About Poetry Center Digital Archive

The Poetry Center's dedicated online archive makes available new video recordings (with audio downloads), plus early audio recordings from the 1950s onward. Digital documents are sourced from unique magnetic-tape recordings, housed on-site in The Poetry Center's American Poetry Archives collection at San Francisco State University. Near all recordings document the Poetry Center Reading Series. New recordings are added as programs occur each season, Fall and Spring. Historic recordings are added as digital files are prepared and cataloged. (more)

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Poetry Center Archive Goes Live!

Historic video recordings (with downloadable audio) from The Poetry Center's first decade of video documentation. We'll post rare video from the 1970s and 1980s, thanks to digital transfers by BAVC via its  Preservation Access...

New: Spring 2014

Ana Castillo + Benjamin Hollander • Alana Siegel + Ted Rees • Judy Grahn • Matvei Yankelevich + Julien Poirier • Ugly Duckling Presse in San Francisco • Troubling Borders • George Albon + Colleen Lookingbill • James Sherry + Kit Robinson • Erica Hunt + Marty Ehrlich • ZZ Packer + Angela Pneuman • Joshua Marie Wilkinson + Sandy Florian • Hazel...

New: Fall 2014

Nancy Morejón • Ben Barson, Royal Hartigan, Hafez Modirzadeh • STRUGGLE FOR A NEW WORLD! Fred Ho Memorial Tribute • Andrew Joron + Julie Carr • Lucy Corin + Lance Olsen • Stephen Ratcliffe • Ed Roberson + Michael Palmer • Steve McQuiddy + WWII Conscientious Objectors • Dawn Lundy Martin + Anne Lesley Selcer • Catherine Wagner, Dana...

Fall 2023

Mitsuye Yamada's 100th Birthday • Eric Sneathen, Noah Ross, Violet Spurlock • Josiah Luis Alderete + Mimi Tempest, Sara Borjas, Aideed Medina • Norma Cole + Adrian Lürssen • Julia Drescher + C.J. Martin • Alice Notley • Michael Kleber-Diggs + Cynthia Parker-Ohene • International Reading for Freedom of Expression and in Solidarity with Palestine...

Spring 2023

Deema Shahabi + Beau Beausoleil • Ed Roberson • Marjan Vahdat + Tonya M. Foster • Abou Farman, with Tonya M. Foster • To the People of Iran—Music for a New Year's Liberation • Kyle Dacuyan + Mirene Arsanios • Diana Khoi Nguyen + Lan Duong • Phoebe Giannisi, with Eleni Stecopoulos • Phoebe Giannisi + Brandon Brown • Alana Marie Levinson-LaBrosse...

Fall 2022

Simon J. Ortiz • Simon J. Ortiz + Jennifer Elise Foerster • Aaron Shurin + Robert Glück, 75th birthday reading • Ari Banias + Demian DinéYazhi' • Ari Banias + Brandon Som • Zeina Hashem Beck + Farnaz Fatemi • Ronaldo V. Wilson + Tonya M. Foster •  최 Lindsay + Ariel Resnikoff • Ariel Resnikoff, George Oppen Memorial Lecture • Kiki...

Spring 2022

David Swallow Jr. • Essential Voices: Poetry of Iran and Its Diaspora • Matthew Clark Davison, Stacy D. Flood, Patrick Earl Ryan • Krip-Hop Nation: Toni Hickman, Keith Jones, Leroy F. Moore Jr., DJ Quad, Wheelchair Sports Camp • erica lewis + Divya Victor • erica lewis + Christine No • Nathalie Khankan, Saretta Morgan, Sarah Riggs • Stefano...

Special Feature: Black Women in the Archives

Selected by poet  Arisa White , this group of historic recordings features original Poetry Center readings by Ai, Maya Angelou, Gwendolyn Brooks, Lucille Clifton, Jayne Cortez, Wanda Coleman, Audre Lorde, June Jordan , and Pat Parker.  Fourteen featured...

