VIRTUAL EVENT: Zoom Forward! In Celebration of the Muse
Founded by Jory Post, Zoom Forward! is an ongoing reading series to showcase writers, keep our cultural spirits high, and support Bookshop Santa Cruz. Presented by phren-Z, Catamaran, and Bookshop Santa Cruz.
Live on Zoom (link and instructions provided upon signup). Register here.
DENA TAYLOR’s most recent book is Exclamation Points: Collected Poems. She is also the co-author, with her daughter Becky Taylor, of Tell Me the Number before Infinity: The story of a girl with a quirky mind, an eccentric family, and, oh yes, a disability. She is currently working on an anthology of writings by women in their 80’s.
SAROJANI ROHAN is a poet, artist, musician and thrills to the place where she can engage creatively with the Muse. She has been published in the Porter Gulch Review, Monterey Bay Poetry Review, phren-Z, Workers Write literary magazine and the anthologies “Landscapes of Soul and Story, “Sisters Singing”, “Sacred Stone, Sacred Water” and the latest, “Second Wind: Poems of Resilience and Hope” published in 2020. Living with her husband in the Santa Cruz Mountains, she finds solace and inspiration to keep hope alive as she optimistically plants new beds of kale and squash. One of her missions? To heed the words of Jalaluddin Rumi: “Yesterday is gone and its tale is told. Today new seeds are growing."
RENEE WINTER is a retired attorney who has traded billable hours for more writing time. Her essays have appeared in many literary journals including Catamaran Literary Reader, Memoir Magazine, Exposition Review, and the London Reader; and in the 2016 anthology Tales of Our Lives. She is a volunteer teacher and co-director of the Santa Cruz Poetry Project, which provides weekly writing classes to incarcerated men and women, who are writing the hard stuff. Renee is honored to participate in her second “Muse”, and thrilled to be included among such talented,
accomplished writers. She has lived in Santa Cruz for 17 years with her husband, Paul Roth, a philosophy professor at UCSC. Renee thanks Laura Davis and the other members of her weekly Thursday evening feedback group who provide the care, counsel and critique that every writer needs to succeed. Special thanks to her two daughters and granddaughters for bringing so much joy into her life!
CHRISTINA WATERS is a fifth generation Californian with a PhD in Philosophy and 20 years teaching experience at UCSanta Cruz. She is a restaurant critic and theater reviewer for GTWeekly. She currently sings with the Santa Cruz Chorale and UCSC Concert Choir. Author of the memoir Inside the Flame, Waters' latest book-in-progress is a murder mystery set in the Mojave Desert. She writes poetry to preserve her sanity.
SUSAN FREEMAN is a poet, writer, and arts educator whose work is informed by a strong sense of place, history, and the ironies of human relationships. She teaches teachers at Stanford University and is committed to keeping literacy, the arts, and social justice at the center of education. Her poetry has appeared in phren-Z, Red Wheelbarrow, Porter Gulch Review, and other publications. Susan co-hosted The Poetry Show 2009-2013, and her participation in The Muse goes back to 1982. She’s grateful to all the women who have contributed to creating space for women’s writing.
PATRICIA ZYLIUS is the author of the chapbook Once a Vibrant Field. Her poems have appeared in California Quarterly, SWWIM, Plant-Human Quarterly, Catamaran Literary Reader, Crosswinds, Body, Passager, Sequestrum, Book of Matches, Juniper, Ellipsis, Natural Bridge, six years, the last fifty-one in the same house Red Wheelbarrow, and other journals, and on the Women’s Voices for Change website. Her poems are also included in a number of anthologies. She has lived in Santa Cruz for over fifty- six years and the last fifty-one in the same house.
SIGRID ERRO was raised on a ranch where her family has lived for over 150 years. Her rural background is often reflected in her writing. Her essays have been published in the Blue Lyra Review, phren-Z, and The Notebook: a progressive journal about women with rural and small town roots. She has worked as a belly dancer, avocado ranch manager, night security guard, chaplain, self-defense instructor, massage therapist, and graphic designer. She trusts she will never run out of things to write about.
CLAUDIA STERNBACH is a former newspaper columnist and served as the Editor in Chief of the literary journal Memoir. Sternbach is also the author of three memoirs, "Now Breathe" Whiteaker Press, "Reading Lips", Unbridled Books and most recently, "Dear Goldie Hawn, Dear Leonard Cohen", Paper Angel Press.
RUTH MOTA’s life is braided with poetry and activism. While pursuing her BA in English at Oberlin College, a Spaniard read aloud from Lorca’s passionate Bodas de Sangre. She decided then she must live in a Spanish-speaking country. She applied to Peace Corps Latin America and ended up in Brazil becoming fluent in Portuguese and passionate about a Brazilian. After working on community health projects in Brazil for years, she returned to the US and obtained her Master’s in Public Health. She worked for the Santa Cruz AIDS Project and at International Health Programs where she facilitated training to health workers and AIDS activists throughout Latin America, Asia and Africa. Now returned to a redwood forest above Watsonville, she focuses on poetry. After improving her craft with Ellen Bass and enjoying poetry workshops at local libraries led by Magdalena Montagne, she facilitated poetry circles with veterans and men at Rountree Jail, publishing their work. Over forty of her poems have appeared in journals and her first anthology is currently a finalist in the Cathexis Northwest Poetry Contest.
A long-time resident of Santa Cruz, Magdalena Montagne has been leading Community Poetry Circles in collaboration with libraries along the Central Coast of California for over a decade. Prior to the pandemic she brought her WisdomVerse poetry program to residents with Alzheimer’s and other cognitive and physical impairments to assisted living facilities in Santa Cruz, Monterey and Santa Clara Counties. An editor and book coach, her first collection of poetry, Earth, My Witness was published in 2019 by Finishing Line Press.
MAGGIE PAUL is the author of Borrowed World, (Hummingbird Press 2011), Scrimshaw (Hummingbird Press 2020), and the chapbook, Stones from the Baskets of Others (Black Dirt Press 2000). Her poetry, book reviews, and interviews have appeared in the Catamaran Literary Reader, Rattle, The Monterey Poetry Review, Porter Gulch Review, Red Wheelbarrow, Phren-Z, SALT, The Jung Journal, and Moonstone. Her book review on Naming the Lost: The Fresno Poets ed. by Christopher Buckley will appear in the Spring 2022 edition of Valparaiso Poetry Review. Co-founder of Poetry Santa Cruz and a former writing instructor at UCSC, Cabrillo, and DeAnza College, she is a writing coach for college-bound students. Maggie lives in Santa Cruz.
CAROL BRENDSEL lives in Felton under the guardianship of the redwoods. She has not grown bark to her knowledge, but who can see their back? Sometimes she wants thicker skin when confronted with obstacles in connecting with others. It is then that poetry comes to the rescue and paints her in camouflage colors.