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Scott Wiggerman's Poetry Pages

H o m e


I am a poet and retired librarian who, after 35 years in Austin, Texas, resettled to a new home in Albuquerque, New Mexico in 2015 with my husband, David Meischen, also a writer, and our cat Tawny.

I am a member and Board member of the New Mexico State Poetry Society, as well as the Chair of the Albuquerque chapter. I am also a member of the Haiku Society of America and a long-time participant--twenty-five years?-- in an on-line poetry critique group, through the Internet Writing Workshop (IWW).

I have taught a number of workshops over the years, not only for the Austin International Poetry Festival and the Writers' League of Texas, but also for Poetry at Round Top, the Georgetown Poetry Festival, the House of Poetry at Baylor University, the Writing Barn, Southwestern University, Bookworks, etc., including "Jump-Start Your Creative Engines," "Jump Start Redux," "Poetic Forms for Today's Poets," "The Well-Seasoned Sonnet," Putting the Creative in Creative Writing: A One-Week Exercise Program," "Working Out Your Writing Muscles: A One-Week Exercise Program," and "Flex & Stretch: A One-Week Exercise Program for Writers," among others. For nine years I taught in the WLT's Summer Writer's Retreat in Alpine, Texas, the latest sold-out class being "Something Bold, Something New" in 2016. As poet Nydia Tapia-Gonzales, one of twenty students in the class, wrote me following the workshop, "Thank you for this amazing week. It was life-changing for me." Can't ask for more than that!

This year my series of haibun, "Going the Distance," about black travelers in the 1950s, was a finalist for the very first annual Bosque Poetry Contest.

My "Egret Sonnet" was nominated by Hobble Creek Review for the 2011 Sundress Best of the Net, as well as a Pushcart! "Formations," another sonnet, was nominated for a 2012 Pushcart by the very same Hobble Creek Review. Both of these sonnets are included in my latest book, Leaf and Beak, which was a finalist for the Texas Institute of Letters' Helen C. Smith Memorial Award.




Finalist for the Texas Institute of Letters'
Helen C. Smith Memorial Award!



Michelle Newby, from a review in Texas Book Lover: "I am reminded of Robert Frost and James Audubon. What a relief and refreshingly free of irony – classical, lyrical, romantic sonnets."

Joanna Weston, author of Summer Father: "I've just finished Scott Wiggerman's book, Leaf and Beak: Sonnets, which I absolutely love. He has a real gift for observing the minutiae of the world around him as he goes on his daily run round Mueller Lake. His ability with slant and half rhyme is phenomenal, so much so that the rhyme is almost unnoticed. I'm going to read it again, it's such a joy."

Justin Evans, author of Sailing This Nameless Ship: "I have for many years been a fan of Scott Wiggerman's sonnets, and I would not hesitate to side him with the likes of Ernest Hilbert and Steven Nightingale as a master of this particular craft. I am even more fond of these sonnets because of their subject matter, which make me see the natural world in a whole new way each time I pick them up and read."

Larry D. Thomas, author of As If Light Actually Matters: New & Selected Poems: "These sonnets are exquisite. They are as good as any I have read by contemporary American poets.”

Ann Howells, editor of Illya's Honey: "I read the book and was particularly impressed by the beginning and ending sonnet series! If you haven't read the book, do it soon!"

Watch the book trailer on YouTube: Leaf and Beak Trailer

Most mornings for the past decade, poet Scott Wiggerman has walked the trails at Austin’s Mueller Lake Park, an urban space created on land that once held the city’s airport. Awake to the landscape as he walked, Wiggerman stopped from time to time and jotted a word or phrase for a poem that would come later. Leaf and Beak is the product of these walks, of the poet’s ever watchful eye, of the discipline he learned mastering the sonnet. Readers are in good hands here. The sonnets—seventy-five of them—flow so smoothly you can forget you’re reading a sonnet and just let the images take you in, the rhythms move you forward. The poems of Leaf and Beak are quiet poems, reflective poems, poems that ask you to walk in stillness for moments at a time, to absorb “the hidden in full view,” to appreciate “a lone green leaf / that hangs on like a weekend birthday, deaf / to bitter winds.” Wiggerman moves from the observed image, letting some details turn him inward while others lead to meditations on his fellow beings, on the world he walks. “What will / tomorrow bring that now cannot be seen?” he asks. “What change, what wonders to discover?”

cover photo by Paul Licce Photography

cover design by Steven Schroeder

interior design by Forget Gutenberg

ISBN: 9780944048658

Purple Flag, 2015










Sarah Cortez, Texas Institute of Letters author of How to Undress a Cop, writes in Texas Books in Review, "One of the remarkable feats of this collection is the dual tasks the poet has accomplished: the precise communication of a fully realized life with its world of luminous revelations and the artful, effective claiming of so much inherently difficult territory—that of anger and that of eroticism, sometimes interwoven. If Scott Wiggerman isn’t already one of your favorite Texas poets, he will be after you read this book."

