Monthly (and other) Readings: 2012 to Present Day
Monthly readings are held at Traditions Fair Trade and typically begin at 6:30 PM with an open mike. Open mike sign-ups begin at 6:00 PM for time slots of 3 minutes or less.
Michael Dylan Welch
March 21, 2018
Michael Dylan Welch
March 21, 2018
Michael Dylan Welch is on a mission to write at least one new poem each week in 2018, in addition to his regular haiku, senryu, and tanka. Michael served two years as poet laureate of Redmond, Washington, where he also curates SoulFood Poetry Night and the Redmond Association of Spokenword, and also directs the Poets in the Park festival. He has published his poems, essays, and reviews in hundreds of journals and anthologies in more than twenty languages, and his recent books include Jumble Box, Earthsigns, Seven Suns / Seven Moons(with Tanya McDonald), Off the Beaten Track: A Year in Haiku, Fire in the Treetops, and Becoming a Haiku Poet. Michael cofounded the Haiku North America conference and the American Haiku Archives. He also founded the Tanka Society of America, and National Haiku Writing Month (www.nahaiwrimo.com). He has been keynote speaker for the Haiku International Association's annual convention in Tokyo, and had a poem from one of his books of Japanese translations featured on the back of 150,000,000 U.S. postage stamps. Michael lives in Sammamish, Washington, and you can visit him at www.graceguts.com.
February 21, 2018
photo courtesy ROBERT WHALE Auburn Reporter
Born in 1943 in Auburn, where she still lives, graduated from Auburn High School in 1961, attended Green River and Highline colleges, University of Washington, and Pacific Lutheran University. Graduated Rainier Writing Workshop Low-Residency MFA Program at PLU in 2007. Former logging truck driver, logging camp cook, hash house waitress, newspaper reporter-photographer-editor, publicist, creative writing instructor at Highline and Pierce colleges, visiting lecturer at Pacific Lutheran University. Willard R. Espy Literary Foundation resident, 2000; Adam Family Foundation White Bridge Traveling Fellowship to live and write in Teton Valley, 2001. Co-founder The Northwest Renaissance, a nonprofit coalition of poets and writers continuously active in the Puget Sound area since the mid-70s. Coordinated the Kent Arts Commission-funded NWR program, Poets at the Kent Canterbury Faire, an annual August reading/workshop and chapbook series, through the Faire's 20-year run. The series continues with Kent Arts Commission sponsorship as Poets@Kent Cornucopia! in July. Her work has appeared in PoetsWest, Arnazella's Reading List, The Duckabush Journal, Signal International, Mr. Cogito, Stone Drum, Images, The Written Arts, Washington Magazine, The Christian Science Monitor, Writer's Northwest Handbook (Media Weavers 1991), Voices in the Trees (Evergreen Press 1989), (GodZillah Gospel Press 1995), and most recently in Kyoto Journal and Origami Condom. Contact: email@example.com
January 17, 2018
Susanne Paola Antonetta’s Make Me A Mother was published by W.W. Norton in 2015. She is also author of Body Toxic, A Mind Apart, and four books of poetry, most recently The Lives of the Saints.Her awards include a New York Times Notable Book, an American Book Award, a Library Journal book of the year, an Oprah Bookshelf pick, a Pushcart prize, and others. Her essays and poems have appeared in The New York Times, The Washington Post, Orion, The New Republic and many anthologies. She teaches at Western Washington University and is the editor of the Bellingham Review.
November 16, 2017
Local poet Joanne Clarkson is the featured reader for the Olympia Poetry Network’s monthly event, Wednesday, November 15, 6:30 – 8:00 p.m. at Traditions Café, 300 5th Ave. NW in downtown Olympia. Clarkson’s full-length poetry collection “The Fates” won Bright Hill Press’ annual contest and was published in June 2017. Her chapbook “Believing the Body” was published by Gribble Press in 2014. This year her work has been featured in the WA129 Poet Laureate Anthology, Blue Heron Review, Catamaran, Edge, Modern Poetry Review, Santa Fe Literary Review, the Ice Cream Anthology from World Enough Writers and the We’Moon Datebook for 2018. She has been the recipient of a GAP Grant from Artists Trust and a NEH grant to teach poetry in rural libraries.
