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.

We love this Whatcom Talk article about Susan J. Erickson, poet, artist, and from-the-ground-up supporter and committee member for the Sue C. Boynton Poetry Contest. Susan’s book, Lauren Bacall Shares a Limousine (Winner, Brick Road Poetry Book Contest 2015), is a deft and dazzling collection of poems written in the voices of women whose names may be familiar and whose perspective, via Erickson, is entirely unique.

here they come!

January 3, 2018

Get ready. The Nasty Women Poets are headed your way. Nasty Women Poets: An Unapologetic Anthology of Subversive Verse (Lost Horse Press) is a timely collection of poems that speaks not just to the current political climate and the man who is responsible for its title, but to the stereotypes and expectations women have faced dating back to Eve, and to the long history of women resisting those limitations.

In BELLINGHAM, four of these nasty women — Bellingham poets Jennifer Bullis, Susan J. Erickson, and Jessica Lee, and Seattle poet Carolyne Wright — will present a lively array of poems from Nasty Women Poets at Village Books in Fairhaven on Sunday, January 14, 2018, at 4:00pm.

In SEATTLE, contributors Kelli Russell Agodon, Jennifer Bullis, Susan J. Erickson, Susan Rich, Martha Silano, Judith Skillman, and Carolyne Wright will share some nastiness at Open Books on Friday, February 2, 2018, at 7:00pm.

In REDMOND, poets Jennifer Bullis, Martha Silano, Judith Skillman, and Carolyne Wright will be featured at SoulFood Poetry Night on Thursday, February 15, 2018, at 7:00pm.

The nasty women poets included here talk back to the men who created those limitations, honor foremothers who offered models of resistance and survival, rewrite myths, celebrate their own sexuality and bodies, and the girlhoods they survived. They sing, swear, swagger, and celebrate, and stake claim to life and art on their own terms.

The anthology, edited by Grace Bauer and Julie Kane, includes work from Kim Addonizio, Jan Beatty, Kelly Cherry, Annie Finch, Alice Friman, Allison Joseph, Marilyn Kallet, Melissa Kwasny, Shirley Geok-lin Lim, Jessica Mehta, Lesléa Newman, Nuala O’Connor, Alicia Suskin Ostriker, Melinda Palacio, Jennifer Perrine, Marge Piercy, Lucinda Roy, Maureen Seaton, Rochelle Spencer, A.E. Stallings, Stacey Waite, Diane Wakoski, Müesser Yeniay, and a fabulous coven of other women’s voices.

Other readings are scheduled nationwide (there are nasty women everywhere!) including Baltimore, Cambridge, Kalamazoo, San Francisco, and elsewhere. Watch for them — better yet, ask for them — at a bookstore near you.

Friday on Lopez

October 30, 2017

Three fine writers, Erika Davis, Susan J. Erickson, and Judith Works, will be featured at “Local Writers Read” on Friday, November 3, 2017, 7:00pm, at the Lopez Bookshop on Lopez Island. Erika Davis will read her original poems on “how to get through each day … with all the chaos and stillness and beauty.” Susan Erickson will give voice to women from her book of poetry, Lauren Bacall Shares a Limousine. Edmond author Judith Works will read from her memoir, Coins in the Fountain.

poetry riches

September 27, 2017

This weekend is full of poetry treasure…

On Friday, September 29, in Bellingham, Poetry at St. Paul’s opens with a presentation by Gregory Wolfe, editor of Image Journal, followed by a reading by poet Luci Shaw. Events begin at 7:00pm at St. Paul’s Episcopal Church.

Also on Friday, September 29, in Deming, Frida and Friends features Susan J. Erickson reading from her book of poems, Lauren Bacall Shares a Limousine, joined by poets Lois Holub, Stephanie Hopkinson, J.I. Kleinberg, C.J. Prince, and Leslie Wharton. The reading begins a 7:00pm at the Deming Library.

Also on Friday, September 29, 2017, in Seattle, Meghan McClure and Michael Schmeltzer will read from their new collaborative volume, A Single Throat Opens (Black Lawrence Press). Join them at their book launch at 7:00pm at Open Books.

On Saturday, September 30, Poetry at St. Paul’s continues with a trio of workshops offered by Jennifer Bullis, Luci Shaw, and Caitlin Thomson. Registration is required. Workshops run concurrently, 1:30-3:00pm, at St. Paul’s.

Later on Saturday, September 30, head back to Open Books in Seattle for a launch party for Hailey Higdon’s chapbook, Rural (Drop Leaf Press), featuring readings by the author, Sarah Heady, and Tanya Holtland.

This is just a sampling of the weekend’s goings-on. Enjoy!

Frida and Friends in Deming!

September 14, 2017

Frida and Friends
Friday, September 29, 2017, 7:00pm

at the Deming Library

Frida Kahlo, the dynamic Mexican painter, is recognized today for her artistic talent and for her courage in dealing with adversity. This reading will gather a group of local women poets to read their work and celebrate strong women. Susan J. Erickson, the featured reader, will share work from her recently published book of poems in women’s voices, Lauren Bacall Shares a Limousine, which includes poems in the voice of Frida. (Frida “herself” will make a guest appearance at the reading!)

Please join the following poets in celebrating with Susan J. Erickson, Frida and Friends: Lois Holub, Stephanie Hopkinson, J.I. (Judy) Kleinberg, C.J. Prince, and Leslie Wharton.

