Call for poems!

March 21, 2016

Washington 129

Washington State Poet Laureate Tod Marshall has announced the launch of “Washington 129, an anthology of poems gathered from the people of Washington State.”

To be published as both an online and print anthology in March of 2017, the collection welcomes submissions from poets of all ages and experience. “Poems are not required to address Washington geography, imagery, or culture directly, but those that do will be given priority consideration.”

You may submit only once, up to three poems, and the submission deadline is January 31, 2017. See more and download the guidelines on the Washington State Poet Laureate website.

poetry in the air(port)

March 20, 2016


A tip of the passport to Heathrow Airport, London, which will add poetry to air this Easter holiday (Easter is March 27). Anticipating a larger-than-usual crowd and lots of families, the airport teamed up with four children’s authors and poets to create and record poems about holidays and travel for “poetry points” in the airport terminals. As part of the initiative, children under the age of 16 are also invited to submit their own holiday-themed poem and there will be workshops conducted around the airport. Read the story on the Heathrow Airport website and follow the links to read and watch the poems.

Baudelaire's Birthday Bash

Spend a spring day in Ellensburg, Washington, and fill your eyes and ears with poetry. The first-ever Inland Poetry Prowl, aka Baudelaire’s Birthday Bash, Saturday, April 9, 2016, will populate downtown Ellensburg with readings, writing, art, open mics and nearly two dozen featured guest poets, including Washington State Poet Laureate Tod Marshall.

See the roster of featured readers, the schedule of events, the open mic guidelines and schedule and plenty more on the Inland Poetry Prowl website and Baudelaire’s Birthday Bash on Facebook.

poetry in space!

March 18, 2016


Are you submitting your poems only to local publications? Here’s a chance to get out of the local rut: send a poem into space!

NASA’s OSIRIS REx mission will visit, explore and sample the asteroid Bennu. Part of the module’s payload will be a sampling of creativity by earthlings like you! NASA invites you to submit a sketch, photograph, graphic, poem, song, short video or other creative or artistic expression by the deadline: Sunday, March 20, 2016 at 11:59 pm PDT. In your work, they urge you to consider the subject of exploration.

See the guidelines and much more about OSIRIS REx, then send a poem out of this world!
. . . . .
image: OSIRIS REx Spacecraft at the asteroid Bennu

teen poetry MOOC

March 17, 2016

teen poetry MOOC

We’ve talked before about Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs), in particular Modern & Contemporary American Poetry, which starts up again in September. But here’s something a little different: a free online poetry writing course for emerging writers 13-19 years of age. No previous writing experience is necessary. Working with poet/instructor Daniel Khalastchi, Associate Director of the Frank N. Magid Center for Undergraduate Writing at the University of Iowa, and a teaching team of graduates of the Iowa Writers’ Workshop, participants will write, share and discuss their work.

Flashwrite begins Wednesday, March 30, and continues through May 3, 2016. Learn more on the University of Iowa International Writing Program Flashwrite page. Tell a teenager.

deadline extended!

March 16, 2016

Cherry blossomsAttention Whatcom County haiku poets: the deadline for submitting cherry-blossom-themed haiku to The Ferndale Cherry Blossom Festival has been extended one week. The new submission deadline is Monday, March 21, 2016.

Each poet may submit two unpublished haiku poems. There are Youth and Adult categories and the winning haiku will be selected by Michael Dylan Welch. For guidelines, see Call To All Whatcom County Poets and find the submission form on The Ferndale Cherry Blossom Festival page.

For inspiration, see “Some Suggestions for Writing Haiku” on the Vancouver Cherry Blossom Festival Haiku Invitational page.

Pay with a Poem

We mentioned Pay with a Poem last year, and while it doesn’t seem to be catching fire in the U.S., it’s worth mentioning again.

In 1999, UNESCO proclaimed March 21 as World Poetry Day.

“One of the main objectives of the Day is to support linguistic diversity through poetic expression and to offer endangered languages the opportunity to be heard within their communities.

“The observance of World Poetry Day is also meant to encourage a return to the oral tradition of poetry recitals, to promote the teaching of poetry, to restore a dialogue between poetry and the other arts such as theatre, dance, music and painting, and to support small publishers and create an attractive image of poetry in the media, so that the art of poetry will no longer be considered an outdated form of art, but one which enables society as a whole to regain and assert its identity.”

Julius Meinl is a Vienna, Austria, based coffee company. With the notion of inspiration already part of their brand, the company encourages creativity in many forms and, in particular, poetry. For the second year, Julius Meinl shops around the world will exchange a cup of coffee (or tea) for a poem on World Poetry Day and they invite other cafes to join them in inviting their customers to Pay with a Poem. Great marketing and great idea.

World Poetry Day is Monday, March 21. Will you pay with a poem?

Poetry 24 times a second

March 14, 2016

Every Frame Tells a Story

In these posts, we occasionally mention films about poets or poetry. Here’s one on poetry about film.

If you live anywhere near Bellingham, Washington, and you love movies, you probably know that Film Is Truth is a locally owned and operated DVD, Blu-ray, and VHS rental store (15,000+ titles) that is also a nonprofit corporation.

On Friday, April 8, 2016, in celebration of movies, poetry and National Poetry Month, Film Is Truth will hold its second annual Every Frame Tells a Story: a poetry-about-movies fundraiser! This all-ages, free event will feature performances by poets Mighty Mike McGee, Elizabeth Vignali, Bruce Beasley, Troy Osaki and Dee Dee Chapman. The action starts at 8:30pm at Honey Moon Mead & Cider.

You can seem more Film Is Truth on Facebook.

new haiku

March 13, 2016

Off The Beaten Track

Boatwhistle, a new London, England, press, has published a collection of 365 haiku, Off the Beaten Track. Twelve poets (including Cascadia’s own Christopher Herold and Michael Dylan Welch) were “invited to compose one haiku per day for a month” and the resulting book offers a unique look at both poets and haiku writing styles. Twelve illustrators (including James Sturm, co-founder and former art director of The Stranger) also participated in the collaborative effort. Read the poets’ and illustrators’ bios and see excerpts from Off the Beaten Track.

on poetry

March 12, 2016

Naomi Shihab Nye
“Read it slowly,
and more than once,
if you love the poem.”
Naomi Shihab Nye
(b. March 12, 1952)
. . . . .
photo Chehalis Hegner