July 19, 2017. Tacoma poet Rick Barot has published three books of poetry with Sarabande Books: The Darker Fall, Want, which was a finalist for the Lambda Literary Award and won the 2009 Grub Street Book Prize, and Chord. Chord received the UNT Rilke Prize, the PEN Open Book Award, and the Publishing Triangle's Thom Gunn Award. His poems and essays have appeared in numerous publications, including Poetry, The Paris Review, The New Republic, The New York Times Magazine, Tin House, The Kenyon Review, and Virginia Quarterly Review. He has received fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts, the Artist Trust of Washington, the Civitella Ranieri, and Stanford University, where he was a Wallace E. Stegner Fellow and a Jones Lecturer. He directs The Rainier Writing Workshop, the low-residency MFA program in creative writing at Pacific Lutheran University. He is also the poetry editor for New England Review. In 2016 he received a poetry fellowship from the Guggenheim Foundation.
May 17, 2017. Cynthia Pratt is a founding member of the Olympia Poetry Network’s board. Her poems have appeared in Crab Creek Review, Raven Chronicles, Bellingham Review, Quill and Parchment, as well as other publications, and anthologies, including Dirt? Scientists, Book Artists, and Poets Reflect on Soil and Our Environment, Pacific Lutheran University (2015). One of her poems was accepted for display at the Seattle Salmon Strategy Summit 2005, and a couple of poems have had the honor of riding around in Tacoma and Metro buses. Her book, Celestial Drift, was published in January, 2017 (Precession Press). Her husband and she have a son and daughter, now grown, and three grandchildren. She is the Deputy Mayor of the City of Lacey.
March 15, 2017. Kent resident Peter Ludwin is an award-winning poet and avid traveler. His collections include A Guest in All Your Houses (2009, Word Walker Press), Rumors of Fallible Gods (2012, Presa Press), which was twice a finalist for the Gival Press Poetry Award, and most recently Gone to Gold Mountain (MoonPath Press.) Peter has received the W.D. Snodgrass Award for Endeavor and Excellence in Poetry and first prize winner of the Muriel Craft Bailey Memorial Award judged by Marge Piercy for The Comstock Review. He also plays acoustic blues guitar and autoharp.
February 15, 2017. Megan Snyder-Camp is the author of three collections of poetry: The Forest of Sure Things (Tupelo Press, 2010, winner of the Crazyhorse First Book Award), Wintering (Tupelo Press, 2016) and The Gunnywolf (Bear Star Press, 2016, winner of the Dorothy Brunsman Book Award). She is the recipient of fellowships and residencies from Bread Loaf Writers Conference, Djerassi, Willapa Bay AiR, Hypatia-in-the-Woods, and the 4Culture Foundation. Megan lives in Seattle.
January 18, 2017. Clemens Starck is a Princeton drop-out, a former merchant seaman, a retired union carpenter and construction foreman, and the author of six books of poems. He is a recipient of the Oregon Book Award as well as the William Stafford Memorial Poetry Award from the Pacific Northwest Booksellers Association. His books are: Journeyman’s Wages(1995), Studying Russian on Company Time (1999), China Basin (2002), Traveling Incognito (2004), Rembrandt, Chainsaw (2011) and Old Dogs, New Tricks (2016). He lives in the foothills of the Coast Range in western Oregon.
November 16, 2016. Born and reared in Spokane, Thomas Aslin has lived nearly his entire life in the Pacific Northwest. Aslin holds degrees in Sociology (UW) and Creative Writing (University of Montana). He has published poems in magazines as varied as Artful Dodge, INTRO 12, and Natural Bridge, and has new work forthcoming in The Georgia Review. His books include Sweet Smoke (Red Wing Press) and Moon Over Wings (Tebot Bach) -- which was a finalist for the 2009 Washington State Book Award in poetry. His newest collection, Salvage, was released in October by Lost Horse Press.
October 19, 2016. Patrick Dixon is a photographer, writer, retired educator, and former commercial fisherman who has been published in Cirque Literary Journal, Oregon Coast Magazine, National Fisherman Magazine, Oberon Poetry Journal, Smithsonian and others. Mr. Dixon has been a featured reader at the FisherPoets Gathering in Astoria, Oregon for 18 years. He is the editor of the seven-book set Anchored in Deep Water: The FisherPoets Anthology (2014). His chapbook Arc of Visibilitywon the 2015 Alabama State Poetry Morris Memorial competition.
