“You can sign-up to read or sing your words on peace at firstname.lastname@example.org …We are very excited about this year’s line-up of international readers, but there’s still lots of room. Please send us an e-mail or call me so we can give you a time. I will send out the schedule on October 1, 2016.” -Carla Shafer
I am proud to be a Fisherpoet for my third year. Currently, I’m scheduled to read on the Honeymoon stage at 8:30 p.m. Here is the full schedule:
Presented by Whatcom Community Foundation and Village Books
Friday, Sept. 21, 6:30-11 p.m.| $5 | Downtown Bellingham
FisherPoet entry button required: $5, available at Village Books through Sept. 19, or on-site at each venue. Space limited; seating first-come, first-served. Buttons not required for children under 12.
Celebrate Bellingham’s maritime sector through FisherPoet music, stories, poetry, artwork, and film at downtown venues on Friday, Sept. 21:
6:30 – 9 p.m. FisherPoets at Sylvia Center, Lucas Hicks Theatre – New 150-seat theater; refreshments available.
6:30-8:45 p.m. FisherPoets at Sylvia Center, Studio – New 65-seat theater; refreshments available.
6:30-11 p.m. FisherPoets at Boundary Bay Brewing – Brew room turns venue; beers on tap.
7-10:30 FisherPoets at Honey Moon Mead & Cider – Cozy small meadery; food available. Please note that this venue is now 21+.
In 2011 I woke up put a turtleneck on and was like, “I’m a freakin’ mess!” That same month I started volunteering at 102.3 KMRE SPARK Radio, broadcasting community radio out of the Museum of Electrical Invention, hoping community work would straighten me out. I used the moniker “Boosie” to hide from judgmental ex-in-laws, and *boom* history was made. This was the profile photo for my FB radio presence for seven years:
Its 2018 and I must admit my life is better for the experience. Want to know more? Take me out for coffee or drinks and I’ll share all my secrets. Until then, keep it real…
“After seven years of producing radio programs, I have decided to say goodnight to this chapter in my life. Thank you KMRE, KZAX, and KPNW for supporting my work. Thank you all for listening, and a special thank you to the hundreds of guests who have lifted me up and inspired me and my listeners over the years.”
-Shannon Laws, producer/host Chickadee Productions
If you have any questions or want to listen to your favorite program offline please contact Shannon Laws on FB messenger or via her writer’s page.
I overwatered my plant yesterday
The liquid flooded over my fail proof double-layered system
a concave plastic trivet atop a faded Christmas cookie plate
adopted decades ago at a bake sale from a forgotten charity
It was hot all this week and the dirt gave up its moisture
even in the darkest places
In my hurry to do good, I underestimated the effect
a deluge of water has on exhausted soil
I forgot all those moments that life tried
to teach me to go easy
Perhaps my lips remembered the effect
of a much-needed kiss the way a kiss
moves its way around down to the very tips of me
—and I let it pour
I let it pour and sit
and now warped wood wiggles
in protest over the zeal of a kiss
Consume whole sentences
into your being by writers
who never flew, can’t be true
Hide in ignorance, uneducated writers
that mass of writers
Eat those words
Dotted on the page
set for the digestive tract
turned for blood
I wallow in my own mind
this clay of form-fitting madness
the sheets are heavy
the pillow a stone
the clock a whip
snaps me to attention
While outside, heard through a window cracked
the freeway, a river of cars, sounds like wind rushing
in the trees, or the waves finding shore—NO
tires on old pavement working the graveyard shift heading home
And then, there it is
as clear as a cloudy night
We are all travelers
On March 8th historian and award-winning fiction author, Janet Oakley and I visited Kendall Elementary to share an introduction to poetry and encourage 4th graders to write their own poetry.
This project is inspired by the depression era Civilian Conservation Corps statue dedication. On June 16, 2018, at the Glacier Ranger Station built by CCC workers, the statue will be dedicated. Janet Oakley is working with Mike Impero and me to coordinate community events for all ages in celebration of the statue dedication. (Read more about the Corps below)
The CCC boys printed their own newspaper called “The Bulldozer”. Copies of the paper still exist. After Janet discovered that the boys wrote many poems for the newspaper, she recruited me to help spur a poetry contest with the local 4th-grade class. The contest went well. The Kendall kids are creative! Select poems are on display at the ranger station and the Kendall Library. Winners will be read at the dedication ceremony on June 16th. Kendall is about 10 miles from Glacier and some of the students are direct descendants of CCC workers who stayed in Whatcom Country after the CCC was dissolved.
Yesterday Janet came over to my home and shared some of the Thank You notes from Kendall. What a warm surprise! I am so thankful for the experience! These cards made my day.
