We are very pleased to share the news that Claudia Castro Luna, a prominent Seattle poet and teacher, has been appointed the fifth Washington State Poet Laureate by Governor Jay Inslee.

Castro Luna fled war-torn El Salvador for the United States at the age of 14 with her family. She went on to earn an MFA in poetry and an MA in urban planning. After working as a K-12 teacher, she became Seattle’s first Civic Poet, a position appointed by the mayor. In that position, Castro Luna won acclaim for her Seattle Poetic Grid, an online interactive map showcasing poems about different locations around the city. The grid even landed her an interview on PBS NewsHour. She is also the author of the poetry chapbook This City and the collection Killing Marías.

Castro Luna’s term will run from February 1, 2018, to January 31, 2020. She will succeed Tod Marshall, the current poet laureate. Prior to Marshall, Elizabeth Austen (2014–2016), Kathleen Flenniken (2012–2014), and Sam Green (2007–2009) held the position.

The Washington State Poet Laureate program is jointly sponsored by Humanities Washington and the Washington State Arts Commission (ArtsWA).

. . . . .
photo bu Timothy Aguero

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On Saturday, December 2, 2017, SpeakEasy 20 will present five highly accomplished Canadian poets — Susan Alexander, Linda Thompson, Richard Osler, Barbara Pelman, and Terry Ann Carter — reading a series of linked poems in their very distinctive voices, each responding to the previous poet’s words.

In addition to the 7:00pm reading at the Mount Baker Theatre Encore Room in Bellingham, three of the poets will offer workshops earlier in the day:

9:15 to 11:30 am —
FORMULATE! — Barbara Pelman
12:45 to 3:00 pm —
Haiku and Small Book Making — Terry Ann Carter
3:00 to 5:15 pm —
Show and Tell: A Generative Poetry Retreat — Richard Osler

Workshops are $15 per session and will be taught at a downtown Bellingham location. Space is limited, so please reserve a spot by sending an email to othermindpress@gmail.com.

See complete event information, poet bios, and workshop descriptions on the SpeakEasy 20 page at Other Mind Press.

Colluvium*

November 19, 2017


2017 Walk Award
By Dee Dee Chapman

Don’t call it a landslide.

Call it a cascade, if you must name it.

The fracture won’t stand there forever.
It spins itself smooth of you.

The detritus’ rich nutrients,
despite frost action and soil creep.

How does that charismatic rhizome
find holes to take hold in, mold its roots ’round?

We’re not supposed to be balloons, but colluviums.
Waste, land-filled, wistful for landscapes.

If only we knew how to fall upon the mountain
instead of pretending we’re sure-footed.

I bet it would feel like flying long enough to believe
we’re more than pebbles that leapt.

I bet it would feel intentional
like blood flow after tourniquet’s release.

. . . . .
Dee Dee Chapman received her BA in Creative Writing at Western Washington University in Spring of 2016. She has been published in From Bellingham With Love, The Noisy Water Review and Jeopardy Magazine. In September 2014 she self-published her first chapbook, Colluvium. Bellingham has been her home for eight years, the longest she’s stayed in one place. She is a cinephile and her favorite animal is the prehistoric Megalodon shark.

. . . . .
*Copyright 2017 by Dee Dee Chapman. Broadside illustrated by Megan Carroll.

the envelope, please

November 18, 2017

In case you missed it, the National Book Awards were announced this week and Frank Bidart won the award in poetry for Half-light: Collected Poems 1965–2016 (Farrar, Straus and Giroux). Read and watch at the National Book Awards website.

poetry floats!

November 17, 2017

Here’s yet another entry into what seems to be the busiest poetry day of the season: FisherPoets on Lake Union. Rich Bard, Jon Broderick, Pat Dixon, Mary Garvey, Sierra Golden, Tom Hilton, Peter Munro, Dano Quinn, Rob Seitz, and Mariah Warren will offer stories, poems, and songs of the sea in the classic salon of the steamer Virginia V.

Program starts 7:30pm on Saturday, November 18, 2017, $5 suggested donation. The Virginia V berths on the south shore of Lake Union, just behind MOHAI and the historic Carroll’s Jewelers clock.

call for writers

November 16, 2017

The annual collaboration between Chuckanut Sandstone Writers Theater and Bellingham Repertory Dance is now underway, with a call for poems, short stories, and essays that will serve as the inspiration and foundation for dances to be performed April 13, 14, and 15, 2018, at the Western Washington University Fine Arts Gallery. The show: “A Night in the Gallery: Dance, Poetry, and Visual Art” will feature four or five poetry and dance collaborative works.

(Note: If you are unfamiliar with Bellingham Repertory Dance, the troupe will perform “Emerge” on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday, November 17, 18, and 19, 2017.)

