A Poetry Reading with Ala Khaki and Melanie Chicoine
Join us for a reading for National Poetry Month with poets Ala Khaki and Melanie Chicoine. Our John Hay Poetry Society will meet after the reading to read their poems.
Ala Khaki, is an Iranian-American poet and a former student activist in Iran during the Iranian Revolution. He is the author of four poetry collections, two in English, Remembrances, A Poetic Memoir of Life in A Political Prison in Iran and Return; and two in Farsi, Calling the Dawn and From Here to Sunrise.
Ala Khaki was imprisoned twice, in 1975 and again in 1976-1977 in the infamous Evin Prison. In 1978 all copies of his first book of poetry, From Here to Sunrise, were confiscated from the publisher and destroyed. His poems have appeared in Iranian and American literary journals and anthologies, including The Book Review, Par (Feather), Thought and Imagination, Worcester Review, The Poets’ Touchstone, the 2010 Poets’ Guide to New Hampshire, Poet Showcase: An Anthology of New Hampshire Poets, and COVID Spring. In 1981 he was the subject of a documentary film titled “Resident Exile” by the celebrated documentary filmmaker and director Ross McElwee.
Melanie Chicoine lives in Amherst NH with her husband, poet Ala Khaki. A native to NH, Melanie enjoys spending her time volunteering, traveling, and writing. Melanie is an active member of several poetry groups and organizations in and around New England; her poems have appeared in Poets’ Guide to NH: More Places, More Poets, COVID Spring – Granite State Pandemic Poems, and others. Melanie is currently serving as president on the Board of Directors for the Poetry Society of New Hampshire (PSNH), and was a recent chief editor of PSNH’s literary journal, The Poets’ Touchstone. During her tenure as editor, she spearheaded the publication of a special collection celebrating all NH State Poets Laureate.