PS: Susan will offer one of her handcrafted collage cards with images of some of the women from the book with each purchase of her book.


September 20, 2016

Honey Moon

Each autumn, the Sue Boynton Poetry Contest holds a series of short, dynamic poetry workshops taught by regional poets. The fall lineup is now in place, with two workshops scheduled on Saturday, October 8, 2016, and two more on Saturday, November 5, 2016.

You can read the workshop descriptions and see the instructor bios on the Workshops page.

Workshops will be held at Honey Moon Mead and Cider (see photo), which is located in the alley behind Pepper Sisters, 1053 N. State Street, Bellingham, Washington.

Registration is required and all fees benefit the Sue C. Boynton Poetry Contest: $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.

Good one!

April 1, 2015

Egress Studio Press reading

There’s no shortage of options for National Poetry Month, but this one should definitely be on your list: a selection of readings by Egress Studio Press authors. Poets include Richard Widerkehr, Ann Spiers, Sheila Sondik, Susan J. Erickson, Anita K. Boyle and James Bertolino. See you there: Village Books, Bellingham, 7:00pm, Wednesday, April 8, 2015.

SpeakEasy 11

The ongoing Bellingham-based poetry series, SpeakEasy, will present a new theme in a new venue for its eleventh program. Poet’s Mind: concept and process, on Saturday, June 29, 2013, at 7:00pm, will feature ten poets, each reading and discussing a single poem.

The featured poets are Luther Allen, Caleb Barber, Matthew Brouwer, Ryler Dustin, Susan J. Erickson, J.I. Kleinberg, Nancy Pagh, Sheila Sondik, Caitlin Thomson and Jeanne Yeasting.

After a number of very successful gatherings at The Amadeus Project, which has now closed, SpeakEasy 11 will take place at the Firehouse Performing Arts Center, 1314 Harris Avenue in Fairhaven. Admission is by donation.

Poets on Fire!

April 23, 2013

Poets on Fire

A group poetry reading
in celebration of National Poetry Month
Poets on Fire
Sunday, April 28, 2013 ~ 7:00pm
The Firehouse ~ 1314 Harris Street ~ Bellingham
$5 suggested donation

This poetry reading includes some of the best lyrical, slam and folk poets in our region: Ryler Dustin, Susan J. Erickson, Kevin Murphy, Allison Preisinger, Caitlin Elizabeth Thomson and John Burgess. Some will sing for you, and some may even ignite your soul. Poets coming from Bellingham, Arlington and even Seattle will be introduced with a special treat from emcee James Bertolino. “A reading so hot, you may have an opportunity to witness spontaneous combustion.”

About the poets:

Ryler Dustin is winner of the 2011 Inprint Paul Verlaine $10,000 Poetry Prize and was a finalist for a 2011 Ruth Lilly Prize. He has also competed on the final stage of the Individual World Poetry Slam. He has taught poetry workshops for Inprint, Western Washington University, Writers in the Schools and Project Row Houses, and edited the literary magazines Gulf Coast and Jeopardy. His work appears or is forthcoming in New South, The Portland Review, Chrysanthemum and other journals. He is the author of The Lantern Sea (Destructible Heart Press) and Heavy Lead Birdsong (Write Bloody). He holds an MFA from the University of Houston but is a Bellingham native.

Susan J. Erickson’s poems appear in 2River View, Crab Creek Review, Museum of Americana, Raven Chronicles, Switched-on-Gutenberg and The Lyric. She is working on a manuscript of poems in women’s voices, including Lucy Audubon, Frida Kahlo, Zelda Fitzgerald and Amelia Earhart. She lives in Bellingham, Washington, where she helped establish the Sue C. Boynton Poetry Contest.

Kevin Murphy is the author of A Beautiful Chaos Demands Energy and has released a CD of his poetry, Between Onions and Oxygen. He performs poetry regularly on the Chuckanut Radio Hour and has toured throughout the Northwest and beyond with the New Old Time Chautauqua. Kevin has been known to accompany his poetry on guitar and drum.

Allison Preisinger is a singer-songwriter based in the Pacific Northwest. Writing and performing solo since 2004, she has played numerous venues throughout the Northwest as well as the Northeast while she attended Berklee College of Music in Boston. Preisinger recently released Be Heard, her second full-length album, and is currently writing and touring the Pacific Northwest.

Caitlin Elizabeth Thomson writes about absence, usually in terms of the apocalypse. Her work has appeared in numerous places, including The Literary Review of Canada, A cappela Zoo, The Liner, Going Down Swinging, The Moth, Labletter and the anthology Killer Verse. Her first chapbook, Victims of Ted Bundy: Washington State and Oregon, was published by Jeanne Duval Editions in 2011.

John Burgess grew up in upstate New York, worked on a survey crew in Montana, taught English in Japan and since 1985 has lived in Seattle. Punk Poems (2005), A History of Guns in the Family (2008) and Graffito (2011) were published by Ravenna Press. He was a 2006 Jack Straw writer; co-founder of the original Burning Word Festival; and the 2008 Words’ Worth curator for the Seattle City Council. He’s currently editor for the online lit journal Snow Monkey, Board member at Richard Hugo House and co-conspirator with the Band of Poets.