September 21, 2016. Allen Braden is the author of A Wreath of Down and Drops of Blood (University of Georgia) and Elegy in the Passive Voice (University of Alaska/Fairbanks). His poems have been anthologized in The Bedford Introduction to Literature, Poetry: An Introduction, Best New Poets and Spreading the Word: Editors on Poetry. Assistant poetry editor of Terrain.org: A Journal of the Built + Natural Environments, he teaches at Tacoma Community College and volunteers for AWP’s Writer to Writer mentorship program.
August 17, 2016. Come bring a poem or two to Olympia Poetry Network’s August All Open Mic readings. It’s a great time to relax
out of the heat of the summer and listen to a wide range of poetry and visit with other poets.
July 20, 2016. Carol Levin's work includes Confident Music Would Fly Us to Paradise (MoonPath Press 2014) and Stunned By the Velocity (Pecan Grove Press 2012). Her work’s been widely published in journals and anthologies, print and online, in Russia, New Zealand, Germany and the US: recent poems appear in Sand Journal, The Red Headed Stepchild, and The Mom Egg Review. As former Literary Manager for The Art Theater of Puget Sound she translated Chekhov’s four major plays. Carol is an Editorial Assistant at the journal, Crab Creek Review and teaches at The Breathing Lab / Alexander Technique, in Seattle.
June 15, 2016. Tim Sherry, a long time public school teacher and administrator, lives in Tacoma, Washington. His poems have appeared in Rattle, The Raven Chronicles, Crab Creek Review, Broad River Review, and Windfall: A Journal of Poetry of Place, among others. He has been a Pushcart nominee, had his work recognized in contests, and in 2010 was an Artsmith Artist resident. His first full-length collection, One of Seven Billion, was published in 2014 by Moonpath Press.
May 18, 2016. Jordan Hartt is a reader, writer, writing teacher, and community & events' organizer. His creative work has appeared in about thirty literary magazines and journals: a collection of narrative poems “Leap,” appeared in 2015. He writes about the Pacific Northwest--rain, firs, cedars, ocean, blue tarps, rusted trucks, meth labs, logging, fishing--and it's recommended that readers put on raincoat before reading his work. Hartt directly facilitates five annual writing retreats, including the Port Townsend Writers' Conference, that serve just over two thousand writers per year.
March 16, 2016. Joseph Green’s most recent collection of poems is What Water Does at a Time Like This (MoonPath Press 2015), following That Thread Still Connecting Us(MoonPath 2012), The End of Forgiveness (Floating Bridge, 2001), Greatest Hits: 1975—2000 (Pudding House, 2001), Deluxe Motel (Signpost Press, 1991), and His Inadequate Vocabulary (Signpost, 1986). Through the Peasandcues Press, he and his wife, Marquita, produce limited-edition, letterpress-printed poetry broadsides using hand-set metal type; and at the C.C. Stern Type Foundry & Museum of Metal Typography, in Portland, he works to preserve the craft of casting the type itself.
February 17, 2016. Christianne Balk’s newest book is The Holding Hours from University of Washington Press. These poems explore the subtle and surprising transformations that come from caring for her young, neurologically injured daughter. Balk anchors these meditations within the landscape of the Pacific Northwest. Christianne’s previous award-winning poetry collections include Bindweed and DesiringFlight. Her poems have appeared in many journals and anthologies, including the New Yorker, the New Republic, and the Atlantic. She lives in Seattle, where she writes and teaches creative writing. She travels frequently into the Cascade Mountains.
January 20, 2016. Lucia Perillo’s sixth book of poems, On the Spectrum of Possible Deaths (Copper Canyon 2012) was a finalist for the National Book Critics' Circle Award and received the Pacific Northwest Booksellers' Award. Her other publications include a book of stories, Happiness is a Chemical in the Brain (Norton 2012) and one of essays, I’ve Heard the Vultures Singing (Trinity University Press). Inseminating the Elephant(Copper Canyon 2009) was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize. Her new book is called Time Will Clean The Carcass Bones (Copper Canyon Press, 2016).
