The current state poet laureate of Texas is Jenny Browne, who was appointed in 2017 and is serving a one-year term. Browne is the author of three poetry collections, most recently Dear Stranger (University of Tampa Press, 2013). She received the Cecil Hemley Award from the Poetry Society of America, as well as several fellowships from the National Endowment of Arts and the San Antonio Artist Foundation. Browne currently teaches creative writing, environmental literature, and women and gender studies at Trinity University in San Antonio.

upcoming events

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Sep 30 2018
Lowell Mick White & Chip Dameron Book Launches
Join us in celebrating the launch of new works from Lowell Mick White and Chip Dameron

Chip Dameron is the author of a travel book and ten collections of poetry, including his latest, Mornings with Dobie’s Ghost. His poems have appeared in literary publications around the country and abroad. A member of the Texas Institute of Letters, he’s also been a Dobie Paisano fellow.
“I now believe in ghosts—or, at least, am convinced that Chip Dameron found a way to commune with J. Frank Dobie’s spirit. This charming book, perfect in every detail, illuminates a rich corner of Texas. You can nearly hear Dobie’s ghost cackling with delight within these pages.” —Steven Davis, author of J. Frank Dobie: A Liberated Mind
Dameron’s poems have been widely praised for their craftsmanship and insight. Rudolfo Anaya said that his poems “are magical in their incantation, as poetry should be.” About Waiting for an Etcher, Jan Seale wrote that “Dameron traverses the space between reality and illusion, whether a river, a memory, or the path of a bird’s flight. His poems dare to enter a twilight lit with final meanings.” And commenting on Hook & Bloodline, Stephen Harrigan said that “Dameron has a talent for the memorable line, the brilliant image. Another poet might be content merely to display these gifts, but Dameron uses them as diamond-hard cutting tools, and his willingness to excavate beneath his own virtuoso surfaces marks him as an artist of real conviction.”
Lowell Mick White’s new novel, Burnt House, a novel-in-stories set in a small town in central West Virginia.
Burnt House is gritty, witty, irreverent, and seductively sexy, conjuring characters who flee the town where they were born or retreat to it to escape the reality of their damaged lives. Burnt House becomes a portrait of a broken family whose saga is told through a series of intimate, closely-linked stories, storytellers who share gossip, secrets, love, and loss.” —Kathryn Lane, author of Backyard Volcano, Coyote Zone, and Waking Up in Medellin
Following the divorce of her parents in the mid-1970s, teenager Jackie Stalnaker is sent away to live with her grandmother in the small town of Burnt House in central West Virginia. Not at all bored by the place, grateful to get away from her squabbling parents, and something of a snoop, Jackie is fascinated by the people she comes to know and is determined to discover—or at least imagine—all their stories and secrets. “Tragedies,” Jackie reports. “Screw-ups. Cruelties. Bad, bad, sad things that nobody ever forgot, things people never talked about o openly but only sometimes related in whispered hinting half-stories after dark.” Burnt House is both the story of what Jackie learns about the town and of her own reaction to her increasing knowledge, a darkly comic, gothic exploration of a town and the people who live there–and an examination of the stories they tell and the histories they know.


613 W. 29th St.
78705 Austin, Texas

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I never knew them all, just hummed
and thrummed my fingers with the radio,
driving five hundred miles to Austin.
Her arms held all the songs I needed.
Our boots kept time with fiddles
and the charming sobs of blondes,

the whine of steel guitars
sliding us down in deer-hide chairs
when jukebox music was over.
see my brother-in-law with a styled shirt

in spite of his cancer below 

then a small dinner in the evening the next day

no one knows except I may be on the road

Mesquite where my father settled in '31

forty-five minutes west then a left you go in

sister Sarita waits for me on Abby Street

after decades in

Old fang-in-the-boot trick. Five-chambered
asp. Pit organ and puff adder. Can live
in any medium save ice. Charmed by the flute
or the first thunderstorm in spring, drowsy
heart stirs from the cistern, the hibernaculum,
the wintering den of stars. Smells like the cucumber