Patti Trimble






When You Dip Your Head Under Water


Dream Poem


You hear the gates of the left ventricle

open for the riders to pass.


The table is set for guests.

The bard sings of great war.


In the hall with ceilings forty feet

above your head every word

leaves a crater.



The floor looks like the moon.

It’s impossible to walk for the holes and ridges,

let alone dance.


But in the corner it is closer to today.

A Balkan man plays the accordion

for his life, a melody for the riders.


Horses gallop in and out

on legs as strong as iron.





Patti Trimble is an essayist, poet, performer, and visual artist. She has a MFA 1988 and BFA 1986 from CUNY Hunter College. She has 40+ published poems in anthologies and journals, 3 chapbooks, a spoken word CD (favorably reviewed in Poetry Flash 1999), and lyrics recorded by The Nature Company. She has performed her lyric poems with music at over 150 conferences, clubs, and concerts in the US and Italy: sharing the stage with respected poets such as L. Ferlinghetti, Pattiann Rodgers, Robert Haas, Gary Snyder, Kay Ryan, et. al. She was co-founder of Tuolumne Poetry Festival in Yosemite, and for performances and workshops was awarded grants from the Lannan Foundation, James Irvine Foundation, and Tumbleweed, annually 1998-2006; and from 1997-2003 she received more than 60 Poets & Writers matching grants for readings at venues such as Carmel Performing Arts Festival, CUNY Environmental Conference, New York Open Center (with Bob Holman), San Francisco Word Cycle, Petaluma Poetry Walk, and Poetry Flash Watershed Festival.



Her essay, « Agnes » was nominated for a Pushcart Prize in 2001; her poetry collection, « Listen » was a finalist in Poets & Writers California Poetry Award, 2004; her short story « Ladro » was finalist in Glimmer Train Press Short Story Competition 2009. She was accepted to Colrain Manuscript Workshop, MA, 2008; and received a Djerassi Foundation Writer’s Residency Award for poetry in 2009.

Her most recent poetry performances were in Summer/Fall 2012 at Sunset Poetry Series; The Sonoma Museum of Art Laureate Series; and (performing with Israeli and Sudanese musicians) at the Festival Altree Maree in Floridia Sicily.



As a freelance writer for over 20 years, Patti has written literally hundreds of original stories and nonfiction essays (on literature, biography, science, philosophy, art, and history) for educational publishers, Macmillan-McGraw-Hill, Prentice-Hall, Encyclopedia Britannica, et. al.



She now works as part-time professor of writing and visual art at the Mediterranean Center for Art and Science, Sicily, and also researches and writes an extensive program book (publication 10,000) for the San Francisco Ethnic Dance Festival.



Early in her career, Patti studied Environmental Science at UC Berkeley for three years. She has also walked much of California and her poetry and artwork reflects her love of wilderness. She has organized numerous literary events to raise environmental awareness, including as co-founder, co-director, and festival poet from 1996-2006 of The Tuolumne Poetry Festival in Yosemite National Park, now in its 16th year. She also teaches poetry workshops for Point Reyes and Yosemite National Parks.



As a visual artist, Patti’s exhibition history includes many group shows, 2 one-person shows (1980s) at WPA Gallery, NYC, and (1980s) representation by Katherine Markel Gallery, 57th St, NYC. Patti taught art for Manhattan Country School, 1985-1988, and was head of a small art department for MCAS in Sicily, 2004-2007. Her awards in visual art include a 1986 nomination from the American Academy and Institute of Arts and Letters, New York, for « younger painter of distinction », and inclusion in many juried exhibitions in New York in the 80s including « Ten Downtown » and Ronald Feldman Gallery. In 1992, jurors awarded her a one-person exhibition at Gallery Route One, CA, and in 1995, her painting won Best in Show, California Museum of Art.



After a fifteen-year hiatus, Patti has recently returned to the painting studio. Her most recent exhibition were (June 2012) « Vanishing California: paintings and poems » in the Environmental Art Project Space of Gallery Route One in Pt Reyes Station, and (Sept 2012) Group show, Botanicals, at Orangeland Gallery, San Francisco.


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