...fell in love with Maine after college, but the CHS class of ‘69 graduate confesses that “deep down inside beats the heart of a Jersey boy.” Kestenbaum, Maine’s poet laureate from 2016-2021, spoke to a rapt CHS student audience in 2018, and “returns” to NJ thanks to the opportunities offered by the virtual format.
Former US Poet Laureate Ted Kooser notes, “Stuart Kestenbaum writes the kind of poems I love to read, heartfelt responses to the privilege of having been given a life. No hidden agendas here, no theories to espouse, nothing but life, pure life, set down with craft and love.”
Kestenbaum is the author of five collections of poems, and was host of the Maine Public Radio program Poems from Here and the host/curator of the podcast Make/Time. For 27 years, he served as the director of the Haystack Mountain School of Crafts on Deer Island.