Our good friend Matthew J. Spireng will be presenting two readings on Sunday, April 1 to kick off National Poetry Month down in New Paltz and Wurtsboro. At the second reading, those who are inspired to get up to the stage can share their work at the open mic.

April is National Poetry Month

On Sunday, April 1, award-winning poet Matthew J. Spireng will present two distinct readings.

The first will be at 4 p.m. at Elting Memorial Library, 93 Main Street, New Paltz.

The second, the opening reading for 2012 for Poetry in the Gallery, will be at 8 p.m. at the Wurtsboro Art Alliance Gallery, 73 Sullivan Street, Wurtsboro. An open mic will follow.

Matt’s most recent full-length book, What Focus Is, was published last year by Word Press. His first full-length book, Out of Body, won the 2004 Bluestem Poetry Award and was published by Bluestem Press at Emporia State University in Kansas. He is also the author of five chapbooks, including Inspiration Point, winner of the 2000 Bright Hill Press Poetry Chapbook Competition. More than 700 of his poems have been published since 1990 in more than 100 magazines and anthologies such asWildernessYankeeThe Amicus JournalNorth American Review,Connecticut ReviewLouisiana Literature and The Poets Guide to the Birds. His individual poems have also won three national awards and been recognized in scores of other competitions.

R.H.W. Dillard said of What Focus Is:

“This new collection of poems continues the project that Matthew Spireng has been pursuing for the past four decades—the making of well-crafted poems that reveal the poetry in the events of every day, those apparently ordinary moments when we do and see ourselves and the world around us with extraordinary clarity. Every page of this book contains such moments, crystalized into gems of recognition, surprise, laughter, deep feeling and true understanding, and each page compels the reader to turn to the next page eagerly to see what’s next.”