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Ralph Dranow

Ralph Dranow and Judy Wells

6 MARCH 2022 — sunday

Poetry Flash presents a reading by Ralph Dranow, presenting At Work on the Garments of Refuge, his own poems with poems and art by the late Daniel Marlin, reading with poet Judy Wells, Dear Phebe: The Dickinson Sisters Go West, online via Zoom, free, 3:00 pm PST (Register to attend: please click here; you will receive an email with a link to join the reading)

Please join us for a Poetry Flash virtual launch reading on Sunday, March 6 at 3:00 pm PST! We are excited to bring you this event via Zoom. To register for this reading, please click on the link in the calendar listing above. After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting. Thank you for continuing to support Poetry Flash and our reading series.

This reading is co-sponsored by Moe's Books in Berkeley; Ralph Dranow's At Work on the Garments of Refuge is available at Judy Well's Dear Phebe: The Dickinson Sisters Go West is available at:

Ralph Dranow is co-author, with the late poet and artist Daniel Marlin, of At Work on the Garments of Refuge. Gary Turchin says, "This is an exquisite book of poetry crafted by two fine poets who were best friends. Daniel Marlin, now deceased, wrote soul-stirring poems, simple, elegant, thoughtful and inspired. They're filled with dharma and the drama of real life. No subject is taboo, but each subject is handled with the deftest of touches. This is a man who had a gift for language but never over did it…always stayed grounded and real. He let his experience guide him and not his ideas.…Marlin and Dranow matured together as writers and this is the culmination of their mutual admiration." In 1978, Ralph Dranow and Daniel Marlin met while working at the Oakland, California main post office. They hit it off immediately, finding a common passion for writing and concern for social justice. Their nascent friendship took root on the level of deep mutual caring as well as support for each other's writing. They formed a writing group that lasted thirty-eight years, and continues today with new members.
Ralph Dranow is an editor, ghostwriter, and writing coach as well as a poet specializing in people's stories. He has published eight poetry books including A New Life, one short-story collection, and numerous poems and articles in magazines and newspapers:
Daniel Marlin (1945-2017) was a poet, artist, translator, and peace activist. He traveled extensively, spending much time in Japan, where his wife, Toshiko, was born. His book Heart of Ardor contains over three-hundred-images of his vibrant paintings and drawings, along with commentary about his artwork. His other books include Jerusalem and the Boardwalk, Amagasaki Sketchbook, and Isaiah at the Wall: Palestine Poems.

Judy Wells newest poetry book is Dear Phebe: The Dickinson Sisters Go West. Lucille Lang Day says, "Go West, young man,' is the famous command, but many young women also heeded this advice. Among them were Judy Wells' great-grandmother Phebe Marsh Dickinson and her two sisters, distant cousins of Emily Dickinson, who came to California from Massachusetts in the late 19th century. In Dear Phebe, Wells chronicles their stories in poetry and prose." Dear Phebe is neither traditional autobiography nor strict genealogy. Letters and historical facts are turned into poems, and anecdotes become grist for the mill. As historian Lauren Coodley says, "This book is a wholly new form, fusing history and poetry, inspiring both disciplines." Bridget Connelly comments, "I loved every twist and turn of this mind-tripping story and laughed with glee when the author ends up returning her great-grandmother Phebe's one-hundred-year-overdue book to the San Francisco Public Library." Judy Wells is the author of eleven previous collections of poetry, including Everything Irish, Call Home, and The Glass Ship. She lives with her husband, avant-garde poet Dale Jensen, in Berkeley.

Daily Listings

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3 DECEMBER 2023 — sunday

  • House concert reading and performance by acclaimed poet Kim Addonizio, Now We're Getting Somewhere, Tell Me, finalist for the National Book Award, with music by guitarist Danny Caron, private home, Berkeley, $20, 4:00 pm PST (For more information, email:
  • The Poetry Center, at the Howard Zinn Book Fair, presents poets Anthony Cody, Borderland Apocrypha, winner of the 2018 Omnidawn Open Book Prize, and Chaun Webster, Wail song: wading in the water at the end of the world, in reading and conversation with each other and the audience, Room 214, City College of San Francisco Mission Center, 1125 Valencia Street, San Francisco, free, 10:30 am-Noon PST (More information here:
  • Poetry Flash presents a reading by poet and translator Cynthia Hogue, instead, it is dark, poet and memoirist Louise Nayer, Narrow Escapes, and Tennison S. Black, Survival Strategies, a National Poetry Series selection, Art House Gallery & Cultural Center, 2905 Shattuck Avenue, Berkeley, two blocks north of Ashby BART, refreshments, free, 3:00 pm PST (
  • Three Rooms Press presents an evening of Dada poetry, performance, and music, in celebration of the launch of Maintenant 17, a contemporary journal of Dada writing and art, with performances by Youssef Alaoui, Mahnaz Badihian, Allison Davis, Carol Dorf, Robert Duncan, James Gleeson, Dale Jensen, Richard Loranger, Anna O'Meara, Eva Maria Stern, Tom Stolmar, Maw Shein Win, Alex Starr, Rich Stone, and Lorene Zarou-Zouzounis, hosted by Peter Carlaftes and Kat Georges, co-directors of Three Rooms Press, costumes are encouraged, Specs' Twelve Adler Museum Café, 12 William Saroyan Place, San Francisco, free, 6:00-8:00 pm PST (More information here:
  • Bazaar Writers Salon presents a reading featuring poet Carolina Hotchandani, The Book Eaters, winner of the 2023 Perugia Press Prize; novelist Joshua Mohr, All This Life, winner of the Northern California Book Award; poet and translator Cintia Santana, The Disordered Alphabet; and poet Sam Sax, PIG, hosted by poet Peter Kline, Mirrorforms, Bazaar Café, 5927 California Street, San Francisco, free, 6:00 pm PST (More information here:
  • The Howard Zinn Book Fair returns after a three-year hiatus, featuring over sixty small presses and community groups selling books and artwork, as well as close to seventy author panels discussing a variety of social justice issues such as climate change, racism, feminism, LGBTQ+, immigration, housing, and the arts, featuring authors Sonali Kolhatkar, Rebecca Solnit, Kim Stanley Robinson, devorah major, Robin D.G. Kelley, Zein El-Amine, Roxanne Dunbar-Ortiz, Peter Linebaugh, Angela Hume, Nina Serrano, Roarshock, Steve Early, and many more, childcare provided, City College, 1125 Valencia Street, San Francisco, free, donations welcome, 10:00 am-6:00 pm PST (More information here:

