Attracting a varied range of poets and audience members, the Six Points Reading Series is held in different locations around the city, following its previous run at the Chicago Cultural Center. Poets have included Christopher Soto (aka Loma), Jamila Woods, Roger Reeves, Emily Jungmin Yoon, Simone Muench, Erika L. Sánchez, Ben Clark and Fatimah Asghar at venues such as Grace Church and Comfort Station in Logan Square and Subterranean in Wicker Park. The reading I attended stood out from many poetry events, because the full house spanned the spectrum of ages, genders and ethnicities.
Curator Danielle Susi says, “I work really hard to make sure it’s as diverse as possible. Six Points operate within the Poetry Center of Chicago and I think the most interesting part of the series is that we don’t have our own space (unlike somewhere like Poetry Foundation and their gorgeous space), so we have some flexibility about pairing types of readers with spaces around the city.
“I focus mainly on younger poets. It’s cool to have someone like Stuart Dybek read because he draws a big crowd, but I’m realizing more how that is not necessarily the only sign of a good event. I’ve loved hosting folks from other cities and making spaces for women, people of color and queer folks—actually I’m the lucky one in that case. I am so grateful to these poets for taking a risk with the series.” (Toni Nealie)
Six Point Reading Series: May 19, 7pm, featuring Helene Achanzar and Tim “Toaster” Henderson at Beauty & Brawn, 3501 West Fullerton, (773)772-9808 and June 30, 7pm, featuring H. Melt and Kush Thompson at Intuit: The Center for Intuitive and Outsider Art, 756 North Milwaukee, (312)243-9088
Toni Nealie is the Literary Editor of Newcity and the author of the essay collection “The Miles Between Me.” A Pushcart Prize nominee, her essays have appeared in Guernica Magazine, Rust Belt: Chicago, The Rumpus, The Offing, Essay Daily, Chicago Quarterly Review, Hobart, Entropy and elsewhere. She worked in magazine journalism, politics and PR in her native New Zealand, the United Kingdom and Singapore and now edits, writes and teaches in Chicago. Find her at toninealie.com and on Twitter @tnealie. She can be reached at email@example.com.