• Address 720 East Locust Street | Milwaukee, WI 53212
  • Phone 414.263.5001
  • Hours Tue-Fri 11-8pm | Sat-Sun 12-5pm | Closed Mon
  • Hours Tue-Fri 11-8pm, Sat-Sun 12-5pm, Closed Mon
Event Calendar
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readings & workshops
November 19

Poetry Reading: Santee Frazier & Franklin K.R. Cline

readings & workshops
November 21

Offsite Talk: Native American Identity & the Politics of the Poetic Image 

readings & workshops
December 3

Ultimate Truth Poetry Reading and Book Release

readings & workshops
December 6

Heddy Keith author of Through it All

readings & workshops
December 9

Poetry Reading: Tonya M. Foster & Samiya Bashir

performances
December 10

Alternating Currents Live presents Nicole Mitchell Quartet

special events
January 27 -28

24th Annual Poetry Marathon & Benefit

Anne-Marie Cusac

Anne-Marie Cusac's poetry has appeared in Poetry, Iowa Review, TriQuarterly, The American Scholar, The Madison Review, and Crab Orchard Review. 

Her first poetry book, The Mean Days(2001) was published by Tia Chucha Press and won the Posner Book Award from the Council for Wisconsin Writers. Her second book of poems, Silkie, won the Many Mountains Moving book prize in 2007, and has been selected by the Wisconsin Library Association for Outstanding Achievement recognition in poetry.

A recipient of a Wallace Stegner Fellowship at Stanford University and a Wisconsin Arts Board Individual Artist's grant, Cusac was for ten years an editor and investigative reporter for The Progressive magazine. Her investigative reporting there won several awards, including the prestigious George Polk Award. She is a professor in Communication at Roosevelt University and a contributing writer for The Progressive. Her nonfiction book, Cruel and Unusual: The Culture of Punishment in America, is forthcoming from Yale University Press in Spring 2009.

Selected Poems

Silkie Song


Anne-Marie Cusac

 

She flames like a window at evening
her hair the color of late sunset
so low and molten it drips into the water.

I shake myself hard
and follow the coldest current
until I see the mackerel
running for open water,

stomachs fat with the heat they've eaten,
gills streaming light like notched lanterns.

I pound my tail. I catch one
and another, another, another.
I tear into their bodies
until I cramp with belly fire
the color of her hair.