Laurie Kutchins, Pulitzer-nominated author of The Night Path, says, "Presence evokes the elements--palpable qualities of air, earth, water and fire, and more--the difficult-to-render textures of familial love, lovers, loss, renewal, memory, and what one needs to stay present to the elemental world. So many moments in Wiggerman's poems 'evaporate like broth into essence,' allowing us to feel absence become presence. And as the poet wisely notes, 'the juxtaposition is seamless."

Cyrus Cassells, Lambda award-winning author of Beautiful Signor states, "In Presence, Scott Wiggerman uses an intransigent stain as an emblem of buoyant integrity in the face of intolerance and exclusion. In this new book, nimbly arranged by the elements, the poet, brandishing his trademark sass, humor, and candor, glories in local nature and limns the joys and trials of being a lovingly irreverent Texas gadfly, a proud and forthright gay man."

Larry D. Thomas, Texas Poet Laureate, writes, "Scott Wiggerman has achieved a noteworthy reputation as a widely-published poet, editor, and poetry workshop facilitator. Presence, his long-awaited second book-length collection of poems, certainly solidifies his standing as a contemporary poet of seriousness and distinction. Presence is an ambitious, significant, and memorable collection of poetry. I give it my highest recommendation."

Anne McCrady, author of the Eakin Book Award-winning Along Greathouse Road, writes in a review in Borderlands: Texas Poetry Review, "These poems are honest and personal: a dialogue about the conflicted need we all have to be present in a family, present with a lover, present in our our bodies, present in the natural world, present as ourselves. These are substantial poems of longing to belong and of the pain of exclusion."

And Robert McDowell, author of the best-selling Poetry as Spiritual Practice, writes, "In Presence, we meet, in the poet's own words, 'the drumming of a buoyant heart.' It is a sound that will not defer to injustice. It is an intelligent and artful yawp that won't go quietly. It is a witnessing we need to hear in a world so full of babbling and duplicity. It's the sound of truth itself . . . . Through it all, Wiggerman's marvelous craft gives shape to his versatility and poignant insight. He is a must-read American poet. Share him with everyone you know who cares about words and the truth."

cover photo by Carol King

ISBN: 9781931247955

Pecan Grove Press, 2011











Judith Minty, distinguished author of Walking with the Bear says, "These well-wrought poems emerge from the physical garden of today and now. They are like the food of contemporary America in their wide range that satisfies the palate. From painful moments of childhood to silky erotica to delightful bursts of humor, Scott Wiggerman's faith in the power of human love and caring prevails to make Vegetables and Other Relationships a true feast."

Ric Williams, Austin Chronicle critic, says, "Wiggerman's poems are like depth charges shot into the churning seas of the cultural wars: some explore softly and deceptively near the surface; others plunge deep, sending seismic shock waves through complacent souls too long sleeping in the mud of declension; all are well crafted implements of personal and political disruption."

ISBN: 1891386131

Plain View Press, 2000

Only $10.00





My partner and I took over the publishing of the Texas Poetry Calendar beginning with the 2006 edition. To do so, we started a new press, Dos Gatos Press. Please take a look at the link to this site; better yet, help us out by either purchasing a copy of one of our books or making a tax-free donation, as we are a non-profit organization! We've also released ten books: an anthology called Big Land, Big Sky, Big Hair: Best of the Texas Poetry Calendar's First Decade; Karla K. Morton's Redefining Beauty, winner of a 2010 Next Generation Indie Book Award, Wingbeats: Exercises and Practice in Poetry, Anne McCrady's Letting Myself In, the anthology Lifting the Sky: Southwestern Haiku & Haiga, and Wingbeats II, Bearing the Mask: Southwestern Persona Poems, Weaving the Terrain: 100-Word Southwestern Poems,Bruce Noll's Circumference of Light, and Greg Candela's Shallow-Rooted Heart, mostl of which are available through Small Press Distribution (SPD). All Dos Gatos Press books are available on the Dos Gatos Press website, as well as through Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Ingram's, and Follett's.

