Raising the Tents

by Frances Payne Adler

Finalist for the WESTAF Book Award

Raising the Tents follows one woman as she plumbs her depths, and retrieves her own voice on her journey to find meaning and wholeness. Adler’s personal mythology evolves from a belief in the possibility for change and from a Jewish heritage emphasizing ancestry. She explores the silencing of women and reveals the empowering effects of finding and claiming our voices. In remembering pogroms and the Holocaust, and her childhood in an alcoholic home, she bears witness against “a world malnourished by its insistence on dominance as a way of life.”



“Notable for its strong feminist, intergenerational, personal, and political messages, this is recommended for all poetry collections.” —Library Journal

“Adler writes...surprising and fierce poems, about the Holocaust and about her own feminist awakening.” —June Jordan, Ms. Magazine

“A Jewish pulse with feminist vision and wise humor. A woman ‘raising the tents’ so that we can see what has not been visible, hear what has not been spoken, probing the crevices of memory, with a wide lens, cherishing all peoples. This is Fran Adler’s very special gift for which all gratitude is due.” —Bettina Aptheker

“Adler is a brave woman, a brave and strong poet.” —Alicia Ostriker


Photo of Frances Payne Adler by Tey Roberts

Frances Payne Adler is co-author with photographer Kira Corser of Home Street Home (San Diego State University Press), When the Bough Breaks: Pregnancy and the Legacy of Addiction (New Sage Press), and The Making of a Matriot: Poetry and Prose 1991–2003 (Red Hen Press). She is the director of the creative writing and social action program at CSU, Monterey Bay. Her poems are widely published in journals, including Women’s Review of Books and Ms. Magazine. Her awards include a NEA grant.