November 18, 2015. Terri Cohlene grew near Renton, Washington where she competed with her two brothers in polliwog-catching, berry-tossing and slug-handling. Her work is influenced by car trips to Eastern Washington and visits to her grandparents’ apple orchard in Cashmere. She is the author of nine books for children including: Won’t Papa Be Surprised! Something Special and her newest, Witch’s Brew—Wicked, Wacky Poems for a Dark, Dark Night. Her poetry has appeared: Godiva Speaks, Pontoon, Floating Bridge Review, Arnazella, Stories with Grace, and Switched on Gutenberg. Terri has taught at Richard Hugo House, Shoreline & Whatcom Community Colleges and Hypatia-in-the Woods.
October 21, 2015. Jeanne Lohmann graduated from Ohio State University in 1945, held a Danforth Fellowship at the University of Kansas 1945-46, and earned her MA degree in Creative Writing from San Francisco State University (1979). She has published ten poetry collections and two books of prose. Her most recent poetry work is Home Ground (Fithian Press, 2013). Her poems appear in chapbooks, literary journals, and anthologies, and have been read on local and National Public Radio. The Jeanne Lohmann Poetry Trail is part of the wooded landscape at Providence St. Peter Hospital in Olympia. At 92 she continues to be active in the Olympia poetry community.
September 16, 2015. Saul Weisberg is a poet, naturalist, educator and executive director of the North Cascades Institute. His first collection of poetry: Headwaters: Poems and Field Notes has recently been published by Pleasure Boat Studio. Saul has worked throughout the Northwest as a wilderness climbing ranger, field biologist, commercial fisherman and fire lookout. Saul is also author of The North Cascades: The Story Behind the Scenery and From the Mountains to the Sea: A Guide to the Skagit River Watershed. He lives with his wife Shelly in Bellingham, Washington.
July 22, 2015. Nancy Pagh is a poet, performer, and educator living in Bellingham, WA. She has authored two award-winning collections of poetry (No Sweeter Fat and After) and one book of nonfiction (At Home Afloat). She teaches in the Department of English at Western Washington University. Born and raised in Anacortes, WA, Nancy’s poems include salal, the rain, the butter clam, cedar and also the body’s relationship with this world.
June 17, 2015. Martha Silano has authored four books of poetry, including The Little Office of the Immaculate Conception, winner of the 2010 Saturnalia Books Poetry Prize, and Reckless Lovely (Saturnalia Books 2014). She also co-edited, with Kelli Russell Agodon, The Daily Poet: Day-By-Day Prompts For Your Writing Practice (Two Sylvias Press 2013). Martha’s poems have appeared in Paris Review, Poetry, American Poetry Review, and North American Review, where she received the 2014 James Hearst Poetry Prize, as well as in many anthologies. Martha edits Crab Creek Review, curates Beacon Bards, a monthly poetry reading series in the Beacon Hill neighborhood of Seattle, and teaches at Bellevue College.
May 20, 2015. Gary Copeland Lilley is a North Carolina poet currently living, writing, and playing music in the northwest peninsula of Washington. His publications include three collections, the most recent being High Water Everywhere from Willow Books. He has driven every mile of Highway 40.
March 21, 2015. A Special 25th Anniversary Reading by Poet Laureate Elizabeth Austen and Local Poet Tim Kelly. Orca Books. 7:00 pm to 8:30 pm. World Poetry Day.
Elizabeth Austen is the Washington State Poet Laureate for 2014-16. Her debut collection, Every Dress a Decision (Blue Begonia Press, 2011) was a finalist for the Washington State Book Award. She’s also the author of two chapbooks, The Girl Who Goes Alone (Floating Bridge Press, 2010) and Where Currents Meet (Toadlily Press, 2010). She produces poetry programming for NPR-affiliate KUOW 94.9 and earned an MFA at Antioch University LA. She makes her living at Seattle Children’s Hospital, where she also offers poetry and journaling workshops for the staff.
Tim Kelly has been a resident of Olympia for 35 years. His poetry, which often revolves his work as a Physical Therapist, has been published in many journals, including Field, Image, The Northwest Review and The Seattle Review, and his four collections of poetry have won multiple awards, including the Field Prize and the Floating Bridge Press Poetry Chapbook Award. He is married with two grown sons.
