Monday, April 9, 2012

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Who can say where a poet's journey begins? 

In West Virginia in childhood when a father recites Poe at the supper table? At church and school where psalms, hymns, and schoolbook verses teach cadence and rhythm? When a girl telling herself stories keeps fear and boredom at bay? When a mother travels twice a month on a bus to the library to gather books for her daughter to devour? In nearby woods where wildflowers, birdsong, mushrooms, and turtles abound? On summer nights on a blanket under the stars when a father teaches the stories the stars tell, what are the meanings of infinity and eternity?

Living now on a great flyway between two wildlife refuges, where great blue heron and wild geese fly over in season daily, surrounded by gardens she has designed, a poet creates a haven in which to celebrate the quiet pleasures of love, friendship, artistic endeavor, spiritual growth, commitment to service and sharing. Born into the aftermath of war, spending her later years still in a world torn by violence and injustice, she seeks to right the balance in the only ways each one of us can: small ordinary daily gestures that foster life.

Patricia Roth Schwartz, poet, fiction writer, gardener, and prison volunteer (facilitating a poetry workshop with inmates), lives in the Finger Lakes Region of central New York state on her thirty-five acre property, Sage-Thyme Haven. Widely published in literary journals including Nimrod, South Carolina Review, Iron Horse, Clackamas Literary Review, Madison Review, and Palo Alto Review, her most recent work appears in Off the Coast, Ellipsis, Clare, and Chaffin. She has been the recipient of awards from Clackamas, Rochester's ImageOut, Sow's Ear, and HeartLodge, plus a Lambda Literary award.

Her full length volumes of poetry are Hungers (Blue Spruce 1972), Planting Bulbs in a Time of War (FootHills 2005), Down the Middle with a Nickel: a Memoir of a West Virginia Childhood in Poems (FootHills 2007), The La Brea Tar Pit Blues: a Memoir of a Los Angeles Adolescence in Poems and Short Lyric Prose (FootHills 2009), The Loneliness of Squash: Writings in creative non-fiction, prose poems and poems (Blue Heron 2012), The Crows of Copper John: a History of Auburn Prison in Poems (Olive Trees 2012)

She has served as editor for the following volumes of work by inmates: Guerillas In The Mist and Other Poems by Michael Rhynes (Olive Trees Publishing 2009), Doing Time to Cleanse My Mind: An Anthology From Auburn Correctional Facility's Inmates' Poetry Workshop 2001-2009 co-edited with John Roche (FootHills 2009), Exiting the Prism-- Fade to Black, by Jalil Muntaqim (Olive Trees 2011)

For purchasing information, go to My Books

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