Ad Astra Per Aspera
Any art can be decorative or enriching. The best examples are often both. In my art, poetry, I strive for an honesty of vision and language that can be understood by the average educated person as well as the person with a specialized education. My poetry is often inspired by local geography, including the birds and wildlife, the roads and rivers, of the Pioneer Valley, but also by the vistas of the Grand Canyon, the monuments of Rome, but always by the heart searching for understanding and meaning in an often meaningless world.
GARY METRAS is the Poet Laureate of the City of Easthampton as of April 2018. He is the author of the poetry books: The Night Watches (1981), Destiny’s Calendar (1985), Until There Is Nothing Left (2003), White Storm (2018), and Captive in the Here (2018) along with twelve chapbooks. His poems, essays and reviews have appeared in such journals as The American Voice, Another Chicago Magazine, The Bellingham Review, The Boston Review of Books, Connecticut Poetry Review, English Journal, North Dakota Quarterly, Poetry, Poetry East, Sanctuary, Wild Earth, Yankee and Tears in the Fence (UK), along with the recent anthologies Proposing on Brooklyn Bridge (Grayson, 2003) and Visiting Frost: Poems Inspired by the Life and Work of Robert Frost (U-Iowa 2005). He is the editor, publisher, and printer of Adastra Press, which specializes in hand crafted, letterpress printed chapbooks of poetry. He is a past recipient of the Massachusetts Fellowship in Poetry. He recently retired after 31 years teaching high school English, then taught writing at Springfield College for six years. He lives in Easthampton, Massachusetts.
First book of poems, Roses in Lyric Light, 1974
Established Adastra Press 1979
Mass. Felowship in Poetry 1984
Sixteenth book of poems, White Storm, 2018
Appointed Easthampton's first Poet Laureate, April 2018