Andrena Zawinski


June 3, 2009, 1:16 am
Filed under: Poetry

What they say about Zawinski as a poet and her work:

Of her award winning SOMETHING ABOUT, Rosaly DeMaios Roffman says the poems are “brave works that are not afraid to identify pain–these poems come from an ‘examined life’–we have a Book of Hours here that connects and widly chronicles the ‘givens’ of a woman.”

Susan Kelly-DeWitt praises them as “full of elegant and perceptive surprises; they are exacting in the way they seek out and find new uses for the language we know. Each poem sets forth–measures and probes–by disappearing into, by entering into what Rilke called Die Dinge. Together they provide an entirely new vista, one which spreads itself before us with breadth and intricacy, intimacy and clarity.”

Lynne Knight dubs the poetry as “so penetrating in heart and intelligence, so unflinching in their gaze upon the self and its obligations to the world, that we feel ourselves turned upside down as we read, jostled from complacency into a desire to heed Zawinski’s passionate call to action.

Judy Wells goes on to laude her poems as “fierce and tender. She can tantalize and she can shock. She lets us know what it means to love in the 21st Century.”

Grace Cavalieri of NPR’s The Poet and the Poem, calls Zawinski “the poet we find when we’re in luck.”

The Montserrat Review’s Laura Orem praises her as “a deeply gifted poet who compels us to look more closely at our  world and more honestly at our perceptions of it.”

Of her chapbook collection, Taking the Road Where It Leads, Sharon Doubiago says “the palimpsest theme and quality of these poems is beautiful.” California Quarterly‘s Jeanne Wagner calls Zawinski “part tour guide, part magician.” Maggie Anderson goes on to say “that these are serious, richly  metaphorical poems. Take them where they lead you!”

Of Traveling in Reflected Light, Len Roberts calls her poetry “strongly imagistic and tightly rhythmical” while Lynn Emanuel characterizes her writing with “this is an articulate, urbane, sophisticated voice…the poems seethe with savvy and are packed with a bristling ironic intelligence.”

ANDRENA ZAWINSKI’s collections include SOMETHING ABOUT (2009) from Blue Light Press, a 2010 PEN Oakland Josephine Miles Award recipient; TAKING THE ROAD WHERE IT LEADS (2008) honors publication from Poets Corner Press; TRAVELING IN REFLECTED LIGHT (1995), a Kenneth Patchen Prize in Poetry from Pig Iron Press; ZAWINSKI’S GREATEST HITS 1991-2001 from Pudding House Publications archival and invitation series; ELEGIES FOR MY MOTHER, an online chapbook at The Pittsburgh Quarterly; POEMS FROM A TEACHER’S DESK from Harris Publications; SIX PACK POEMS TO GO, an illustrated postcard collection from Harris Publications. Her work has appeared in Quarterly West, Nimrod, Slipstream, Callaloo, Gulf Coast, Psychological Perspectives Journal of Jungian Thought, The Progressive Magazine, Pacific Review, Monterey Poetry Review, San Francisco Reader, Haight Ashbury Literary Journal, Many Mountains Moving, and others. Some anthologies in which her work has been published are Hard Love, We Used To Be Wives, So Luminous the Wildflowers: Anthology of CA Poets, For She is the Tree of Life: Grandmothers through the Eyes of Women Writers, Nothing But Red,  Beyond Forgetting on Alzheimer’s, Not A Muse: Inner Lives of Women, and Eating Her Wedding Dress.

Work online appears at Tattoo Highway, Canary, Pedestal, The Amistad, Poemeleon, Adirondack Review, Kritya, Beatitude, Digital Paper, Switched on Gutenberg, and at many more sites.

Zawinski has been Features Editor at Poetry Magazine.com  since 2000. She was born and raised in Pittsburgh, PA, but has made the California her home for several years. Zawinski teaches writing at Laney Community College in Oakland and lives on the city island of Alameda. She founded and organizes the San Francisco Bay Area Women’s Poetry Potluck Salon. When not writing or teaching, she is an avid shutterbug with many photographs appearing in literary journals in print and online.

Contact andrena.zawinski@att.net to schedule a reading.

For sample poems, see:   http://www.poetrymagazine.com/zawinski



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June 3, 2009, 12:26 am
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