Scott Wiggerman's Poetry Pages
H o m e
I am a poet, teacher, editor, artist, 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, and our cat Tawny.
Some highlights of my personal writing career: My first Pushcart, in 2008, was for "Playing GI Joes," nominated by HeartLodge."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. My most recent Pushcart nomination (2020) was for "Another Four in the Morning," selected by San Pedro River Review.
Leaf and Beak: Sonnets, my third book, was one of three Finalists for the Texas Institute of Letters'
Helen C. Smith Memorial Award! And in 2021 I will be inducted into the Texas Institute of Letters, along with two other poets, Kevin Prufer and Allison Hedge Coke.
In March 2020, "Johnsburg" was featured in American Life in Poetry chosen by Poet Laureate Ted Kooser. I will forever be grateful. It is also featured now on the esteemed Poetry Foundation website. In July 2020, "the distance /we have weathered / driftwood" earned seventh place in the European Kukai 2020, which I'm very proud of since there were 259 entrants from 48 countries! In August 2020, "Reveries While Walking the Mesa on the Hottest Day of the Year" earned a Laureates' Choice Award in the 2020 Maria W. Faust Sonnet Contest, the second time in five years I've placed a sonnet in the Maria W. Faust Sonnet Contest (the first was for "Birding in Fog" in 2015).
I have also been studying art the past few years here in Albuquerque. Art is something I've always been interested but have not had much formal training in, but I have produced enough to create a small portfolio, sorted by media, if you're interested in seeing another side my work: Scott Wiggerman Art Portfolio. In addition, a selection of my art is also available as prints at Society6.
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
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
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."
cover by Scott Wiggerman
Plain View Press, 2000
husband 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. While we no longer publish the calendar, we continue to produce books. Please take a look at the link
to this site; better yet, help us
out by purchasing a copy of one of our books,
as we are a non-profit organization. We have released numerous books, including: 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, Greg Candela's Shallow-Rooted Heart, and the very recent 22 Poems & a Prayer for El Paso. Most of our books 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. David and I also run a monthly series of Wingbeats workshops at Bookworks in Albuquerque, the second Tuesday of the month.
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!