March 18, 2015. Liz St Louis was born and educated in London, England. She was a family medicine doctor for several decades and is now a part time medical consultant. She has been writing poetry since her teens, but only "came out of the poetry closet" in 2000. Liz has published three chapbooks. Cloud Shadows, Poems from the Sargasso, and Luminaria.
February 18, 2015. Terry Martin earned a B.A. from Western Washington University and M.A. and Ph.D. from the University of Oregon. An English professor at Central Washington University, she is the recipient of CWU’s Distinguished Professor Teaching Award and the CASE/Carnegie U.S. Professor of the Year Award. Her poems, essays, and articles have appeared in hundreds of publications and she has edited books, journals and anthologies. Her first book of poems, Wishboats, won the Judges’ Choice Award at Seattle’s Bumbershoot Book Fair in 2000. Her second book, The Secret Language of Women, was published in 2006. Her new book of poems, The Light You Find, was published by Blue Begonia Press in September, 2014. She lives with her family in Yakima, Washington.
January 21, 2015. A special Celebration to Kick-off OPN's of 25th Year. A range of OPN's originators, past & present board members, and special benefactors have been invited and will present a poem, story, remembrance in honor of the occasion. Response has been robust, so the evening will be extended to 8:30 PM. For this evening only, our traditional open mike will be suspended to give all progenitors, historical board members and special benefactors a turn at the mike. Oh, and there will be cake!
November 19, 2014. Holly J. Hughes is author of Sailing by Ravens (University of Alaska Press, 2014), co-author of The Pen and The Bell: Mindful Writing in a Busy World (Skinner House Press, 2012), and editor of the award-winning anthology, Beyond Forgetting: Poetry and Prose about Alzheimer’s Disease (Kent State University Press, 2009). Hughes has taught writing at Edmonds Community College for more than 25 years as well as at regional conferences and workshops. She has also spent over thirty summers working on the water in Alaska in a variety of roles, including commercial fishing for salmon, skippering a 65-foot schooner, and more recently, working as a naturalist on ships.
October 15, 2014. Merridawn Duckler has published widely in fiction, nonfiction and poetry. Her most recent poetry is in Empty Mirror, Five [Quarterly], and Naugatuck River Review. Her plays have appeared in New York, Washington and California, including one in verse in the Female Playwright Festival Manhattan Shakespeare Project and Last Frontier Theater Conference in Valdez, Alaska. She does text-based installation at Blackfish Gallery in Portland where she hand wrote a Walter Benjamin essay on a ten foot wall with an alcove for a selfie.
September 17, 2014. Linda Malnack's book, Bone Beads, was published by Paper Boat Press in 1997 after winning their chapbook contest. She has also won the William Stafford Award, the Willow Springs Poetry Award, and a 2014 Writers Award from The Nassau Review. Linda has published over 150 poems in various journals including Amherst Review, the Seattle Review, and Northwest Review. She lives in Normandy Park where she is currently co-edits the on-line poetry journal, Switched-on Gutenberg. She is working on a book manuscript loosely titled The Museum of Everything.
July 23, 2014. *Note July date change to avoid Lakefair.* ’ The Old Growth Poetry Collective proclaims it "hails from the foliage-laced cultural and political hotbed of Cascadia and has been a word-wind of revolutionary poetics since its founding at The Evergreen State College in 2011, bringing poetry to new venues and a new audiences, delivering emboldening critiques of the status quo, gut-quaking humor, and visceral revelations on the meaning of self and society to Olympia and beyond." Further, "In its drive to unmask the potential of all who would listen, the cleective has performed at the Portland Poetry Slam, Olympia Artswalk, Love Our Local Fest, and The Evergreen State College. The collective also hosts poetry open mics, slams, and featured performers at venues throughout Olympia, including a weekly poetry open mic at Café Love this summer on Thursdays from 7-9pm.
June 18, 2014. Joanne M. Clarkson’s fourth poetry collection, Believing the Body, was published this spring by Gribble Press. Her poems have appeared recently in Nimrod, Rhino and Not Somewhere Else But Here: A Contemporary Anthology of Women and Place. Clarkson has Master’s Degrees in English and Library Science, has taught and worked as a professional librarian. After caring for your mother through a long illness, she re-careered as a Registered Nurse specializing in Hospice and Community Nursing. Many of her poems honor her patients and their caregivers.
