Corridor Vol 5

This month one of our regular artists and poets, Kathleen McKeever, asked to run the circuit, dropping the zines off at her favorite places around town. It is fun to sneak a few onto the newspaper rack at cafes and coffee shops, I don’t blame her. August, Volume 5 will be in & around town this weekend. Keep your eyes out for copies!

Vol. 5 Contributors
All poems and art used with permission

LONGINGS
Ashok Bhargava, Vancouver, Canada

[Love is not a lie]
Poem first appeared in Empty House Press, Issue 8
SOMETIMES THE TRUTH: REPRISE
Poem first appeared in Empty House Press, Issue 6
Jory Mickelson, Washington

LUCK OF THE STARS 
EYE WASH

Lynn Geri, Washington

WADE AND SWIM
MRS. NOAH

Both poems from “Body/Today”, Published 2020
Kathleen McKeever, Washington

RIVER INK
MORNING WALK

Shannon Laws, Shannon Laws

BIOs for August

Ashok K. Bhargava: Art award winning multilingual poet; The founder and president of the Writers International Network Canada (WIN Canada); Community activist; public speaker; Former president of Literary Society of BC;
Author of six poetry books and many poetry anthologies.

Jory Mickelson is a trans writer who lives along the I-5 Corridor in Washington state.

Lynn Geri is a poet whose words grasp at air, in her wayfaring rise from salty earth. She prefers to grapple ethereal fir in her published works; several journals, anthologies, and books: Mother, Ankhs and Roses, I Submit. Scroll books: Awe 
and Wonder, Lilies, Romp in the Clover, Searching for Light and Deep Water…where truths ride on watery wind.

Kathleen A. McKeever lives in Sunnyland among a community of young families collaborating  to create the world we desire for future generations. One of her greatest joys has been watching the babies learn to walk and the young people graduate from high school.
Poet, artist, creator of the Urban Cauldron Tarot Deck. Kathleen’s volumes of poetry “Cloudlight“, published in 2018 and “Body/Today“ published in 2020 are available by
Contacting her via urbancauldron@yahoo.com

Shannon Laws produced a poetry discussion podcast during the pandemic, “Poetry Club Talks…”, available wherever you get your podcasts. She writes frequently on the working class, homelessness, the human condition, and romantic relationships. She makes her home in
Bellingham, Washington.

Ghost in the Hall

Do you have dreams about the home you grew up in? I can see my childhood home in my mind. The typical three bedroom west coast rambler; living area on one side and a looong hallway to the bedrooms on the other. As a young kid I was pretty sure the place was haunted. The creaky floor didn’t help.

Ghost in the Hall
by Shannon Laws
Odd Little Things, published 2014

When I was a child A Skeleton Ghost would walk
The bedroom hall of our home  
Afraid of the dark I would sleep with the light on
My door open just enough to keep out the trouble
Ghosts are everywhere when you are four.  

Often the ghost would wiggle its way past my door
Steps heard creaking across loose boards
Creak.  Creak.  Creak.

Down the hall slowly it walked   Skeleton heading for the kitchen
To fill up its ribs with mom’s pork chops
Then fiddle its way back to bed After the meal was consumed  

One scary night before this mystery was solved
I slept between my parents for protection  
Bookends of adult and authority on either side
Defense from anything ghoulish
Each parent rolled over facing the walls
As I lay blinking at the ceiling.  

2 a.m. is Skeleton’s supper time  
Down it came toward my parents’ room
Bones walk lightly when there is no moon  
Closer.  Closer.  Closer.
 
From the ceiling my eyes followed
To see what stood at the foot of the bed  
Its frame wiggled trying to materialize
To grab hold of me with solid hands   
Dad sighed in his sleep and the ghost misted away. 
Scared off by the possibility of his waking
I waited.  Waited.  Waited.  

