Event: Read-In World Peace Poets

You’re invited

2015 poetsforpeace 8x11 poster Final
poster by Shannon Laws

 

Musicians, poets and lovers of peace please join us for the 3rd annual Read-In!  This is a FREE and public international event.  Sign up today via email at worldpeacepoets@gmail.com for a five minute slot to share what peace means to you.  The read in ends when the last poet speaks.  A light supper and refreshments will be served.

 

Facebook event page is here:

https://www.facebook.com/events/1483419105294481/

 

Learn more about World Peace Poets Bellingham chapter here:

https://shannonplawswriter.com/world-peace-poets/

Event: A Night at the Gallery

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You are invited to

A Night at the Gallery

Saturday March 21st, 7:00 p.m.
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“BRD recently received incredible community support for a new choreographic project with Seattle modern dance great, Mary Sheldon Scott. Join the dancers of Bellingham Repertory Dance and choreographer Scott on Saturday, March 21st for a unique performance in the Western Gallery. A Night at the Gallery will include excerpts of the work in progress, repertory from past seasons, poetry readings from the Chuckanut Writers Group inspired by the dance, a reception, and a window into the choreographic progress. The choreographer and dancers will discuss their works with audience members throughout and following the performance.

This is a one-night-only engagement. Doors will open Saturday March 21st at 7:00 pm at the Western Gallery on campus at Western Washington University. Tickets available at the PAC Box Office for $15. Call 360-650-6146 or http://www.tickets.wwu.edu/. Free parking available on campus in 17G and C-Lots. Click this to get more information at the EVENT page.”

Two of my poems, “Voice on the Trail” and “Last Hour of the Night”

have been accepted for the wall display in this program.

Thank you Bellingham Repertory Dance Company and

Chuckanut Sandstone Writer’s Theater!

Christmas Card 2014

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Holiday Happy Dance

Merry Christmas from the

S.P. Laws staff!

-Shannon, Brad, Vin, Robert, and Byung-hun

Click HERE to view our holiday card in Super-High-Speed Definition™

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So, how was your 2014?  What a mixed bad of nuts, right.  

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A large group of protesters stage a “die-in” on the street in response Monday in Seattle to the Ferguson grand jury decision not to indict Darren Wilson in the death of Michael Brown. Photo: JORDAN STEAD, SEATTLEPI.COM


Robots went to Mars, the Rosetta spacecraft‘s Philae probe successfully lands on Comet 67P, the Ferguson, Mo. ruling (WTH?), the die-ins, Russia hosts the Olympics, Pussy Riot spoke out, Brazil puts on a dynamic show for the FIFA World Cup, the TV news world goes nuts over the disappearance of Malaysia Airlines Flight 370, the US government continues to play games instead of governing, stunning display of the aurora borealis viewed by people as far south as Seattle, and some dy-no-mite sun activity causing cell/satellite outages.  Fun. Fun. Fun.  You were there, I don’t need to go into detail, but what a strange, wild, wonderful, and horrific year.

Here at the S.P. Laws office we had a… lets call it  “productive” year.  Many improvements are in place to help launch us off into an even more productive schedule for 2015. Here is the years recap:

mayorsartaward poster

2014 started off on the good foot with a breathtaking announcement in April.  A letter came in the mail to officially notify me I was selected for  2013 Mayor’s Arts Award recipient “Poet”, along with many powerful folks in the Bellingham arts community, including my “Writer Idol” Laurel Leigh.  Here we are celebrating at The Temple Bar afterwards with productive and energizing writers Susan Chase-Foster and Janet Oakley.

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me, Laurel Leigh, Susan Chase-Foster, Janet Oakley

Also in April I was invited to speak with two lovely poets Jennifer Bullis (Bellingham) and Heather Curtis (Anacortes) for Heather’s book launch “Upon Waking” and for National Poetry Month.  I could not be in better company.  A fine set of poets.

book reading VB april 5

In  June my second poetry book, “Odd Little Things”, was released.  Special thanks to my dear friend and editor Denise DuMaurier for her help.  I edited my first book “Madrona Grove” by myself, in addition to formatting it.  (I’ll never do that again) I learned my lesson.  Editors are good people to know & hire.  Don’t be afraid to use an editor.  My two cents.

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“Odd Little Things” June 2014

 “Odd Little Things” is a familiar ride full of piercing moments and wishes. In this, her second book of poetry, Shannon bares all making you feel like best friends at a café sharing secrets. The cycles of life seem to spin like an unforgiving stellar system for this poet. However large or small, everything matters, especially the moments you only share with yourself. Shannon says about her new book, “If ‘Madrona Grove’ is my lover, then ‘Odd Little Things’ is my child.”