May 21, 2014. Robert Michael Pyle writes essay, poetry, and fiction from an old Swedish farmstead along a tributary of the Lower Columbia River in southwestern Washington. His eighteen books include Wintergreen and The Tangled Bank. A Guggenheim Fellow, he has received the John Burroughs Medal and several other writing awards. Pyle’s poems have appeared in magazines including the North American Review, and in a chapbook, Letting the Flies Out. Evolution of the Genus Iris is his first full-length book of poems.
March 19, 2014. Linda Strever’s poetry collection, Against My Dreams, was released in fall 2013. Her poetry credits include Adanna, Beloit Poetry Journal, CALYX Journal , Crab Creek Review, Floating Bridge Review, Nimrod, Spoon River Poetry Review and others. Winner of the Lois Cranston Memorial Poetry Prize, her work has been a finalist for the New Issues Poetry Prize, the Levis Poetry Prize and the Ohio State University Press Award in Poetry. She has an MFA from Brooklyn College.
February 19, 2014. Risa Denenberg is an aging hippie poet currently living on the Olympic Peninsula in Sequim, Washington. She earns her keep as a nurse practitioner and has worked for many years in end-of-life care. She is a moderator at The Gazebo, an online poetry board and reviews poetry for the American Journal of Nursing. Along with Mary Meriam, she is a mistress at Headmistress Press, dedicated to publishing fine lesbian poetry. Her poems have been published online and in journals over the past 30 years. She has two chapbooks, what we owe each other (The Lives You Touch Publications, 2013) and Blinded by Clouds (forthcoming, Hyacinth Girls Press) and a full-length book, Mean Distance from the Sun (Aldrich Press, 2013).
January 15, 2014. Charles Goodrich is the author of three books of poetry, A Scripture of Crows, Going to Seed: Dispatches from the Garden, and Insects of South Corvallis, and a collection of essays, The Practice of Home. He also co-edited the volume In the Blast Zone: Catastrophe and Renewal on Mount St. Helens. His poems and essays have appeared in many journals and anthologies, and his poems have been read more than a dozen times by Garrison Keillor on "The Writer's Almanac." Following a long career as a professional gardener, he now serves as Director for the Spring Creek Project for Ideas, Nature, and the Written Word at Oregon State University. For more information: www.charlesgoodrich.com
November 20, 2013. Ann Spiers is outgoing Poet Laureate of Vashon Island. Her chapbooks include Tide Turn, Volcano Blue, and A Wild Taste (May Day); Long Climb into Grace (FootHills); The Herodotus Poems (Brooding Heron); What Rain Does (Egress Studio); Bunker Trail (Finishing Line). She leads workshops on writing poem cycles and on the art/craft of chapbooks. Her MA in Literature and Creative Writing is from the University of Washington. Visit her webpage http://annspiers.com
October 16, 2013. Nancy Dahlberg is a Seattle poet with roots in Chicago, Houston, and Eugene, OR . Often a featured reader at poetry venues in the Seattle area, her poems have appeared in numerous journals and anthologies, most recently in Beyond Forgetting: Poetry and Prose about Alzheimer's Disease (Kent State University Press, 2009) and Many Trails to the Summit (Rose Alley Press, 2010).
September 18, 2013. Poet and poetry advocate J. Glenn Evans will be the featured reader at September’s Olympia Poetry Network event. Founder of PoetsWest, the on-line gateway to information about poets and poetry in the Northwest, Evans sponsors public poetry readings and hosts a radio show. He is the author of four books of poetry: Deadly Mistress, Window in the Sky, Seattle Poems and Buffalo Tracks and three novels. Former stockbroker-investment banker, Evans is a native of Oklahoma, part Cherokee and has lived in Seattle since 1960.
August 21, 2013. Jeanne Lohmann has long suggested that OPN members might be interested in peeking into the workings of a critique group to see how those interactions can be helpful to poets. For August OPN has an opening for the Fusion Critique Group and they choose to present poems that derived from a writing exercise. They will be featuring 'list poems' and talking about how the group functions. Open mike will be coordinated with this theme. So members who have a 'list poem' -- see the OPN Newsletter for an explanation -- will be given first opportunity at the open mike. Note that in a reversal of normal protocol, open mike will follow, rather than precede the main presentation.
