Salt and Iron, poems by Gregory Byrd










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Readings and Appearances



November 5-7. Other Words Conference. St. Augustine, Florida

November 8.  Safety Harbor Writers & Poets Conference: A Focus on Craft.  Safety Harbor, Florida.

November 17, 18: St. Petersburg College-Clearwater Campus 50th Anniversary Celebration.  I wrote the 50th anniversary poem: “I am SPC-Clearwater

June 27, 2015.  10:45 AM to 12 Noon in Workshop #4:  Contemporary Florida Poetry from Coast to Coast with Orlando in the Middle.  2015 Convention of the National Federation of State Poetry Societies.  Hilton Bay Front Hotel in St. Petersburg on June 25 – 28, 2015.  Hosted by the Florida State Poets Association.

April–National Poetry Month!
April 15th, 7:00 p.m. Dunedin Public Library.  223 Douglas Ave, Dunedin, FL 34698
(727) 298-3080

April 29th, 12:30 p.m. Leepa-Rattner Museum of Art, St. Petersburg College, Tarpon Springs campus, 600 Klosterman Road, Tarpon Springs, FL. Contact Prof. Anthony Nappi 727-712-5827,
Article in the SPC online student newspaper The Sandbox with pictures and video

April 30th.  New College of Florida.  5800 Bay Shore road, Sarasota,FL.  Contact Kira Rib


November 30, 2014.  Nature Coast Unitarian Universalists.  7633 N Florida Ave, Citrus Springs, FL 34434.  Sermon with a few poems and daughter Carlyn playing cello.

11:00-11:45 Room STG 123  October 25, 2014.  Times Festival of Reading.  University of South Florida.  St. Petersburg Campus.   (Peter Meinke reads at 10:00 in the same room, so come early and catch him, too)

Complete list of readers announced by Tampa Bay Times:

September 6, 2014.  Octagon Arts Center,    2470 Nursery Road, Clearwater, FL
September 9, 2014. Inkwood Books (with Peter Meinke). 7 p.m.
September 30th, 2014.  2 p.m.  St. Petersburg College, Clearwater Campus. Library.

Praise for Salt and Iron:

“In these fascinating poems, Greg Byrd is like the fishermen he often writes about, casting out his clear and dark lines and slowly reeling us in, until we find it’s a little hard to breathe, on this dry land that might be Florida.   These poems are painterly narratives, told with a quiet intensity that produces, like all good poetry, a mixture of sorrow and relief.   We recognize the feeling.”
–Peter Meinke, Lucky Bones (University of Pittsburgh Press, 2014).

“By turns introspective, expansive and close to the senses, Gregory Byrd’s  poems embody the restless energy of the Florida landscape, a place of stories fathers tell over beers and ordinary heroes facing unordinary times.  Life-sized, transformative and singularly American, Salt and Iron vibrates with quiet lyricism and the backbreaking work of love and hope.”  –Silvia Curbelo, The Geography of Leaving and The Secret History of Water

Salt and Iron is durable essential engagement with earth, sea, ageless necessities, rooted in family, rhythms of what matters and will.  Its Florida is where one is from, a way of life, in and of watery land–whether in Albania, Utah, Brooklyn.  Everywhere people survive work, pervasive, to give leisure to others.  Salt and Iron is “The Open Boat” in which one confronts the elements as an equal, with knowledge. Each word or line, weighed, new, timeless, needs rereading.
Greg Byrd knows the land and water and those who squeeze their living from it, children who survive its dangers, or don’t, the humanity left behind.  –Van K. Brock, Lightered: New and Selected Poems

Links to poems from Salt and Iron:

Ras Gene” in Apalachee Review 57
DuskCortland Review 36 (with audio!)
On Being Asked What I Thought of Neruda’s ‘The Enigmas’Cortland Review 26
TarponPanhandler, Scarp, and Florida Straits chapbook from Yellowjacket Press. (this link opens as a pdf)
Dark Lesson” p. 32, Eckerd Review 2014

Youtube videos of Greg reading poems from Salt and Iron:

“Salt and Iron” (title poem)
“Deer Hunting in the Everglades”
Farewell to Lincoln Square (after Raphael Soyer)” a poem for Labor Day
My Daughter, Learning Geometry in a Foreign Country” posted for Easter

Michael Trammell reviews Salt and Iron in Apalachee Review 65

Three poems were included in a Hambidge art show, Fables of the Ecofuture.  Grace Thornton discusses “Dark Lesson,” in her review of the show for Burnaway.

To order:
–For a signed copy of Salt and Iron, click the “buy now” link to the right or email for mailing address to send a check.  Be sure to include your address and any specifics regarding how you would like to be addressed.

–Unsigned copies of Salt and Iron may also be ordered from Snake Nation Press.


Florida Straits can be ordered from Yellowjacket Press for $13.

At Penuel is available from Split Oak Press for $12.

Send me your thoughts!


4 thoughts on “Salt and Iron, poems by Gregory Byrd

  1. Listened to Greg read last night. I watched ( actually listened) to the audience react to “Deer Hunting in the Everglades” but I loved the sweetness of “Short Hair.” It was like one of those unexpectedly intimate views inside a long relationship that you sometimes catch as through a window, short, sharp, a little awkward ( the eavesdropping, Greg, not the poem). I found “At Penuel” about scars and narratives the most moving but still what a great evening! Listening to both Peter and Greg reminded me that poems should always be read aloud. Almost made me wish I had students to tell that to. . . almost.

  2. Many thanks to all who came out to the reading/cello event at the Dunedin Public Library tonight. Great audience, good questions, and great vibes. Special thanks to librarian extraordinaire LIz White for making everything happen well and smoothly.

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