island poetry

June 27, 2020

The Town of Friday Harbor and Friday Harbor Arts Commission (FHAC) have announced the winners of their first Poetry Garden Contest. A blind judging process was used to review 271 poems submitted by 90 San Juan County residents. Final selections were made by Washington State Poet Laureate Claudia Castro Luna and include 20 adults and 10 students grades 3 to 12.

Winning poems will be published in a book as well as engraved for display at four outdoor poetry gardens located in Friday Harbor at the San Juan Community Theatre, the Mullis Community Senior Center, next to the post office, and at the waterfront viewing area below Downriggers. Congratulations to the poets and to Friday Harbor.

If your summer travels, such as they are, include San Juan Island, be sure to browse the newly installed poems.

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Poetry Garden photo by Rebecca Cook

poetry outside

June 11, 2020

Located about nine miles north of downtown Seattle, Shoreline, Washington, has just launched a new program of site-specific poetry.

Inspired by the sense of place in Chinese poetry, the Voices in the Forest project connects residents and visitors with the work of local poets who have written about specific places in Shoreline. All of the poems are tied to physical locations, providing details that readers will recognize from their own encounters in the field. In addition to reading the poem for yourself, you are also invited to listen to each poem as it is read by its author. As the project progresses, poems will be translated into multiple languages.

Shown above is “Vertebrae” by Raúl Sánchez. The poem is sited on the west end of the I-5 overpass at 195th Street NE. Copies of the poem are available in the box.

More about the poets, the poems, and downloadable maps at Voices in the Forest.

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