Hannah Fries & L.I. Henley

Please join us Thursday, November 2, 2017, at 7:00 pm, when poets Hannah Fries and L.I. Henley will read for the Collected Poets Series. Mocha Maya’s Coffee House, 47 Bridge St, Shelburne Falls, MA. ($2-5 suggested donation)

Hannah Fries

Hannah Fries is a poet and editor and author of the poetry collection Little Terrarium. She grew up in New Hampshire, went to Dartmouth College, and later got an MFA in poetry from Warren Wilson College. From 2005 to 2014, she worked as an editor—including poetry editor—at Orion magazine. From 2014 to 2017, she worked as a project editor for Storey Publishing. Her poetry and prose have appeared in such places as American Poetry Review, Massachusetts Review, Drunken Boat, Water~Stone Review, and Alaska Quarterly Review. Her work has been nominated for the Pushcart Prize, and she was awarded a scholarship from the Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference. She is currently a freelance editor.

L.I. Henley

L.I. Henley holds an MFA in poetry from Pacific University of Oregon and an MA in Reading and Literacy through Cal State San Bernardino. Her poems have appeared, or are forthcoming, in Waxwing, Rust + Moth, DIAGRAM, Rhino, and many other journals. She is the author of two chapbooks, Desert with a Cabin View, and The Finding (Orange Monkey Publishing). Big Yes Press published her first full-length collection, These Friends These Rooms, in 2016, and her new book, Starshine Road, won the 2017 Perugia Press Prize. She is the recipient of The Academy of American Poets University Award, The Duckabush Prize in Poetry, and two prizes from The Poet’s Billow. With her husband, poet Jonathan Maule, she lives once again in the high desert of California. Together they run the online literary and art journal, Aperçus and the Visiting Writers Series at The Beatnik Lounge in her hometown of Joshua Tree. She teaches English at Crafton Hills College in Yucaipa, California. https://www. lihenley.com.



A man who wants to be an artist should
never look at pictures. How do you learn
the shifting shape of wind, its rare summer
sweetness, mornings when sun and rising fog
wash the sky’s crisp face with a whitened sheen?
The children crouch in salt-licked shrubs,
heads down, their shoulders sun-warm and fingers
staining purple, a few tongues stained, too,
the thought of pie. The breeze is a child, shy
thing for a day. It finds the red ribbon
of a girl’s hat, catching it like a kite tail
that flutters toward the hint of song perched
on a gray branch—more suggestion of bird
than bird, tiny brushstroke in the broad sky.

(Originally published in Terrain.org)


THE WORST / L.I. Henley

Four years old . . my father’s only child
he is teaching me how to shoot

Coffee cans perched on a fence in the desert
wingless rusted birds

The one in the middle
that one is a killer

The coffee can becomes
a man with many faces

who will follow me to the door
of my first apartment

then he’ll be the old clerk
selling Lucky Strikes & Soju

then the guy from high school
who I’ll marry & divorce

he’ll be the lump in my breast

a branch in the street

the failed brakes in my car

he’ll be a long walk down a bright hall
that narrows to an inch

But right now I am small
the pistol is small &

the pistol will jerk
How can my father know my heart?

I am distracted by something shiny in the dirt

for a moment I forget the worst
My first crystal . . the size of a tooth

Steady . . my father says . . Now shoot