October 13, 2010

PRESS RELEASE: The Poet's Haven Celebrates Thirteen Years

The Poet's Haven Celebrates Thirteen Years
Massillon, Ohio, United States of America
October 13, 2010

The Poet's Haven, publisher of an online literary journal and podcast series and promoter of live poetry and music events in northeast Ohio, announces the thirteenth anniversary of the press's official launch and the upcoming event schedule.

The Poet's Haven started out as publisher Vertigo Xi'an Xavier's personal webpage on America Online back in late 1995.  Over the course of 1996 and early 1997, the small page began accepting and publishing submissions from other writers and artists.  By October 1997, it had grown to the point that it was relaunched at PoetsHaven.com and The Poet's Haven made its official debut as an online press.  Today, PoetsHaven.com features over 6,000 pages of poetry, stories, and artwork, and has published work from more than 2,000 creators.

Celebrating the press's tenth anniversary in 2007, the first "Saturday Night With The Poet's Haven" open-mic event was held, recording the live performances for a podcast.  A second event was scheduled in April 2008, a third the following June, and from there the shows eventually became a regular monthly event.  "Saturday Night With The Poet's Haven" shows are now held on the third Saturday of each month, rotating between Akron, Ohio and Cleveland, Ohio each month.

The Poet's Haven has also taken over promotion of the poetry slam that is held during Canton, Ohio's First Friday festival.  The show has been expanded to include featured poets as well as the open-mic and slam competitions.  Arts in Stark sponsors the poetry slam, with $50, $30, and $20 prizes going to first, second, and third place in the competition.

Saturday Night With The Poet's Haven will be at Phoenix Coffee in South Euclid on October 16, featuring music from Nick Wilkinson and with featured poets Jill Riga and Lee McKinstry.

Nick Wilkinson began his music career sometime around his sophomore year of high school with a few friends. Playing bass and doing vocals, the punk-ish band was rocking the world, or at least small parts of Ohio. After that project dissolved, Nick began attending the University of Akron. Now wielding a beat up Johnson acoustic guitar and pretending he knows a thing or two about a thing or two, he writes and plays songs about those things or twos.

Jill Riga graduated in 2007 with an M.F.A. in Creative Writing from the first graduating class of the Northeast Ohio Master of Fine Arts program. She is also a fairly decent dancer and smells good. Her favorite shoe is the left one. Her poetry has appeared in Moonlit Magazine and in the drug-induced visions of used car salesmen everywhere.

Lee McKinstry is a 19-year-old Cleveland Native who has been writing, doodling, and somehow marking up papers since she was five.  She is currently a student at the College of Wooster.  She has participated in Playhouse Square's SlamU! program, and has been on Cleveland's National Youth Poetry Slam team the past two years.  She spends most of her time in flannel, looking for lost pens.

November 20's Saturday Night With The Poet's Haven event will be at Angel Falls in Akron, with featured poets Steve Brightman and Eric "Verbal Influence" Odum.

Steve Brightman is 1/4 cup dijon and whole grain mustard, 1/4 cup honey, 1/4 cup ground coffee, and 1/4 cup deep dark molasses. He lives in Kent, Ohio, with his pionus parrot and thinks that PNC park is the finest cathedral in North America. His poems have been featured in "Pudding House," "Kansas City Voices," "Origami Condom," "My Favorite Bullet," and he was included in the Ohio Bicentennial Anthology titled "I Have My Own Song For It: Modern Poems about Ohio."

Eric "Verbal Influence" Odum is a 20-year-old poet hailing from Cleveland, Ohio. He has been part of Playhouse Square's SlamU! program for the past five years. He is a peer mentor, running workshops and working on a personal level with teens on performance and writing. He was part of Cleveland's National Youth Poetry Slam team for the past three years. He also runs a poetry group called Spit Poet Spit, which performed at Urbean Joe’s Coffee this past September. Eric is the founding member of an after school poetry group called New Age Poets. He started writing at the age of nine and began performing at fifteen. He has released one chapbook, "Unspoken Declarations," and has a CD in the works called "Verbal Therapy."

Canton's First Friday Poetry Spectacular will feature Trenchcoat Manifesto on November 5 and Robert Miltner on December 3.

Trenchcoat Manifesto is poet Tom Adams and artist/musician Richard Hearn. Adams and Hearn combine spoken word and audio samples (both found and manufactured) with original music and multi-media art for spinning tales culled from just-beneath-the-surface of everyday life and the abstract and sometimes bizarre depths of the human condition.  Tom Adams began developing his craft in the mid 1980's and has performed his work at open-mics and organized poetry events around the Northeast Ohio area and beyond, including Mac's Backs, Border's Books, the Cleveland Center for Contemporary Art, the Barking Spider Tavern, Spaces Gallery, and Shakespeare & Company in Paris. Tom has published chapbooks of his work, including "Lament for The Fallen Soldier."  Richard Hearn has been involved in the Northeast Ohio art and music scene since 1980, playing in local underground "alt.art" bands of note - Uzizi and Breakfast In India, and working in the visual mediums of painting, photography and mixed-media sculpture. In the late 80’s, Richard worked on more experimental audio projects, including cut-up assemblages of field recordings and an early collaboration with Tom Adams, before forming his own band, Angst Café (1989-1995) which released the EP "Sad Venus." Besides performing at local clubs and regional festivals, Angst Café presented multimedia events at venues around Northeast Ohio that included performances by local poets and artists. During this period Richard also began to experiment with digital photography, at first by digitizing his 35mm film images for further treatment in PhotoShop, to working entirely in the digital realm, and later experimenting with analog/digital video loops.

Robert Miltner teaches literature and creative writing at Kent State Stark. He is the author of "Hotel Utopia," selected by Tim Seibles as winner of the New Rivers Press book prize, and a dozen chapbooks, including "Against the Simple" (Wick chapbook award). Miltner has published poems in "Artful Dodge," "Barrow Street," "LIT," "Diagram," "Pleiades," "Prose Poem," "Sleeping Fish," and "Sentence," and short fiction in "Istanbul Literary Review," "Apple Valley Review," "Storyglossia," "Ophelia Street," "Perigee," and "Christmas Stories from Ohio." He is working on a novel, "Tempest," and edits "The Raymond Carver Review" (http://dept.kent.edu/english/RCR/).

For more information on The Poet's Haven and Poet's Haven events, visit:


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