4 DECEMBER 2023 — monday

  • Rivertown Poets presents a reading featuring Kathe Jordan and Gail Entrekin, Walking Each Other Home, finalist for the Blue Light Prize and the Richard Snyder Prize, followed by an open mic, three minutes per reader, hosted by poet Sande Anfang, Aqus Café, 189 H Street, Petaluma, free, 6:15 pm PST (More information here:

5 DECEMBER 2023 — tuesday

6 DECEMBER 2023 — wednesday

7 DECEMBER 2023 — thursday

  • Lunch Poems, UC Berkeley's noontime reading series, presents poet Jesse Nathan, Eggtooth, Morrison Library inside Doe Library, 101 Library Ct., University of California campus, Berkeley, free, 12:10-12:50 pm PST (More information here:

8 DECEMBER 2023 — friday

9 DECEMBER 2023 — saturday

  • Sacramento Poetry Alliance presents a poetry reading by Molly Fisk, The More Difficult Beauty, and Tricia Caspers, Some Flawed Magic, Sacramento Poetry Alliance, 1169 Perkins Way, Sacramento, free, 4:00 pm PDT (More information here:
  • The Poetry Center presents poet Divya Victor, CURB, winner of the PEN America Open Book Award and the Kingsley Tufts Poetry Award, reading from her work and joining in conversation with poet Tonya M. Foster, A Swarm of Bees in High Court, part of Undisciplining the Fields, a conversation and reading series that emphasizes artists and writers from a range of fields and cross-disciplinary practices, free, East Bay Media Center, 1939 Addison Street, Berkeley, 2:00-4:00 pm PST (More information here:

10 DECEMBER 2023 — sunday

11 DECEMBER 2023 — monday

  • City Lights Books presents a reading with four Black Lawrence Press authors, poet Lisa Dordal, Writer-in-Residence at Vanderbilt University and author of Mosaic of the Dark, finalist for the 2019 Audre Lorde Award for Lesbian Poetry, short story writers Nancy Welch, The Road from Prosperity, and JoeAnn Hart, Highwire Act & Other Tales of Survival, and novelist Sara Johnson Allen, Down Here We Come Up, winner of the Big Moose Prize from Black Lawrence Press, City Lights Books, 261 Columbus Avenue, San Francisco, free, 6:00 pm PST (Register to attend:

12 DECEMBER 2023 — tuesday

13 DECEMBER 2023 — wednesday

  • City Lights Books celebrates the 90th birthday of the late Jack Hirschman (1933-2021), poet, translator, editor, and activist, former Poet Laureate of San Francisco, and prolific author of poetry and essays including All That's Left and Lyripol, with tributes by Agneta Falk, joined by Scott Bird, Dimitri Charalambou, Neeli Cherkovski, Mauro Ffortissimo, Celia Hirschman, Matt Gonzales, devorah major, Sarah Menefee, Alejandro Murguia, and Byron Spooner, online via Zoom, free, 6:00 pm PST (Register to attend:

14 DECEMBER 2023 — thursday

15 DECEMBER 2023 — friday

16 DECEMBER 2023 — saturday

17 DECEMBER 2023 — sunday

18 DECEMBER 2023 — monday

19 DECEMBER 2023 — tuesday

20 DECEMBER 2023 — wednesday

21 DECEMBER 2023 — thursday

22 DECEMBER 2023 — friday

23 DECEMBER 2023 — saturday

24 DECEMBER 2023 — sunday

25 DECEMBER 2023 — monday

26 DECEMBER 2023 — tuesday

27 DECEMBER 2023 — wednesday

28 DECEMBER 2023 — thursday

29 DECEMBER 2023 — friday

30 DECEMBER 2023 — saturday

31 DECEMBER 2023 — sunday

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