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Birds Fall Silent in Oakland

  • Perch Coffee House 440 Grand Avenue Oakland, CA, 94610 United States (map)

Celebrate the publication of our latest anthology, Birds Fall Silent in the Mechanical Sea at Oakland’s Perch Cafe and meet an indie press looking for new voices. 

Featuring contributors and special guests Guy Biederman, Cathyann Cusimano, Carol Dorf, Kit Kennedy, Richard Loranger, Mary Mackey, and Julian Mithra.

Hosted by Jane Ormerod and Richard Loranger

Doors open 6:30 pm

Free admission but please buy a coffee or two.

Birds Fall Silent in the Mechanical Sea is an exhilarating collection of contemporary poetry and fiction from established and emerging writers across the United States and beyond. The anthology also contains an interview with musician/artist Walter Steding.

Submissions for our next anthology are open October 15 2019 to January 15 2020

Guy Biederman is the author of Soundings and Fathoms (Finishing Line Press). He has won awards in Exposition Review’s Flash 405 contests, and his stories and poems appear in journals such as Carve, Flashback Fiction, and Sea Letter. Guy hosts This Day Afloat on Radio Sausalito, lives on a houseboat with his wife and two mutinous cats, and walks the planks daily.

Cathyann Cusimano's work has a way of making the ordinary speak as if it were a stop along a traveler's journey. Her words move inside the image until the language itself becomes a mirror of ideas and possibilities folding over and into one another. She is rebellious and constrained by the polite dance of her own way of seeing. Cathyann is most poignant when she draws on the personal feelings from her life, and sets the drama of her own humanity upon a stage of poetic scenery. Find her poetry in great weather’s Suitcase of Chrysanthemums.

Carol Dorf is the author of the chapbooks Some Years Ask and Theory Headed Dragon. Her poetry appears in Bodega, About Place, Glint, The Mom Egg, Surreal Poetics, The Journal of Humanistic Mathematics, Scientific American, and The Other Side of Violet (great weather for MEDIA). She is poetry editor of Talking Writing and teaches mathematics in Berkeley.

Kit Kennedy has published 6 collections of poetry including while eating oysters (CLWN WR BKS, Brooklyn, NY). Work has appeared in great weather for MEDIA, Pedestal, First Literary Review -- East, and Otoliths among others. She serves as Poet in Residence of SF Bay Times and Poet in Residence of herchurch. 2019 marks ten years of blogging: please visit She lives in Walnut Creek, CA.

Mary Mackey became a poet by running high fevers, tramping through tropical jungles, dodging machine gun fire, being caught in volcanic eruptions, swarmed by army ants, stalked by vampire bats, threatened by poisonous snakes, making catastrophic decisions with regard to men, and reading. She is the author of 14 novels, one of which made The New York Times bestseller list; and 8 collections of poetry including Sugar Zone, which won a PEN Oakland Josephine Miles Award for Literary Excellence, and The Jaguars That Prowl Our Dreams: New and Selected Poems 1974 to 2019, which won a 2018 CIIS Women’s Spirituality Book Award and the 2019 Erich Hoffer Award for the Best Book Published by a Small Press. You can contact her at

Julian née Sara Mithra’s first book If the Color Is Fugitive (Nomadic Press, 2018) traces queer desire on the frontier of the American West and was a finalist for the 2019 Lambda Literary Award in Transgender Poetry. They eke out a living in Oakland encouraging young people to write.

Earlier Event: November 7
great weather at Live Lit, San José CA
Later Event: November 10
Spoken Word Sundays NYC