A Public Sphere for Poetry, Politics, and Nature
“Vox Populi is basically a personal blog that seems to have swallowed a small planet.” — Doug Anderson
Vox Populi, founded in April 2014, is a community of writers, artists, teachers and activists who share a vision of what American life is and what it could be. By exposing problems and proposing solutions, we are part of a growing movement in America that believes in environmental responsibility, empowerment of the disadvantaged, peaceful co-existence, and reform of the corrupt institutions that put the short term interests of the few over the long term needs of the many. These topics, which are interdependent, are explored through poetry, journalism, personal essays, videos, music, and visual art that display a love of craft and a dedication to truth. In short, we look for the poetry in everything.
The opinions expressed in Vox Populi are those of the individual contributors.
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Born and raised in Texas, Michael Simms has worked as a squire and armorer to a Hungarian fencing master, a stable hand, a gardener, a forager, an estate agent, a college teacher, an editor, a publisher, a technical writer, a lexicographer, a political organizer, and a literary impresario. He identifies as being on the spectrum and as a survivor of childhood sexual abuse who didn’t speak until he was five years old. He is the author of three full-length collections of poetry, most recently American Ash, as well as four chapbooks, three novels and a textbook about poetry, and he’s been the lead editor of over 100 published books. As the founding editor of Vox Populi and the founding editor emeritus of Autumn House Press and Coal Hill Review, he was recognized in 2011 by the Pennsylvania State Legislature for his contribution to the arts. Simms and his wife Eva live in the Pittsburgh neighborhood of Mount Washington overlooking the confluence of the Allegheny and Monongahela Rivers.
Dr. Nisha Gupta, co-founder, earned her Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology at Duquesne University. Her research is focused on psychopolitics: the psychological impact of worldwide social injustices. She explores the use of art and social media as interventions to foster societal empathy and bridge differences.
Contributing Editors: Doug Anderson, Joan E. Bauer, David Huddle, Derrick Z Jackson, Naomi Shihab Nye, Mel Packer, Eva-Maria Simms, Nicholas Simms, Sandy Solomon, Philip Terman, John Samuel Tieman, Arlene Weiner
Website designer: Joseph Carreno
Regular Contributors: Doug Anderson, W.J. Astore, Robert Lee Baily, Joan E. Bauer, Peter Blair, Adrian Blevins, Chana Bloch, Deborah Bogen, Ace Boggess, Laure-Anne Bosselaar, Daniel Burston, Noam Chomsky, Paul Christensen, Angele Ellis, Daniel R. Cobb, Kate Daniels, Chard De Niord, Yana Djin, Stephen Dobyns, Tom Engelhardt, Molly Fisk, Deirdre Fulton, Vanessa German, Andrea Germanos, Michael Greger MD, Nisha Gupta, Rachel Hadas, Sam Hamill, Chris Hedges, David Huddle, Marc Jampole, Kogonada, Gail Langstroth, Sarah Lazare, Djelloul Marbrook, Lauren McCauley, Leslie McGrath, George Monbiot, Bill Moyers, Majid Naficy, Tashi Nyima, Naomi Shihab Nye, Patricia A. Nugent, Robert Okaji, Mel Packer, Jose Padua, Andy Piascik, Dawn Potter, Nadia Prupis, Robert Reich, Boris Seewald, Eva-Maria Simms, Michael Simms, Ellen McGrath Smith, Rebecca Solnit, Sandy Solomon, Kareem Tayyar, Kate Tempest, Philip Terman, John Samuel Tieman, Clifford Thompson, George Yancy, Michael T. Young, Tony Zhou, Andrena Zawinski, Abby Zimet.
Protestors on Smithfield Bridge, Pittsburgh, December 2014
(photograph by Robert Lee Bailey)