My father was a quiet man, little brought out
his anger, looking back I think dad was
The Skeleton Ghost walking the halls at night
His spirit jumping out, looking for food for his soul
Wandering around for morsels of encouragement
His bony frame proved little return

Wherever he is, I hope there is a table before him
Every morning set with enlightenment, curiosity, love
I hope he found peace because
With one soft growl
One scary night

He save my life



You can get your copy of Odd Little Things from
independent book store Village Books
https://www.villagebooks.com/book/9798743768806

BUK 100 – Thank you


Books ready to fly! You can order the well-made piece here: http://newington.blue/ , DM them at press@newington.blue

What a delight to learn a poem of mine, written in the spirit of Saint Bukowski, b. August 16, 1920, was selected for a chapbook celebrating his 100th birthday! My first international submission acceptance. Indeed an honor. A copy is flying closer to my mailbox as I post this update.
These are beautiful, limited edition, small press collector books that you can still order–get your copy today! Contact Newington Blue Press, East London, today! (Apx. £25)

“Newington Blue Press was born in 2020 – when due to the Covid–19 virus and pandemia the centenary Festival on the occasion of what would have been the 100th birthday of Bukowski – to be held in Germany – had to be canceled. Originally planned as a small, humble replacement only, our anthology of tributes, testimonials, and unpublished works – lived up to it’s second volume so far and is to be continued.

Downing Street chirps in a word.

The writer’s call-out & mission statement for BUK 100:
“We have gathered writers, scholars, and graphic artists/photographers from all around the globe in order to celebrate the man Bukowski on the very occasion. Our contributors range from contemporary witnesses/friends of Bukowski – still alive, to emulating artists working in his tradition, scholars who work for or gaining degrees/doctorates on Bukowski to congenial artists esp. in the performing arts who are occupied with the phenomenon of the «poet laureate of skid row» for years. Everybody is free to greet Charles Bukowski in his or her specific way, style, and individuality, be it an essay – a photograph or poetry. We would warmly welcome you to take part in our little endeavor, which explicitly aims to blow borders of nations and thus assembles contributions from artists from all continents.”

Hank and a Ham Sandwich

P.S.
Perhaps you and a writer you know say, “I need to give this some air.” Reading a work in progress at an open mic or to a group of other writers can help form the piece. In 2018 I read my Charles Bukowski-inspired poem “Christopher Titus Save Me.” based on the Bukowski poem “The Twelve Hour Night”. It is one of my longest poems, yet written from the heart -or should I say the wrenched heart- about working as an overnight deep cleaner at a Casino. I had no words to describe the experience and Bukowski helped me find those words. But, the poem needed air, it needed to be tested.

In my town, we have a monthly open mic at the local indie book store, Village Books. The night I signed up for a 5-minute read, a new artist was in the crowd-drawing, um, portraits… of each reader. Bob Zaslow–thank you. Bob included in his portrait lines from “Christopher Titus Save Me”.


Listen to Poetry Club Talks…Charles Bukowski, that I hosted.
I share the how & whys of what the 2002 book
What Matters Most Is How Well You Walk Through the Fire did for me.
https://poetryclub.podbean.com/e/poetry-clubtalkscharles-bukowski/

Monday is the first day of SPRING! The sun is coming through my window. I watched it as it arched around the buildings, right-sided shadows slowly making their way left. The Christmas Cactus takin’ it all in.
No meme this morning. just this photo.
-Hope you are well, healthy, happy, fed, sheltered, loved, and giving love…and CREATING,
Shannon

Poetry Club Talks…Translation with Sean Dwyer

https://www.podbean.com/media/share/pb-zfnbk-f786a8

Topic: Translation
Host: Ron
Poem: W.S. Merwin’s translation of Pablo Neruda’s “Poema 20”
Recorded: January 9, 2021

Dwyer vs Merwin / Poem 20

We have a guest this week! Author, poet, musician, Western Washington University Spanish professor, and host of the monthly Village Books Open Mic Sean Dwyer joins the club today.

Under the microscope are two poems; W.S. Merwin’s Spanish/English translation of Pablo Neruda’s (b.1904-d.1973) “Poema 20” vs. Sean’s translation.   Open up the document (attached) and follow along as Sean takes us line by line, explaining the difference between native and dictionary translation, the importance of cultural understanding, the effort to keep the original rhyming scheme, and more.  