About the Civilian Conservation Corps Statue
On June 12, 1933, a group of forty-three men from the Civilian Conservation Corps arrived in Shuksan in the Mount Baker National Forest. A week later they were joined by thirty enrollees from Illinois. By July 12, Company 2915 was at full complement of 200 men. During the summer and fall, the company worked on the construction of truck trails on Hannegan Pass and Twin Lakes, felled snags, and strung telephone lines. On November 2, the company moved to their permanent site on the Mount Baker Highway between Maple Falls and Glacier. Over the years, Company 2915 would build the Douglas Fir and Silver Fir campgrounds, the Glacier Ranger Station, the Austin Warming Hut, fire outlooks and hundreds of roads and trails
This June 16, 2018, nearly eighty-five years after the first group of CCC boys arrived at Camp Glacier, a statue will be erected at the Glacier Ranger Station to honor the Civilian Conservation Corps’ work. Though Mount Baker District is used heavily in winter and summer, few today know the history of the CCCs in our area. This statue will serve to tell their story.
A Little History Lesson
The Civilian Conservation Corps came out of the desperate days of the Great Depression. In 1933, only 30% of the population had jobs, mostly halftime. Banks, farms and businesses failed. With 25% of all young men ages 16 to 30 unemployed, serious social problems arose. To meet this national crisis, President Franklin Delano Roosevelt proposed the Emergency Conservation Act, soon known as the CCC. FDR was inaugurated on March 3, 1933. He proposed the bill on March 21. Both houses passed it on March 28. FDR signed it March 31.
Whatcom County’s first call for young men to sign up was in mid-April. A qualifying family had to be on the welfare rolls, their son between the ages of eighteen and twenty-five years old. The family received an allotment of twenty-five dollars a month. The enrollee would receive five dollars a month, but they were also fed, given shelter and soon training in a variety of things –from radio, auto mechanics to packing horses and setting up phone lines. Some finished their high school certificate.
The CCC Worker Statue
Sometime in the early 1970s, former CCC boys formed alumni chapters to get together, share their stories and support the preservation of their work in state and national. Today, most of the chapters are closed as members have passed away. The concept of the Civilian Conservation Corps, or CCC Worker Statue program was developed by the former Chapter #129 of Grayling, Michigan in 1995. Program coordinator Rev. William Fraser had the dream to have a statue in every state. The CCC Legacy, a national non-profit group, took on the task recently and now owns the CCC statue mold.
For the past year, author and historian Janet Oakley and Mike Impero, North Fork historian worked to get a CCC worker statue for the Glacier Ranger Station. Oakley grew up on stories of the CCCs and wrote a novel, Tree Soldier, set in the Glacier area. For two years, she was a Washington Humanities speaker, going around the state talking about the CCC’s impact on the state’s treasured parks and soil conservation. Mike Impero has written books about the Glacier area. He has a personal reason for the statue: his father was one of the first CCC boys to serve at Camp Glacier. Last month CCC Legacy signed with the Mount Baker National Forest to allow such a statue. The statue will be the second in Washington State and seventy-second in the nation.
On June 16th at the Glacier Ranger Station built by CCC workers, the statue will be dedicated. Janet Oakley is working with Mike Impero and local poet Shannon P. Laws to coordinate community events for all ages in celebration of the statue dedication.
A 4th grade Kendall poetry contest in March through April. Poems will be displayed at the Kendall Library and at the Glacier Station. On April 28th Janet and Mike will give a presentation at Village Books. All the events are free and open to the public. -press release
Encore performance! Poet Shannon Laws hosts a Honeymoon poetry OPEN MIC followed by her “You Love Me, You Love Me Not” beat poetry program accompanied by stand up bassist, Greg Sherman. Shannon’s fresh sense of humor and quietly erotic poetry highlights the joys and aggravations of mid-life singlehood in this collection of love and love maybe poems. Sure to make you go “LOL” and “OOoooOoo”, a fun night for all.
If you missed her debut performance of the set in February you got another chance to catch this unique poetry presentation. Books will be on hand to purchase, donations accepted.
“Shannon Laws’ poems are ventures, many journeys of the mind and imagination… They also probe the mysteries of the human condition, posing elemental issues: love and death and loss, the aching solitariness of human experience, the straining for meaning, clarity and confirmation, the yearning for contact and connection, and the guises humans adopt in the consequent interchange.” —Ron Leatherbarrow, Professor of Literature, Whatcom Community College
Don’t’ be a poet and not know it!
Come on down for good food, good words and a warm fun time of love and no love poetry.