KUSP's Poetry Show

Selected Readings: The New Yorker, Hitchcock, Piercy




Guest reader Joan Maro again joined host Dennis Morton on August 23, 2015 for an hour of back-and-forth poetry reading and discussion. This is Joan’s third guest spot on the Poetry Show, and listeners can look forward to more visits in the future.

Joan read a number of poems from among those published this year in The New Yorker magazine, and also one by Ted Kooser.  New Yorker authors included:



23 - Wounded Alphabet coverDennis’ readings were drawn from a number of books, including:

Selected Readings: Levertov, Carruth, Carver, Piercy, Lendennie, Kumin, more


On this week’s Poetry Show, host Dennis Morton shared readings from a variety of poets. Check back in about a week for updates to this post.

Troy Jollimore, guest poet


Last night09 - cover, poet Troy Jollimore returned for his quadrennial visit to the Poetry Show. He sat down with host Dennis Morton to read from and discuss Troy’s newest poetry collection, titled Syllabus of Errors, which will be published on September 29. The title is perhaps partly a reference to a Vatican document by that name (1864), which comprised an extensive list of “errors” on a wide range of “modern” subjects.

The poems in this book have a lot to say about truth, lies, falsehoods, and authority – and the often problematic relationships among them. We should expect no less from a philosopher – Troy teaches that subject at Cal State Chico. At another point in the interview, Troy noted that his students sometimes complain that he answers questions with questions. These poems employ some of that same Socratic approach.

09 - Jollimore



This is Troy Jollimore’s third visit to the Poetry Show. The first was was back in May, 2007, to talk about his first published book, Tom Thomson in Purgatory. Apropos of nothing, the timing of that visit made him the second earliest guest poet in our podcast library. Although the KUSP Poetry Show stretches back into the mists of the early 1970s, we only have podcasts from May, 2007. A second visit, in August 2011, coincided with publication of a second book, At Lake Scugog

For our most up-to-the-minute blog readers, be advised that Troy Jollimore will be reading at Bookshop Santa Cruz on Tuesday evening, August 11. This is the regular monthly “second Tuesday” poetry reading, sponsored as always by Poetry Santa Cruz. Joining Troy will be Maggie Paul – also a past Poetry Show guest.

C. J. Sage, guest poet



Local poet and animal-rights advocate C. J. Sage visited the Poetry Show on August 2, 2015. She and host Dennis Morton read and discussed poetry primarily about animals. Ms. Sage edits The National Poetry Review, and has five published books:




In addition to poetry, Dennis and C.J. discussed a rescue and sanctuary center for dogs, focused especially on a group of hunting dog breeds known as “sighthounds”.  The center is run by a 501(c)3 nonprofit called Hound Sanctuary Inc. Learn more at houndsanctuary.org.

Marc Zegans, guest poet – part 2, Tilly Shaw


On the KUSP Poetry Show broadcast for July 26, 2015,  host Dennis Morton was joined once again by poet, spoken-word artist and creative development advisor Marc Zegans.

26 - SwimmingBut before continuing the discussion of spoken-word poetry with Marc, we paused briefly to pay respects to Tilly Shaw, longtime local poet and educator who passed away a few days ago. Dennis read three poems from Tilly’s book, Swimming Closer to Shore (2002, Hummingbird Press). A future show will revisit Tilly’s poetry in more depth. The poems:

  • Vroom
  • My Mother’s Death
  • Quitting Computer Solitaire After Playing 17, 309 Times


26 - Redux




Marc Zegans’ first Poetry Show appearance a few weeks ago included readings/tracks from a book-with-CD anthology titled Spoken Word Revolution: Slam, Hip Hop & the Poetry of a New Generation. This time, we hear cuts from the second volume of that collection, titled Spoken Word Revolution Redux, again edited by Mark Eleveld and narrated by Mark Smith. Redux expands the scope of the first volume along with the commonly-understood definition of spoken-word. The Redux collection includes older-style poetry readings alongside more recent forms like slam, hip-hop, etc.

We also got a sneak preview of Marc’s soon-to-be-published poetry collection, titled The Underwater Typewriter (Pelekinesis Press). Marc will be back soon for a show dedicated to the new book.

Readings: Joanie Maro, guest reader encore


19 - composite

For the July 19, 2015 Poetry Show, host Dennis Morton again welcomed guest reader Joanie Maro. Readings this time were from new issues of a pair of our favorite poetry periodicals, and from one of Dennis’ favorite poets:

Readings: with guest reader Joanie Maro


12 - 4 covers

For this week’s Poetry Show, host Dennis Morton welcomed a guest reader – Joanie Maro. It was Joanie’s first appearance on the show, but hopefully not the last. She’s a new member of the Board of Directors of Poetry Santa Cruz, poetry lover (obviously) and intrepid discoverer of out-of-print local poetry publications. Joanie and Dennis shared and discussed a number of poems with listeners.

Readings: Ostriker, Simic, Shantiris, Astley


05 - 4 covers

On the Poetry Show broadcast of July 5, 2015, host Dennis Morton read poetry selections from a variety of sources, including:

Marc Zegans, guest poet


28 - Marc ZegansPoet, spoken-word artist and creative development advisor Marc Zegans joined host Dennis Morton on June 28, 2015 for a discussion of Marc’s chosen genre: spoken-word poetry. Marc quickly introduced the first and most obvious difference between spoken-word and traditional poetry – performance is an integral part of spoken-word, inseparable from the words themselves. To demonstrate, we heard several cuts from a book-with-CD anthology titled Spoken Word Revolution: Slam, Hip Hop & the Poetry of a New Generation, edited by Mark Eleveld. An advisor on the collection was Mark Smith, who many credit with founding the “slam” scene. Also included is an introduction by Billy Collins.


28 - Spoken Word cover




Marc also shared some of his own wry poems, demonstrating (among other things) that humor is often an element of spoken-word. An interesting discussion ensued concerning Marc’s composition process, paying special attention to the sound of the lines and words when performed - in Marc’s words, the “musical possibilities”. For more biography of Marc Zegans, check out this interview on a blog called Creative Life.

Stephen Kessler Translates Spanish Poet, Luis Cernuda


Layout 1On the June 21, 2015 Poetry Show, local poetry luminary (and past Poetry Show host) Stephen Kessler joined host Dennis Morton to read from and discuss his new book, a hefty volume of translations titled Forbidden Pleasures: New Selected Poems [1924-1949], by the Spanish writer Luis Cernuda. Published by Black Widow Press, the 400+ page book features Kessler’s new English translations, side-by-side on the pages with the original Spanish text.

Cernuda was one of the “Generation of ’27” (Spanish: Generación del 27), a group of young poets that arose during the 1920s. The members were scattered by the onset of the Spanish Civil War in 1936. Best-known to Americans of the group is probably Federico Garcia Lorca, who was assassinated in the early days of the war. Cernuda spent many years in the UK and US before ending up in Mexico late in life. He never returned to Spain.

20 - S. KesslerThe stars have been in alignment for the Poetry Show (or maybe it’s the hard work of Dennis Morton in scheduling guests and subjects). Last week we learned that a previous guest, Juan Felipe Herrera, has just been named United States Poet Laureate. In honor of that honor, we re-broadcast Mr. Herrera’s 2014 visit to the show. This week’s guest, Stephen Kessler, was also a guest on that 2014 show because of his long-time association with both Herrera and the Poetry Show.

Forbidden Pleasures will have its official Santa Cruz introduction on July 18 at Felix Kulpa Gallery, presented by A New Cadence Poetry Series.