more finalists

January 31, 2020

It’s awards season, and PEN America has announced the 2020 PEN America Literary Awards Finalists. See the complete list here, with poetry books in assorted categories.

Poetry titles include Deaf Republic by Ilya Kaminsky (Graywolf Press), Be Recorder by Carmen Giménez Smith (Graywolf Press), Erou by Maya Phillips (Four Way Books), and five book-length translations of poetry: Final Matters: Selected Poems, 2004-2010 by Szilárd Borbély (Princeton University Press), translated from the Hungarian by Ottilie Mulzet; Room in Rome bu Jorge Eduardo Eielson (Cardboard House Press), translated from the Spanish by David Shook; Daybook 1918: Early Fragments by J.V. Foix (Northwestern University Press), translated from the Catalan by Lawrence Venuti; Killing Plato by Chantal Maillard (New Directions Publishing), translated from the Spanish by Yvette Siegert; and The Winter Garden Photograph by Reina María Rodríguez (Ugly Duckling Presse), translated from the Spanish by Kristin Dykstra and Nancy Gates Madsen.

Congratulations, finalists! The winners will be announced at the awards ceremony on Monday, March 2, 2020, at Town Hall in New York City.

poetry in Edison

January 30, 2020

Tiny Edison, Washington (pop. 133 in 2010), home of the world-famous Chicken Parade (February 23, 2020) as well as much impressive art and food, will liven up a winter evening with a Winter Poetry Reading featuring Georgia Johnson, Jory Mickelson, and Jeffrey Morgan. Join them on Thursday, February 6, 2020, at 6:30pm, at i.e. gallery, in the heart of downtown Edison.

Come early to view the birds of winter in nearby fields, the “Birds Eye View” bird invitational art exhibit at Smith & Vallee, and enjoy a meal at one of Edison’s stellar restaurants.


January 29, 2020

Literary Arts has announced the 2020 Oregon Book Awards finalists. The finalists for The Stafford/Hall Award for Poetry, judged by Megan Fernandes, Nick Flynn, and Marcus Wicker are:

  • Carl Adamshick of Portland, Birches (Four Way Books)
  • Shaindel Beers of Pendleton, Secure Your Own Mask (White Pine Press)
  • Lynn Otto of Newberg, Real Daughter (Unicorn Press)
  • Allan Peterson of Ashland, This Luminous: New and Selected Poems (Panhandler Books)
  • Ashley Toliver of Portland, Spectra (Coffee House Press)

See the complete list of finalists, and mark your calendar for the 33rd annual Oregon Book Awards Ceremony on Monday, April 27, at Portland Center Stage at the Armory.

Congratulations, poets!

new, for now

January 28, 2020

In case you were distracted by the snow and missed the announcement, Bellingham’s Alternative Library has a new, if temporary, home.

The Alternative Library offers a curated public book collection and is host to a wide array of events, including concerts, film screenings, workshops, and readings.

As they continue to search for a permanent location and raise funds to support the move and ongoing activities, the Alternative Library can be found at 1309 Billy Frank Jr Street, west of Ellis, just north of Holly at the edge of Downtown Bellingham.

Your favorite ongoing events, such as poetrynight, may have relocated along with the alt.lib, so double-check venues before you go.

are you listening?

January 27, 2020

While we often mention poetry podcasts, it was December 2013 when we noted the then-new New Yorker Poetry Podcast series. Happily, the series has been perking along ever since.

In the latest offering, The New Yorker poetry editor Kevin Young is joined by Ellen Bass, who reads “Quahogs” by Frank X. Gaspar as well as her own poem “Because.”

Listen to the podcast and/or read the transcript of their conversation, with links to the poems, which appeared in the magazine. You can subscribe by way of the New Yorker app, available from the App Store or from Google Play.

You have until March 28, 2020, to get to the Center for Book Arts in New York City to see Warren Lehrer: Books, Animation, Performance, Collaboration.

Warren Lehrer is a prolific writer and artist/designer and this exhibition combines book arts, animation, typography, and performance. Many of the works are collaborative, created with other writers, musicians, and animators.

Warren Lehrer will present/perform his work as author, designer, and book artist, and discuss the relationship between the books, animations and performance/readings on Thursday, March 26, 2020. The event is free, with advance registration.

If you are interested in visual poetry, this is a must-see.

. . . . .
image: “Poetry” from Five Oceans in a Teaspoon

There’s still a little time to sign up for the World Peace Poets annual Peace Poetry Postcards Fest and exchange postcards with poets around the world who care about peace. Just sign up and during the month of February send one postcard each to the 29 people on your list.

The deadline to sign up is Tuesday, January 28, 2020. Simply send an email to worldpeacepoets AT with your name, and your street address (or PO Box), city, country, and Zip Code. You will receive brief instructions along with a list of names and addresses.

No previous poetry experience required!

next Friday in Anacortes

January 24, 2020

The Empty Bowl Reading Series at Pelican Bay Books in Anacortes will kick off 2020 on Friday, January 31, at 7:00pm with a reading by Ed Harkness and Donald Kruse. [NOTE CHANGE: Donald Kruse is unable to attend; Rena Priest will read in his place.] They will be joined by Yesica Solano, a young poet from Skagit County who has released her first chapbook, Talk About Me, published by Underground Writing. Plus, there will be musical interludes by The Dovetails.

Michael Daley will also be introducing Empty Bowl’s latest publications: Hold Fast, by Holly J. Hughes, and The Blossoms Are Ghosts at the Wedding: Expanded Edition, by Tom Jay.

A congenial atmosphere and good sounds. Try it.

be cool on Vashon

January 23, 2020

The Black Cat Cabaret (at Snapdragon) will host 3 x 3 x 3 on Thursday, January 30, 2020. That shakes out as three poets plus three jazz musicians each reading or performing for three minutes, and in between the readings a three-minute jazz improvisation by the three alternating Some’tet musicians. Or something. Got it?

The poets will be Susan Lynch (Vashon’s Poet Laureate for 2020), Lynn Carrigan, and Catherine Johnson, plus music by Some’tet (Michael Whitmore, Barry Cooper, and Patrick Christie).

Cool, man.

And as long as we’re on Vashon…. Brian Reed will present Birds, Song, and Poetry as part of the Talk on the Rock series on Sunday, January 26, 2020, at 7:00pm, at Vashon Center for the Arts.

Rhythm on the Rails

January 22, 2020

Attention, Portland-area writers: Rhythm on the Rails is back for another immersive round trip. On Saturday, February 22, 2020, Johnnie Mazzocco will guide a group of writers from Portland to Seattle and back to Portland, by rail, writing all the way. In addition to six hours of writing (three up, three back), the journey also includes lunch at Matt’s in the Market, a visit to the Seattle Art Museum (with prompts), as well as free time to explore Pike Place Market or other Seattle sights of your choice. It’s a rolling writing retreat and it sounds pretty swell.

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