Sikélianòs, Eleni

views updated


PERSONAL: Born in CA. Education: Naropa Institute, M.F.A. (writing and poetics), 1991.

ADDRESSES: Office—Teachers & Writers Collaborative, 5 Union Square West, New York, NY 10003-3306. Agent—c/o Coffee House Press, 27 North Fourth St., Ste. 400, Minneapolis, MN 55401. E-mail—[email protected].

CAREER: Poet and teacher. Teachers & Writers Collaborative, New York, NY, poet-in-residence; Bard College, teacher in Clemente program; affiliated with St. Mark's Poetry Project, New York, NY.

AWARDS, HONORS: Santa Barbara Scholarship Foundation Award, 1990, 1991; two San Francisco Education Fund grants, 1994; California Arts Council residency grant, 1994; creative writing fellowship, National Endowment for the Arts, 1995; Gertrude Stein Award for Innovative American Writing, 1995, 1997; Yaddo fellow, 1999; Maison des Ecrivains Etrangers et Traducteurs fellow, 1999; James D. Phelan Award for California-born writers, 1999, for Blue Guide; Fulbright fellowship, 1999-2000; New York Foundation for the Arts translation grant, 2000, for Verses on Bird.


To Speak While Dreaming, Selva Editions (Boulder, CO), 1993.

The Book of Tendons, Post-Apollo Press (Sausalito, CA), 1997.

Earliest Worlds, Volume 1: Blue Guide, Volume 2: OfSun, of History, of Seeing, Coffee House Press (Minneapolis, MN), 2001.

Chapbooks include Gold Trout, 1994, Poetics of the X, 1995, Color, 1998, The Lover's Numbers, 1998, From Blue Guide, 1999, Poetics of the Exclamation Point, A Book of Ease, and The Blue Coat Narrative. Contributor to periodicals, including Feminist Studies, Exquisite Corpse, Big Rain, Thirteenth Moon, Ink, Chicago Review, Fence, Sulfur, and Grand Street.

SIDELIGHTS: Poet Eleni Sikélianòs grew up in California, has lived in Paris, and has returned to write and teach in the United States. She has taught in both men's and women's prisons in Colorado, the Tenderloin and SoMa homeless communities of San Francisco, the summer writing program at Naropa, the San Francisco Art Institute, and in libraries and public schools. In New York City she teaches through the Teachers & Writers Collaborative; an essay that describes some of her experiences adapting the works of poet Sappho for a sixth-grade class is available on that organization's Web site.

Sikélianòs has published a number of chapbooks and small collections of verse. In reviewing her volume To Speak While Dreaming, Small Press Review's Dennis Formento said her "subtle puns … delight the alert reader. I could be delighted for ages."

Earliest Worlds, Sikélianòs's first major collection, consists of Blue Guide, free-verse poems and often-surreal prose focusing on the scientific details of the physical world that shift from light to dark, and Of Sun, of History, of Seeing, a collection of essay poems that continue the scientific motifs. A Publishers Weekly contributor wrote that Earliest Worlds "yokes an aggressively modern style to an almost metaphysical sense of wonder in the world."



Publishers Weekly, April 23, 2001, review of EarliestWorlds, p. 75.

Small Press Review, March, 1994, Dennis Formento, review of To Speak While Dreaming, p. 4.


Teachers & Writers Collaborative Web site, (May 8, 2002).*