Caesura (Virtual) Poetry Festival

Thursday, October 1 thru Wednesday, October 7, 2020

Southeastern Pennsylvania’s Poetry Festival & Retreat is going virtual this year.  As much as we love our annual retreat at Camphill there was no way to ensure the safety of our staff, instructors and attendees so we decided to take it online. The Virtual Caesura will still feature workshops and readings and offer an opportunity to spend time with members of the poetry community. No travel is required, so we have an opportunity to expand our reach to poets and writers from near and far and the extended schedule offers more opportunities to fit it into even the most challenging schedule. 

Register for our email newsletter below to get updates about the event as our plans come together and workshops are confirmed.  We look forward to seeing you on our screen this year and on-site next year. 

All tickets include the entire week’s workshops, reading and panels. 

Each audience member who registers prior to September 15 will include a collection of poetry books written by our workshop hosts.

Tickets are non-refundable.

Event Cost

$99 per person 

Thanks to our sponsor, Tekpoet, we are able to offer 3 scholarships to Caesura. Please use the form below and submit your application by September 29 at midnight. All applicants will be notified Wednesday evening, so you will still be able to buy tickets before the event starts on Thursday if you don’t win.

MCPL are welcoming warm professionals who create an easy environment in a beautiful setting!
The workshops were stimulating and safe…How can I say it? Cozy and challenging at the same time! Caesura is a pause I didn’t want to end.

Mary Ann Miller

Participant & Instructor Caesura 2019

2020 WORKSHOP HOSTS

Chad Frame

Chad Frame, Director of MCPL, will host and emcee Caesura 2020. Chad’s work appears in Rattle, Pedestal, Mom Egg Review, Philadelphia Stories, Barrelhouse, Rust+Moth, and other journals and anthologies, as well as on iTunes from the Library of Congress. He is the Director of the Montgomery County Poet Laureate Program and Poet Laureate Emeritus of Montgomery County, the Poetry Editor of Ovunque Siamo: New Italian-American Writing, a founding member of the No River Twice poetry improv performance troupe, and co-founder of the Caesura Poetry Festival and Retreat.

Amy Small-McKinney

Amy Small-McKinney’s second book of poems, Walking Toward Cranes, won the Kithara Book Prize 2016 (Glass Lyre Press). Her newest manuscript, “Unpracticed Bodies Come Apart” was a 2019 finalist with both Trio House Press and Barrow Street Press. Her poem “Birthplace” received Special Merits recognition by The Comstock Review for their 2019 Muriel Craft Bailey Poetry Contest. Small-McKinney’s poems have appeared in many journals, for example, American Poetry Review and Tiferet, and have also been translated into Romanian and Korean.

Dan Simpson

In 2017, Daniel Simpson and his wife, Ona Gritz, collaborated on two books, co-authoring Border Songs: A Conversation in Poems and co-editing More Challenges for the Delusional, an anthology of prompts, prose, and poetry. His first collection of poems, School for the Blind came out in 2014. The New York Times and numerous poetry magazines have printed his work. The recipient of a Pennsylvania Council of the Arts fellowship, he tends a blog at www.insidetheinvisible.wordpress.co

Dara-Lyn Shrager

Dara-Lyn Shrager lives in Princeton, New Jersey, and is the co-founder and editor of Radar Poetry. Her full-length poetry collection, Whiskey, X-Ray, Yankee, was published by Barrow Street Books in 2018. She holds an MFA from Bennington College and a BA from Smith College. Her poems appear or are forthcoming in many journals, including Crab Creek Review, Southern Humanities Review, Barn Owl Review, and Nashville Review. Learn more at: www.daralynshrager.com

Dilruba Ahmed

Dilruba Ahmed is the author of Bring Now the Angels (University of Pittsburgh Press, 2020). Her debut book of poetry, Dhaka Dust (Graywolf Press), won the Bakeless Prize. Her poems have appeared in Kenyon Review, New England Review, and Ploughshares. Her work has been anthologized in The Best American Poetry 2019, Halal If You Hear Me, Literature: The Human Experience, and elsewhere.

