• 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 - Jun 27

Book Club: Readshops led by Karl Gartung

readings & workshops
July 3 - Dec 30

Dhamma MKE

readings & workshops
October 22 - Dec 31

Welcome Home!: A Veterans Writing Group

exhibitions
December 8 - Jan 25

To Sight's Limit

readings & workshops
December 12

Poetry Reading: Eric Baus & Siwar Masannat

readings & workshops
December 13

Reading: Milwaukee Queer Writing Project

special events
December 15 -15

Woodland Pattern's Annual Open House

performances
December 19

Formations Series for New and Improvised Music

December 23 - Jan 1

CLOSED

special events
January 25 -26

26th Annual Poetry Marathon and Benefit

Archived readings & workshops
Mar 25 Wednesday, March 25
10:00am, $10 all day access | FREE entry for readers, and for those who pledge a reader for $40 or more

 

A reading in celebration of the release of Margaret (Peggy) Rozga’s latest poetry collection, Justice Freedom Herbs.

 

Margaret (Peggy) Rozga is a civil rights activist, poet, playwright, professor emerita, and the author of Though I Haven't Been to Baghdad (Benu Press, 2012) and 200 Nights and One Day (Benu Press, 2009. She served as managing editor of the chapbook anthology Turn Up the Volume: Poems about the States of Wisconsin (Little Bird Press, 2013). Her essay "Community Inclusive: A Poetics to Move Us Forward" was nominated for a Pushcart Prize and is included in the Cow Feather Press anthology of prose works from Verse Wisconsin. She has been awarded residencies at the Sitka Center for Arts and Ecology and at the Ragdale Foundation and a fellowship at the American Antiquarian Society. A sought-after poetry workshop facilitator and speaker on social justice issues, Peggy believes both activism and creative writing involve seeing, being aware beyond the obvious, and both involve the dogged determination to get something right.  

"Margaret Rozga's words alight - as a monarch might - on the edge of your spirit. They linger there as if you read them in passing, maybe in a volume on a shelf in a cabin overlooking a river, and come to you quietly for you to savor later. A beautiful work for justice and beauty - great action and the small work of tending leaves."

             —Andi Cumbo Floyd

 


 

History Lesson

at a church near Philadelphia, Mississippi

 

For James Chaney, Michael Schwerner and Andrew Goodman

 

Burned down to the bell Freedom Summer

then resurrected in red brick, a site now

for civil rights pilgrims, this church, its grounds

with three crosses, held me like a womb of silence. 

 

Surely the commercial-sized panel truck

jolted and creaked down the rutted road, 

but its unblemished white body, like some

unpurged ghost in my mind, 

 

suddenly loomed large and larger, the vehicle

edging in on me, stopping, so the driver, White

like me, my age, could question me face to face. 

Do you know where highway 740 is at?

 

I relaxed, the question no challenge. I had a map, 

fetched it from my car, looked, but could not

get my bearings.

 

He took my map, studied it, returned it to me. 

I used to live here, he says and breathes in 

then exhales slowly. But

everything's changed.

 

"Is that right?"

He showed no doubt. Yes.

 

I watched him pull back onto the road

looked for a logo on his truck. None. 

Checked the map index. There is no highway740. 

What was he looking for? What was he telling me?

 

Maybe I misremember what number he asked for. 

That was the summer we turned the corner

of a new century. I write a dozen years later, 

and I still don't know.