In 2007, the WCWPS hosted a special poetry reading to commemorate its annual celebration of WCW’s birthday and to acknowledge the 25th anniversary of the renaming of the Williams Center. The reading took place on September 16 on the Terrace of the Williams Center, followed by a champagne reception during which the poets signed books.
Featured poets included Alicia Ostriker and Laura Boss, both of whom read at the WCW Centennial at the Williams Center in 1983; Lewis Warsh, a featured poet at the 2005 Symposium; Urayoan Noel, featured reader for the 2006 WCWPS event; Jim Klein, WCW Poetry Cooperative member and workshop leader; and Tina Kelley, award winning poet and New York Times reporter. Bill Zavatsky, poet and Williams scholar, opened the reading with a discussion and reading of WCW’s works. Several of WCW’s family members attended, notably three daughters of William Eric Williams, WCW's son. Suzy Williams Sinclaire and Erica Williams Gilbert shared reminiscences of their grandfather. Daphne Williams Fox read a poem written by her mother that was published at the time of the Williams Center naming.
Following are more detailed bios on the WCWPS 2007 guest poets.
Laura Boss is founder and editor of Lips, a poetry magazine established in 1981 that has published Allen Ginsberg, Gregory Corso, Alice Notley, Michael Benedikt, Anne Waldman, Alicia Ostriker, Marge Piercy, and Ted Berrigan, among others. An award-winning poet, her books include Stripping, the award-winning On the Edge of the Hudson, Reports from the Front, and Arms: New And Selected Poems. She also leads the Rutherford Library’s young adult poetry workshops.
Tina Kelley’s first book of poetry, The Gospel of Galore, won a 2003 Washington State Book Award. Her upcoming collection is entitled Looking Only for Yes. Her poems have appeared in several poetry journals and on the buses of Seattle, Washington. A reporter for the Metropolitan section of the New York Times, she wrote 121 of the Times “Portraits of Grief” obituaries on 9/11 victims.
Jim Klein, a reader at the renaming of the Williams Center, has published more than 100 poems in such literary magazines as Unmuzzled Ox, Beloit Poetry Journal, Berkeley Poetry Review, Oxford Magazine, Footwork, Field, Gandhabba, Onthebus, Poetry Now, Popular Film, Pulpsmith, RT: Journal of Radical Therapy, Journal of New Jersey Poetry, and was featured in Wormwood Review. While a professor of English at Fairleigh Dickinson University for 14 years, he founded Lunch, a nationally recognized college literary magazine whose contributors went on to found other literary magazines such as The Paterson Literary Review, The Passaic Review, and Lips.
Urayoan Noel is a poet, performer, and critic, with two books of poetry, Las flores del mall, and Kool Logic/La lógica kool, and a poetry-rock-performance DVD “Kool Logic Sessions: Poems, Pop Songs, Laugh Tracts.” His poems, creative essays, nonfiction, and translations have appeared in New York Quarterly, Terra Incognita, Pavement Saw, Rattapallax, Teachers & Writers, and several anthologies. In addition he fronts the South Bronx rock band, objet petit a, and co-directs the arts organization ‘Spanic Attack. His appearances include the 2006 Modern Language Association conference.
Alice Ostriker has published eleven volumes of poetry, including Volcano Sequence and No Heaven. Her most recent prose book is Dancing at the Devil’s Party: Essays on Poetry, Politics, and the Erotic. Her poetry has appeared in The New Yorker, American Poetry Review, The Atlantic, Paris Review, Ontario Review, and The Nation. She is a Professor Emerita of English at Rutgers University.
Lewis Warsh is author of five books of fiction, three autobiographies, and 18 books of poems, most recently the forthcoming Inseparable: Poems 1995-2005. He has been editor and publisher of United Artists Books for over 28 years. He is Associate Professor of English and MFA creative writing program director at Long Island University in Brooklyn.
Bill Zavatsky has written two volumes of poetry, Where X Marks the Spot and Theories of Rain & Other Poems, as well as a prize-winning translation of Andre Breton. He was director of the independent literary press SUN for some 15 years and currently teaches English, creative writing, and film at Trinity School in NYC.