Monthly Archives: June 2009

6/24/09 -Timothy Mason

Timothy Mason


Timothy Mason has performed poetry and promoted folk music since the 1980’s, honed his performance style in the early poetry slams and around the campfires of the fabled Kerrville Folk Festival. He has an extensive background in human services. He’s volunteered on a telephone crisis intervention hotline, trained as a rape crisis counselor, worked with developmentally disabled adults and court-involved youth. This along with his eight years volunteer work in a battered women’s shelter have given him a unique empathy with the quiet battles of daily survival.

Born in the Midwest, he still calls Salt Lake City home though he has been a New Englander for over two decades. Over his 25 plus years presenting folk music to New England audiences his work has included reviving Club Passim, the legendary Harvard Square coffeehouse that began as Club 47, pioneering new audiences at Capo’s in Lowell MA and bringing The Old Vienna Kaffeehaus in Westboro, Massachusetts, to national prominence. By day he provides bookkeeping services, tax preparation and consultations to independent artists and arts oriented small businesses. He is also the Director of the New England Folk Music Archives.
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Posted by on June 25, 2009 in * Past Features


6/17/09 – Susan Allison

Susan Allison

Poet Susan Allison is founder of Ibis Books & Gallery which in 1991 became NEAR, Inc./, better known to us as The Buttonwood Tree, an arts and cultural performance space on Main Street in Middletown.

Born in Derby, Connecticut and raised in Louisville, Kentucky, she calls poetry and wanderlust the two main constants in her life. After mountain-climbing and hitch-hiking through East Africa, she returned to Wesleyan University to earn a BA in African Studies in 1985. Shortly after graduation, she sought out bookstores handling used and rare books, and these became a new destination point for her wanderlust – until she opened Ibis in 1989. Hundreds of poets, performers, artists and book-lovers all over the state are so very glad she did: The Buttonwood Tree is a lively on-going venue for artists and art in many forms!
Susan Allison lives in Middletown with her husband, Stephan, and son, John. Her most recent book of poetry “Down by the Riverside Ways,” has had a warm and enthusiastic reception. According to John Bassinger, “Some poets produce highly polished and showy zirconium studded with many well-behaved commas. Susan Allison has created poems that seem to have become naturally what they are as diamonds, emerge from carbon under pressure, not laid out on black velvet, but set in mother earth.” For sample poems:
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Posted by on June 18, 2009 in * Past Features


6/10/09 – Charlie Bondhus

Charlie Bonhus

Charlie Bondhus’s poetry chapbook What We Have Learned to Love was the recipient of BrickHouse Books’s 2009 Stonewall Series Chapbook Award. He earned his MFA in creative writing from Goddard College in 2005, and is currently pursuing a Ph.D. in literature at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, where he teaches writing and literature. His poetry manuscript, How the Boy Might See It, was a finalist for the 2007 Blue Light Press Award for a first book. His poetry and fiction have been published in The Harrow, Potter’s Field 3, The Starry Night Review, Swell, Red Owl Magazine, Poetry Motel, and Mirage #4: Period[ical], and he has an academic article forthcoming in the May 2010 edition of Gothic Studies.

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Posted by on June 11, 2009 in * Past Features


6/3/09 – Norah Pollard & a Favorite Poem Project Reading

Norah Pollard

This week, we have something of a double feature: Norah Pollard (see below), and a community reading ofAmerica’s favorite poetry which is a part of the Favorite Poem Project started by Robert Pinski in 1997 when he was poet laureate of the United States.

So bring a poem NOT YOUR OWN – a masterwork poem by a famous poet – hopefully one that sparked your interest in poetry, or that speaks to you in some deep way. During the open myk which precedes Norah Pollard’s reading you will get to share your favorite masterwork poem. Is your taste Longfellow, Whitman, Sandburg, Poe, Shakespeare, Clifton, Ashberry ? Whatever your favorite famous poem bring it to share with our Wednesday Night Poetry Community. 

According to Atrium House, poet Norah Pollard, who holds an M.A. in English from the University of Rhode Island, has been variously “a folk singer, waitress, nanny, teacher, solderer, and print shop calligrapher. She currently works for a Bridgeport steel company. In 1983 she received the Academy of American Poets Prize from the University of Bridgeport, and for several years was editor of The Connecticut River Review. She lives in Stratford, Connecticut.”

She’s also daughter of “Seabiscuit’s” jockey, Red Pollard, and has written a collection of poems called “Leaning In” from Atrium House, (after you click, then page down for poem samples from the book), which speak to her early life, as well as about her father. The book has excellent reviews from Dick Allen and Rennie McQuilkan among others. If you miss the reading, you can order her book directly from Atrium House by calling 860-217-0023.

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