solstice, tomorrow

April 10, 2021

Congratulations to Carla Shafer, who conceived and edited a wonderful collection of poems of light, Solstice: Light & Dark of the Salish Sea (Chuckanut Sandstone Press). The collection features the work of 29 poets in two sections, Summer Solstice and Winter Solstice.

Tomorrow, Sunday, April 11, 2021, at 7:00pm Pacific, Village Books will present a book launch reading from Solstice. See the list of poets in the collection and register for the online reading here.

SpeakEasy 27: A Spiritual Thread engaged five poets in what turned out to be a nine-month poetic conversation. The resulting series of linked poems was presented in five Zoom readings.

To complete SpeakEasy 27, audience members were invited to submit their own poems inspired by and directly linked to specific ideas or language in the 25-poem series. Round 6, on Sunday, March 28, 2021, at 7:00pm Pacific, will feature response poems by Sarah Brownsberger, Lauren Camp, Nancy Canyon, Bev Darnall, J.I. Kleinberg, Eric Kosarot, Rachel Mehl, Peter Messinger, Jory Mickelson, Don Mitchell, Kevin Murphy, Bethany Reid, Sheila Rosen, Paul Sarvasy, Betty Scott, Carla Shafer, Sheila Sondik, Allie Spikes, and Nik Warren.

Additional information and video of the previous readings is available on the Other Mind Press SpeakEasy 27 page. The reading is free on Zoom (Zoom link available from the participating poets or by sending an email to othermindpress AT gmail.com). Please join us!

At a recent workshop at Egress Studio, Anita K. Boyle introduced the idea of the self-directed writing workshop. The idea is that rather than working under the guidance of an instructor, participants work independently, responding to prompts and to the site.

Riffing on this idea, World Peace Poets invites your participation in the five-week-long World Peace Poets Community Write-In on Peace and Justice, September 21 through October 26, 2019. Drop in for a few minutes or an hour or more; join in as often as you’d like. It’s self-directed!

Free and open to the public, the Community Write-In provides sites around Bellingham where participants can sit and create poems, essays, short stories, or artwork. Bring your own writing materials. Some inspiring words will be available and a volunteer will be on hand at each site. Additionally, each site will create a “fusion poem” to which participants can add a line of their own.

Click here for a chart of participating venues and times (PDF). Note that new venues and times may be added, so watch for updates on World Peace Poets on Facebook. If you think you will participate on one or more days, please register by sending an email to worldpeacepoets@gmail.com in order to help the organizers prepare.

The write-in will culminate in the free World Peace Poets Read-In at St. James Presbyterian Church in Bellingham on Saturday, October 26, 2019, with a 3-minute-per-person open mic for writing and music related to peace and justice. Doors open at 5:00pm, a soup and salad supper will be served at 5:30pm, and side dishes will be provided by you, potluck.

summer Sundays

June 1, 2019

You’re invited to a first-Sunday-of-the-month
poetry reading
at 5:00pm
by the book box
at 1507 Larrabee,
in Bellingham.

Featured poets are
Kevin Murphy (June 2),
Carla Shafer (July 7),
Luther Allen (August 4),
and You (open mic, September 1, 2019, followed by a potluck).

Thanks to Jeni Cottrell for the idea and the venue!

strong voices

January 2, 2019

You’re invited to look and listen as a group of poets offer their words to accompany the Women Empowering Women exhibit at Allied Arts in Bellingham on Sunday, January 6, 2019, at 4:00pm. Featured poets include Nancy Canyon, Lois Holub, Jessica Lee, Maria McLeod, Rainbow Medicine-Walker, Dayna Patterson, Carla Shafer, Kami Westhoff, and Leslie Wharton.

The opening reception for the exhibit will be held during Gallery Walk, Friday, January 4, 6:00-8:00pm. The participating artists (Francie Allen, Mary Jane Davis, Patti Fairbanks, LaVera Langeman, Erin Libby, and Leslie Wharton) will also host a film and fundraiser for the Cascadia International Women’s Film Festival on Thursday, January 17, 6:00-8:00pm, and a Tea Party in honor of the Women’s March on Saturday, January 19, at 2:00pm. The exhibit will remain on view through Saturday, January 26, 2019.

Buckingham in Bellingham

February 25, 2017

Polly Buckingham workshops

Polly Buckingham, poet, fiction writer, and founding editor/publisher of Stringtown Press, will be offering two workshops on Saturday, March 4, 2017.

At 10:00am, she will present The Surprise of Poetry: Concentration & Abandonment.

This workshop is intended to bring participants into that space where everything in language is up for grabs, into a greater state of uncertainty and unknowing. Garcia Lorca writes in his essay “Theory and Function of the Duende,” “Very often intellect is poetry’s enemy because it is too much given to imitation, because it lifts the poet to a throne of sharp edges and makes him oblivious of the fact that he may suddenly be devoured by ants, or a great arsenic lobster may fall on his head.” We will work on reaching a state of deep concentration and abandonment, that space from which the real surprises begin and with them the energy of poetry.

At 1:00pm, she will present Re-envisioning Fiction: Drafts Refocused, Reimagined

What happens after that first inspired draft of a story? This workshop will give authors ideas for refocusing, restructuring and further developing their drafts. We will run through a series of exercises that ask students to think about their drafts in ways that might not yet have considered. For example, what happens when you think about your story as a dream narrative or consider major world events that might be happening at the same time as your story? We will work on a series of writing prompts that allow students to flesh out scenes that might feel flat or dialogue that feels dull. If you have a draft, bring it along. But a draft is not necessary.