Grant Clauser

Grant Clauser is the author of five books, including Muddy Dragon on the Road to Heaven (winner of the Codhill Press Poetry Award), Reckless Constellations, The Magician’s Handbook, and Necessary Myths. He won the Cider Press Book Award and the Dogfish Head Poetry Prize, and has had poems featured in the American Poetry Review, Cortland Review, Rattle, and others. He works as an editor, and also teaches poetry at Rosemont College.

J.C. Todd

J. C. Todd is author of Beyond Repair (Able Muse Press, 2020), and The Damages of Morning, a 2019 Eric Hoffer Award finalist.  Winner of the 2016 Rita Dove Prize in Poetry and former fellow of the Pew Center for Arts & Heritage, she has published in Beloit Poetry Journal, The Paris Review, the Journal of Compressed Creative Arts. She has taught in the Rosemont MFA Program and the Bryn Mawr College Creative Writing Program.

Mary Jo LoBello Jerome

Mary Jo LoBello Jerome, the current Bucks County Poet Laureate, recently won honorable mention in the Allen Ginsberg Awards and has work forthcoming in Paterson Literary Review. Her fiction and poetry has appeared in Schuykill Valley Journal, Ovunque Siamo, Stillwater Review, River Heron Review, Little Patuxent Review, Short Story, and elsewhere. She has written for The New York Times, Scholastic Publications, and holds an MFA in Writing from Vermont College of Fine Arts. maryjolobellojerome.com

Joanne Leva

Joanne Leva is author of two poetry collections, Eve Would Know and Eve Heads Back. Her poem, “God Walks into a Bar,” was featured in a Philadelphia Calligraphers’ Society Poetry Reading & Exhibit. She is founder of the Montgomery County (PA) Poet Laureate Program (MCPL). Go to: www.joanneleva.com to learn more.

Keith Kopka

Keith Kopka is the author of Count Four (University of Tampa Press, 2020). His poetry and criticism have recently appeared in The International Journal of the Book, Mid-American Review, New Ohio Review, Berfrois, Best New Poets, and many others. Kopka received the 2017 international Award for Excellence from the Books, Publishing & Libraries Research Network. He is also a senior editor at Narrative, as well as the co-founder and director of operations for Writers Resist.

Liz Chang

Liz Chang (www.lizchangpoet.com) was 2012 Montgomery County Poet Laureate in Pennsylvania. Her chapbook Animal Nocturne is available from Moonstone Press. Her poems have recently appeared in Verse Daily, Origins Journal, Breakwater Review and Stoneboat Literary Journal, among others. She is an Associate Professor of English at Delaware County Community College.

Nicole Greaves

Nicole Greaves teaches English in Philadelphia. She holds an MFA in Creative Writing from Columbia University. Her poetry has appeared in numerous literary reviews and been acknowledged by several prizes. In 2003, she was the poet laureate of Montgomery County, Pennsylvania and was nominated for Best on the Net by Radar Magazine in 2015. Much of her work explores themes around acculturation, gender roles, and class.

Ona Gritz

Ona Gritz’s books include Geode, a Main Street Rag Poetry Book Award finalist, On the Whole: a Story of Mothering and Disability, and Present Imperfect, an essay collection forthcoming from Poets Wear Prada. A longtime columnist at Literarymama.com, her poems and essays have appeared in Ploughshares, The New York Times, River Teeth, The Bellevue Literary Review, Brevity, and elsewhere. Ona’s nonfiction is listed among Notables in Best American Essays and Best Life Stories in Salon.

Pat Valdata

Pat Valdata’s poetry book about women aviation pioneers, Where No Man Can Touch, won the 2015 Donald Justice Poetry Prize. Her other poetry titles are Inherent Vice and Looking for Bivalve. Her poetry has been published in Ecotone, Fledgling Rag, Italian Americana, Little Patuxent Review, and Valparaiso Poetry Review. She has a new novel, Eve’s Daughters, forthcoming from Moonshine Cove Publishing in November. www.patvaldata.com

Rachel Marie Patterson

Rachel Marie Patterson is co-founder and editor of Radar Poetry. She holds an M.F.A. from the University of North Carolina-Greensboro. The recipient of an Academy of American Poets Prize, Rachel’s work has been nominated for Best of the Net, Best New Poets, and the Pushcart Prize. Poems appear in Harpur Palate, Cimarron Review, Smartish Pace, Parcel, The Journal, Thrush, Nashville Review, Redivider, Fugue, and others. She is the author If I Am Burning (MSR, 2011).