Available at Village Books, in store and online at this link: Odd Little Things VB

BTW: This fall a second edition of Madrona Grove was graciously edited by poet master, retired professor, James Bertolino.  Available now at Village Books, click here: Madrona Grove VB

RADIO

June marked the end of The New Americana Hour’s second season.  It was a double punch to the intellect and heart.  Such an honor to be apart of this program.  I am a volunteer producer for a non-profit radio station in Bellingham, KMRE 102.3 LP, that broadcasts out of the SPARK Museum of Electrical Invention.

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Sunday afternoon editing session for The New Americana Hour

This season just touched my heart greatly.  It was as if the seed co-host, Jon Winter and I planted last year decided to reward us with a bodacious bloom.  Musician’s approached us hearing about the show from their colleagues, asking to be a guest on it.   TNAH also connected with the Seattle based television program“Band in Seattle”. The success of last years line up and increase of listeners has contributed to two new sponsors for 2015.

To learn more about this pioneering Bellingham program please visit the shows re-broadcasting site on wordpress: http://newamericanahour.wordpress.com/

September presented two magnificent opportunities to spread some SPL poetry: 2014 Tagore Festival in B.C. and the official book launch of “Odd Little Things”.

The Tagore Festival is always a treat.  The music, films, history, traditional Bengal clothing and dance ignites the senses!  Carla Shaffer and I were invited to read on the Friday performance.

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September Poetry Host Book Launch Bellingham WA
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September Tagore Festival Richmond, B.C.

For my book launch I invited two poet friends of mine to join me.  Now, you know I can fill up an hour’s worth of podium time, however, I saw this as an opportunity to share the space with two of Bellingham’s finest: Carla Shafer and Erica Reed.  Carla is the long time host of Chuckanut Sandstone Writers Theater, and Erica the host of Kitchen Sessions (2012-14), two inspiring open mics in town.  This was the first time, that I am aware of it anyways, where three poetry group hosts gathered to read their poetry for an audience.  Thank you Village Books for providing the space and promotion.  I believe there was a cross-pollination, an intermingling if you will, of poet circles.  Good times.

2014 poetsforpeace 8x11 poster FINAL
September World Peace Poet Event Bellingham, WA poster by Shannon Laws

In September we also hosted the second annual “Poets for Peace, Read-in! Write-on!” event.  This year held on a Friday night.  The program is simple: opening ceremonies, soup/salad dinner, poets and musicians read and sing about what peace means to them.  It ends when the last poet speaks. This is the only peace read-in in Bellingham.  I hosted the event along with my Peace Sisters Carla Shafer and author and poet C.J. Prince.  Watching members from Seattle to B.C. share their peace poems is like a healing, and good massage, calming down the anxiety of questions regarding humanities future.  “World peace starts with me” – peace is to be shared freely.

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Peace Sisters: C.J. Prince, me, Carla Shafer planning the 2014 Poets for Peace event.

The last event I was fortunate to be apart of was in November, a fundraiser for the Whatcom Juvenile Justice Creative Writing Project.  Held at the glamorous Encore Room at the Mt. Baker Theater.  The audience was generous and responsive to touching poetry by all artists.  Kevin Murphy was the exclamation point at the end of the evening with his bongo poems that everyone can relate to.  Man, I love that guy!

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Kevin Murphy, C.J. Prince, Joe Nolting, me, and Mathew Brouwer

What a year.  My writing is a great release, and a reward thanks to a responsive writing and book worm community here in Bellingham.  Connecting with people, my neighbors, sharing intimate work like poetry, music, a smile and a handshake, is like a great reward, an enrichment to my little life.  People are amazing.

This summer I am hoping to expand my readings outside of Bellingham.  I’m hoping for an Anacortes reading, perhaps LaConner, South King County and Seattle.  Just crossing my fingers that time and money will be available for those events.  This December I moved into a tiny apartment.  Like Virginia Wolf, I have a room of one’s own (and kitchen and a bath).  Here is my launching pad for 2015.  I wonder where it will take me?

“Lock up your libraries if you like; but there is no gate, no lock, no bolt that you can set upon the freedom of my mind.” Virginia Wolf

Thank you for joining me in my life of writing.

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Little room, little desk. Where I type, write and dream. Dream to think ratio 5:3

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Event: Three Poetry Host

3 poets Launch sept 2014_SLaws

 

You’re invited…

My new poetry book, Odd Little Things, will officially launch September 6, 2014 at Village Books, 4-5:00.  Please join me and my two poet-sisters, Carla Shafer and Erica Reed as we share our poetry.  Books will be  available for purchase and sign at the event.

Three’s COMPANY

I asked Carla and Erica to join me in my celebratory hour, mainly because I am a fan of their work, both on paper and within the community.  Carla’s graceful, intelligent writing makes me marvel at life’s organized beauty.  Erica is more like a surgeon with her pen, digging into areas of the heart and mind, exposing those delicate memories that need to be explored.