Another book I've edited, Bearing the Mask: Southwestern Persona Poems, with Cindy Huyser, is the second in the "Poetry of the American Southwest" series from Dos Gatos Press. From the foreword by Carmen Tafolla: "The range of voices here is as beautiful and translucent as a rainbow—from Cochise to Calamity Jane, Navajo Code Talkers to Japanese internees, Devil Girl and Old Man Gloom, slaves and stunt pilots, Paiutes and migrant mothers, Annie Oakley and Georgia O’Keefe, security officers and French tourists, Gregorio Cortez, La Llorona, and Cynthia Ann Parker—all come to life here, speak their own truths and their own sacred space in these poems. The beauty of their lives shines through in a history that refuses to be erased, voices that refuse to be silenced. Such is the nature of persona poems drawn from the broad stroke of human experience." Available on the Dos Gatos Press website!

And the latest book I've edited, this time with my husband David Meischen, is Weaving the Terrain: 100-Word Southwestern Poems. This collection of over 200 poems has this in common: Each poem is exactly one hundred words, no more, no less. Within this restriction, however, you’ll find poems as varied as the landscape, the history, the people they evoke, including stunning prose poems and haibun, as well as poems in every shape made possible by a poet’s imagination and the hundred words chosen. Each poem is a concentrated gem on a topic related to the broad area known as the Southwest." Now available on the Dos Gatos Press website!






Coming up in 2019:

On January 8, I will present "Line-Finding" for the monthly Wingbeats workshop at 6:00 p.m. at Bookworks.

On March 12, I will present "Hand & Divination" for the monthly Wingbeats workshop at 6:00 p.m. at Bookworks.

On May 25, I will co-host the third annual Poets' Picnic at the Open Space Visitor Center.

In the Past Year (or two or three):

On October 9, I presented "Ways of Looking" for the monthly Wingbeats workshop at Bookworks.

On August 14, I presented "Sentimental Immunity: The Animal Poem" for the monthly Wingbeats workshop at Bookworks.

On June 9 (and July 14 and August 12), I conducted additional workshops on poetic structure at the North Domingo Baca Multigenerational Center in Albuquerque.

On May 26, I co-hosted the second annual Poets' Picnic at the Open Space Visitor Center with Dale Harris.

On May 8, I presented "Tell It Slant: The Extended Metaphor" for the monthly Wingbeats workshop at Bookworks.

On April 28, I ran a workshop on poetic structure for the annual New Mexico State Poetry Society convention.

On April 7, I hosted a reading of Weaving the Terrain: 100-Word Southwestern Poems at Teatro Paraguas in Santa Fe.

On January 26, I co-hosted the book launch of Weaving the Terrain: 100-Word Southwestern Poems, the latest Dos Gatos Press book, at 6:00 p.m. at Bookworks, which featured 20 of the poets from the book.

On January 13, 2018, I was one of the invited poets in Echoes of the Cordillera: Attitudes and Latitudes Along the Great Divide, an event in Alpine, Texas, which paired photographs by Jim Bones with poems written by a couple of dozen poets from the Southwest. At the Museum of the Big Bend.

On January 9, I presented Christopher Kennedy's "Weird Words" at the monthly Wingbeats workshop at 6:00 p.m. at Bookworks.

On December 7, I participated in the bosque reading at Bookworks in Albuquerque.

On November 11, I took part in a reading of poems from "WILDERNESS" land untrammeled” at Page Coleman Gallery in Albuquerque, 2-4:30 p.m.. The exhibit offered the work of fifty New Mexico visual artists and twenty original short poems by New Mexico writers--including a gorgeous handmade book.

On October 28, I was on the Poetry panel at the very first Lubbock Book Festival in Lubbock, Texas, where I also did a reading.

On October 10, I presented Laure-Anne Bosselaar's "Repetition and Cadence, or Repetition for Cadence" at the monthly Wingbeats workshop at 6:00 p.m. at Bookworks.

On September 13-17, I was heavily involved in Haiku North America at the Hotel Santa Fe in Santa Fe. I was one of the local committee members and co-editor of the HNA anthology that was released there, Earthsigns. In addition, I ran a workshop during HNA called "Revision for Beginners."

On August 24, I was one of two featured readers at "Fixed & Free," the long-running monthly poetry open-mic at the Source in Albuquerque, 7-9 p.m. The other reader? None other than my hubbie, David Meischen!

