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

Since yesterday’s featured poem mentioned Friday Harbor (on San Juan Island, Washington), we thought we’d mention that Friday Harbor has announced the establishment of four “new poetry gardens as a way of bringing poetry — a way of seeing our world through another’s mind — into our everyday experience.” Poems for the gardens are currently being collected in a contest for San Juan County residents of all ages (deadline November 30, 2019).

According to the San Juan Islander, “Selected poems will be professionally engraved on plaques and displayed artistically in one of several gardens located in the Town of Friday Harbor for a period of two years.”

The poetry gardens will supplement Friday Harbor’s already impressive collection of more than 20 public art installations around town.

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April 3, 2018

The Land Bank and San Juan Island National Historical Park, along with students from Stillpoint School and Spring Street International School, celebrate the “Year of the Bird” for National Poetry Month. Between April 1 and April 30, the Land Bank’s Westside Lake trail loop at Limekiln Preserve will feature bird-inspired poems written by students ages 5-13.

temporary poetry walk

April 10, 2015

Paul Piper - The Waves

In honor of National Poetry Month and the 25th anniversary of the San Juan County Land Bank, a series of unique, temporary installations of nature-inspired poetry mark the route along trails through some of San Juan Island’s most inspiring natural settings — Limekiln and Deadman Bay Preserves, Lime Kiln Point State Park and American Camp.

The poetry, on display for the month of April only, includes work by Kelli Russell Agodon, Humberto Ak’abal, Wendell Berry, James Bertolino, Sally W. Bryan, Lewis Carroll, Michael Daley, e.e. cummings, Sally Green, Sam Green, Sam Hamill, D. M. Jenkins, Janet Lewis, Howard McCord, Paul Nelson, Mary Oliver, Nancy Pagh, Paul Piper (shown above, with his poem “The Waves”), Leonora Speyer, William E. Stafford, Robert Sund, William Jay Weissinger, Ken Wood and James Wright.

There will be two guided walks: Saturday, April 11, 2015, at 1:00pm, with poet Paul Nelson and SJI National Historical Park Historian, Mike Vouri; Saturday, April 25, at 1:00pm, with poets Sally and Sam Green and Land Bank Director Lincoln Bormann. Details on The San Juan County Land Bank website.

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