Illinois State Poetry Society
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Benefactors ($50)
Bruce Amble
Lampis Anagnostopoulos
Michael Eddie Anderson
Tim Breitzmann
Robert Coté
Georgiann Foley
Jim Lambert
Pam Larson
John Li
Usha Mahisekar
James Reiss

Patrons ($30)
David LaRue Alexander
Ann Carlson
Christine Cianciosi
Joan Colby
Joe Glaser
John Gordon
Larry Hays
Dan Kenny
Sheila Kirscher
Tom Moran
Ina Perlmuter
Marcia Pradzinski
John Quinn
Jenine Ravesloot
Marjorie Rissman
Tom Roby
Ryan Sauers
Nancy Schaefer
Irfanulla Shariff
Sharon Simmons
Judith Tullis
Gail Vescovi

In Memoriam
Sally Hanson Calhoun
Nancy Jean Carrigan
David Christensen
Don Cornwell
Patricia Gangas
Chris Holaves
Martha S. Moss
John Pawlik
Paul J. Wolf
New Poems

Search only ISPS site
Welcome to this Web site for the Illinois State Poetry Society, connecting ISPS members with each other and with the general public. Here you'll find information for and about this group of serious poets. Since June of 2000 we have been posting bimonthly editions of poetry written by ISPS members. All ISPS members are invited to submit a poem each two-month period. (How and when to submit) You are invited to read the ISPS member poems posted in April 2015 as well as previous postings.

To join ISPS through June, , please fill out our Membership Form and mail it with a check for $20.00. You don't have to be an Illinois resident to join ISPS, but you do need to be an ISPS member to have your poems posted in this Web site.

Upcoming ISPS Meetings

ISPS News Bulletins

A Message from the President, February, 2015

by Susan T. Moss, ISPS President

Susan T. Moss

Now that the new year is underway, it could be a good time to make some poetry resolutions. A few examples include participating in this year’s poetry month library display with a March 7 deadline.

Another idea is to participate in more open mics at local coffee houses such as Brewed Awakening in Westmont or Madame Zsu Zsu’s tea shop in Highland Park, The Café Gallery in Chicago or so many other local places in your own area.

Perhaps this is the year to start sending or send more poems to various national, international and local journals. Duotrope, Poets and Writers Magazine and The Line Break (an online blog) are just a few places to check for submission ideas.

You might even decide to assemble your own work into a chapbook or full-length collection. The poems could be self-published or in cooperation with a publishing house.

Hosting one of a growing number of salons held in private homes is a congenial way to share poems and even add music or art as a combination of celebrat- ing creativity.

Try contacting local bookstores for readings by a small group of poets. Many places are happy to host an evening or weekend afternoon event and also sell the poets' books.

Start another ISPS chapter with members in your area at the local library. Help is available with guidelines and feedback. Participate in more theme-related poetry contests. This year’s NFSPS offers many choices as do local contests. Highlandparkpoetry has ongoing opportunities. Also watch for the next ISPS poetry contest this year.

Make a video of you reading personal poetry and send it out to the world. This idea is growing quite popular. Check YouTube for some performance ideas.

Set aside more time to collect and respond to ideas for writing poetry. It helps to have some goals for future work and even places you want to submit the finished pieces or compilation for a personal collection.

With this year still new between first days of winter and early sightings of spring, it is time to consider the quote by Rainer Maria Rilke, "And now we welcome the new year, full of things that have never been."

Happy writing,

Susan T. Moss

Archive of Presidents' Messages

Doreen Ambrose-Van Lee's poetry features in "The Project(s)"

ISPS member Doreen Ambrose-Van Lee's poetry will be featured in the world premiere of "The Project(s)," written by American Theater Company's Artistic Director PJ Paparelli and Joshua Jaeger and conceived and directed by PJ Paparelli.

For over 50 years, Chicago led the nation in urban renewal by transforming its slums into modern high-rise communities. Today, a handful remain. Combining a cappella music, dance, and multi-media with verbatim text taken from over 100 interviews, Artistic Director PJ Paparelli creates a groundbreaking documentary experience that illuminates the communities deep inside the walls of public housing and asks, "What is America's responsibility to its poor?"

Previews begin on Friday, April 24. Tickets start at $38. Call the box office at 773.409.4125 or visit online at to reserve your tickets today!

"The Project(s)" runs at American Theater Company in Chicago from April 24 through May 24th.

"Last Sunday" Reading, April 26, 2015

All poets who attend will be featured at Brewed Awakening, 19 West Quincy (across from the train station), Westmont, on Sunday, April 26, 2015 at 12:30 PM. Cover charge of $7.00 includes coffee and a snack. The readings are sponsored by the Illinois State Poetry Society and Brewed Awakening.

Bring a bunch of poems so you can participate in Hat Trick Poetry. You will get to put one topic (or poetry form) in the hat, and get first chance at reading when your card is drawn. There may be one or two surprises, too, as we celebrate the end of National Poetry Month.

Order Distilled Lives, Volume 1, ISPS Poetry Anthology

book cover
Seventy-five members of Illinois State Poetry Society have, as their 20th anniversary anthology's title promises, distilled life with its vicissitudes and revelations. Poems weave universal themes in rhyme and free verse while presenting fresh, provocative and sometimes metaphysical insights. Humor, pathos, reverie and existentialism, among other diverse tones, combine in this entertaining and insightful collection.
Sneak Peek
To Order

Contact Us

If you have questions or feedback regarding this Web site, please click a link below to send an e-mail to a member of the ISPS Web Committee. We welcome your thoughts.

Alan Harris
Larry Turner
William Marr

Web site design and maintenance by Alan Harris at