The call for writing follows. Submissions must be received on or before Wednesday, December 6, 2017. Follow the instructions very closely.

Choreographers in the Company read the written submissions with a fresh perspective. They look for feelings, images, or stories to convey through modern dance. Four to five performance pieces will be chosen and will involve one or more dancers. Works may be read aloud or posted prior to, during, or after the dance. All winning submissions will be presented in a Phrasings 2018 chapbook.

The program is looking for a wide range of poetry and all forms of writing to be selected for:

  • Originality — has not been published or performed previously.
  • Vivid imagery — the content could be personal, pastoral, and/or tactile.
  • Lyrical qualities — gives attention to rhythm and language.

Important note: No writing has ever been selected that refers to dancing or had obvious dance content.

Instructions (follow closely):

  1. To submit: e-mail submissions to chuckanutsandstone@gmail.com on or before Wednesday, December 6, 2017. Use the Subject line: Submission Phrasings 2018.
  2. Submit an attachment of up to 3 poems and/or dialogue, essay, or short story as a pdf or MSWord attachment. Do not put your name on the attachment. Limit submissions to pieces that are 1-2 pages in length. They must be original and not previously performed on stage.
  3. Plus, in the body of the e-mail, please list the titles (or first lines) of the submissions and your name, phone number, street address, and e-mail address. In 75 words or less, write a short introduction that describes you and your degree of openness to how your works might be performed.

Receipt of your submission and outcomes with follow-up details will be sent via e-mail. Please address comments or questions to Carla Shafer at chuckanutsandstone@gmail.com.

. . . . .
Photo by Nolan McNally


 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
A recent update from Soapstone included the following note from Kim Stafford, which we pass along in its entirety. (Follow links for details, some yet to be posted; most events are in Portland, Oregon, or online.)

Dear Friends Writing in Complex Times:

In writing workshops, these days, I’m finding, people long to testify for tender things, to tell saving stories, to witness for the good. In spite of dark days, this may be a golden age of writing remedy for trouble. I invite you to join one of the workshops I’ll be doing this year, either in person or online, and be a citizen of collaborative conscience. Bring friends.

Kim Stafford

Workshops & Events with Kim Stafford
Fall 2017 to Summer 2018

These workshops are dedicated to inviting “what wants to be written” by each participant. They are inclusive, non-competitive, exploratory, collaborative. We become a learning community devoted to a spell of safety and curiosity that welcomes what comes to the page without expectation or judgment. Along the way, we begin to envision doors opening in multiple directions for what we are ready to tell, and what the world needs from each voice among us.

November 2017
Poetry Reading
First Unitarian Church, Portland, Oregon, Saturday, November 17, 2017, 7pm.

Poems for a Better Nation
A one-day generative writing workshop to address the mysteries of our divisions.
First Unitarian Church, Portland, Oregon, Saturday, November 18, 2017, 9am-3pm.

December 2017
Daily Writing in the Spirit of William Stafford
A weekend workshop that examines the writing practice of WS, and tries it out.
Lewis & Clark College, Saturday-Sunday, December 2-3, 9am-5pm.

January 2018
ONLINE: Memoir: Essays, Poems, Manifestos
A 10-week online generative writing workshop, with films, prompts, and response groups.
Lewis & Clark College, beginning with an orientation week January 10, 2018.

ONLINE: Daily Writing in the Spirit of William Stafford
A 5-week online generative writing workshop, with films, prompts, and response groups.
Lewis & Clark College, beginning with an orientation week January 22, 2018.

Works in Progress
A 5-session creative community for advancing personal projects in writing.
Lewis & Clark College, alternate Tuesdays beginning January 23, 2018, 5-8pm.

February 2018
Courage to Lead Through Writing, with Kim Stafford, Sherri Carreker & Dawn Montgomery
A three-day writing retreat for teachers and citizens.
Menucha Retreat Center, Friday-Sunday, February 15-17.

March 2018
EXTRA: A workshop taught by my colleague, Laura MoultonWielding the Pen to Make a Difference
A weekend workshop for writers in all genres.
Saturday-Sunday, March 3-4, 9am-5pm

April 2018
Poetry Writing
Five Wednesdays, beginning April 4, 2018, 4:30-7:15pm, location TBA.

June 2018
The Practice of Writing
A weeklong writing retreat, Monday-Friday, June 25-29, 2018.

July 2018
Your Episodes of Origin
A weeklong writing workshop in poetry, essays, & stories at the Fishtrap Gathering.
July 9-13, 2018.

Continuing Education credit is available for classes offered through Lewis & Clark.

A series of tiny books by Kim Stafford is available through Lulu.com.
The Flavory of Unity: Post Election Poems
The Right to Be Forgotten: Poems while Traveling
Meditations & Poems for Writers
Circumference: Poems of Consolation & Blessing
Earth Verse

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