poetry on the bus…

April 30, 2013

Poetry in Transit, Pennsylvania

Each year, the winning poems from the Sue Boynton Poetry Contest are turned into beautiful placards (by Egress Studio) and displayed inside Whatcom Transportation Authority (WTA) buses, riding around Whatcom County for an entire year.

We’re always happy to find other communities that treat bus riders to poetry, including the area around Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania, which is served by the Luzerne County Transportation Authority. Founded in 2007 by Wilkes University Associate Professor of English Dr. Mischelle Anthony (who still coordinates the program), Poetry in Transit posted well-known poets the first year, but since then has put out a call to local residents as well as students and faculty at four area colleges. Each year’s poems address a theme and are limited to six lines or fewer.

The 2013 Sue Boynton Poetry Contest placards will be placed in WTA buses in about July. Meanwhile, enjoy the 2012 poems while they last.

Read about other poetry-on-the-bus programs.
. . . . .
Poetry in Transit design by Mark Golaszewski

on poetry…

April 29, 2013

Yusef Komunyakaa

I knew life / Began where I stood in the dark, / Looking out into the light, / & that sometimes I could see // Everything through nothing.
Yusef Komunyakaa
(b. April 29, 1947)

. . . . .
Magic City, “Sunday Afternoons” (excerpt)

free poetry…

April 28, 2013

Coursera ~ Modern & Contemporary American PoetryPerhaps, in recent months, you’ve been following the buzz about university courses that are offered free online. Coursera consolidates many of those courses (341 at the moment) into a single online catalog where you can explore, register and enroll in programs from 62 universities.

Yesterday we mentioned Pulitzer Remix, which, in addition to being a month-long found poetry project, has also become an online community for the 85 participating poets. Sheila Sondik (thanks again, Sheila) tells us that the University of Pennsylvania online course Modern & Contemporary American Poetry has been highly recommended among Remixers. “Apparently, it is really worthwhile even if you only read the poems and watch the videos.”

The ten-week course, which is taught by Al Filreis and is entirely free, begins September 8, 2013. No previous knowledge of poetry is required, nor do you need to buy textbooks or show up at a particular time for online sessions. Read more about Modern & Contemporary American Poetry or explore other programs available free online through Coursera.

Pulitzer Remix

National Poetry Month is winding down, but the poetic commitment continues at Pulitzer Remix. It’s intriguing how the voices of both the original author and the “finding” poet come through in the resulting found poems. Just a reminder to browse the collection, including the work of long-time (former) Boynton committee member Sheila Sondik, who spent the month finding the poetry in The Yearling by Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings.

Literacy Walk/RunThink of it as sort of a book group on the hoof. The 14th Annual Walk/Run for Literacy, Saturday, June 29, 2013, is a fundraising 5k that supports the work of the Whatcom Literacy Council. It starts at 9:00am in Fairhaven in front of Village Books/Fairhaven Runners, follows the Padden Creek trail, passes Fairhaven Park and loops back to Mill Avenue near 11th Street.

Registration is now open. Sign up. Walk. Run. Support literacy. It’s fun!

(After your morning walk/run, you’ll have plenty of time to cool down, enjoy the day and find your way back to the Firehouse Performing Arts Center for SpeakEasy 11: Poet’s Mind: concept and process. More on that to follow.)

poetry walk, illustrated

April 25, 2013

Gabriel Campanario, Seattle Sketcher, poemboxGabriel Campanario is a journalist and illustrator whose blog, Seattle Sketcher, is well known to readers of The Seattle Times. A couple of weeks ago, for National Poetry Month, his column included his lively illustrations of poetry posts, boxes and even a bench that he’s observed and painted in his meanderings through Seattle. Have a look at his April 6 Seattle Times post, “Our real-life poetry of the streets.”

To see other places where “poetry posts” are cropping up, see our earlier entries on Santa Fe, Portland and Portland again.


April 24, 2013

Times Haiku

In case it has escaped your attention, the New York Times is honoring National Poetry Month with daily infusions to a Tumblr blog known as Times Haiku. Before you get excited about submitting your own, be aware that these are accidental haiku, selected by a computer from the text of the New York Times for their strict 5-7-5 syllables and then vetted by a human being. They’re quite surprising and wonderful. Read about Times Haiku and peruse recent Times Haiku posts.