Margaret Kaufman

Margaret Kaufman

Margaret Kaufman, poet and fiction writer, is the author of five books of poetry, including letterpress limited editions published by the Gefn Press (London), The Janus Press (Vermont), and Protean Press (San Francisco). Her first full-length collection, Snake at the Wrist, was published by Sixteen Rivers Press in 2002. A resident of Kentfield, California, Kaufman leads poetry workshops, teaches at the Fromm Institute at the University of San Francisco, and edits both fiction and poetry.

Inheritance (2010)

“The arts of remembering in Margaret Kaufman’s Inheritance are as various as the tones of voice available to her as a poet. Her voice can be political, and it can be sensual portraiture. But always, she will show us that a ‘memory of that joyous dancing burns.’ There is heartbreak in this book, and there is high drama. I love such moments in Kaufman’s work, when memory is at its most cinematic. But there is more than just cinematics in this book, for ‘memory smolders too,’ she tells us. That moment when a poet stops, in the middle of images, looking for a word, is wisdom: ‘Somewhere my father is dying, / but I am in a room with lemon light.’ I love it, too, when Kaufman notes our strangeness of being, when ‘denial and delight’ come together on the page, and ‘all her words are aviary.’ ” —Ilya Kaminsky, author of Dancing in Odessa

Read poems from Inheritance by Margaret Kaufman.

Snake at the Wrist (2002)

“Margaret Kaufman is a remarkably gifted poet . Her attention to the nuances of the natural world and to the quiet oscillations in the lives of her speakers is both exemplary and heartbreaking. Her exquisite sense of measure and restraint make her reckonings of the complex junctures of our lives all the more compelling and powerful as she quilts together her many fabrics of human celebration. This is a gorgeous collection.” — David St. John

Read the review of Margaret’s book of short stories, Where Somebody Waits, in Cleaver Magazine.

Margaret Kaufman, Rebecca Foust, Kristen Tracy and Brenda Hillman were interviewed by Michael Krasny on his KQED-Forum program “Poetry Hour,” on Thursday, July 8, 2010.

Margaret’s poem “Photo, Brownie Troop, St. Louis, 1949” was featured in American Life in Poetry, column 225.

Margaret’s short story “Life Saving Lessons” has won Second Prize in the 2009 Nimrod Literary Awards: The Katherine Anne Porter Prize in Fiction.

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