Entries in Houston (24)


Mary Wemple

Mary Wemple is the creator and coordinator of Words & Art, a reading series of poetry and prose inspired by the art at Rice University Art Gallery.  She also leads the critique group, Poets in the Loop.  Previous publications include Spikey Palm and Houston Poetry Fest Anthology 2005 and 2009.





Death in the Lunch Room


The TV in the lunch room

finally died.
Larry from the print shop
can’t revive it anymore
no matter how much he slaps it.
It stopped responding
and sits there quietly reflecting
the windows and the traffic outside.
It used to chatter 
to the microwave about
current events, fashion, celebrities.
But the microwave only wanted
to talk about hunger, lines of waiting,
and the ways food could explode.
“The world isn’t all about lunch,” said the TV
in its final days.
The microwave only hummed
as it turned things around inside
and patiently counted backwards.
Mary Wemple








“Sometimes it seems like the sun chooses who it will shine on.  The chosen few know nothing of shade or shadow.” ~from Shades of Poverty
The sun is definitely shining on poet Thasia “TradeMark” Madison. At such a young age she has accomplished a lot through her education and passion. A native from New Orleans, Louisiana, TradeMark had to move to Dallas upon the tragic events of Hurricane Katrina. Able to adapt swiftly from the experience, she remained active and graduated from Arlington High School receiving a full academic scholarship to Prairie View University.
While at Prairie University TradeMark became acquainted with the art of poetry. 2007, her Sophomore year, was the first time TradeMark witnessed the finesse of spoken word. A poet named Emanuelee “Outspoken” Bean started a poetry club and team on campus and soon became her mentor. The 2007-2008 PV Slam Team saw great success in a short time by receiving 1st place in Regionals and finishing 8th in the Nation in its inaugural year. TradeMark went on to coach the PV Slam team the following year.
Outside of her college studies, TradeMark co-coached the youth poetry team Metafour. Metafour is a nonprofit organization that caters to youth and their interest in creative writing. TradeMark states “that it is a fulfilling experience passing on talents and knowledge to a younger generation.” In 2012, she made it onto the Houston VIP National Slam Team – a personal goal of hers. And this year she has reached yet another one of her goals: Winning the Houston VIP Slam Team Qualifier for the Women of the World Poetry Slam (WOWPS) competition and the chance to compete in the World competition representing Houston.
TradeMark is always writing and practicing her poetry. She is most known for her poems: “Waves” a poem about the lethal effects of Hurricane Katrina and “Hyphen” a powerful poem on women’s equality. TradeMark plans on releasing books, recordings, and videos for her poetry in the future.



Amir Safi

Amir Safi’s poetry is the result of a collision between his Iranian culture and his Texan upbringing. He is a graduate of Texas A&M University where he received a degree in Biology. “What better subject to study than the science of life?” While in school, he co-founded 501(c)3 poetry non-profit Mic Check and the Texas Grand Slam Poetry Festival. Upon moving to Houston, Amir founded Write About Now Poetry, a weekly poetry slam and open-mic that meets every Wednesday at 7:30 PM at Avantgarden. Amir is the 2013 Southern Fried Poetry Slam Champion, a 2013 National Poetry Slam semi-finalist, a featured artist on Upworthy, and he has performed at shows and concerts featuring performers ranging from Anis Mojgani to Stalley. For more information, contact or booking please go to https://www.facebook.com/amirsafipoetry. 

Steel Buttafly - Erania Ebron

Erania Ebron is an Administrative Judge with the United States Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, Houston District Office in Houston, Texas.

Judge Ebron is a native of New Orleans, Louisiana. Her acting credits include her role as Lena Younger (Mama) in the New Orleans production of Lorraine Hansberry’s A Raisin in the Sun; and her recent role as Henrietta Seiberling in the Wide Awake production of Bill W. and Dr. Bob, directed by Glenn Dodson.

Judge Ebron’s poetry pieces discuss the universal themes of faith, love and loss. As SteelButtafly, she has performed in Dallas, Texas at the famed poetry house “Reciprocity.” She has also performed at various locations in Charlotte, North Carolina, including: Living Art, Poetic Visions, The Dedication of “Our Memorial Walkway,” and the Igunnuko African Festival. This year marks the first appearance of SteelButtafly in the Word Around Town Poetry Tour in Houston, Texas.


PW Covington

PW Covington is a rancher and Veterans' mental health provider living in Lavaca County,  Texas. He has been a part of the non academic,  Beat, poetry scene in Texas for over 20 years. His latest book is an epistolary novel,  based on his time living inside Texas state prison, titled "Dear Elsa". 

Burroughs in the Back
(orginally published in Harbinger Asylum)

For a long, damned, time there
I could have sworn
That it was Billy Burroughs - hitchhiker
Riding, stoned in my backseat
A faint, rear view,  reflection
Of decades old cologne
I looked again
And it was just a grease stain
On my mirror
And, I remembered
I now drive a pickup truck
And haven't picked up a hitchhiker
In years....