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Featured poet Maritza Rivera

Sensuality is one of the main ingredients in poetry. To taste, smell and hear words is what Maritza does so beautifully. At this time in history we are looking for life without artificial intelligence, and we turn to poetry, where the human heart is stored. Rivera leads us there so that amidst the tumult of the day we are, thankfully, distracted by Good. Poems do not blaze a trail; they simmer to warm the path we follow toward what we can cherish between us.
— Grace Cavalieri


When you read a poem

savor each word as you

would a spoonful of

a luscious dessert.

Caress each bite-sized syllable 

gently with your tongue

as if it were the name

of your best love.

Say it slowly, say it softly

like a family secret finally

finding its freedom.

When you read a poem

read it as if each breath

you take were your last. 

Maritza Rivera, aka Mariposa, has been writing poetry for over forty years. She lives in D.C. and Puerto Rico. She's the creator of a short form of poetry called Blackjack, is the publisher of Casa Mariposa Press, and hosts the annual Mariposa Poetry Retreat in Waynesboro, PA and the annual Mariposa Reunion Reading at the Writer’s Center in Bethesda where she's also a workshop leader. Maritza was the recipient of a 2012 BID International Writing Fellowship in Bahia, Brazil, and attended the 2013 Bread Loaf Writers Conference in Sicily.  Maritza Rivera is the author of About You (1998), A Mother’s War (2008), A Baker’s Dozen (2013) and Twenty-One: Blackjack Poems (2013). In 2016 she created the Blackjack Poetry Playing Cards.

Grace Cavalieri is founder and producer of “The Poet and the Poem“ on public radio, now from the Library of Congress. She celebrates 40 years on-air in 2017. She’s has 18 books and chapbooks published, the latest is WITH (Somondoco Press, 2016.) Cavalieri has had 26 plays produced on American stages. Her newest play is “ANNA NICOLE: BLONDE GLORY.” The play is inspired by Anna Nicole: Poems, published by GOSS183. Her poetry has been featured on Garrison Keillor’s “Verse Daily” and Ted Kooser’s “American Life in Poetry.”  She is the managing poetry editor for PoetsArtists.