Book launch party and readings!

December 3, 2014

Bellingham Poems flyer

This is a guest post by Chuck Luckmann.

Bellingham Poems

“Poetry is a good way to be in the world,” my friend the poet Emily Warn once said. When I think this way, I’m a better poet and writer: more observant and mindful. When I’m in the world as a poet, nothing is ordinary.

Some poets are born poets; others are made. I’m in the latter category. I’ve worked at becoming a poet, but often in a haphazard way. To help me become a more disciplined writer, in October 2001, I started looking for another poet or two who would be interested in meeting regularly to share drafts.

At first Jason Graham and I met at the Old Town Café, but he took a job in Seattle. Shortly thereafter, in 2002, I met Paul Piper and Tim Pilgrim. We began meeting once or twice a month, at 4:00 PM on Thursdays, at The Black Cat, Nimbus, The Temple Bar, and when the weather was pleasant, on the outdoor decks at La Fiamma and Nicki’s at Squalicum Harbor.

Having to send to Pilgrim and Piper a poem every two weeks was good discipline. Our feedback to each other helped clarify and improve all of our drafts. Every poem went through this collaborative process. We’d meet, drink beer, and collectively try to solve our poetical problems. The writing group has helped me write and revise maybe a 100 poems; I’m sure it was the same for Tim and Paul.

A couple years ago we noticed that we’d written a significant number of poems about Bellingham and its surrounding landscapes. We decided that the collection would make a fine book. We chose 32 poems, and a few days ago, Flying Trout Press published Bellingham Poems.

We’ll be celebrating our poetry group and publication with a party on Saturday, December 6, 2014, from 3:00 – 6:00 PM at Brandywine Kitchen, 1317 Commercial Street, Bellingham. We’ll also be reading at Village Books, 1200 11th Street, at 4:00 PM on Sunday, December 14. Please join us.

. . . . .
Chuck Luckmann received his M.A. at Western Washington University and currently teaches English at Skagit Valley College.

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