Sean Hanrahan

Sean Hanrahan is a Philadelphian poet originally hailing from Dale City, Virginia. He is the author of the full-length collection Safer Behind Popcorn (2019 Cajun Mutt Press) and the chapbooks Hardened Eyes on the Scan (2018 Moonstone Press) and Gay Cake (2020 Toho). He currently serves on the Moonstone Press Editorial Board, as head poetry editor for Toho, and workshop instructor for Green Street Poetry. He teaches a class titled A Chapbook in 49 Days.

Sean Webb

Sean Webb has received many honors for his work, including winning the Passages North Neutrino Prize and the Gemini Magazine Poetry Open. His recent chapbooks are “The Constant Parades” and “What Cannot Stay Small Forever.” His work has appeared in many publications including Prairie Schooner, North American Review, The Quarterly, Seattle Review, West Branch, Schuylkill Valley Journal, and Philadelphia Stories. Links to poems and books can be found at seanwebbpoetry.com

Catherine Glenn

Catherine Glenn is a semi-retired public high school teacher, published poet and “semi-out” trans-woman. Catherine’s poetry (published under her male name) has appeared in several regional journals and online sites. She has won a regional “Poet Laureate” competition and was a finalist in The Eric Hoffer Award for Poetry. Within the official confines of a school setting, she engages with LGBTQ+ youth whenever she is able and encourages high school students to expand their writing beyond the artificial limit of 280 characters.

Lynn Levin

Lynn Levin’s most recent poetry collection, The Minor Virtues, is listed as one of Spring 2020’s best books by The Philadelphia Inquirer. Her previous collections include Miss PlastiqueFair Creatures of an Hour, and Imaginarium. Her poems have appeared in Boulevard, Artful Dodge, on Garrison Keillor’s The Writer’s Almanac, and other places. She teaches at Drexel University. Her website is lynnlevinpoet.com.

Valerie Fox

Valerie Fox’s work appears in Juked, Philadelphia Stories, Reflex, The Cafe Irreal,  and Hanging Loose. Her poetry collections include The Rorschach Factory, The Glass Book, and Insomniatic. Her work has been selected for both the Best Small Fictions and Best Microfiction series. She teaches at Drexel University. You can learn more about her work here. 

Michelle Reale

Michelle Reale is a professor at Arcadia University.  Her work appears in a  wide variety of publications, both online, print and anthologies. In addition she is the author of 11 books of poetry,  including In the Blink of a Mottled Eye (Kelsay Books, 2020) and Season of Subtraction ( Bordighera Press, 2019).  She teaches in the MFA program at Arcadia University and is the founding and managing editor of OVUNQUE SIAMO: New Italian American Writing.

Doris Ferleger

Doris Ferleger, Ph.D. is a clinical psychologist and poet whose poetry and memoir essays have been published in numerous literary journals including: BridgesCalifornia QuarterlyCalyxComstock ReviewConfluenceMany Mountains MovingNortheast CorridorPhoebe (Suny)South Carolina ReviewSouth Dakota Review13th Moon, and in anthologies entitled: Motherpoet and Journey into Motherhood. She holds an MFA in Poetry from Vermont College and has attended well-regarded writers conferences including Bread Loaf and the Krakow Polish Poetry Seminar, founded by Polish poet Adam Zagajewski, which brought established and emerging American poets to Poland to discuss Polish poetry and the interface between poetry and history. Ferleger’s ardent interest in poetry and history is reflected in her book entitled Big Silences in a Year of Rain. Of Ferleger’s book, poet Bill Olsen writes:

Tom Mallouk

Dr. Tom Mallouk’s poetry and prose have been widely published both in print and on-line. His presentation “Poetry and Repair” integrates the poetic process with that of psychological, spiritual and emotional healing. A three-time runner up for the Bucks County poet laureate, his chapbook Nantucket Revisited was published in May, 2013. He has been a practicing psychotherapist for more that 45 years and resides with his wife Dr. Eileen Engle in Doylestown, Pennsylvania.

THANKS TO OUR SPONSORS

Reach a new audience & support the literary arts in Montgomery County.