Gregg Shapiro is a 1999 inductee into Chicago's Gay and Lesbian Hall of Fame and a recipient of the 2003 Outstanding Support OMA (Outmusic Award). He is a pop culture journalist, poet and fiction writer whose creative work has been published in a multitude of literary journals including Blithe House Quarterly, Spoon River Poetry Review, Gargoyle, The Illinois Review, Columbia Poetry Review, Folio, and The Washington Review, to name just a few.
His creative work also appears in numerous anthologies, such as Mondo Barbie (St. Martin's Press), Bar Stories (Alyson Books), Sweet Jesus (The Anthology Press), Getting It On: A Condom Reader (Soho Books), Reclaiming The Heartland (University of Minnesota Press), Unsettling America (Penguin Books) and others. A Multicultural Reader (Perfection Learning) and Literature And Gender (Addison Wesley Longman), are two textbooks containing his work. For nearly a decade spanning the turn of the millennium, he has also served as the chief curator for Women & Children First Books' Pride readings, drawing upon many of Chicago's top LGBT/Q writers in this annual celebration. (For a sampling of this, see the Pride 2000 readings.)
Shapiro's poetry inhabits streets, public transport, casual but ruminating observation, and moments with intimate acquaintances, such as partners and family. While lucid and unaffected, the poetry reveals transcendant significances in daily objects and affairs drawn from the artist's life. Where many writers whitewash geography from their poetry, Shapiro writes unabashedly from place. The scenes for his poems have direct significance among the other objects and phenomena in his writing, and extend the poems into social and cultural critique.
Audition Gregg Shapiro's poetry. The poems below were recorded at e-poets.net studios in Chicago in May 2004.
- May 2004