Great fun on Friday, August 12th!

Rosanna's on 9/4/2016!

October 9th,

we read the poems

of Joel Fallon!

A great book, can be purchased at Bookshop Benicia:

Scholarship winners, Brian Chou with Poet Laureate Johanna Ely and Jessica Turner

Great turnout on June 5th!

Joel Fallon Celebration, Friday, Dec. 16th, 4-8 pm!

March 11's Fun:

"Beat Poets' Reading in Benicia:" 4 pages, send me

an e-address for the pdf:

​​​​Brian Chou and Jessica Turner are 2017 Poetry Scholarship Winners The Joel Fallon Poetry Scholarships for 2017 have been awarded to graduating high school seniors Brian Chou of Benicia High School and Jessica Turner of Liberty High School. Poet Laureate Johanna Ely commented on Jessica’s and Brian’s craft, “Both Brian and Jessica have the gift of being able to take a personal experience, and by writing a poem about it, have it become a universal feeling  that all of us have experienced and can understand. I hope the scholarships enable each of them to further explore the world through the eyes of a poet.” The scholarships, named for Benicia’s first Poet Laureate, are granted each year by the Benicia First Tuesday Poetry Group to one graduating senior from Benicia High School and one from Liberty High School. The awards are based on the students’ accomplishments in poetry and potential for future achievement, as reflected in the application materials they submit, and through a personal interview. The scholarships are intended to encourage young poets and to cultivate an awareness of poetic perspective in our community. Perhaps uniquely among scholarships, there is no requirement that the proceeds be used for college education expenses, since, for poets, all of life is education.  

Coming July 1st!

We rocked

Rosanna's again

on Sunday, Oct 2!

Love Poetry Contest Photos!

Our Friend and Poet Joel Fallon:

Joel  Fallon

If you'd like to see a 5-page pdf of this event's photos, please e-mail me at Space here is limited!

AAUV Event in March with 3 PL's –

2 pages, send me an e-address for the pdf:

Woo-Hoo! Picnic Photos from Sunday, August 27th!

Photos of June 9th!

(E-mail Peter Bray at for a

5-pagepdf copy of this, room here is limited.

Newest group anthology available at Bookshop Benicia

Johanna's Announcement for June 1, 2018:

If you'd like to see any multi-page pdf of these event's photos, please e-mail me at Space here is limited and our events are many!

Photos of Lois' Book Signing

Dana Gioia, CA Poet Laureate was HERE in April!

Woo-Hoo! Did we have fun!

Johanna Ely, Benicia Poet Laureate 2016-2018

Wow! An outstanding event, April 26th, 2016 

Poetry Happenings in June!
June 3:  First Sunday Poetry Series

at Rosanna’s European Delights
Where:  305 First St.

Time:  2-4pm
This month’s featured poet is

Vallejo’s Poet Laureate, D.L. Lang.
An open mic follows.
June 5:  
First Tuesday Poets monthly meeting
Where:  Benicia Public Library 150 East L St. /Dona Benicia Room
Time:  6:45-8:45pm
Please join me for my last meeting as P.L.!Bring favorite poems to read, or just come and listen.
Everyone is welcome!

The next meeting will be August 7th, and will be hosted by the new Poet Laureate!

June 9:  There are TWO wonderful events on this day, and you can attend both!
Reading and book signing of "Late Harvest Green," by Benicia author, Lois Requist.
Where:  Estey Realty  216 First St.  Benicia
Time:  4-6pm.
Help Lois celebrate the launch of her new book!

Ekphrastic Poetry Reading for the exhibit, "Art of the Book" at Gallerie Renee Marie.
Where:   Jordan Realty 1038 First St.  Benicia
Time: The reading is at 5:30pm.
Please confirm with me if you would like to participate ASAP.  Peter Bray is making a flyer, and would like to list some names.

June 16:
The Benicia Public Library celebrates its 25th anniversary! Fun events are scheduled throughout the day. I will be reading a poem written for this special occasion at 1:30pm in the Dona Benicia Room. For more information, go to
June 27:  
A poetry reading at Abrams Claghorn Gallery  for the exhibit, "Have You Heard Us Yet?" The poetry and artwork is inspired by current women’s issues. Benicia poet, Becky White, will be reading her poem at this event. This is a juried show for both artists and poets.
Where:  Abrams Claghorn Gallery  1251 Solano Ave.  Albany
Time: 6:30-8:30pm.

For more information go to
June 28:  
OZCAT RADIO 89.5FM in VALLEJO broadcasts poetry on ARTBEAT at 10AM with D.J. LaLa. (Laura Mullet)  If you would like to go on the air and read a poem, email Laura at:
And so, dear poets and lovers of poetry, this is my last newsletter to you as I end my term as Benicia’s 6th Poet Laureate.  Thank you for the honor, and let’s give full support to the next P.L.! I look forward to seeing you at many of the upcoming poetry events!
Best wishes, Johanna



Between two mountains

The wings of a gliding hawk

Balancing sunlight


– David Elliott

Rosanna's Photos, March 5th:

August 11, 2016
Dear Friends,
It is so hard for me to write this…

I must bring you the sad news that

Benicia’s first and most beloved

Poet Laureate, Joel Fallon, died this

morning at the age of 85. Joel was a wonderful poet and mentor to many, who gave so much of his wisdom and energy to our community. He will be missed beyond words, and his absence will be greatly felt.

Joel’s family plans to be present at our Poets’ Picnic in the City Park this Sunday, August 14th, 1-4 pm. This was an event that Joel started as first Poet Laureate. Please come and bring your poetry, or bring one of Joel’s poems to read. He would want us to have a good time and celebrate life, and our love of poetry.
A memorial planned by the family will take place in December. I will let you know when the details are in place.
Sincerely, Johanna  
Johanna Ely, Poet Laureate of Benicia, 2016-2018