John Burroughs

John Burroughs (Poetry) | Cleveland, OH

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John Burroughs is a Cleveland area poet and publisher, acclaimed for his dynamic and engaging performances. He is the author of around a dozen poetry chapbooks and at least one full-length poetry collection, The Eater of the Absurd. For close to a decade around the turn of the millennium, John served as a full-time playwright and occasional music director in residence for the Ministry of Theatre at Marion Correctional Institution, composing operas including King of All Kings. In 2007, his blog was ranked number 1 in several categories on MySpace when he decided to move on to Facebook and his own new website. John got involved in Cleveland’s vibrant live poetry scene in 2008, won the first poetry slam he ever competed in, formed the associations PoetryElyria and Lorain County Poets, served as webmaster for the Ohio Poetry Association, and has contributed irregularly to the O.P.A. and Cleveland Poetics blogs, and co-founded the legendary Lix and Kix Poetry Extravaganza and Snoetry: A Winter Wordfest. Burroughs is perhaps most proud of his work (since 2008) as the founding editor of Crisis Chronicles Press, curating several multimedia anthologies and publishing poetry and fiction titles by many of the world’s finest indie writers.


Oct Tongue-1 (Crisis Chronicles Press, 2014). With Mary Weems, John Swain, Steven Smith, Lady [Kathy Smith], Shelley Chernin & Steve Brightman. Anthology. Poetry.

The Eater of the Absurd (NightBallet Press, 2012). Poetry.


  • Loss and Foundering. (NightBallet Press, 2018). Poetry
  • Water Works (The Poet’s Haven Small Press Archive, 2017). Poetry.
  • Electric Company (new expanded paperback edition) (Writing Knights Press, 2016). Poetry.
  • Beat Attitude (NightBallet Press, 2015). Poetry.
  • A Case for Ascension (with Jameson Bayles, Dianne Borsenik, Joan Koromante & Michelle Roberts) (Asinimali Publications, 2015). Poetry.
  • It Takes More Than Chance to Make Change (The Poet’s Haven Author Series, 2013). Poetry.
  • Barry Merry Baloney (Spare Change Press, 2012). Poetry.
  • Water Works (recycled karma press, 2012). Poetry.
  • Electric Company (Writing Knights Press, 2011). Poetry.
  • Identity Crisis (Crisis Chronicles Press, 2010). Poetry.
  • Identity Crises (with Bree & Douglas Manson) (Green Panda Press, 2009). Poetry.
  • 6/9: Improvisations in Dependence (Crisis Chronicles Press, 2009). Poetry.
  • Bloggerel (Crisis Chronicles Press, 2008). Poetry.

Blurbs, Press, & Reviews

“[John Burroughs’] words are part Bob Dylan-dada, part Andy Warhol soup-can pop-art stream-of-conscious, complete with a cast of characters ready for their 21st Century close-up. They spill from the poet’s lips, piling atop one another with scurrilous abandon, catching the small crowd of listeners up in a hypnotic rhythm and subtle shock reminiscent of Jack Kerouac’s finer road hymns and the unflinching simplicity of Charles Bukowski….”
—Brian Lisik, Brunswick Sun-Times

“John is probably THE most inspirational and encouraging poets I know. When I go to a reading or event, he mezmerizes me. The amount of work he puts into to the poetry community in North East Ohio is amazing, and the whole poetry scene owes him so much gratitude.”
—Katheryn Womack, a.k.a. Ryn Cricket, author of In Circles

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