27th Reading


4th SUNDAY 06-24-12

Featured Poet
Brendan Constantine

Brendan Constantine

Brendan Constantine was born in 1967, the second child of two working actors, and named after Irish playwright Brendan Behan. An ardent supporter of Southern Californiaís poetry communities and one of its most recognized poets, he has served as a teacher of poetry in local schools and colleges for the last eighteen years. In addition to this, he regularly brings poetry workshops to foster children and eldercare centers. In 2002, Mr. Constantine was nominated for Poet Laureate of the state of California.

His first collection, Letters To Guns, was released in February 2009 from Red Hen Press and continues to receive acclaim. His work has appeared in numerous journals, most notably Ploughshares, FIELD, Ninth Letter, The Pinch, ArtLife, and LA Times Bestseller The Underground Guide to Los Angeles. His collection, Birthday Girl With Possum (2011 Write Bloody Press), was a nominee for the National Book Award.

Mr. Constantine is currently poet in residence at the Windward School in West Los Angeles. He is also working with The Alzheimerís Poetry Project, bringing poetry workshops to Alzheimer's patients throughout the southland. He holds an MFA from Vermont College of Fine Arts and lives in Hollywood at actor Bela Lugosiís last address.

A new collection of poems, Calamity Joe, was released by Red Hen Press in March, 2012.

Jessica Lynn Kubinec
Red Hen Press
Email: publicity@redhen.org
Phone: 626-356-4760
Fax 626-356-9974
P.O. Box 40820
Pasadena, CA 91114


Words are a lens
to focus one's mind.
Ayn Rand

What is needed is, in the end, simply this:
solitude, great inner solitude.
Going into yourself and meeting no one for hours on end,
that is what you must be able to attain.
Rainer Maria Rilke

There are two kinds of writers:
those that make you think,
and those that make you wonder.
Brian Aldiss

Language cares.
Howard Nemerov

I'm writing a book.
I've got the page numbers done.
Stephen Wright

D.B. Pacini
Introducing Brendan Constantine

Brendan Constantine

Words are sacred.
They deserve respect.
If you get the right ones,
in the right order,
you can nudge the world a little.
Tom Stoppard

Pay attention to the sound of words.
Dave Wolverton

Good writing is supposed
to evoke sensation in the reader,
not the fact that it is raining,
but the feeling of being rained upon.
E.L. Doctorow

There is no idea so stupid or hackneyed
that a sufficiently-talented writer
can't get a good story out of it.
Lawrence Watt-Evans

The art of writing is the art of applying
the seat of the pants to the seat of the chair.
Mary Heaton Vorse

A story isn't about a moment in time;
a story is about the moment in time.
W. D. Wetherell

There's no such thing as writer's block.
That was invented by people
in California who couldn't write.
Terry Pratchett

Music is the effort we make to explain
to ourselves how our brains work.
We listen to Bach transfixed because
this is listening to a human mind.
Lewis Thomas

A teacher is a person who never says anything once.
Howard Nemerov

I am a part of all I have read.
John Kieran

We pass the word around;
we ponder how the case
is put by different people,
we read the poetry;
we meditate over the literature;
we play the music;
we change our minds;
we reach an understanding.
Society evolves this way.
Lewis Thomas

I hope that real love and truth are stronger
in the end than any evil or misfortune in the world.
Charles Dickens

Tell the readers a story!
Because without a story,
you are merely using words
to prove you can string them
together in logical sentences.
Anne McCaffrey

A book, a true book,
is the writer's confessional.
For, whether he would have it so or not,
he is betrayed,
directly or indirectly,
by his characters,
into presenting publicly
his innermost feelings.
Nelson Algren

I shall weave a suit of leaves. At once.
With acorns for buttons.
Shirley Jackson

All the information you need can be given in dialogue.
Elmore Leonard

A writer never has a vacation.
For a writer's life
consists of either writing
or thinking about writing.
Eugene Ionesco

Some of the secret
joys of living
are not found
by rushing from
point A to point B,
but by inventing
some imaginary letters
along the way.
Douglas Pagels

A friend knows the song in my heart
and sings it to me when my memory fails.
Donna Roberts

If you cannot see God in all,
you cannot see God at all.
Author Unknown

Ride your horse along the edge of a sword;
hide yourself in the middle of flames.
Author Unknown

Toula Portokalos: Why? Why do you love me?
Ian Miller: Because I came alive when I met you.