 
We packed the presentation and Q/A into one show
 
Guide
Start – 43:00 minutes is a line by line exploration
43:00 – 48:00 Sean reads his translation in Spanish
48:00 – 1:20:00 Group Questions and Answer
1:20:00 – We close with Pablo himself reading the original “Poem 20”  
 
-Thank you Sean for joining us today.  It was a delight!
 
Please visit Sean’s website to learn more about this fascinating writer:
https://www.seandwyerauthor.com/quest
 
photo: Dwyer, Author photo and the cover of his latest book “Quest for Tears” about his recovery from a traumatic brain injury.  

Event: Clover Reading

Winter Clover

You are invited to the

Independent Writers’ Studio‘s publication

Clover A Literary Rag

Winter Vol 8 reading

This publication is published in Bellingham, Washington, but accepts submissions from poets and writers located all over the nation. Every year as word get out, the book grows in  proportion.  This is my second time appearing in the Clover.

Thank you Mary Gillilan  and Norman Green for all your hard work.  You are both a perfect team!

Clover is reading submissions for their next Clover edition, out in June.  The deadline is April 30.  Visit their web site for details.

Poetry Book: Odd Little Things

online cover OLT
Photo credit: Daniel Laws. Taken at Old Town Cafe, Bellingham. Home of the BEST beni

This book was a lifesaver.

Written over the years of late 2012-2014 the poetry that emerged from my finger tips started to take a new direction.  Nature and love topics will always be on my forethought, but objects like a pole, a cinnamon roll and a rain drop on a porch at night attacked my senses.

2013 was an especially wild year, romantically, professionally, artistically.  New jobs (plural), hope gained then lost AGAIN, projects built such as “Poetic Moments” radio feature and the Peace Poets ‘Read-in” events, wonderful highs.  Then the love life roller coaster: hot and cold, warm, simmer, then over and gone.  In my free time, my down time and on my dates with my notebook, words started to show up.  THINGS started to twinkle at me to say “hi”.  Simple things with deep worlds.

“Odd Little Things” is a shorter book than “Madrona Grove” but it feels like it says more with less words.  I hope you will consider adding it to you collection.  This is the age of the chap book, staple binding n’ all.  Collect them and SAVE a poet!

~Shannon P. Laws

Purchase “Odd Little Things” by visiting Village Books
online or walking in. 
Buy online here

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: Poetry Reading

Join local poets
Heather Curtis, Shannon Laws
and Jennifer Bullis
for a poetry reading celebrating
National Poetry Month.

April 5, 2014, 7:00 pm
Village Books 
1200 11th St
Bellingham, Washington
Come on down to celebrate National Poetry Month 
and the release of Heather’s new poetry book, “Upon Waking”.
“Upon Waking has been inspired by the exploration of landscapes: both internal and external. The mind, natural world, relationships, and personal experiences are the wells from which poet, Heather Curtis, draws inspiration. It is her hope, that these poems express where she has been and encourage you to do your own exploring.” 
See you there!

Village Books Event Page

***

Poetry: River Ink

 
 
River Ink
Went to the river looking for a poem
I found my familiar trail
Winding woods that hug the bank
Whatcom Creek in August
Bushes high and
Full of berries,
Birds and spider’s webs.
Grass sways underwater
Moving in sync with the river
This what peace looks like,
Melted into movement
Tree branch dips over the drink
Desiring more of plenty
Is water from the root not good enough
Do you cool your leaves in the noon sun
Down by the edge there’s a place to sit
Two dead trees have slumped across
I dip a stick into the stream
Like pen into ink
To write my name on the
sun bleached wood.
The sun grabs my letters
Throws them in the air
Birds ride the upward current
Did I just disappear?
This poem and others by Shannon P Laws
are available in a paperback book
Madrona Grove: Poems Written Under the Canopy
published by Chickadee Productions
***