Mazza Writers in Residence

The Poetry Center's Mazza Writer in Residence program is supported by the Sam Mazza Foundation. Beginning in Fall 2017, with poet Tongo Eisen-Martin, from Fall 2018, poet Tatiana Luboviski-Acosta, novelist Juliana Delgado Lopera, playwright Peter Sinn Nachtrieb, poet Wendy Trevino, writer, musician, filmmaker and dancer Brontez Purnell,...

Tripwire Cross-Cultural Poetics Series

The Poetry Center's Tripwire Cross-Cultural Poetics Series, presented in conjunction with Tripwire: a journal of poetics ,  focuses on cultural and poetic work seen from outside narrow nation-state points of view, presenting poets and related artists often...

George Oppen Memorial Lecture

The George Oppen Memorial Lecture was initiated in 1985, after the death of poet George Oppen (1908–1984), in order each year to explore the life, work, and legacy of Oppen and his contemporaries. Digital video is available for recent...

Poetry Coalition Series

The Poetry Coalition is a nationwide alliance of over 25 literary organizations " working together to promote the value poets bring to our culture and the important contribution poetry makes in the lives of people of all ages and...

Poetry Center Book Award

The Poetry Center Book Award has been  presented annually since 1980  by The Poetry Center, San Francisco State University, to a single outstanding book of poetry published in the prior year. Watch video, from recent years, of readings by award winners and...

In Common Writers Series

The Poetry Center's In Common Writers Series, supported by the Walter & Elise Haas Fund. Taking its initial inspiration from the Thinking Its Presence 2017 conference on race and writing, the series pairs visiting writers and artists from...

Works in Translation

Featuring programs—mostly of poets, Adnan to Zurita—either with work presented in translation from the original language, or else in which languages other than American English figure in the presentation. Arabic, Bengali, Chinese, Diné, French, German, Greek, Italian, Japanese, Kurmanji, Latin, Lakota, Persian (Farsi), Portuguese (Brazil),...

Prose at The Poetry Center

Novelists, short-story writers, essayists and memoirists, artists and theorists, historians, and storytellers: from James Baldwin in 1960 on the art of the novelist, to Joan Didion's first public reading; Kathy Acker reading from manuscript in 1977; Jackie Wang debuting Carceral Capitalism with story-writer Lily Huoang; Frank Wilderson...

1960s Audio Programs

The Poetry Center's 1960s collection represents the transition with the new decade from the era of founding director Ruth Witt-Diamant, with Robert Duncan her assistant, to the emergence of many younger poets destined to become prominent. Striking highlights are several symposia, e.g., James Baldwin on the role of the writer; memorials for...

1950s Audio Programs

The Poetry Center's unparalleled 1950s collection documents at close hand the world-renowned "San Francisco Renaissance" movement, centered on new poetry, alongside the presence of more 'mainstream' figures. This collection features many of the earliest recordings of the voices and works of outstanding poets engaged in the San Francisco scene,...

Fall 2021

Roxanne Dunbar Ortiz, Amy Sonnie, James Tracy • Keith Donnell Jr. + Antony Fangary • Mark Nowak + Worker Writers School • Angel Dominguez + Hannah Kezema • Angel Dominguez + Ronaldo V. Wilson • Jaime Cortez + Camille Roy • jayy dodd + Lourdes Figueroa • Wang Ping + Ava Koohbor • Gary Snyder with Wang Ping • Chris Nealon + Stephanie Young •...

Spring 2021

Uche Nduka + Sophia Dahlin • Fanny Howe + Linda Norton • Vi Khi Nao + Dao Strom • Cristina Rivera Garza + Kit Schluter • Momtaza Mehri + Zoé Samudzi • Denise Riley + Jennifer Soong • Youmna Chlala + Ken Chen • Brontez Purnell + Friends • Mahogany L. Browne, Christopher Malec, Josiah Luis Alderete + the work of Q.R. Hand • New Voice: Dan Lau,...

Fall 2020

Elizabeth Rosas, Samantha Cosentino, Lillian Giles • Ashley Toliver + Jason Bayani • Prageeta Sharma + Dodie Bellamy • John Yau + Andrew Joron • John Yau + Claudia La Rocco • Bob Kaufman's Collected Poems , a celebration • In honor of Audre Lorde & Pat Parker: Judy Grahn, Jewelle Gomez, Avotcja, Arisa White, Leila Weefur, Angela Hume •...