(From My Big Fat Greek Wedding Movie)

We must believe
that we are gifted
for something,
and that this thing,
at whatever cost,
must be attained.
Marie Curie

The first step to getting the things
you want out of life is this:
Decide what you want.

Always be fearless.
Walk like the lion,
talk like pigeons,
live like elephants,
and love like
an infant child.
Santosh Kalwar

returned Mr. Micawber,
"do with me as you will!
I am a straw
upon the surface
of the deep,
and am tossed in
all directions
by the elephants.
I beg your pardon;
I should have
said the elements."
Charles Dickens
(David Copperfield)

Do not seek to follow
in the footsteps of the men of old;
seek what they sought.

When you get to the top of the mountain, keep climbing.
Author Unknown

The difference between fiction and reality?
Fiction has to make sense.
Tom Clancy

The Bible has been translated into Klingon.

Once you learn to read,
you will be forever free.
Frederick Douglass

A book is the only place in which you can
examine a fragile thought without breaking it,
or explore an explosive idea without
fear it will go off in your face.
It is one of the few havens remaining
where a man's mind can get
both provocation and privacy.
Edward P. Morgan

Lack of information cannot be used as
an excuse for not furthering your knowledge.
Every city has a public library
full of appropriate books,
no matter what your area of interest.
Catherine Pulsifer

Donít let your victories go to your head,
or your failures go to your heart.
Author Unknown

If you're going to tell people the truth,
be funny or they'll kill you.
Billy Wilder

Don't worry about
people stealing your ideas.
If your ideas are any good,
you'll have to ram
them down people's throats.
Howard Aiken, IBM engineer

I value the friend who for me
finds time on his calendar,
but I cherish the friend
who for me
does not
consult the calendar.
Robert Brault

Most people do not believe in anything very much
and our greatest poetry is given to us by those who do.
Cyril Connolly

Technique alone is never enough.
You have to have passion.
Technique alone is
just an embroidered potholder.
Raymond Chandler

The most original authors
are not so because they advance what is new,
but because they put what they have to say
as if it had never been said before.

D.B. Pacini
Announcing refreshment/social break.

The act of writing is an act of optimism.
You would not take the trouble to do it
if you felt that it didnít matter.
Edward Albee

Without knowing the force of words,
it is impossible to know men.

It's a delicious thing to write.
To be no longer yourself but to move
in an entire universe of your own creating.
Gustave Flaubert

The only important thing in a book
is the meaning it has for you.
Somerset Maugham

You don't write because you want to say something,
you write because you've got something to say.
F. Scott Fitzgerald

All Uranus' satelites are named after
William Shakespeare's and Alexander Pope's characters.

True understanding is found through compassion.
Author Unknown

Tim Christensen


Lyrics by Jim Turner
Music by Tim Christensen

Jim Turner

Don't waste a minute
not being happy.
If one window closes,
run to the next window,
or break down a door.

The world is
so great and rich,
and life so full of variety,
that you can never
lack occasions for poems.

Talk about your plenty,
talk about your ills,
one man gathers
what another man spills.
Robert Hunter,
Lyricist for Grateful Dead

Dr. Andy Jones

Let what you love, be what you do.

