2011 Poet Populist Finalists
Election Deadline: Friday, April 29, 2011 at 12:00 Noon
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Toni Bee is a writer, poet, and photographer. She is a citizen journalist in the Neighbor Media program at Cambridge Community Television (CCTV) where she hosts the monthly talk show "BeLive with Bee". Toni says she is a people person who enjoys covering stories about community, artists, and all types of colorful people. Check out her blog at: www.cctvcambridge.org/user/tonibee
Narrative: Poetry is an art that makes my heart thump. The thump is soul, a rhythm, a cadence, and a gift of words. I would like to share words with community but also have community share their words, their special art, and their thump with me. If I become Poet Populist of Cambridge, my goal would be to present poetry and teach its methods while creating a reciprocal relationship with those who also consume the literary art form. I would work hard with the children and people of the city to feel the thumps of their hearts and the souls in their poetry. I would accomplish this by visiting Cambridge middle and high schools and by working with English teachers to create poetry workshops. It would be great to encourage the youth to express themselves in new ways.
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Irene Koronas has a fine arts degree from Mass College of Art Boston. She is a multi-media artist working with paint, collage, mono-printing, artists books, poetry and photography. She is currently the poetry editor for Wilderness House Literary Review. Her poetry has appeared in journals and magazines,on line zines and Clarion 13. She has seven chap-books: work among friends, where words drip, perception, tongue on everyday, species, flat house and to speak the meaning of being. her work is in 3 anthologies, and she has two full length books, 'self portrait drawn from many' ibbettson street press 2009; "pentakomon cyprus", 2010 Cervena Barva Press. "Emily Dickinson", Propaganda Press 2010 (chapbooks); "Zero Boundaries" Cervena Barva Press 2009.
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Scott Ruescher has lived in the Cambridgeport neighborhood of Cambridge, Massachusetts, since 1982, moving there from across the river in Boston at the insistence of a diehard Cantabrigian who claimed, perhaps rightly, that Cambridgeport was the absolute hippest and most progressive neighborhood in the Boston area. For 23 years or so Ruescher has been married to Rebecca Hayden, a fact worth noting here because she was a neighbor in Cambrideport when he met her at work (over at the English department of Boston University) in 1983. They lived together in a sequence of three rental apartments in Cambrideport before they were able to buy a sweet little condo in 2003. A native of central Ohio, Ruescher grew up in an historically interesting town outside of the capital city of Columbus that had gone in one century from being a reliable stop for runaway slaves on the Underground Railroad before the Civil War to being a white-flight suburb during the Vietnam and Cold War eras. His parents hailed from blue-collar agricultural/industrial stock, and he and his sister were the first in the family to go to college (although admittedly not the first in the extended family). His father, the son of a tool-and-die maker, fabricated sheet metal for approximately 40 years at the same coal mining machinery factory as his uncle and grandfather, while his mother, the daughter of rural Ohioans who'd fled small farms in the country for modest work in downtown Columbus, worked as a secretary, community participant, and homemaker.
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Jeff Walker is a poet, fiction writer, and artist who has long made his home in Cambridge. Currently 48 years old, Walker has been writing poetry for nearly four decades. After attending college in the Berkshires, he worked in publishing for several years before applying his passion for writing and community service as a leader in prevention education campaigns in the fight against AIDS. Walker has since spent nearly 15 years working for state and municipal agencies designing award winning community health programs that have been reproduced internationally. Walker's success in getting the attention of his consumer and prompting healthy behavior change has come through a unique understanding of using language and art to inspire.
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