Both workshops will be held at St. James Presbyterian Church (upstairs), 910 14th Street, in Fairhaven. Sliding fee: one workshop $10 – 30 (you decide); both workshops: $15 – $45.

Space is limited and pre-registration is required. To register, email Carla Shafer at chuckanutsandstone@gmail.com, including your name and contact information along with the workshop(s) you wish to attend, or call 360-961-2320. Bring your registration fee on Saturday in cash or check along with writing materials.

These workshops offered by TALA – Teaching and Learning Arts and Chuckanut Sandstone Writers Theater.

In addition, Polly Buckingham will be reading from her latest book, The Expense of a View, on Friday, March 3, at 7:00pm at Village Books.

LiTFUSE in Bellingham

January 7, 2017

LiTFUSE - Poets Unite

Next Saturday, January 14, 2017, at 7:00pm, Village Books in Bellingham will welcome James Bertolino, Michael Schein, Luther Allen, Carla Shafer and Anita K. Boyle reading from LiTFUSE @10, an anthology of LiTFUSians spanning the full ten years. The reading is free and copies of LiTFUSE @10 will be available for purchase. More on Facebook.

LiTFUSE 2017 will take place in Mighty Tieton, Washington, and registration is already open. Have a look at the lineup of featured poets and register early, especially if you’re interested in taking a workshop (they fill up quickly).

tune in tomorrow!

January 1, 2017

Bellingham Art Beat

Listen in on Monday, January 2, 2017, as radio host Boosie Vox interviews poets and community poetry advocates Luther Allen and Ron Leatherbarrow. The show will air on Make.Shift Radio 94.9 FM KZAX at 3:30pm and again on Saturday, January 7, at 11:00am. You can also listen to the 30-minute show on the Bellingham Art Beat website. (While you’re there, check out the recent BAB interview with poets Carla Shafer and Leslie Wharton.)

Poetry

Poet Carla Shafer, well known around Cascadia as the founder (1993) and guiding spirit of the Chuckanut Sandstone Writers Theater, has forwarded several invitations for poets and poetry lovers.

First, there’s the World Peace Poets Third Annual Read-In, which is happening tomorrow, Saturday, October 24, 2015, at St. James Presbyterian Church, 910 14th Street, Bellingham, Washington. This is a free, public event with special musical guests. Doors open at 5:00pm. A light dinner will be served at 5:30 along with coffee and tea. Readings begin at 6:15pm and 30-40 poets and musicians will present until about 9:30pm.

Next, there’s the Thanksgiving Community Concert to be held on Thanksgiving Eve, Wednesday, November 25, 2015, at 7:00pm, also at St. James Presbyterian Church. The evening will include the reading of three poems selected from open submissions. Poets may submit up to three poems (maximum 35 lines or 1-2 minutes each) on the theme of thankfulness. Suggestions from Carla: “A short narrative poem on a Thanksgiving memory, lyrical or commentary poem on thankfulness related to life today. Start with a repeating line, such as: I am thankful when… It can be humorous or serious, but a poem or a prose poem. Avoid end rhymes.” Use the subject line Thanksgiving poem and send as a pdf or MSword attachment to chuckanutsandstone@gmail.com. The deadline is Noon on Sunday, November 1.

Finally, poets are invited to submit up to three poems in which rain is the theme or a significant metaphor for a Pacific Northwest rain anthology. Poems can be up to 1-1/2 pages long. Readers “will want to read this under an umbrella, in front of a warm fire, or until they feel drenched in the solemn or giddy joy or the overwhelming dreariness of rain.” Use the subject line RAIN POEM 11.15.2015 and send as a pdf or MSword attachment to chuckanutsandstone@gmail.com. The deadline is midnight on Sunday, November 15.

Writing Peace workshop

February 17, 2015

February 28, 2015 - Bellingham

You are invited to participate in a freeWriting Peace” workshop, taught by poet Carla Shafer, on Saturday, February 28, 2015, 10:00 am – Noon, at the Mount Baker Theatre Encore Room (104 N. Commercial Street, Bellingham). To pre-register, send an email with Writing Peace in the subject line to worldpeacepoets@gmail.com. Please include your name and a phone number in case of last minute changes. Please bring writing materials. Everyone is welcome!

Workshop Description (edited from the flyer): Writing about peace in a poet’s voice isn’t easy. This is a place to start or hone your skills.

This workshop helps you get your passion on the page in poetic forms that cause readers to feel good about their sense of cause, to think harder about how to represent the changes that must come or are on their way. Through samples and conversations we will briefly consider the conscientious objector camps of WWII and the poets (William Stafford, William Everson and more) who stood by their convictions and lived with peace never far from their hearts. You will be reminded of the peace poets during the Vietnam war: Denise Levertov, Margaret Randall, and Robert Bly. We’ll reflect on where we discovered peace, what we believe about it around the edges or at its core. During the workshop, the poet working on inner peace and/or peace in the world will: find tools to write with, start writing, fill many pages with notes and ideas.

Workshop leader: Carla Shafer, writer, poet, founder of Chuckanut Sandstone Writer’s Theater (Bellingham since 1992), has written several chapbooks, the latest Remembering the Path. She has poems in Whatcom Places II, Poetry Walk: Sue C. Boynton Poetry Contest, The First Five Years, and Crosscurrents. She is a collaborator with Bellingham Repertory Dance Company on Phrasings: In Word and Dance. Her poem “Elixir of the Solar Spectrum” was commissioned for a choral piece composed by Reginald Unterseher and premiered by Bellingham Chamber Chorale. She was awarded Empowered Poet by World Poetry Canada. She graduated with a degree in English from Lewis and Clark College, Portland, Oregon, where she learned about writing from the poet William Stafford.

%d bloggers like this: