this evening in Bellingham

December 3, 2018

You’re invited to join Christen Mattix this evening, Monday, December 3, 2018, as she reads prose poetry from her book, Skein: The Heartbreaks and Triumphs of a Long Distance Knitter, which explores her three-year, half-mile, blue-line knitting meditation/sculpture/installation. The reading begins at 6:30pm at Cooper Lanza Gallery in Bellingham.

Wednesday in Bellingham

June 12, 2018

Bring it, poets! Wednesday, June 13, 2018 (and the second Wednesday of every month), the Chuckanut Sandstone Writers Theater invites you to read your original writing (all forms welcome) for up to (but no longer than) 7 minutes. The summer location is the atrium at Lovitt Restaurant, 1114 Harris Avenue in Fairhaven. Sign up to read between 6:30 and 6:45pm. Readings begin at 6:50pm.

Mark your calendar for the first Sunday of the month at 5:00pm, as a series of summer sidewalk readings present the voices of Bellingham poets. If you show up at 1507 Larrabee, in Fairhaven, look for the book box and that’s where the the readings will be held.

June 3 ~ Shannon P. Laws
July 1 ~ Donna Rushing
August 5 ~ Jim Bertolino & Anita K. Boyle
September 2 ~ Nancy Canyon

See you there!

winter Clover

January 26, 2018

Mary Gillilan and Norman Green launched Clover, A Literary Rag in the summer of 2010 with the writing of contributors from the Independent Writers’ Studio — 17 in all. Thirteen editions later Clover has published a total of 234 writers — about half from Washington State, around 40 from Whatcom County, and 11 from international locations.

To see and hear what Clover has become, attend the reading for Volume 14 at Village Books in Fairhaven on Sunday, February 11, 2018, at 4:00pm. Featured contributors are Luther Allen, Janet Bergstrom, James Bertolino, Susan Chase-Foster, David Drummond, John Green, Frances Howard-Snyder, Paul Hunter, Andrew Shattuck McBride, Janet Oakley, Raul Sanchez, Harvey Schwartz, Karen VandeBossche, and Betty Scott. The reading is free and copies of Clover will be available for purchase.

(Submissions for Volume 15 are open until April 30, 2018.)

tonight in Bellingham

October 12, 2017

Poet Rob Lewis will be reading from his new collection, The Silence of Vanishing Things, this evening at 7:00pm at Village Books.

the sound of Clover

September 2, 2017

When Clover, A Literary Rag, launched as a literary journal in 2010, there was no way to predict that it would become more substantial and more respected with each issue in print. Now, with thirteen volumes and a Mayor’s Arts Award under its belt, the Bellingham-based journal of international fine writing will celebrate art as written word at a reading from Volume 13.

Hear a selection of writers, including Susan Chase-Foster, Luther Allen, Christine Kendall, Gary McWilliams, Abbe Rolnick, Garrett Sanford, Laurel Leigh, Jennifer Bullis, Caitlin Thomson, Jim Bertolino, Carla Shafer, and Paul Hunter, in an engaging afternoon of readings on Sunday, September 10, 2017, at 4:00pm, at Village Books in Fairhaven. The reading is free and copies of Clover will be available for purchase.

(And by the way, submissions for Volume 14 are open until September 30, 2017.)

find some poems

September 3, 2016

Robyn Hood Black - found poem

In conjunction with Poetry Camp (Bellingham, Washington, October 1, 2016), poet Robyn Hood Black will lead a one-hour Found Poem Makerspace Activity on Friday, September 30, 7:00-8:00pm, at Village Books in Fairhaven.

In this step-by-step, all-ages workshop, each participant will be able to create a piece like the art found on Robyn’s artsyletters Etsy shop. Participants’ pieces will be matted and ready to frame. (The cost of materials in each packet would be about $6, but packets are being provided free to 50 participants thanks to Robyn, with a contribution from Pomelo Books.) Participants will be encouraged to read their found poems aloud and talk about their pieces. No sign-up; just show up.

Village Books a finalist!

January 28, 2016

Village Books

That Village Books should find itself on a Bookstore of the Year list will be no surprise to anyone who has browsed the aisles, purchased books (etc.) or attended one of the 300-plus events that the Bellingham, Washington, independent bookstore presents each year. But when Publishers Weekly lists Village Books on its shortlist of five for the 2016 PW Bookstore of the Year, it’s enough to make all of Cascadia proud. The winning bookstore will be announced in March and the award presented at Book Expo America in May. Congratulations to Chuck & Dee Robinson and the entire VB crew!

World Peace Poets

You are invited to gather with World Peace Poets for a peace vigil on Friday, January 1, 2016, beginning at 4:00pm at the peace pole at the Firehouse Performing Arts Center (14th and Harris in Fairhaven/Bellingham). Participants will walk together down Harris to the peace pole at the pond near 8th (near the bus/train depot).

On this first day of the year, the hearts of many people turn to the vision of humankind living together in peace and harmony. Please bring a brief reading to share that speaks to this theme, such as a poem, a meaningful quote, a description of deepening understanding, or a concern to lift up in hope. Readings will be interspersed with moments of silent reflection. Bring a candle to hold and place at the dockside or float on the water. The gathering will conclude about 5:30pm. Bundle up and join neighbors and fellow poets to start the year sharing in the spirit of harmony and community. People who choose not to walk can meet those who do at 8th and Harris about 4:15pm.

more poetry workshops!

October 31, 2015

Two more terrific poets will offer workshops to benefit the Sue Boynton Poetry Contest on Saturday, November 14, 2015. Workshops are held on the lower level of the Fairhaven Library in Bellingham, Washington. Registration is required: $30 for one workshop or $50 for both workshops offered the same day, paid by check or cash at the workshop.

Register by sending an email to boyntonpoetrycontest@hotmail.com indicating the workshop(s) you wish to take and including your name and a phone number. Please bring writing materials.

Ann Spiers10:00am – Noon
Ann Spiers
The Poem’s Line, or Lessons in Break Dancing

“Yet there is at our disposal no tool of the poetic craft more important, none that yields more subtle and precise effects, than the linebreak if it is properly used.” Denise Levertov

Linebreaks help you construct a poem, especially as you draft the poem’s final form. In this workshop, participants will respond to writing prompts to create stanzas, and then practice the art of line breaks. The class will consider how other poets used this integral craft by studying poems to discern poets’ diverse decisions about linebreaks. Linebreaks can define the poem, create cadence, establish emphasis, aid the reader in decoding meaning, uncover rhyme and half-rhyme, fudge clunky moments, provide humor, enhance sound, alter pace, and clarify phrasing. Some poets use linebreaks, spacing, and tabbing to display the process of the poet writing at the moment of creating a poem — its intellectual or emotional structure.

Ann Spiers is the inaugural Poet Laureate of Vashon Island. She stewards the Poetry Post in Vashon’s Village Green, co-produced the 2009 Vashon Poetry Fest, and curated Broadsides: Poems on Paper at a Vashon art gallery.

Bellingham’s poets have been good to Ann. Egress Studio Press published her chapbook, What Rain Does. She has read at the Whatcom Poetry Series and Village Books. She fondly remembers reading T. S. Eliot’s “The Hollow Men” at Fast Eddie’s Tavern when the audience raucously joined in the poem’s refrain. This year, Peasandcues Press designed and printed the broadside, “Rain Violent,” a poem from her Weather Station manuscript.

Michael Daley1:00 – 3:00pm
Michael Daley
Attentively

This workshop will suggest the practice of “organic form” described by Denise Levertov in her essay by that name. Attentiveness, or “attentivity” (not a word), may be the prime mover of poetry, or at least its muse’s primary tool, so basic it operates at the instinct level, and like spontaneous dance, leads to refinement. The workshop’s efforts will be toward an organic practice of composition through six different exercises. As they are exercises, rough drafts are the hope, but the practice includes recognizing three distinct tiers, or phases, in crafting observational responses. “During our time together we will grope toward the form of what we need to say.”

Michael Daley was born and raised in Dorchester, Massachusetts. He later took vows and prepared to become a Catholic priest. Upon leaving religious life, he was wild in the streets, protesting wars and seeking a life of experience. He holds a B.A. from the University of Massachusetts and an M.F.A. from the University of Washington. He is the founding editor of Empty Bowl Press, former Poet-in-Residence for the Washington State Arts Commission, the Skagit River Poetry Foundation and the Massachusetts Cultural Council, and a retired English Instructor for Mount Vernon High School. In addition to seven chapbooks, he has published three full-length collections of his poetry and a book of essays. He has been awarded by the Washington State Arts Commission, Seattle Arts Commission, Artist Trust, Fulbright, and the National Endowment of the Humanities.