House of the Tomato

If a woman wants to be a poet, she must dwell in the house of the tomato. -- Erica Jong

Regional website for the Wisconsin Fellowship of Poets, in partnership with the Reader's Loft.


Celebrating, sharing and inspiring poetry throughout Wisconsin.

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Poetry Reading


Featuring James A. Gollata & Sue Blaustein

 James A. Gollata

James A. Gollata

James A. Gollata, minimalist poet, has been published in several journals. As an actor he has appeared in several stage, radio, and CD productions, plus videos and the movie Wisconsin Death Trip. He is also a drummer and a dreamer, sometimes simultaneously.

Sue Blaustein.jpg

Sue Blaustein lives and writes in Milwaukee. In 2016, she retired from the Milwaukee Health Department, where she was a food safety inspector. Once retired, she completed the manuscript she’d worked on for some 18 years and published her book In the Field, Autobiography of an inspector. Poems in the book previously appeared in Wisconsin People and Ideas, Isotope, Verse Wisconsin, Mud Season Review, Blue Fifth Review, Kudzu Review and other publications. Sue is also a storyteller and active volunteer with Ex Fabula, the Milwaukee Urban Ecology Center and the Zablocki VA Medical Center. More information can be found at

Sample Poem

It pleases my hands
to compare the weights
of bell-shaped sinkers, to
pass cast-metal blobs
          from right hand
to left. It soothes me
to squeeze the jaws
of split-shots and guide
transparent line
through golden swivels.
          You weaned me
from kiddie spinning rods
on the banks of the Rock River.
You showed me how to cast
with an open-face reel.
Drowsy from Hennessey
& Cherry Coke, I’d wind
back to childhood – 
to the front window of
Gray’s Hardware in Sussex, New Jersey. 
An amber sunshade colored
the fishing gear orange.
I got minnow nets
and clownish bobbers
for my little box. In the first
years, love stays liquid – warm
and close – like pond water
in July. Tackle boxes
are my museums
of contentment.  

Earlier Event: October 25
Poetry Reading

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