progressive poem

April 14, 2018

Here’s a fun National Poetry Month project: The Kidlitosphere Progressive Poem.

The Poetry Friday anthologies, by Sylvia Vardell and Janet Wong, are designed to help teachers and librarians teach poetry. Each year since 2012, friends of Poetry Friday and other poetry lovers sign up to add a line to a progressive poem, one line per day, for the month of April. You can view the latest line and the poem so far by clicking on the current date. Fun!

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Poetry-About-Movies

April 13, 2018

And as long as we’re talking about the intersection of poetry and film, we should mention Poetry-About-Movies: a celebration of Film Is Truth happening at Honey Moon in Bellingham on Tuesday, April 17, 2018. The evening will feature poetry about movies by Dee Dee Chapman, Rena Priest, Susan J. Erickson, and Jessica Lee.

Film is Truth 24 Times a Second is a beloved, locally owned and operated DVD, Blu-ray, and VHS rental store in Bellingham with a little bit of everything and a lot of foreign films, independent movies, arthouse films, and documentaries.

going on in Seattle

April 12, 2018

The Cadence Video Poetry Festival is going on now at Northwest Film Forum in Seattle: “Verse meets visuals in motion during a series of cinepoem screenings, ekphrastic responses, and generative workshops celebrating National Poetry Month.” Check it out.

projects we love

April 11, 2018

Here’s a heartwarming project that came by way of a forwarded email.

At Oakton Elementary, in Oakton, Virginia (Fairfax County), Andrew Relihan’s 6th-grade class has opened a Poem Store. Inspired by a visit to Bellingham and the typewriter performance work of Erica Reed and Natalie Fedak, Mr. Relihan’s class invites people to suggest a topic, provide a mailing or email address, and then “Pick your price: Once you have thoroughly enjoyed your custom made poem we ask you to pay what it was worth to you (not to exceed $5).” They created a Google form for the orders and a dedicated page for payments.

Andrew Relihan explains: “The funds collected from our Poem Store will go toward buying the materials needed to build a middle school for the community of Tres Reyes in Honduras. The community’s school currently only has room for students up to 6th grade and will give those students a chance to continue their education! This effort will be carried out by Students Helping Honduras and the One Thousand School initiative.” Relihan spent a week last summer helping bring La Escuela Yolanda Melindez in Santa Rita one step closer to its completion (officially opened January 2018), working alongside members of the community, both young and old, stacking bricks, mixing cement, and sharing stories and meals with each other.

In an email received yesterday, Mr. Relihan says, Monday “was the first day that students worked on ‘filling orders.’ They were a little overwhelmed at the prospect of writing for an actual audience, but it was clear that they were motivated to put their best work down on paper. They will have the rest of the week to work on filling orders during our Language Arts block, and I’d imagine that a few students would be motivated to continue filling orders in their free time (assuming we have anyone who comes to the table late).”

To support this wonderful National Poetry Month project, click on the Google form link and name your topic!

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poetry to see

April 10, 2018

Expedition Press, based in Kingston, Washington, publishes poetry books, broadsides, and visual art with a typographic focus. For National Poetry Month, the press has mounted two exhibits:

“On Edge,” at Core Gallery in Seattle, is an installation of Broken Broadsides (fragmented poetry prints) and abstract paintings influenced by the prints and other texts. The show features words by poets Cedar Sigo, Natalie Diaz, Jane Wong, Shin Yu Pai, Amber Flame, Erin Malone, Elaina Ellis, Leanne Dunic, Tom Gilroy, Lena Khalaf Tuffaha, and Holly Wren Spaulding. The exhibit is open through April 28, 2018, and many of the poets will participate in a reading at the gallery on Wednesday, April 25, at 7:00pm.

Expedition’s second exhibit is “Poetry & Type: distilled words for disturbing times,” which is on view through April 30 at Highline College in Des Moines, Washington. There is a reception for the exhibit TODAY, Tuesday, April 10, 1:30-3:00pm at Highline Library Exhibits and Art Gallery, Building 25, 4th floor, and there will be other poetry exhibits and readings scheduled throughout the month.

a new home for poetry

April 9, 2018

The Sylvia Center for the Arts is the latest addition to the Bellingham, Washington, Arts District. It features multiple performance spaces, classrooms, and studios, all available to the local performing arts community. For National Poetry Month, the Sylvia Center stage will be enlivened with a night of dazzling stand-up poetry featuring Anis Mojgani, Cristin O’keefe Aptowicz, Buddy Wakefield, and Derrick Brown. Monday, April 30, 2018, 7:00pm. Tickets are $15 at eventbrite.

Call for poems

April 8, 2018

Poet and activist Sarah Zale has issued a call for poems about the death penalty. The deadline is July 1, 2018. Zale plans to publish a chapbook and hold a series of readings around the state, to be followed by a more extensive anthology.

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