August 5th, 2018 at Manayunk-Roxborough Art Center 3:00 PM to 5:00PM

Kathleen anne sheeder-bonanno 

Kathleen anne sheeder-bonanno 

The Manayunk Roxborough Art Center, located at 419 Green Lane (rear) will offer a memorial celebration of the life and work of Kathleen Sheeder Bonanno on Sunday, August 5, from 3:00 to 5:00 PM.  Kathleen was a prominent figure in Philadelphia’s literary scene and the guiding light in setting up the Musehouse  A $5 donation is kindly requested for the Art Center.  Refreshments will be served.

Kathleen was an award-winning poet, author, and activist and contributing editor to the American Poetry Review. Her awards included the Purple Ribbon Award from the Lutheran Settlement Home for her advocacy on behalf of domestic violence issues, the Beatrice Hawley Award for her best-selling book of poems, Slamming Open the Door; and a Knight Foundation grant which made it possible for her to open Musehouse—A Center of the Literary Arts in Chestnut Hill. Kathleen y was a woman of extreme generosity, heart and incomparable wit. Lover of puns, dogs, and the arts; unparalleled raconteur; gifted teacher; poet of grace and candor; tower of strength; and world-class free-spirit. She also possessed a gift for friendship.

In many ways this memorial tribute grew out of a special article in the Schuylkill Valley Journal that was devoted to the appreciation of Kathleen as a teacher and the specialness of the Musehouse workshops. Contributors to that SVJ issue are: Amy Small-McKinney, Grant Clauser, Faith Paulsen, Susan Holck, David Ryan, Phyllis Strock and Susan Taichman- Robins.

Some of the writers, so far, who will be sharing comments in this afternoon program include:

Amy Small McKinney, Grant Clauser, Susan Taichman-Robins, Faith Paulsen, Elliot barTzedek. Some people will also be reading some of Kathleen’s unpublished poems.

For this memorial celebration everyone is invited to share memories of the remarkable teacher and special friend of the arts that is Kathleen Sheeder Bonnano. Let us celebrate her life and her writing and the compassionate humanity that she shared with so many.

Peter Krok, Humanities Director at MRAC, is the coordinator of the MRAC Reading Series.  He is also the editor-in-chief of the Schuylkill Valley Journal Print and Online at  For information about the program, call the MRAC at 215-482-3363 and leave a message.

Here is “Poem About Light” that appeared in Kathleen’s remarkable poetry book, Slamming Open the Door:

August 5th, 2018 Kathleen Sheeder-Bonanno Memorial

The Manayunk Roxborough Art Center, located at 419 Green Lane (rear) will offer a memorial celebration of the life and work of Kathleen Sheeder Bonanno on Sunday, August 5, from 3:00 PM to 5:00 PM. 

If you can not attend and would like to make a donation, Please use the link below and Thank You!


Poem About Light

 You can try to strangle light: 
use your hands and think
you’ve found the throat of it,
but you haven’t.
You could use a rope or a garrote
or a telephone cord,
but the light, amorphous, implacable,
will make a fool of you in the end.
 You could make it your mission
to shut it out forever,
to crouch in the dark,
the blinds pulled tight—
still, in the morning,
a gleaming little ray will betray you, poking
its optimistic finger
through a corner of the blind,
and then more light,
clever, nervy, impossible,
spilling out from the crevices
warming the shade.
 This is the stubborn sun,
choosing to rise,
like it did yesterday,
like it will tomorrow.
You have nothing to do with it.
The sun makes its own history;
light has its way.