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Author Event: High Plains Bookfest Poetry Reading

High Plains Bookfest finalists read poetry at This House of Books, your member-owned, independent bookstore & tea shop in downtown Billings, Montana

Poetry Reading

  • All That Held Us by Henrietta Goodman
  • Blackbird Song by Randy Lundy
  • Heavy by Joy M. Brown
  • View from True North by Sara Henning 

Joy M. Brown, a poet from Regina, Saskatchewan, took up powerlifting after retiring from a life as a teacher and school principal. She started exercising with weights at age 70 so that she could do household chores without help. Soon she was interested in competitive lifting. Her poetry in Heavy is inspired by the activities of the gym and the people she trains with. The poems have already attracted positive reviews by the Saskatchewan Writers Guild. 

Henrietta Goodman is the author of three books of poetry. The most recent, All That Held Us, is a sonnet-sequence published by BkMk Press in 2018 as winner of the John Ciardi Prize. Originally from North Carolina, she has lived in Montana since 1991. She teaches at Rocky Mountain College in Billings and at the University of Montana online.

Sara Henning teaches writing at Stephen F. Austin State University, where she also serves as poetry editor for Stephen F. Austin State University Press. Her book, View from True North won the 2017 Crab Orchard Poetry Open Prize. This is a book of memory and history, written in an understanding that the task of relating family history is sometimes indistinguishable from lamentation. In it, she explores the destructive legacies of alcoholism and multigenerational closeting, the erasure of sexual identity, and suicide. Even so, her writing is compassionate and lyrical. Sara's poems will be read by Emily Ursaliak.

Randy Lundy is a Cree poet whose poems are based in the natural world. His poems read like good prayers, mantra's for future progress, songs for souls deeply attached to the earth under foot.  These poems feel the liturgy, a guide to new rituals, new empowerment. Blackbird Song delves into his Indigenous heritage and his kinship with the land. It is a deeply contemplative work. An award-winning poet, Lundy’s work has been widely anthologized.


This event, part of the 2019 High Plains Bookfest takes place at the bookstore on Saturday afternoon, October 25, starting at 3 o'clock. Books will be available for purchase and the poets will be happy to sign your copy.


Parking downtown is free on weekends. If you cannot find a place to park on the streets, your best bet for finding a nearby parking space is to try one of the nearby parking garages. Park 3 near the corner of Second Ave N. and North 27th street is nearest, about two blocks from our door and featuring the marvelous mural of Billings History by Terri Porta.

Event Date: 
Saturday, October 12, 2019 - 3:00pm
This House of Books
224 North Broadway
Billings, MT 59101-1935
All That Held Us: Poems Cover Image
ISBN: 9781943491124
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: BkMk Press of the University of Missouri-Kans - April 2nd, 2018

Blackbird Song Cover Image
Email or call for price
ISBN: 9781926710396
Availability: Hard to Find
Published: Hagios Press - January 15th, 2017

View from True North (Crab Orchard Series in Poetry) Cover Image
Email or call for price
ISBN: 9780809336852
Availability: Special Order
Published: Southern Illinois University Press - November 22nd, 2018