April Ossmann is the author of Event Boundaries  and Anxious Music, both from Four Way Books, and has published poetry in numerous journals including New England Review and Colorado Review, and in anthologies including From the Fishouse (Persea Books), and is the recipient of several awards for her poetry, including a 2013 Vermont Arts Council Creation Grant and a Prairie Schooner Readers' Choice Award. She has also published essays including Thinking Like an Editor: How to Order Your Poetry Manuscript (Poets & Writers, March/April 2011), and a biography/critical study of poet Lynda Hull in American Writers Supplement XXI (Charles Scribner’s Sons).

She teaches as a poetry editor-in-residence for the low-residency MFA in Creative Writing Program at Sierra Nevada College at Lake Tahoe. She also teaches guest poetry workshops regionally, using a non-traditional workshop method she developed intended to teach poets to revise their work more objectively (as an editor would), and has taught creative writing and literature courses at Lebanon College and at the University of Maine at Farmington. She was Executive Director of Alice James Books from
2000 - 2008.
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Capital Public Radio Interview About Event Boundaries
Valley News Interview
Poetry Now Interview About Event Boundaries
Kate's Miscellany Interview About Event Boundaries
Vermont Arts Council Interview About Event Boundaries
The Southeast Review Online Interview About Anxious Music
Wikipedia Article



Library Journal

Ossmann…explores the connections between love and death—and their centrality to life—while weaving a tapestry of associations. The poems are beautiful and subtly witty, complicated and deceptively honest…"  
–Karla Huston

Bennington Banner

Ossmann brings a deft touch of word choice and poetic structure that moves those human events from the level of the commonplace to the extraordinary.
Michael F. Epstein  


…with regard to the possibilities offered by April’s poetics, boundaries are not sharp edges; instead, they are dimensionless membranes analogous to the cosmological event horizons of black holes…Jane Kenyon had the immutable “otherwise;” April has the mutating otherwise. Robert Frost had hay fields; April has force fields. Vermont poets have sturdy apple orchards; April has immaterial auras. Auras as transitory— and marvelous—as orchids…I highly recommend Event Boundaries.  
                                                                                        Therese Broderick


Publishers Weekly

“…a voice remarkable for its confidence and fierceness…her style suggests long acquaintance with the conventions of intimate, autobiographical 21st-century verse and a daring all her own.”

Library Journal

“These poems exhibit a quiet, considered intelligence rare in first collections. Ossmann…writes of desire tempered by wisdom and self-restraint…throughout lurks the fear of breaking loose and spinning away, to the point where ‘when we learn the answers/will we have forgotten/all the questions.’ Recommended.”  –Ellen Kaufman


"This book concerns itself with this territory–a kind of Rorschach, a shifting of foreground and background and the huge question posed in many guises of how to contain or embrace or release desire. Ossmann's best poems have this quality of controlled panic, an intelligence able to articulate and tolerate alarming paradox."  –Rebecca Kaiser Gibson

Poets’ Quarterly

“Ossmann explores life’s many arenas and their attendant imperfections with the precision of a surgeon and the sharp wit of a polished conversationalist. Eschewing perfect closure, her poetry achieves a fullness which matches the range of life as it truly is, from its quotidian depths to its delightfully soulful surfaces.”  —Christina Cook

Off the Coast

“Her lines are neat, her stanzas often clipped, matching her musingsthat fine synchronicity between subject and style we look for in the best poetry, form following feeling and vice-versa.”  –Carl Little

Stride Magazine

“It is unusual for me to warm so swiftly to a collection of poetry as I did to this debut publication by April Ossmann.”  –Alan West

Bangor Daily News

“…uncertainty is a fascinating reality, and there’s a delight and…a nobility in the impulse to grapple with it, hopefully resulting in a momentary stay against confusion, as Frost put it. The poems in Anxious Music are to be commended for following the inclination, wherever they lead.”  –Dana Wilde

Devaney, Doak & Garrett Booksellers

“Known in the industry as an excellent editor, we are not surprised to find Ossmann’s Anxious Music an extremely taut and well crafted volume.”  –Kenny Brechner


“So much of this poet's language is new and inquiring that I found myself reading often two or three times through a poem before turning the page… every question is the start of an unexpected and delicious answer. I'll be reading this collection again. And again.”  –Beth Kanell


“At her best, Ossmann explores the complexities of loss and desire without providing us with easy answers…Anxious Music reveals to us that while we are often at the mercy of our desires, we are seldom in control of them.”  –Jennifer Hanks


“You will not find literary gamesmanship in Anxious Music. The language is simple and straightforward but the cumulative effect is mesmerizing.”  –S.T.

Email address:  aprilossmann@hotmail.com

April's Poetry