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Welcome to the schedule of the 2015 Massachusetts Poetry Festival, happening May 1-3 in the beautiful and historic town of Salem! 

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To purchase your attendance button, read articles on our headliners, get tips for where to stay in Salem, and more, visit our website at www.masspoetry.org/festival2015.

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avatar for Adam Grabowski

Adam Grabowski

Adam Grabowski's work has recently appeared in Off the Coast, Drunk in a Midnight Choir, and Wilderness House Literary Review. He can be heard on voicemailpoems.org His second chapbook, The Washing Our Hands EP was released in 2015 and is available now through his website. He counts his voice as part of the Northampton Poetry Open Mic mosaic, where he facilitates a poetry workshop. He brings pie to a knife fight. He currently lives in Holyoke, Mass. with his wife and two daughters.

Sample Poem:
--from Wilderness House Literary Review

Washing Our Hands

-Neonatal Intensive Care Unit
Bay State Hospital
Springfield, Ma

We stand here
for the required two minutes
washing our hands

as a pile of still frame futures
scatter and whiten in the bath.

This is home now,
this occupied country.

And so the water holds us.

There are signs that insist
you must leave if you are coughing, feverish.
There are signs reminding nurses,
social workers to wash and
wash again every twenty minutes.

What the signs don’t say
but what we’ve learned
sitting each night in chairs rocking
with their brass plaques naming the tiny dead

is that these nightly rituals
of getting clean have nothing to do
with what we could bring in
and everything to do
with what we need to leave behind.