Search for:
Back to Blog

Our Fall 2020 Series of Ten-Minute Readings

Poets House Presents, our new series of ten-minute online readings and performances, continues this fall, bringing poets from their homes—across the country and beyond—to yours. Airing on Fridays at noon, over a dozen of these short readings are scheduled from September of this year into January 2021. Designed to make poets and their work accessible in a virtual format, our hope is that these potent doses of poetry will offer hope and inspiration as the year unfolds.




September 4, 2020 | 12:00 pm

Our season begins in East Flatbush, Brooklyn with John Murillo reading from his new collection Kontemporary Amerikan Poetry (Four Way Books, 2020), which Carolyn Forché describes as “a lyric burst of virtuosity and passion long in coming, something between song and prayer, centered on a fifteen-sonnet redoublé on the subject of murderous racism and the rage that pushes against it, the whole of the book becoming an ars poetica for memory as noose and history as burning church.” 


September 11, 2020 | 12:00 pm

We move westward to San Diego, California to be with the renowned master of the short-form poem Rae Armantrout as she reads from her book Conjure (Wesleyan University Press, 2020).

Alone in your crib,
you form syllables.

Are you happy when one
is like another?

Add yourself
to yourself.

Now you have someone

—Rae Armantrout, from “Care”


September 18, 2020 | 12:00 pm 

Reaching us from Santa Barbara, California, poet, DJ, and teacher Joshua Escobar reads from Bareback Nightfall (Noemi Press & Letras Latinas, 2020). “These poems, set in alternating coasts, written in different voices and across strained dialogue, follow the relationship between DJ Ashtrae and Doctor Electronic. Two larger than life figures that live in the world of cognates and false cognates, a world in code-switch” (Natalie Scenters-Zapico).


September 25, 2020 | 12:00 pm

Poet and novelist Lois-Ann Yamanaka joins us from Honolulu to read her poetry. Her writing explores Asian American families, and the culture and language of Hawaiʻi, She has won a Lannan Literary Award, an Asian American Literary Award, and an American Book Award.




October 2, 2020 | 12:00 pm 

Joining Poets House from Raleigh, North Carolina, Tyree Daye reads from his second collection Cardinal (Copper Canyon Press, 2020), “a generous atlas that serves as a poetic ‘Green Book’—the travel-cum-survival guide for black motorists negotiating racist America in the mid-twentieth century.”


October 9, 2020 | 12:00 pm

A member of the Turtle Mountain Band of Ojibwe, artist and prolific poet Heid E. Erdrich reads from Little Big Bully (Penguin,  2020), a National Poetry Series award-winning collection that examines a host of ills, from sexual harassment to the epidemic of missing and murdered Indigenous women, while also giving voice to survivors. She joins Poets House from Minneapolis, Minnesota.


October 16, 2020 | 12:00 pm 

Acclaimed Canadian poet, essayist, and translator Lisa Robertson reads from The Baudelaire Fractal (Coach House Books, 2020), her debut novel about a poet who realizes she has written the works of Baudelaire. She joins Poets House from Nalliers, France.


October 23, 2020 | 12:00 pm 

francine j. harris joins Poets House from Houston, Texas to read from Here is the Sweet Hand (Farrar, Straus & Giroux, 2020). “This is a book full of ‘heat,’ of being beneath and being above, of desire, neighbors, the news, the horrors of systemic racism played out in a 19th-century orphanage and a shooting on a train—all presented without the censoring influence of traditional continuity,” writes Lynn McGee for Lambda Literary.


October 30, 2020 | 12:00 pm

You Don’t Have To Go To Mars for Love (Four Way Books, 2020) is the new collection of poet Yona Harvey who reads selections of this work from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. “Harvey critiques popular culture and its myriad incarnations of ‘grand theft auto,’ allowing poems to provide an alternate psychic space that affords the possibility of community and empowerment” (Publisher’s Weekly).



November 6, 2020 | 12:00 pm

A Two-Spirit, Oji-nêhiyaw member of Peguis First Nation (Treaty 1), Joshua Whitehead reads from his poetry collection full-metal indigiqueer (Talonbooks, 2017), “a cyberpunk dystopian vision of modern queer Indigenous life” (Gwen Benaway).


November 13, 2020 | 12:00 pm

Lambda Award-winning poet, performer, and scholar Rosamond S. King reads from All the Rage (Nightboat, forthcoming 2021) from Brooklyn, New York.

No accident
, surviving

we want to live
. forgotten on the trudgy treadmill
between payday and pillow
through today’s common despair

. do not be comforted. we
want to live. remember
by seeing small, 6 or 8
legs trudging or flying to
contentment. remember
by lingering with any
face divine. we want to
live. tilt yourself up; the same
vast is possible
before and behind our eyes

from All the Rage (Nightboat, 2021) by Rosamond S. King


November 20, 2020 | 12:00 pm 

Kazim Ali’s The Voice of Sheila Chandra (Alice James Books, 2020)—described as both metaphysical and “of the moment”—makes its way to us from San Diego, California.


November 27, 2020 | 12:00 pm 

Reading to us from Winston-Salem, North Carolina, writer and scholar Metta Sáma shares work from her collection Swing at your own risk (Kelsey Street Press, 2019) and the chapbook Le Animal & Other Creatures (MIEL Press, 2015). “Hungered, sensual, thicketed with image and nailed into history, Sáma’s poems are visionary manifestos of the body boiled in Black Woman bloodline,” writes Tyehimba Jess.




Dec 4, 2020 | 12:00 pm

Former Canadian Parliamentary Poet Laureate Fred Wah reaches us from Kootenay Lake, British Columbia, where he reads from his book Music at the Heart of Thinking (Talonbooks, 2020). This collection extends the projects of two previous out-of-print works Music at the Heart of Thinking (1987) and Alley, Alley Home Free (1990).


Dec 11, 2020 | 12:00 pm

From the Coast Salish Watch House on unceded Coast Salish Territory (BurnabyBritish Columbia, Canada), poet and activist Rita Wong shares work found in her forthcoming collection Current, Climate (Wilfrid Laurier University Press, 2021) and beholden (Talonbooks, 2018), co-written with Fred Wah.


Dec 18, 2020 | 12:00 pm 

Poet, translator, and essayist Aditi Machado joins Poets House from Cincinnati, Ohio to read from her collection Emporium (Nightboat Books, 2020). In this book, Machado “takes us on a tour of the development of mercantilism that gradually and deftly builds up into a critique of capitalism and its plundering. Her response to the resulting ‘emporium’ and its inevitable clichés is a language of resistance, but also one of delight, pleasure, and profound discovery” (James Laughlin Award Citation).


JANUARY | 2021


January 1, 2021 | 12:00 pm 

Originally from Sāmoa Amelika (American Samoa), poet and artist Dan Taulapapa McMullin, joins Poets House from his home in Hudson, New York to read his work. His book of poems Coconut Milk (University of Arizona Press) was on the American Library Association Rainbow List Top Ten Books of the Year.

We encourage you to explore the Poets House Presents archive, which includes readings by Joy Harjo, Chen Chen, Diane Glancy, Tommy Pico, Ed Roberson, and Joey De Jesus, among many other exciting poets. We’ll add to this archive throughout the fall, so if you miss a reading, just check back in!

And please check our website for other upcoming fall programs!

Posted In: News