Monday, October 10, 2016

Village Poets of Sunland Tujunga monthly event features poet Shahé Mankerian

Village Poets of Sunland Tujunga present


Featured Poet at Village Poets Monthly Reading

at Tujunga's Bolton Hall Museum, 10110 Commerce Ave. Tujunga, CA 91042

Sunday, October 23, 2016 at 4:30 p.m.

Shahé Mankerian is the principal of St. Gregory Alfred and Marguerite Hovsepian School in Pasadena and the co-director of the Los Angeles Writing Project. As an educator, he has been honored with the Los Angeles Music Center's BRAVO Award, which recognizes teachers for innovation and excellence in arts education.

His poems have won Honorable Mentions in 2011 Allen Ginsberg Poetry Award and Arts & Letters Journal of Contemporary Culture. Shahé was a Semi-Finalist for the Knightville Poetry Contest. He was the first place winner of 2012 "Black and White" anthology series from Outrider Press. 

Mankerian's most recent manuscript, History of Forgetfulness, has been a finalist at four prestigious competitions: the 2013 Crab Orchard Series in Poetry Open Competition, the 2103 Bibby First Book Competition, the Quercus Review Press, Fall Poetry Book Award, 2013, and the 2014 White Pine Press Poetry Prize. His poems have been published in numerous literary magazines. 

Writer's Block at Father's Grocery Store

Coarse coffee grinds took the color 
of Medusa's hair. A pound of garbanzo 
weighed less than Nabokov's Lolita. 
A bag of pita felt softer than Juliet's 
pillow before suicidal Romeo. I wrote 
countless villanelles on paper bags 
before stuffing them with cans of dolma, 
bottled rose water, and pouches 
of Aleppo pepper. I thought I saw 
the Karamazov Brothers tasting Kalamata 
olives. Sometimes I sat on cardboard 
boxes full of fava beans and daydreamed 
about Anne Sexton. I couldn't write 
because Father called me back to work. 
Madame Bovary wanted two pounds 
of French ham sliced thinner than lined paper. 

This poem appeared in *The Indian River Review, April 2016

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