was a finalist for the 2021 Two Sylvias Wilder Prize and also the  Small Harbor Press Laureate Prize. Her collection Blinded Birds (Finishing Line Press, 2022) was named Winner of the 2022 International Book Awards in the poetry chapbook category; “Ghazal: For a Wild Child, Grown” – a poem from that collection – is also a nominee for the 2023 Pushcart Prize. Barb lives in Ridgefield with husband Chuck. Blinded Birds is available at or any local independent book seller. Barb's 2023 resolution is to try her hand at writing short stories. EPISODE EXTRAS Barb Jennes on Facebook Helix Literary Magazine Interview Moth storytelling video Blinded Birds - Finishing Line Press --- Send in a voice message:
Sarah Marze is a composer, vocalist, and conductor from Canton, CT. She is an Honors Student studying Music Composition and Vocal Performance at the University of Connecticut with professors Dr. Kenneth Fuchs and Dr. Constance Rock. In 2019, she was selected as a UConn Holster Scholar, completing her original song cycle, Songs of Salem, 1692, based on the poetry of local poet Ginny Lowe Connors. Sarah is also the president and co-founder of a student organization, the UConn Composer-Ensemble Collaboration, which has produced three concerts of student compositions. Sarah also enjoys being the assistant conductor with the UConn Festival Chorus. This past summer, she received an UConn IDEA Grant for her project, Let Us Sing: Contemporary Art Songs for Young Singers, which was a collaboration with six poets from the Connecticut Poetry Society. Among her recent performance credits are singing the role Lucy in The Telephone by Giancarlo Menotti and performing in the concerto competition winners’ concert. Sarah is most looking forward to creating and performing a one-woman opera for UConn Opera’s spring production in collaboration with librettist Alize Rozsnyai.  Sarah was chosen as a Marshall Scholar, and will be pursuing a Master’s of Music Composition at a conservatory in London. More of her music can be found on her website.  EPISODE EXTRAS Sarah Marze Website Let Us Sing: Contemporary Art Songs for Young Singers Sarah Marze: UConn's Sixth Marshall Scholar --- Send in a voice message:
Several of Connecticut's leading poets and poets laureate share their works in this holiday peace reading, presented by the Oliver Wolcott Library in Litchfield, Conn. Jim Kelleher, of the Oliver Wolcott Poets, is the organizer and host for this seasonal celebration of peace and hope. Rennie McQuilkin, Connecticut poet laureate emeritus  Ginny Lowe Connors, West Hartford, CT, poet laureate emerita Joan Hoffman, Canton, CT, poet laureate Sandy Carlson, Woodbury, CT, poet laureate Robert Piazza, Litchfield, CT, poet laureate Barb Jennes, Ridgefield, CT, poet laureate Karen Silk, Washington, CT, poet laureate  Rick Magee, Bethel CT, poet laureate Deborah Rose, New Milford, CT, poet laureate  Jack Sheedy, Harwinton, CT Patricia Martin, Torrington, CT Jim Kelleher, Goshen, CT --- Send in a voice message:
Host Sandy Carlson talks with Katherine Schneider, a poet and adult ESL professional living in Norwalk, CT. She holds an MFA from Fairfield University's low residency MFA program where she worked closely with Baron Wormser and the late Dr. Kim  Bridgford. She has also received an MA in TESOL and has taught ESL to adult students in the greater NYC area for 10 years.  Being an active participant in writing/poetry community is important to Katie. She co-founded and co-hosts the literary livestream FUMFA Poets &  Writers Live (@fumfalive) with her MFA colleague, fiction writer Chris Belden. She is also engaged with combining poetry with music and other creative arts. Her endeavors in this regard can be followed at @the_story_of_how. Her first chapbook, I Used to Remember the  Story of How, was published by Finishing Line Press in 2019. Her publication credits for individual poems include Ruminate, Blue Line, The Poetry Porch, The Paddock Review, and Collateral. Her poem "Breath" was also a nominee for a Pushcart Prize. Katie has recently  completed a manuscript, which constitutes her first book-length manuscript, entitled Breaking the Fever. This manuscript leans even more heavily into vulnerability in religious, romantic, and political social  contexts explored in her first chapbook, and it takes the reader as  much into personal memory as it does into literal and abstract Holy Land. It brings the reader on a journey of longing, revelation, ecstasy,  and pain to arrive at a place of hard-won faith in self-worth. EPISODE EXTRAS Check out FUMFA Poets & Writers Live on Facebook I Used to Remember the Story of How is available on Finishing Line Press --- Send in a voice message:
Sandy and Jim discuss an event Jim organized, featuring some of the best poets in Connecticut.  Listen in and learn more about the Holiday Peace Poetry Reading - Dec. 15, 7 to 8:30 p.m., presented by the Oliver Wolcott Library - with Jim, Sandy, and many more, including previous People and their Poems guests Jack Sheedy, Patricia Martin, and Faith Vicinanza.  ZOOM LINK: --- Send in a voice message:
Host Sandy Carlson ( and visits with Jim Kelleher, who teaches literature and composition at Northwestern Connecticut Community College. He has published three books of poetry and taught in public schools and libraries across northwestern Connecticut. EPISODE EXTRAS Mick: A Celestial Drama on Antrim House Quarry on Amazon Holiday Peace Poetry Reading - Dec. 15, 7 to 8:30 p.m., presented by the Oliver Wolcott Library - with Jim, Sandy, and many more, including previous People and their Poems guests Jack Sheedy, Patricia Martin, and Faith Vicinanza. ZOOM LINK --- Send in a voice message:
In this episode, Sandy talks with Nancy McMillan of Bethlehem, CT. Nancy is the award-winning author of March Farm: Season by Season on a Connecticut Family Farm. Her essay “For the Love of Linen” (CT Lit Anthology 2020) was a Pushcart Prize nominee. Litchfield Magazine publishes her feature stories, one of which won first place in the CT Press Club 2022 Contest. Her work has appeared in Pangyrus, The Sunlight Press, Persimmon Tree, Fiction Southeast, and Edible Nutmeg, and her reviews have run in Connecticut newspapers. She directs the writing program at Arts Escape (Southbury, CT), where she helps students embrace and inhabit their innate creativity.  Episode Extras Find out more about Nancy McMillan  Nancy's episode on Pangyrus  Nancy's feature in Litchfield magazine   Arts Escape --- Send in a voice message:
Host Sandy Carlson (, poet laureate of Woodbury,  CT, talks with Nadine Cascini and Jim Hinkle, owners of Studio Hill  Gallery. Studio Hill is an art gallery, studio, and shop where artists  collaborate their talents to offer their artistic creations in a  welcoming and imaginative environment. It features both local and  international artists of all different medias, along with a bookstore and gift shop where customers can browse with complementary  refreshments. It's located on Main Street in the historic small town of Woodbury.   Episode Extras Visit Studio Hill Gallery online at --- Send in a voice message:
Sandy talks with Patricia about the influence of meaningful lyrics on Patricia during the heyday of the Beatles' invasion, about  Patricia the roles of mentors, and of responding to opportunity when it presents itself in the development of her craft. Patricia is an author, poet, performer/actor, and freelance writer/communications professional who has been featured at numerous venues, festivals, on radio and television, and published in various periodicals and anthologies. A member of the Author’s Guild and Nonfiction Author’s Association, Martin is the author of six nonfiction books and a poetry collection. She collaborated on a CD with composer/producer/musician Gus Mancini. Episode Extras Learn more about Patricia Martin In Venice I Could Sing on Amazon Martin and Mancini Contact Patricia via email --- Send in a voice message:
In this episode, Sandy talks with Elizabeth Kutepov, a writer, musician, and painter living in Roxbury, CT. Elizabeth, whose stage name is Rap to God, talks about searching for the truth and finding the creative source at the heart of each of us as she discusses the place of writing in her search for personal peace. Her book is available on Amazon. Episode Extras Learn more about Elizabeth's music Follow Elizabeth on Instagram Rap to God on Amazon --- Send in a voice message:
During a trip with Arts Escape of Southbury, CT, to Hollister House Garden in Washington, CT, Sandy wrote two poems that she read at an Arts Escape event Sept. 24, 2022. Hollister House boasts a classic garden in the English manner, with a loosely formal structure, informally planted in generous abundance situated in the Litchfield hills of Northwestern Connecticut. It's an ideal place to capture a variety of flower photos, spend time painting a landscape, to sit and write, or wander meditatively through the pathways. --- Send in a voice message:
Sandy talks with Southbury, CT, poet and artist Faith Vicinanza, who discusses her role in slam poetry in Connecticut, the influence of others to drive us toward poetry, and the vital relationship between the poet as performer and the audience. Episode Extras Faith on Amazon Faith Vicinanza on Instagram See Faith's work on YouTube More about Faith in this 2005 article in The Newtown Bee Text of Mary Oliver's Wild Geese Mary Oliver reads Wild Geese Gallery 25, New Milford, CT Arts Escape, Southbury, CT --- Send in a voice message:
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