What we call the beginning
is often the end.
And to make an end
is to make a beginning.
The end is
where we start from.
T. S. Eliot

I see the role
of the writer as creating a room
with big windows
and leaving the reader to imagine.
Itís a meeting on the page.
Kevin Crossley-Holland

Taylor Graham
Taylor Graham's Poetry

I think what I love most about writing is
that feeling that you really nailed something.
I rarely feel it with a whole piece,
but sometimes with a line you feel that it
really captured what it is that you had inside you
and you got it out for a stranger to read,
someone who may never love you or meet you,
but he or she is going to get
that experience from that line.
Andre Dubus III

The King died and then the Queen died. That is a story.
The King died and then the Queen died of grief. That is a plot.
E.M. Forster

Jim Turner

I have been successful probably
because I have always realized
that I knew nothing about writing
and have merely tried to tell
an interesting story entertainingly.
Edgar Rice Burroughs

I liked the kid who wrote me that he had to do a term paper
on a modern poet and he was doing me because,
though they say you have to read poems twice,
he found he could handle mine in one try.
Howard Nemerov

Poetry makes life what lights and music do the stage.
Charles Dickens

Write quickly and you will never write well;
write well, and you will soon write quickly.
Marcus Fabius Quintilianus, circa 65 A.D.

Lessie Bond

I often think of a poem
as a door that opens
into a room
where I want to go.
Minnie Bruce Pratt

I learned that you
should feel when writing,
not like Lord Byron on a mountain top,
but like a child
stringing beads in kindergarten,
happy, absorbed, and quietly
putting one bead on after another.
Brenda Ueland

Bernie Brooks

Exercise the
writing muscle every day,
even if it is
only a letter,
a title list,
a character sketch,
a journal entry.
Writers are like dancers,
like athletes.
Without that exercise,
the muscles seize up.
Jane Yolen

Pour yourself
out like a fountain.
Flow into the knowledge
that what you are seeking
finishes often at the start,
and, with ending, begins.
Rainer Maria Rilke

To be what we are,
and to become what
we are capable of becoming,
is the only end of life.
Robert Louis Stevenson

Stan McFadden

In order to rise from its own ashes a phoenix first must burn.
Octavia E. Butler

Why do writers write?
Because it isn't there.
Thomas Berger

Hatch Graham

First, find out what your hero wants,
then just follow him!
Ray Bradbury

No tears in the writer,
no tears in the reader.
George Moore

Michael Borboa

The author must keep his mouth shut
when his work starts to speak.
Frederich Nietzsche

Life, a beauty chased by tragic laughter.
John Masefield

Tienne Forman

Becoming a writer means being creative enough to
find the time and the place in your life for writing.
Heather Sellers

Wait until you are hungry to say something,
until there is an aching in you to speak.
Natalie Goldberg

Lance Houck

The time to make up your mind about people, is never.
Philip Barry

Reading and weeping
opens the door to one's heart,
but writing and weeping
opens the window to one's soul.
M.K. Simmons

Jared Coffey

Think you're escaping
and run into yourself.
Longest way round
is the shortest way home.
James Joyce

To be the kind of writer you want to be,
you must first be the kind of thinker you want to be.
Ayn Rand

Stephen Wilson
Content Editor/ARTIFACT
A San Joaquin Delta College Publication

Truth, like gold, is to be obtained not by its growth,
but by washing away from it all that is not gold.
Leo Tolstoy

No one is useless in this world
who lightens the burdens of another.
Charles Dickens

D.B. Pacini

At night, when the objective world
has slunk back into its cavern
and left dreamers to their own,
there come inspirations and capabilities
impossible at any less magical and quiet hour.
No one knows whether or not he is a writer
unless he has tried writing at night.
H. P. Lovecraft

Usually, when people get to the end of a chapter,
they close the book and go to sleep.
I deliberately write my books so when
the reader gets to the end of a chapter,
he or she must turn one more page.
When people tell me
I've kept them up all night,
I feel like I've succeeded.
Sidney Sheldon

Everybody walks past
a thousand story ideas every day.
The good writers are the ones
who see five or six of them.
Most people don't see any.
Orson Scott Card

Bernie Brooks

And in the end, the love you take,
Is equal to the love you make.
The Beatles

Things we do,
we do for ourselves.
But that which we love we have
no choice but to give away.
Edmond Medina

D.B. Pacini thanking everyone for coming.

To have great poets there must be great audiences too.
Walt Whitman