• 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
readings & workshops
April 6 - Sep 28

Book Club: Readshops led by Karl Gartung

readings & workshops
July 3 - Sep 25

Dhamma MKE

August 1 - Sep 26

The Point Being: Works by Thomas Gaudynski

readings & workshops
September 5

Br!NK New Play Festival

film & video
September 6

aCinema presents Aurora Picture Show’s Extremely Shorts Touring Program

readings & workshops
September 7

Poetry Reading: Ana Božičević & Annie Grizzle

readings & workshops
September 7

Poems are a River: Writing Built and Natural Form - a workshop with Ana Božičević

September 11

Thomas Gaudynski, Linda Binder, and Mark Mantel performing in response to The Point Being

September 14

AVIARY: Selected Paintings by Ken Wood - Book Release and Reception

September 15

Alternating Currents Live presents Silvia Bolognesi and Russ Johnson

September 19

Formations Series for New and Improvised Music

readings & workshops
September 20

Poetry Reading: John Sierpinski, Sylvia Cavanaugh, and Ed Werstein

Archived readings & workshops
Sep 25 Sunday, September 25
7:00pm, $Give What You Can

We hope you’ll join us for a celebration of new poetry releases - Michael O’Leary’s Reception and Peter O’Leary’s The Sampo, both from The Cultural Society; and "Stalking Gerard Manley Hopkinsby Amy Evans, from Salient Seedling Press in conjunction with Woodland Pattern Book Center.



Born and raised in suburban Detroit, Michael O’Leary studied classics in college and received a PhD in civil and materials engineering. A founding editor of both LVNG and Flood Editions, he works as a structural engineer in the nuclear power industry and lives with his family in Chicago. He is the author of Reception (The Cultural Society, 2016).




Peter O’Leary was born in 1968 in Detroit, where he was educated by the LaSallean Christian Brothers. He studied literatureand religion at the University of Chicago. He is the author of four previous books of poetry, as well as two books of literary criticism, including Thick and Dazzling Darkness: Religious Poetry in a Secular Age. He lives in Oak Park, Illinois, and teaches at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and at the University of Chicago. With John Tipton, he edits Verge Books.


Amy Evans is a poet and singer based in London. She is the author of the chapbooks CONT. (Shearman, 2015), The Sea Quells (Shearsman, 2013) and Collecting Shells (Oystercatcher, 2011), and the co-author of VierSomes 001 (Veer, 2012). Her montages and poems have been widely published and anthologized. She co-edited The Unruly Garden: Robert Duncan and Eric Mottram, Letters and Essays (Peter Lang, 2007). Her forthcoming poetry installation SOUND((ING))S takes place at sea in the English Channel. Her broadside "Stalking Gerard Manley Hopkins" is due out soon with Salient Seedling Press in conjunction with the Woodland Pattern Book Center. She teaches at the University of Kent, UK.




Three years into my dissipation

I heard von Hempel’s hale hello

and accepted his invitation

to hash the Natural Man of Rousseau

over shirred eggs baked in ramekins.

A summer of Huckleberry Finn

had left him restless for a new

adventure and without ado

he asked me to draft his Reflections on

the Revolution in Finance.

With cake in hand, I seized the chance

to write the wrongs of my diction on

another’s name and still get paid

to cast myself as falsely played.


—Michael O’Leary


from the sampo


Väinämöinen. Earth’s ward. Feeling it. Earth’s ancient aura.


outward. Rushing toward the headland.

Suomi. His homeland.


Pieces of the Sampo. Gathering them from the lakeshore.

From the margin of the sand.

The Sampo’s sacronymic amanite lid. In fragments.

Treating them as seeds. Cryptogams.

In the soil of the jutting headland. Making furrows. With his

sword. Wrought for him by Ilmarinen.

Morning mist perfuming him. In an aerosol

of light. Shaking the seeds of the Sampo like spores of

dusky weather over the patterns of trenches in the open earth

he’s made. Everywhere plumes of shook dust.


Then calling out. To the sky woven in cloud. A final prayer.

“Maker of weather. Maker of earth.

Let us live in Suomi

in argentious Karelia.

God’s trance-hour stretched out before us

the wiles of sorcerous hags wither in.

The schemes of men unwind in.

The spells of water-sorcerers diffuse in.


Against earth envy. Protect us.

Shining midnight sun.

Beaming aestival moon.

Eastern ceaseless winds the summer rain chases:

these ward from frost, from evil brumal weather

cursed down on us from the lasting

lightless north.


A harvest and a refuge. These we’ll make. From light

the moon draws its equinoctial silver from.

And the mesh of tendrils the Sampo draws down

into fertile shadow with





—Peter O’Leary




from CONT.


May days:         

when                  s inking


there are            ap/proved sounds  

sum                    un/natural     


dis Content         with what is contained

(in a vessel,        book, law etc.)


La [6 out of every 8] meant that


while water [4      5ths] is

                            common s  +  represents


flow of space

people                 don’t float            


between               borders                

                            nor in accordance


with stock            market                   

                                                ~         buoyancy


Triton                   g/rows




Silence                profits the




berried under


-tow                      ≈ I Will


not be                   $


wept                     a way

—Amy Evans