Poet | Writer | Author
Anthologies and Memoir
—My Gay Dad and the Rocky Ride to Our True selves
Not Yet Published
Dad was an eccentric, closeted gay, Chicago artist who hobnobbed with celebrities and criminals. In 1977, while leading a double life, he began to record almost everything. By 2000, he’d recorded 6000 audio cassette tapes, which are archived at the Kinsey Institute.
During those years, Dad faced financial hardships, divorce, alcoholism, an arrest and beating by the police, dysfunctional family dynamics, my brother’s schizophrenic diagnosis, and physical decline. Meanwhile, I married young and had two daughters, earned a college degree, escaped an abusive marriage, launched a writing career, raised my daughters, published two books, tried to recapture my youth, performed at poetry slams, cared for my aging dad, and learned to embrace my own creativity.
The book is the story of my father and I both learning to accept ourselves and lead an authentic, creative life without losing our compassion or sense of humor.
Lending Color to the
85 pages | 19 paintings | 48 poems
Soft Cover | 8.5” x 8.5” | $19.50
NOW ONLY $15.00
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This project is partially supported by an Individual Artists Program Grant from the City of Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs & Special Events and the Illinois Arts Council, a state agency through federal funds provided by the National Endowment for the Arts.
Wherever I'm At
Book of the Year prize.
These pages feature outstanding work produced by more than 150 poets and artists, with a range of style and complexity that mirrors Chicago’s varied and nuanced character. Every poet and artist boasts strong Chicago ties.
A dazzling array of voices representing many generations of Chicagoans grace these pages, including essential poets such as Li-Young Lee, Tyehimba Jess, Sandra Cisneros, Campbell McGrath, Patricia Smith, Edward Hirsch, Kathleen Rooney, Elise Paschen, Sterling Plumpp, Marianne Boruch, Tara Betts, Reginald Gibbons….the list is exhaustive, deliberately so. Reading this anthology will erase any doubt that Chicago belongs in the top tier of literary cities, and in the top tier of cities, period.
Newcity Lit: My Kind of Town: A Review of “Wherever I’m At: An Anthology of Chicago Poetry” by Mary Wisniewski. The anthology is, in short, full of startling and various riches.. Read More
WBEZ Chicago (NPR): In the hands of these poets, Chicago is a collection of scintillating everyday moments by Elly Fishman. A blockbuster anthology, just out, gives a star turn to 134 living poets with deep ties to the city. Meet three standouts. Read More.
Third Coast Review: Myriad Chicagos, Wherever I’m At: An Anthology of Chicago Poetry, reviewed by Patrick T. Reardon. Read More
Chicago Tribune: Chicago as a poem: The birthplace of slam poetry finally gets a contemporary anthology of poetry by Christopher Borrelli. Some days the hardest thing in the world is explaining Chicago to someone not from Chicago...Read More
Wednesday Journal (Oak Park, IL): Poems where you can find yourself by Michelle Dybal. Being whisked away on a journey through Chicago — its neighborhoods, its establishments, its parks and natural habitats, across time...Read More
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American Gun: A Poem by 100 Chicagoans is a collective response to the individual suffering behind the statistics. Chris Green asked one-hundred poets from across the city to take turns writing a communal poem about Chicago’s gun violence. The poets range in age, gender, race, ethnicity, and poetic experience. Well-known poets write with teen poets from the South and West Sides… many from the group Young Chicago Authors, but also young poets from Chicago’s alternative high schools, where statistically, students experience the most gun violence in the city.
The poem is a pantoum, a poetic form where every line is repeated twice. This form mirrors the semi-automatic firing of a weapon and also the seemingly endless cycle of shootings in Chicago.
Our country needs more truth, more collaboration – something like this poem where diverse people sing together in sanity and beauty. When politics fails us, poetry tells us we are not alone in our outrage and hope.