Lyric World

March 5, 2020

This is a guest post by Shin Yu Pai.

The Lyric World poetry series launched in January at Town Hall Seattle and brings together contemporary poets to talk about the social role of poetry. In our first installment, we hosted Thomas Hitoshi Pruiskma, who reflected on the role of wonder in poetry, while performing a magic trick or two for our live audience. Ibrahim Arsalan, who is griot-trained jeli, performed music on the African kora.

I created the series as an extension of my previous work with Town Hall as an artist-in-residence for that organization, where I had a chance to curate programming that focused on poetry and the sacred in the everyday with Peter Levitt, poetry and place with writer Kathleen Alcalá, plus a program on creativity as it has innovated activism in the work of documentary poet Kaia Sand, public artist Susan Robb, and architect Rex Hohlbein of The Block Project.

My current work is committed to highlighting underrepresented voices who have not previously shared their work with Town Hall audiences. Our inaugural season highlights voices from the Asian-American diaspora. Looking around at other series in Seattle, I was aware of local event series that elevate the work of Indigenous and Black poets but didn’t see anyone producing programming on an ongoing basis related to Asian-American poets and our work.

On Thursday, March 19, 2020*, we’ll host the poet Koon Woon, who will speak on poetry and displacement and how poetry can create a sense of belonging where the notion of home has been complicated. In June, we’ll be back with a program with Prageeta Sharma, an author with Seattle-based press Wave Books. Our programs are distributed through KUOW Speaker’s Forum and you can listen to the first installment of Lyric World here.

If you’d like to support this program, please consider making a donation here. We are supported by The Windrose Fund, Poets & Writers, and Office of Arts & Culture for The City of Seattle.

To learn more about Lyric World, here is some press the series has garnered:

Seattle Review of Books
South Seattle Emerald
Northwest Asian Weekly
Cascadia Magazine

*IMPORTANT NOTE: Town Hall has suspended in-person attendance at programs scheduled through March 31, 2020. The program will be rescheduled once normal activities resume.

. . . . .

Shin Yu Pai is a poet, cross-media artist, and curator for the collaborative global exploration project Atlas Obscura. Her poetic origins inform an artistic style that has grown beyond the written word — manifesting in photography, installation and public art, cross-disciplinary collaborations, and sound. She was the fourth poet laureate of the City of Redmond.

Thomas Pruiksma photo: Eric Frommer
Shin Yu Pai photo: James McDaniel

Joshua Beckman at WWU

February 9, 2019


Poet Joshua Beckman will discuss two of his two recent books, Three Talks and The Lives of the Poems (Wave Books, 2018), on Wednesday, February 13, 2019, at 6:00pm, at Western Washington University (Bond Hall, room 105), as part of the Bagley Wright Lecture Series on Poetry. The event is free.

Joshua Beckman is the author of many other books, including The Inside of an Apple, Take It, Shake, Your Time Has Come, and two collaborations with Matthew Rohrer: Nice Hat. Thanks. and Adventures While Preaching the Gospel of Beauty. He is editor-in-chief at Wave Books and has translated numerous works of poetry and prose, including Micrograms, by Jorge Carrera Andrade, 5 Meters of Poems (Ugly Duckling Presse, 2010) by Carlos Oquendo de Amat, and Poker (Ugly Duckling Presse, 2008) by Tomaž Šalamun, which was a finalist for the PEN America Poetry
in Translation Award. He also co-edited Supplication: Selected Poems of John Wieners (Wave Books, 2015). He lives in Seattle and New York.

Dana Killmeyer, UNLV MFA studentThere’s a venerable tradition linking poetry and buses. We’ve posted on this topic before and here’s one more. In Las Vegas, Nevada, Dana Killmeyer, an MFA student at UNLV, decided to take poetry to the people, recruiting fellow poet Shannon Salter to read poems on board the bus known as the “Deuce.” Read more about their surprise performance in “Captive audience: An ambush poetry reading on the public bus.” For additional links to the poetry-bus tradition, read about the Wave Books Poetry Bus cross-country tour in 2006 (more on that from the Poetry Foundation) and on-the-bus readings in Vancouver, BC.
. . . . .
Photo: Yasmina Chavez

Celebrate the ow in Bukowski

November 19, 2013

Bukowski Erasure PoetryAre you a fan of Charles Bukowski? Have you tried your hand at erasure poetry? Here’s an opportunity combine the two. Silver Birch Press, an independent publisher located in Los Angeles, invites your submissions to Bukowski Erasure Poetry.

See examples on Bukowski on Wry. The call for submissions and guidelines are here and the deadline is December 15, 2013. Selected Bukowski Erasure poems will appear on the Bukowski On Wry blog and in a printed collection.

Silver Birch Press has recently released the Bukowski: An Anthology of Poetry & Prose about Charles Bukowski, a 272-page collection that includes portraits of the author by over 75 writers and artists around the world.

poetry and film…coming up!

January 31, 2013

entertainmentMark your calendar for what promises to be a memorable poetry event: 3 Days of Poetry: Poetry and Film. Beginning the evening of Friday, February 22, 2013, and continuing through Sunday, February 24, Seattle-based  independent poetry press Wave Books will present contemporary and vintage films, video and television featuring poetry and poets as well as a studio where poets can record their own short film. Events will be held at Gallery 1412 in Seattle. Full details here.

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