June 19, 2013. During her 2011-2013 tenure as Tacoma Poet Laureate, Jose Emmons Turner worked to promote poetry through the community, support the work of young poets and taught numerous workshops. Her work has been published in many journals and anthologies including In Tahoma’s Shadow, California Quarterly and Floating Bridge Review. A chapbook printed by Springtide Press will be released this fall. When she is not chasing her two Bichons, Josie teaches Advanced Placement English, Sophomore, and Senior English at Clover Park High School.
May 15, 2013. Prize-winning poet Bethany Reid earned her M.F.A. and Ph.D. from UW, where she was a poetry editor and later interview and essay editor of The Seattle Review. Bethany is on the faculty of Everett Community College.
March 20, 2013. Derek Sheffield was born in Portland, Oregon, and grew up there and on the shores of Washington's Puget Sound. He is a graduate of the University of Washington's creative writing program and has published his poems widely in literary journals such as Poetry, Orion, Georgia Review, North American Review, Alaska Quarterly Review, and Southern Review. Derek will be reading from his new collection: Through the Second Skin (Orchises Press, 2013). Among his awards are the Hazel Lipa Environmental Chapbook Award, the Sparrow Prize in Poetry, and the James Hearst Poetry Prize judged by Li-Young Lee. In addition, he was the runner-up for the 2012 Emily Dickinson First Book Award and a finalist for the Walt Whitman Award. He teaches poetry and nature writing at Wenatchee Valley College and lives with his family in the foothills of the Cascade Mountains near Leavenworth, Washington, where he has led birdwatching hikes and where he participates annually in the Audubon winter bird count.
February 20, 2013. Kent resident Peter Ludwin is an award-winning poet and avid traveler. His collections include A Guest in All Your Houses (2009, Word Walker Press) and Rumors of Fallible Gods (2012, Presa Press), which was a finalist for the Gival Press Poetry Award. Peter received the W.D. Snodgrass Award for Endeavor and Excellence in Poetry and has the past twelve years attended the San Miguel Poetry Week in Mexico, where he has studied under distinguished poets Mark Doty, Tony Hoagland, Joseph Stroud and Robert Wrigley.
January 16, 2013. OPN features Leonard Orr, author or editor of thirteen books of literary criticism/ critical theory, is Assistant Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs and Professor of English at Washington State University Vancouver. His poetry collections include Why We Have Evening (2010), Timing Is Everything (2012) both from Cherry Grove. He served as president of the Washington Poets Association for three years and in recent years has taken up painting abstracts. Both his poetry and painting feature a similar aesthetic based in spontaneity, surprise, and passion.
November 14, 2012. [Note date change to 2nd Wednesday of the month so as not to conflict with Thanksgiving.] Tremolo (Red Hen Press, 2012) is Alice Derry’s fourth full collection of poetry. Tess Gallagher says: “Tremolo is a tour de force of vibratory power that marks Alice Derry as having come into her own as one of our very best poets.” After twenty-nine years teaching English and German at Peninsula College in Port Angeles, Alice retired in June, 2009. She was a major force in conceiving and directing the college’s Foothills Writers’ Series from 1980 to 2009. Her other full collections include Strangers to Their Courage (LSU Press, 2001) – a finalist for the 2002 Washington Book Award, Stages of Twilight (Breitenbush, 1986), and Clearwater (Blue Begonia Press, 1997).
October 17, 2012. Olympia's own Lucia Perillo will be our famed, featured reader. Her fifth book of poems, Inseminating the Elephant (Copper Canyon 2009) was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize and also received the Washington State Book Award and the Bobbitt prize from the Library of Congress. In 2012 she published a book of stories, Happiness is a Chemical in the Brain, along with a new book of poems, On the Spectrum of Possible Deaths. It's sure to be an EVENT.
September 19, 2012. We will have two featured readers: Gayle Kaune and Richard Widerkehr. Port Townsend poet Kaune will be reading from her new collection All The Birds Awake (Tebot Bach) of which one reviewer said, “these vivid poems show us ways to live and ways to face the end of living.” Gayle is widely published; this is her second full-length collection. Like Kaune, Widerkehr, who lives in Bellingham where he's been a teacher in the Upward Bound Program, has won multiple poetry awards. His books include The Way Home (Plain View Press), Her Story of Fire (Egress Studio Press) and Disappearances (Radiolarian Press).