On June 30, I presented "Words at the Speed of Sounds: Poetic Effects through Sound" at the National Federation of State Poetry Societies' convention in Fort Worth, Texas, which received endless praise from many in attendance. As Anne McCrady, who also presented that day, said, she could see lightbulbs going off across the audience."

On June 10, I read poems related to artist Hariette Tsosie's art at Weyrich Gallery, 2935 Louisiana Blvd NE, Suite D, Albuquerque

On May 20, I co-ran a haiku workshop and then co-hosted a reading at the Open Space Visitors' Center in Albuquerque with poet Dale Harris, part of the Poet's Picnic there--a full day of fun, food, and poetry.

On April 8, I taught a workshop for the New Mexico State Poetry Society, "Haiku: More than Counting Syllables," at the Domingo Baca Center in Albuquerque.

On March 25-26, 2017, I participated in the "Take a Detour from Route 66: Taos to L.A." event in City of Industry, California, at two Southern California historical sites: The Workman and Temple Family Homestead Museum and the Rowland House,

On March 14, I led another workshop for the Dos Gatos Press Wingbeats workshop series, "Aping the Masters," at Bookworks in Albuquerque.

On December 13, I was one of the Legends and Monsters anthology readers at Jules' Poetry Playhouse in Albuquerque at 7:00 p.m.

On December 1, 2016, I participated in the launch of bosque at Bookworks in Albuquerque at 6:00, alongside a number of writers, including my husband, David Meischen.

On November 17, 2016, I participated in another reading for Bearing the Mask: Southwestern Persona Poems, this one at Malvern Books in Austin, Texas.

On October 25, 2016, I hosted a reading for Bearing the Mask: Southwestern Persona Poems at Bookworks in Albuquerque at 6:00, featuring seven poets from the book: myself, Sharon Rhutasal-Jones, Mikki Aronoff, David Meischen, Liza Wolf-Francis, Gayle Lauradunn, and Caroline LeBlanc.

On August 23, I taught Andrea Hollander's "The Postcard Poem" exercise from Wingbeatsat Bookworks in Albuquerque at 6:00 p.m.

On August 13, I emceed a nature poetry reading featuring Dale Harris at the Open Space Visitor Center in Albuquerque, where I also volunteer.

On July 23, I taught another class for Texas Writes, "Bearing the Mask: Discovering the Other through Persona," in Marfa, Texas, 10:00 a.m.-1:00 p.m. We looked at how persona is used in new poems from Bearing the Mask: Southwestern Persona Poems, including poems using the personae of artist Donald Judd and rancher Rebecca “Becky” Smith, local legends of West Texas. Then we tried our hands at using personae in writing exercises which helped us discover the “other” and made us appreciate that when we use persona we are responsible for bearing the mask.

On July 17-22, I taught a week-long workshop for the 10th anniversary of the Summer Writers' Retreat in Alpine, Texas: "Something Bold, Something New: Best Poetry Exercises from a Decade of the Writers' Retreat.".

On June 28, I taught Ravi Shankar's exercise, "The Manipulated Fourteen-Line Poem," at Bookworks in Albuquerque at 6:00 p.m., the first of the Wingbeats summer series of free workshops.

On April 23, I hosted an open mic for the New Mexico State Poetry Society annual convention, and I taught a last-minute workshop, "Words at the Speed of Sounds."

On February 9, I read with California writer Chella Courington at Bookworks in Albuquerque, New Mexico at 6:00 p.m.

On January 19, I taught a workshop, "Writing the Bad Sonnet" at Bookworks in Albuquerque at 7:00 p.m. This was a continuation of the Dos Gatos Press workshop series for Wingbeats II.

On January 9, 2016, I presented a workshop for the Albuquerque division of the New Mexico State Poetry Society called "Starting with Something." The workshop was on the poetic form known as the "golden shovel," and it had a record crowd. Expect more golden shovels ahead!

On November 22, 2015, Elizabeth Raby and I appeared together in Santa Fe, New Mexico, at Teatro Paraguas, to promote our Purple Flag books.

On November 7, 2015, I participated in an art & poetry reading in Taos, New Mexico, to kick off "Under a Common Sky," an invitational exhibit in the Mural Room of the Historic County Courthouse in the Taos Plaza running through February 2016. Exciting to be one of the poets involved in this ekphrastic event, which also included Karen Cordova, Max Early, Veronica Golos, Leslie Ullman, Dom Zuccome, Andrea Watson, and others!