These woman are outstanding pillars in the writer community.  They care, they listen, they show up.  Dedicated to keeping the writing arts alive in Bellingham, Carla and Erica create platforms for area artist to express themselves; with projects like Fairhaven Art Block, writing poetry by request at the Farmer’s Market, and  Read-ins for Peace.

 

 

 

Event: Mayor’s Arts Award/Speech

Tonight at 5:30
Here’s my thank you speech:

     I am filled with joy and encouragement over this award.  It is a humbling experience to be listed with the other artist from the past years and those receiving it today.  Many of whom are on my list of people I want to be someday.

I believe I share this award with organizations that were here long before I arrived to Bellingham, in winter of 2010.  Places such as:
Village Books
Chuckanut Sandstone Writers Theater
Whatcom Poetry Series: Poetry Night Open Mic
and KMRE 102.3 SPARK Radio
that broadcasts out of the SPARK Museum on Bay Street

It was through these community centered groups that I was able to find a good reason to be busy on Tuesdays and Wednesdays 12-3, or Sundays 1-4.  2013 was a busy and productive year for poetry, and I am glad to of been apart of it.

Roosevelt said: “Far better it is to dare mighty things, to win glorious triumphs even though checkered by failure, than to rank with those poor spirits who neither enjoy nor suffer much because they live in the gray twilight that knows neither victory nor defeat.” As militant as this sounds, action is required to better our surroundings. Actions.  Not wishful thinking.  Lets all work together to build a better tomorrow.

Thank you Mayor Linville, the Bellingham Arts Commission, and my friends and family for your support.

Thank you.

Poem: Rondo

Did I love thee?  I only did desire
To hold thy body unto mine,
And smite it with strange fire
Of kisses burning as a wine,
And catch thy odorous hair, and twine
It through my fingers amorously.
Did I love thee?
Did I love thee? I only did desire
To drink the perfume of thy blood
In vision, and thy senses tire
Seeing them shift from ebb to flood
In consonant sweet interlude,
And if love such a thing not be,
I loved not thee.
~
by 
George Moore
Feb 1852-Jan 1933
an Irish novelist, short-story writer, poet, 
art critic, memoirist and dramatist
…one of the poems I read at the Chuckanut Sandstone Writer’s Theater
monthly open mic, 2/12/2014, held at the Firehouse Cafe, in Fairhaven
***

International Peace Poets

The Bellingham Poets for Peace Read-In! Write-On! Event is pleased to announce the confirmed international speakers:

Candice James,Duke Ashrafuzzaman, Bernice Lever, Max Tell
Bong Ja Ahn, Lilija Valis, Janet Kvammen, 
Farina Reinprecht, and Una Brauhns.

Referring to this collaboration of Canadian poets and American,
Farina said it best, “We are a team” 

***


Event: Read-In! Write-On!

Some local poet and writer friends are organizing a World Peace Read-in! and Write-on! It will be held on Saturday, November 9, 2013 from 2 PM to 8 or 9 pm. at 910-14th Street (St. James Presbyterian Church). There will be an opening and welcome reception at 2 pm. People will be welcome to come later in the day and evening, but we want a crowd at the opening.
It is open to everyone. We are planning a special Young People’s hour that features their writing from 2:30 to 3:30 pm. We are hoping that young people (through high school) will come and share poem/stories about peace…living peacefully or whatever they might like to share. They can speak from 1 to 5 minutes.  Please sign up young people sending us an e-mail at worldpeacepoets@gmail.com we’ll confirm the time and answer any questions.
At 3:30, we are planning a time for international poets (speakers and writers in more than one language).  Most of the international guests will be from British Columbia, but local international voices can choose to read now or later in the day. 
For the World Peace Open Mic held after 5:00 pm, five minute slots of time are open to poets and writers from everywhere. The sign up for this time period is at Village Books.  
Musicians ! Musicians are welcome. We’d especially like musicians included who have song about peace that young people would enjoy. This sign-up is done at: worldpeacepoets@gmail.com. For times after 5 pm musicians can sign up for a five-minute slot at Village Books. These will be musicians who can perform using one voice mic and one instrument mic, with no additional setting up required. (questions go to worldpeacepoets@gmail.com)
Other activities will be posters for peace, Information about world peace initiatives and a space will be provided for meditation and writing.
This a free event, no one is getting paid. It is part of a world-wide “poetathon for peace”  to be launched October 23, 2013 by World Poets Canada (friends in New Westminster, BC).

-Event coordinators,
Carla Shafer, Betty Scott, Shannon Laws

Event: Fairhaven Art Block Party

Come one, come all to the first annual 
Fairhaven Art Block Party!
Spontaneous street poetry provided by the 
Chuckanut Sandstone Writers Theater.
This festival is designed to spotlight the 
wonderful artistic community in the  
historic district of Fairhaven.
I’ll be one of the street poets, with my book 
Madrona Grove in hand.
**See you there**