Kevin Patrick Sullivan

Upcoming Readings


          Nov. 2,3, 8,9,10,15,16, and 17th for a complete

           Schedule, times and ticket prices click on the above  




Originally from Dearborn Heights, Michigan, Kevin settled on the central coast of California in 1975. In 1982 he self-published his first chapbook of poems and stepped out into the world of poetry. He is the author of several chapbooks including his new release UNDER SUCH BRILLIANCE, from Word Palace Press, 2012 and two full length collections, First Sight, Mille Grazie Press 1994, and THE SPACE BETWEEN THINGS, DeerTree Press, 2008. He has been published in such Literary journals as ArtLife, SOLO, Hummingbird, Solo Café, Solo Novo and Askew. He has been included in the anthologies Sometimes in the Open, Poems from California's Poets Laureate, The Night Goes On All Night, Noir Inspired Poems and Sparring With Beatnik Ghosts, Vol.2. - Issue 2.

Kevin was a guest editor at SOLO PRESS, where he was the principal editor of SOLO CAFE Volumes 1 & 2. Kevin has been a featured reader, throughout the state of California. He has read at the Bristol Poetry Festival, Bristol, England as well as the BBC on Radio Bristol, hosted by Keith Warmington, The Paddington International Poetry Festival London, England, Cork and Galway, Ireland, Barcelona, Spain and Detroit, Michigan.

In 1984 Kevin co-founded the Annual San Luis Obispo Poetry Festival and the monthly reading series Corners of the Mouth at Linnaea's Café, in San Luis Obispo. In 2001 he founded the 501 (c) (3) Non-Profit Corporation , San Luis Obispo Poetry Festival/Corners of the Mouth and is the Executive and Artistic Director of both programs. In 2012 he founded and is the Artistic Director of Poetry At The Bean, the Nautical Bean, 11560 Los Osos Valley Rd. San Luis Obispo.

Kevin has worked on and off as a poet/teacher with California Poets in the Schools since 1984. He has worked as a poet facilitator for the California Arts in Corrections at The California Men's Colony. In 2001 he was honored by the San Luis Obispo County Arts Council, receiving its Arts Recognition Award, for his work in the community supporting poetry and poets and was recognized by the San Luis Obispo City Council as a cultural asset to the city of San Luis Obispo.

In 2003 he was named by the New Times as one of their Volunteers of the Year and was proclaimed Poet Laureate by the City Council of San Luis Obispo. In 2007 he was awarded a $2,000 Art Inspires — Individual Artist Grant — for poetry from ARTS Obispo, the San Luis Obispo County Arts Council.

He works for San Luis Obispo Unified School District as a Grounds Keeper and lives in San Luis Obispo with his wife, the artist and poet, Patti Sullivan.


Under Such Brilliance

“Following the wrong God home
I stumble into bliss.”

It is remarkable that these ecstatic poems also carry a sharp political impact: baseball thoughts in burning Detroit, the BP oil spill considered in Italy and the sad return of Jungle Bob from Viet Nam. The grace and delight in these poems also make us surprised “when night turns into day.” If following the wrong God home leads to such bliss, I will follow you anytime,  Kevin. 

—Glenna Luschei, Past Poet Laureate San Luis Obispo, Editor & Publisher of SOLO PRESS

There is an almost indescribable music in these poems by Kevin Patrick Sullivan; a joyful thrumming suffusing a natural world the poet has unabashedly embraced, and with the music of his words makes visible to the reader.

—Jackson Wheeler

When it is so apparent that the boys with the poetry prize parts in their hair have co-opted the collective creative imagination with their intellectual snobbery, what a pleasure it to discover these new Sullivan poems. He views America with a direct and clear-eyed vision. Within his defamation of Viet Nam and in his paean tribute to the 1968 Detroit Tigers, he’s reflecting upon a nation in both its metaphoric disgrace and its glory.

We have only to read Kevin Patrick Sullivan’s Plein Air Poetry With Molly Lipsher to further eavesdrop on his celebration of life. And, too, just one more reason for us to be celebrating the joyous occasion of this publication.

—Michael C Ford

The Space Between Things

“When Kevin Patrick Sullivan reads, you hear a Celtic courage, ageless and refreshing, singing in the lines. Kevin’s voice reflects acuity of vision, vitality, honesty. His work ethic is inspiration for all poets, young and old. He is director of the nationally respected ‘Corners Of the Mouth’ readings at San Luis Obispo’s venerable and beloved mecca of the arts, Linnaea's Café.”

—Ray Clark Dickson, First Poet Laureate, city and county, San Luis Obispo

“Kevin Patrick Sullivan wakes up everyday in love with the world. He is an ecstatic descendent of Rumi, but his poems illuminate the roots of joy growing in a more difficult terrain. These spare light-filled hymns sing the praises of a sweet journeyman’s everyday life—from working on the assembly line at the Ford Motor Plant in Detroit to simply acknowledging the sacred act of breathing. These poems prove that the mystic still walks among us, works with us side by side—mining exuberance in beautifully muddy boots.”

—Dian Sousa, Past Poet Laureate, city of San Luis Obispo

Partial Reading List

A Number of These Venues on Several Occasions

      .   Santa Barbara Mission