Poet, Memoirist, Teacher and Editor Pauletta Hansel served as the first Poet Laureate of Cincinnati from April 2016 through March 2018. She is author of six poetry collections, most recently Palindrome (Dos Madres Press, 2017), which was awarded the prestigious Weatherford Award for the best Appalachian poetry book of 2017. Read her blogs about the writing of Palindrome here.
Other recent books include Tangle (Dos Madres Press, 2015), The Lives We Live in Houses (Wind Publications, 2011) and What I Did There (Dos Madres Press, 2011). Pauletta’s poetry and prose has been featured recently in journals including Talisman, Now & Then: The Appalachian Magazine, Atlanta Review, ABZ Journal, Postcard Poems and Prose, Still: The Journal, The Mom Egg, Penwood Review and Appalachian Journal and anthologized in A Gathering at the Forks; Old Wounds, New Words; A Kentucky Christmas; Listen Here: Women Writing in Appalachia; the Motif series and Creatures of Habitat and Crossing Lines. Her poems have been featured on The Writer’s Almanac, Ted Kooser’s American Life in Poetry and Verse Daily. Links to poems and prose published online can be found below.
Pauletta leads community writing workshops and retreats in the Greater Cincinnati area and beyond. She is managing editor of Pine Mountain Sand & Gravel, the literary publication of the Southern Appalachian Writers Cooperative. (Submission guidelines here.) In addition to her role of Cincinnati’s Poet Laureate, Pauletta served as Writer in Residence at Thomas More College’s Creative Writing Vision Program and at WordPlay, a literary and literacy organization for younger writers. Pauletta received her MFA from Queens University of Charlotte. Originally from southeastern Kentucky, Pauletta lives in Cincinnati with her husband, Owen Cramer.
Self-Portrait as Ellipsis
I live at the cliff edge
of story, the pause
and the hand’s blind reach.
In the photograph
I am the vee of light
between the shadows
two bodies make.
I am the words
you might have said.
From Palindrome (Dos Madres Press, 2017)
Reading: Tending Green at Word of Mouth, Cincinnati
Reading: Strawberry Moon at Word of Mouth, Cincinnati
Reading: Of What We Make Our Poems on WVXU Around Cincinnati.
Reading: Our Words: Cincinnati, April 2017 on WVXU Around Cincinnati.
Poems and Essays
Poem: The City in Appalachian Heritage
Poem: Portrait of My Mother as a Dried Sunflower in Verse Daily
Poem: “A Blessing for the Feast of All Poets” read by the young Kentucky poet, Mackenzie Berry, in her first Word to Wellness Podcast.
Poem: Palindrome in Still: The Journal
Poem: Girl Villanelle in Silver Birch Press, ME at 17
Microfiction/Prose Poem: Secrets in Postcards Poems and Prose Magazine, 1/31/17
Poem: Photograph of a Woman at a Funeral in Journal of Kentucky Studies, Vol. 31, 2016
Poem: Portrait of My Mother’s Dementia as Saturn’s Rings in Still The Journal, Summer 2016
Of What We Make Our Poems: May 2016 Picture/Poem in Movers & Makers Cincinnati
Poem 314 it on the HIV Here & Now Project (For poet Joseph Enzweiler, who died of brain cancer, April 16, 2011. We miss you Joe!)
Poem on Postcard Poems and Prose, online magazine, published February 17, 2014
Links to Articles and Interviews
Berea College: Weatherford Award for Best Appalachian Books Announced
My Therapy Blog: 20 Valuable Blogs for Caregivers
Xavier University: Montessori Teaching Grounds Cincinnati Poet Laureate
Cincinnati.com: Springer Hosts Cincinnati Poet Laureate Pauletta Hansel
Ohio Arts Council Arts Blog: Appalalachian Writers Project Showcases the Power of the Small Press
Poetry Month Interview on WVXU, Around Cincinnati
CityBeat calls Pauletta 2017’s Best Ambassador for Poetry
Cincinnati Enquirer Article, April 23, 2016 on WordPlay’s Poet Tree Project.
Radio Interview on Around Cincinnati
WVXU broadcast September 25, 2015 “Pauletta Hansel Releases Her Newest Book Of Poetry, Tangle”
Radio Interview on Around Cincinnati, WVXU broadcast April 19, 2012
Online Interview on Dos Madres Press, Online Interview with Pauletta Hansel on Her New Book, Tangle
Radio Interview on Accents, WRFL broadcast Dec 14, 2012
Article on Soapbox Cincinnati, online magazine, published September 11, 2012