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Literary Partners Program: Finishing Line Press Fall Poetry Reading Featuring: Rodica Draghincescu and More

Sep 6, 2014 | 1:00 pm

Please join Finishing Line Press for a reading celebrating poets and their recent publications.

Reception to follow.

Featured Reader, Rodica Draghincescu

Other readers include:
Leah Maines
Mark Belair
Hélène Cardona
John FitzGerald
Sherri Felt Dratfield
Michael J. Grabell
Frank Messina
Ilene Starger
Rose Auslander

About the Poets:

Rodica Draghincescu is a linguist, writer, poet and translator. She writes in French and Romanian. She is the author of numerous books of poetry published in Romania, France, Germany and the United States. Her latest book, RA(ts) (Éditions du Petit Pois, Béziers 2012) won VIRGIL prize for European French-language poetry and literature, from the Societe des Poetes Francais. In addition, she is the general director of multidisciplinary, multilingual web magazine: LEVURE LITTERAIRE ( and a member of the editorial board of the German review Matrix. She is currently pursuing a doctorate at the Paul Verlaine University in Metz, France.

Leah Maines is the publisher of Finishing Line Press. She is an American poet, best-selling author, actor, and editor. Maines has edited over 600 books and is the author of Beyond the River (Kentucky Writers Coalition Press, 2002) and Looking to the East with Western Eyes (Finishing Line Press, 1998). She was born in Cincinnati, Ohio and grew up in Kentucky. She was educated in Europe, Japan, and the USA. In addition to an English degree, Maines also holds a Master of Divinity. She was the poet-in-residence for Northern Kentucky University in 2000. Her publication credits include Flyway, Licking River Review, Nebo and the Owen Wister Review.

Mark Belair’s poems have appeared in numerous journals, including Alabama Literary Review, Atlanta Review, Harvard Review, Michigan Quarterly Review, Poetry East and The South Carolina Review. His books include the collection While We’re Waiting (Aldrich Press, 2013) and two chapbook collections: Night Watch (Finishing Line Press, 2013), and Walk With Me (Parallel Press of the University of Wisconsin at Madison, 2012). For more information, please visit

Hélène Cardona is a poet & actor (Chocolat, Dawn of the Planet of the Apes), author of Dreaming My Animal Selves (Salmon Poetry, 2013), winner of the Pinnacle Book Award, and The Astonished Universe (Red Hen Press, 2006). She speaks six languages and holds a Master’s in American Literature from the Sorbonne, taught at Hamilton College & LMU, translated for the Canadian Embassy & NEA, and received fellowships from the Goethe-Institut & the Universidad Internacional de Andalucía. She is co-editor of Dublin Poetry Review and Levure Littéraire. Other publications include Washington Square, World Literature Today, Poetry International, The Warwick Review.

John FitzGerald is a poet, writer, editor, and attorney for the disabled. He is author of Favorite Bedtime Stories (Salmon Poetry, 2014), The Mind (Salmon Poetry), Telling Time by the Shadows (Turning Point), and Spring Water (Turning Point Books Prize, 2005). Other works include Primate, a novel and screenplay, and the non-fiction Everything I Know. Other publications include Poetry: Reading it, Writing it, Publishing it (Salmon Poetry), Dogs Singing: A Tribute Anthology (Salmon Poetry), From the Four-Chambered Heart: In Tribute to Anais Nin (Sybaritic Press), The Warwick Review, World Literature Today, MadHat Review. He was editor of the Law Review.

Sherri Felt Dratfield’s second collection of poetry, Water Vigils, was recently published by Finishing Line Press and has been nominated for the 2014 Pushcart Prize. The City, Sherri’s debut book of poetry published in 2013, also was nominated for a Pushcart Prize. Joan Larkin Recently selected Sherri’s poem “Hallelu” as a finalist in the Jewish Current’s Raynes Competition. Her poem entitled Time Pieces Repaired, received a Margaret Reid Prize for Traditional Poetry. Sherri graduated from Goucher College majoring in drama and English, received an MFA in Acting from University of Denver and a JD, Order of the Coif, from NYU. She has earned her living as an actor, theatrical producer and attorney specializing in intellectual property and First Amendment Law. Sherri lives in the West Village in Manhattan with her husband, Simon, and their two wheaten terriers.

Michael J. Grabell’s first poetry chapbook, Macho Man, won the Finishing Line Press prize and was nominated for a Pushcart. His poems have appeared in Best American Poetry, Best New Poets 2009, Southwest Review, Rattle, and the Columbia Poetry Review. He has won a Dorothy Sargent Rosenberg prize and was runner-up in the River Styx International Poetry Contest. Grabell is an investigative reporter for ProPublica, where he has produced stories for the New York Times, NPR, and Time magazine. He is also author of Money Well Spent?, a book on President Obama’s stimulus plan.

Frank Messina is the author of Full Count: The Book of Mets Poetry and Disorderly Conduct. Publishing credits include Beloit Poetry Journal, NY Times, Sports Illustrated, PBS, NPR and MOTH radio. In 2013, his 9/11 journal was accessioned into the collection of the National 9/11 Memorial & Museum. In 2014, Messina’s poem, Grunt, was made into a short film by the Manhattan Film Institute. He has a recurring role as Al Capone’s bodyguard in HBO’s Boardwalk Empire, and stars as vigilante “Ginger Lafferty” in the Troma Films feature, Toxic Tutu. He serves on the Advisory Board of the Kerouac Project.

Ilene Starger’s poetry has appeared in Bayou, Oyez Review, Georgetown Review, Tributaries, Folio, Oberon, Paper Street, Second Wind, Tar Wolf Review, Erato, Grasslimb, Manzanita, Poesia, Ibbetson Street, Iodine, Phoenix, The New Renaissance, The Same, The Tupelo Press Poetry Project and The Istanbul Literary Review. Finishing Line Press published her chapbook Lethe, Postponed. She is the co-creator of Elusive Things, a classical song cycle composed by Eric Shimelonis based on ten of her poems. Sung by F. Murray Abraham and played by the musicians of Voice of the City Ensemble, it had its premiere at Carnegie Hall on January 15, 2010.

Rose Auslander lives with her husband and daughters in Brooklyn, a block from the Gowanus Canal. She is Poetry Editor of Folded Word Press, Editor of unFold magazine, and co-editor of the Twitter
anthology, On A Narrow Windowsill; she has read her poems on NPR; her poem “For You Mothers” received a Pushcart nomination and her “Oh My” received a Best of the Net nomination. Her Finishing Line chapbooks include Folding Water and the upcoming The Dolphin in the Gowanus. For updates, follow Rose’s blog:

This event is made possible in part through the Poets House Literary Partners Program

Admission Free and Open to the Public Location Elizabeth Kray Hall Sponsored By Finishing Line Press


Sep 6, 2014
1:00 pm
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