Spring 2020

James Cagney + Josiah Luis Alderete • Jennifer Bartlett + Denise Leto • Suzanne Stein + Anne Lesley Selcer • Diasporic Vietnamese Artists Network: Viet Thanh Nguyen, Thi Bui, Isabelle Thuy Pelaud, She Who Has No Master(s), Danny Thanh Nguyen • Cancelled due to pandemic: 11 remaining events, rescheduled for Fall 2020

Fall 2019

Neeli Cherkovski + Jim Dunn • Trisha Low + Syd Staiti • Fay Victor + Myra Melford • Caren Beilin + Amy Berkowitz • Peter Nachtrieb + Guests • Giancarlo Huapaya + Omar Pimienta + José Antonio Villarán + Friends • Bao Phi + Sarah Menefee • Raquel Salas Rivera + Vanessa Angélica Villarreal • Tyrone Williams, The George Oppen Memorial Lecture •...

Spring 2019

Jasmine Gibson + Juliana Spahr • Frank B. Wilderson III + D.S. Marriott • Lauren Levin + Melissa Mack • Morgan Parker + Charif Shanahan • Brandon Shimoda + Aisuke Kondo • Maryam Ivette Parhizkar + Kenyatta A.C. Hinkle • R.O. Kwon + Nona Caspers • Feliz Lucia Molina + Alli Warren • Darius James + Val Jeanty • Juliana Delgado Lopera +...

Fall 2018

Forrest Gander • Tommy Pico + Brontez Purnell • MK Chavez + Heather June Gibbons • John Pluecker + Jen Hofer: Antena Aire • Tatiana Luboviski-Acosta + Daisy Zamora + Kyle Parker • Jared Stanley + Steven Seidenberg • M. NourbeSe Philip • Leroy F. Moore + Lisa “Tiny” Gray-Garcia • May-lee Chai + Junse Kim • Janice Lee + Brenda Iijima

Spring 2018

Lewis Jordan Trio, for Langston Hughes • Dale Smith on Robert Duncan + Charles Olson • Garrett Caples + Julian Talamantez Brolaski • Jackie Wang + Lily Hoang • Solmaz Sharif • David Henderson • Tom Raworth Memorial Tribute • Cosmic Diaspora + Steve Dalachinsky • The Black Aesthetic • James Kass + Paul S. Flores

Fall 2017

Nellie Wong + Genny Lim • Martha Ronk + Paul Vangelisti • Douglas Kearney + Tatiana Luboviski-Acosta • Camille T. Dungy + Javier Zamora • Tongo Eisen-Martin + Marshall Trammell • Dennis Cooper + Eileen Myles • William Rowe + Helen Dimos • Trace Peterson + Max Wolf Valerio • alex cruse + Kevin CK Lo • David Meltzer Memorial Tribute •...

Spring 2017

Charles Alexander + Susan Thackrey • Benjamin Hollander Memorial Tribute • Wendy Trevino + Oki Sogumi • Andrew Maxwell + Hank Lazer • Layli Long Soldier + Truong Tran • Asya Abdrahman + Faith Aidele + Tonya M. Foster • David Boyce + Hafez Modirzadeh + Marshall Trammell + poets • Margaret Randall • Poetry Center Chapbook Exchange •...

Fall 2016

Tongo Eisen-Martin + Jasmine Gibson • Samantha Giles + Angela Hume • Bill Berkson Memorial Tribute • Jennifer Foerster • Julia Bloch + erica lewis • Florencia Castellano + Luis Felipe Fabre + Pablo Katchadjian • Lee Ann Brown + Rod Smith • Mg Roberts + Geneva Chao • Carolina De Robertis + Micah Perks • José Kozer • Alice Notley • Oscar...