July 25, 2012. Tacoma poet Kay Mullen’s work has appeared in various poetry journals, most recent, Appalachia, American Life in Poetry and Raven Chronicles. Kay is a recipient of the William Stafford Award from the Washington Poets Association. She has two full-length poetry collections, Let Morning Begin (2001) and A Long Remembering: Return to Vietnam (2006). Several of her poems have been nominated for a Pushcart Prize as well as Sundress Publications’ Best of the Net 2009. Kay received an MFA Rainier Writing Workshop from Pacific Lutheran University. She teaches poetry at Catherine Place, a center for women in Tacoma. Kay will be reading from her most recent collection of poems, Even the Stones.
June 20, 2012. Seattle poet Susan Rich is the author of three collections of poetry, The Alchemist’s Kitchen (2010) named a finalist for the Foreword Prize and the Washington State Book Award, Cures Include Travel (2006), and The Cartographer’s Tongue / Poems of the World (2000) winner of the PEN Award for Poetry.She has received awards from The Times Literary Supplement of London, Peace Corps Writers and the Fulbright Foundation. Recent poems appear in the Harvard Review, New England Review, Poetry Ireland, and The Women’s Review of Books.
May 16, 2012. Washington State's new Poet Laureate, Kathleen Flenniken will read from her recent collection, Plume (2012, University of Washington Press). It's a search for identity, a bout with betrayal, and a coming-to-terms with the Hanford Nuclear site, where her scientist father worked for nearly 35 years and she worked for three, as an engineer and hydrologist. Flenniken’s first book, Famous, won the Prairie Schooner Book Prize and was named a Notable Book by the American Library Association and a finalist for the Washington State Book Award. She is an editor for Floating Bridge Press, dedicated to publishing Washington State Poets, and a teacher for Writers in the Schools and Jack Straw.
May 3, 2012. Jeanne Lohmann writes and is an active mentor in Olympia’s poetry community. She will read from her most recent book, As if Words. Jeanne has published eight books of poetry and two prose collections . Her poems have appeared in many literary magazines and anthologies, and have been read on local and National Public Radio.
April 18, 2012. In honor of National Poetry Month, Board members of the Olympia Poetry Network, will channel the works of favorite dead poets, proving that those who came before us still come alive when their works are read. This year, again, the shades drawn to our séance will be varied, brilliant, and disconcerting: the Nobel-Prize-winning Polish poet Wislawa Szymborska, fierce satirist Jonathon Swift, King Kong’s niece Jane Cooper, Black Mountain poet Robert Creeley, a wonderful writer and troublemaker in Grace Paley, and Lew Welch who taught lyric writing to Country Joe McDonald and wrote, “The worst Persian voluptuary could never have imagined my most ordinary day.” No doubt other inspirations will arise for the occasion. The audience will be invited to share their own favorite dead-poet poems during the Open Mike session. Please join us for an entertaining evening among old, but not forgotten, friends.
March 21, 2012. Don Freas arrived here from the east coast at twenty and was captured the southernmost finger-bays of the Salish Sea. Evergreen was the lure. Then big trees, salty shell-strewn edges, off-trail thickets — maybe even the rain — held him orbiting this landscape. He's an artist engaged in furniture design, a sculptor, a poet, an editor and a legal minister who can officiate at weddings. Don has four collections of poems in print; his poems have been published in The Asheville Poetry Review, Rosebud, and the Sulphur River Literary Review, as well as several anthologies.
February 15, 2012. Joseph Green lives in Longview, Washington, where he taught at Lower Columbia College for twenty-five years. His poems have been appearing in magazines and journals since 1975, and many are collected in His Inadequate Vocabulary (The Signpost Press, 1987), Deluxe Motel (The Signpost Press, 1991), Greatest Hits: 1975–2000 (Pudding House, 2001), and The End of Forgiveness, which won the Floating Bridge Poetry Chapbook Award for 2001. He designs and prints limited-edition letterpress poetry broadsides through The Peasandcues Press, in partnership with his wife, Marquita, and serves on the board of directors for the C.C. Stern Type Foundry, in Portland. At home, he still plays his concertina exuberantly at odd hours to keep his neighbors reaching for ever-greater heights in music criticism.
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