S124. Wandering Jews Go West

C125-126, Oregon Convention Center, Level 1
Saturday, March 30, 2019
9:00 am to 10:15 am


Jewish life in Oregon began with Goldsmith's general store in 1849. The gold rush brought many immigrants including German Jews west, living up to the "wandering " name. What do we do with this peripatetic honorific or insult? Like pickles, Jewish poets on this panel have picked up wandering world flavors and share poems from North, South, East, and West diasporic influences. These poems address what "home" means for poets on the move, inviting audiences to sit and listen before heading out of town


Melisa Cahnmann-Taylor is the author of Imperfect Tense (poems), and three books about arts-based education. She was awarded 2015–2018 NEA Big Read grants, a Fulbright (2014) and artist residency (2017) in Mexico. She is Professor of Language and Literacy Education at the University of Georgia.

Philip Terman is the author of five books of poetry, including Our Portion: New and Selected Poems. A selection of his poems has been translated into Arabic. He founded the Chautauqua Writers' Festival and teaches at Clarion University, where he directs the visiting writers series.

Rodger Kamenetz's eleven books of poetry and prose include The Jew in the Lotus, The History of Last Night's Dream, The Lowercase Jew, and To Die Next To You. Founding Director of LSU's MFA program and LSU Distinguished Professor Emeritus, he works now as a dream therapist.

Robin Becker’s eight books of poems include The Black Bear Inside Me. Emerita Liberal Arts Research Professor of English at Penn State, Becker received fellowships from the Bunting Institute, the Mass Cultural Council, and the NEA. She edits poetry for The Women's Review of Books.

Richard Chess is the author of four books of poetry, Love Nailed to the Doorpost, Third Temple, Chair in the Desert, and Tekiah. He is a regular contributor to Good Letters, the blog hosted by Image Journal. He directs the Center for Jewish Studies at UNC Asheville. www.richardchess.com


March 27–30, 2019
Portland, OR

Oregon Convention Center