Spring 2016

Jane Gregory + Vincent Katz + Tom Clark • Annie Finch • Clarence Major + Patricia Spears Jones • Fred Moten + Nathaniel Mackey + Hafez Modirzadeh • Ed Pavlić + David Lau • Elaine Kahn + Trisha Low • Sarah Schulman + Terry Castle • Kuwentuhan (Talkstory): Barbara Jane Reyes + Arlene Biala + Javier O. Huerta + Urayoán Noel + Aimee...

Fall 2015

Robert Dewhurst + Michael Seth Steward on John Wieners • David Meltzer • Katy Bohinc + Paul Ebenkamp • Michael Gizzi’s Collected Poems • Lucia Berlin’s A Manual for Cleaning Women  • Tonya M. Foster + David Buuck • John Keene + Tân Khánh Cao • Cassie Thornton + Christian Nagler + Christopher Higginbotham •...

Spring 2015

Frank O’Hara’s Lunch Poems 50th Anniversary Reading • Okey Ndibe • Alli Warren + Laura Moriarty • Bill Berkson + Duncan McNaughton • Robert Adamson + Joanne Kyger • Pierre Joris on Paul Celan + Nicole Peyrafitte • Tribute to Kathleen Fraser • Stacy Szymaszek + Peter Culley • Arisa White + Raina J. Léon • Maged Zaher + Rodney...

Alpha Index: Abdrahman to Bunting

Alphabetical index of programs by author surname, subject surname, or program title, A–B. • Index photo: Ai (Florence Anthony), November 14, 1974, reading at The Poetry Center, San Francisco State (video still). 

Alpha Index: Callahan to Durbin

Alphabetical index of programs by author surname, subject surname, or program title, C–D. • Index photo: Ken Chen and Youmna Chlala, remote-access reading from their Brooklyn home, April 1, 2021 (video still).

Alpha Index: Eberhart to Guzman

Alphabetical index of programs by author surname, subject surname, or program title, E–G. • Index photo: Kathleen Fraser, March 22, 2015 at California College of the Arts Writers Studio, San Francisco campus, reading at the Tribute to Kathleen Fraser, organized in celebration of her 80th birthday (video still).

Alph Index: Hagedorn to Inada

Alphabetical index of programs by author surname, subject surname, or program title, H–I. • Index photo: Jessica Hagedorn and the West Coast Gangster Choir, October 30, 1975 (video still).

Alpha Index: James to Luboviski-Acosta

Alphabetical index of programs by author surname, subject surname, or program title, J–L. • Index photo: Truong Tran and Layli Long Soldier, talking with the audience March 2, 2017 at The Poetry Center (video still).

Alpha Index: Mac Low to Myles

Alphabetical index of programs by author surname, subject surname, or program title, Ma to My. • Index photo: Fred Moten and Stefano Harney, at McRoskey Mattress Co., San Francisco, April 6, 2022 (video still).

Alpha Index: Nachtrieb to Quinteros

Alphabetical index of programs by author surname, subject surname, or program title, N–Q. • Index photo: Simon Ortiz, November 19, 1975, reading at San Francisco State, César Chavez Student Center (video still).

Alpha Index: Randall to Rukeyser

Alphabetical index of programs by author surname, subject surname, or program title, Ra–Ry. • Index photo: Denise Riley and Jennifer Soong (emcee, Brandon Brown): March 20, 2021 (video still).

Alpha Index: Salas to Szymaszek

Alphabetical index of programs by author surname, subject surname, or program title, Sa–Sz. • Index photo: Solmaz Sharif, March 7, 2018, reading at San Francisco State, Humanities Symposium Room, to celebrate Persis Karim's appointment as inaugural director of the Center for Iranian Diaspora Studies Center (video still).

Alpha Index: Taitano to Zurita

Alphabetical index of programs by author surname, subject surname, or program title, T–Z. • Index photo: Frank B. Wilderson III, February 14, 2019, talking with the audience after reading from the manuscript of his book  Afro-Pessimism , a year before that book's release (video still).



Steve Dickison, director

Elise Ficarra, associate director

For questions or comments about The Poetry Center or holdings in The Poetry Center Digital Archive: 

Email: poetry@sfsu.edu

Phone: (415) 338-2227

Website: https://poetry.sfsu.edu