On October 23, 2015, Elizabeth Raby and I launched our respective new Purple Flag books at Bookworks in Albuquerque, New Mexico at 7:00 p.m., Beneath Green Rain and Leaf and Beak.

On October 21, I taught my first workshop in Albuquerque at Bookworks--on the persona poem.

On July 18-23, 2015, I returned to the Summer Writers' Retreat in Alpine, Texas, where I taught a week of "Radical Re-visioning for Poets."

On April 18, I taught a workshop based on my Wingbeats II exercise, "Writing the Bad Sonnet," at Poetry @ Round Top, in Round Top, Texas.

On March 4, I read and talked about Leaf and Beak: Sonnets at Wildflower Terrace, 3801 Berkman Dr. (next to the old Mueller Airport tower).

On March 1, I had a multimedia book launch for Leaf and Beak: Sonnets at Malvern Books in Austin. Performer Joe Blanda provided music, cover-photographer Paul Licce displayed photographs, and I read from my new book of sonnets, Leaf and Beak.

On January 20, 2015, I was the monthly guest of the Ex Libris Book Club for Houston's Public Poetry, where we discussed the poems of Thomas James from Letters to a Stranger, live on GoToMeeting. To view the full book discussion, see: Public Poetry Ex Libris - Scott Wiggerman on Thomas James.

On December 20, 2014, I ran a workshop called "Tell It Slant: Extending the Metaphor" for the Austin Poetry Society's December meeting at 8863 Anderson Mill Road, Suite # 114, Austin TX 78729, 1:30-3:30 p.m.

On December 6, I hosted the final 2015 Texas Poetry Calendar reading at Malvern Books in Austin with over two dozen readers from all over the state. The entire reading--in several segments--is up at YouTube if you go to the Malvern Books page there.

On November 29, I appeared at BookWoman in Austin as part of its Indie Fair.

On October 5, I read at Malvern Books in Austin with Santa Fe poet Elizabeth Raby. My entire reading is up at YouTube at Malvern Reading, starting with a sestina and a crown of sonnets, and ending with the poem that earned my first Pushcart nomination, "Playing GI Joes."

On October 4, I was one of the featured poets at the Georgetown Poetry Festival, along with David Meischen, Sarah Webb, Elizabeth Raby, and Carol Hamilton. I also ran a Wingbeats II workshop, "Three Quick Exercises from Wingbeats II."

On September 12, I was one of the readers at the Feminist Poetry Fest, 8:00 p.m., at Link & Pin Gallery, 2235 E. 6th St #102, Austin, Texas. I also led a workshop for the Festival from Wingbeats II, "The Incredible Shrinking Poem."

On August 9, I presented a talk called "Tell It Slant: The Power of the Metaphor" at the Alpine Public Library in Alpine, Texas, along with Carol Dawson, with a panel discussion led by Becka Oliver.

August 2-8, I returned to Alpine, Texas for a seventh time for the Summer Writers' Retreat, where my sold-out workshop focused on new poetry exercises from Wingbeats II, "Wingbeats II: A One-Week Exercise Program."

On June 28, I presented a workshop at the annual WLT Agents' Conference at the Hyatt Regency in Austin. The workshop, “Jump-Start Exercises to Get Writing Flowing," ran 10:15-11:00 in the Hill Country Rooms A&B (first floor) and featured brief writing exercises from Wingbeats II.

On June 8, I read at Malvern Books in Austin, for the release of the new issue of Borderlands: Texas Poetry Review, along with several other poets, including Laurie Ann Guerrero, the new Poet Laureate of San Antonio. This is the 40th issue of this fine poetry journal!

On May 8, I read with Ken Fontenot and Carolyn Florek at the Round Top Library, as the three of us discussed "Why Read Poetry" in Round Top, Texas, 7:00 p.m.

On May 2, I took part in an ekphrastic poetry exhibit at OBLIQ Gallery at the Arizona Center in downtown Phoenix, AZ called "Sacred Stories of the Southwest." The event was a unique collaboration of 15 artists and 15 poets from New Mexico, Arizona, California, Texas, Colorado, and one poet from Hawaii, who has spent considerable time in the Southwest.


Now that you've learned a little about me, I hope you'll take the time to visit my other pages through the menu on the left. I also encourage you to email me your comments at my email address:

swiggerman (at) comcast (dot) net

Thanks for stopping by!