Cascadian Zen

I am delighted to be part of the Cascadian Zen weekend at Seattle U, which I am helping to organize with Shin Yu Pai and Jason Wirth. Shin Yu is the former Poet Laureate of Redmond and Jason is Professor of Philosophy at S.U., and a Soto Zen Priest.

Organized loosely around exploring the relationship between the Cascadian bioregion as it intersects with Zen ideas, practices, and aesthetics, Shin Yu Pai, Jason Wirth and Paul E Nelson are hosting a diverse group of writers who are interested in broadly exploring the question of “What is Cascadian Zen?” through their poetic and/or philosophical writing.

What: Cascadian Zen
Where: Seattle U., Wyckoff Aud.
When: Fri & Sat, Feb 14, 15, 2020
Time: Friday: 3pm-8pm, Saturday, 9am-6pm
Cost: FREE

I am going to get a dress rehearsal for my presentation, Monday, February 10, 2020, at Folio, at 1pm, as part of the Folio Poets Society, or Folio PoSo as I like to call it. The member-supported library is at the historic Pike Place Market (the soul of Seattle) with views of Elliott Bay and, on a nice day, the Olympic Mountains.

What: Cascadian Zen
Where: Folio: The Seattle Athenaeum, 93 Pike St. #307, Seattle, WA 98101
When: Monday, Feb 10, 2020
Time: 1pm
Cost: Free to Folio members, a suggested donation for the general public

I have developed a presentation that looks at SPLAB’s 20 year bioregional cultural investigation of Cascadia. It started in 2012, with the first Cascadia Poetry Festival and continues via that fest (happening again May 1-3, 2020, at the Multiverse on San Juan Island; via ongoing interviews (see the 1994-2005 era ones here) and my own poems and literary activism. The Seattle U event will be videotaped and put online before too long.

One last heads-up for now. As to my poetry, my ongoing serial poem re-enacting the history of Cascadia, Pig War& Other Songs of Cascadia, is being expanded. The publisher of my first book A Time Before Slaughter, Apprentice House has agreed to publish a tenth anniversary edition, to be launched at Open Books, April 11. Does this mean the old edition of ATBS is now going to be a collector’s item? Buy some copies now just in case.

Where: Open Books: A Poem Emporium, 2414 North 45th St. Seattle, WA 98103
When: Saturday, April 11, 2020
Time: 7pm
Cost: Free, but buy a book for the love of the Baby Jesus!

About Splabman

Paul Nelson is founder of SPLAB (Seattle Poetics LAB) in Seattle, the Cascadia Poetry Festival and the August POetry POstcard Fest (PoPo). He has published a collection of essays, Organic Poetry & a serial poem re-enacting the history of Auburn, WA, A Time Before Slaughter (shortlisted for a 2010 Genius Award by The Stranger) and American Sentences, a book of 17 syllable poems drawn from the first fourteen of his 20 years of daily practice. The tenth anniversary edition of that book includes Pig War: & Other Songs of Cascadia. He’s interviewed Allen Ginsberg, Michael McClure, Wanda Coleman, Anne Waldman, Sam Hamill, Robin Blaser, Nate Mackey, Eileen Myles, George Bowering, Diane di Prima, Brenda Hillman, George Stanley, Joanne Kyger & many Cascadia poets (see: has presented his poetry and poetics in London, Brussels, Bothell, Cumberland, BC, Qinghai and Beijing, China, Lake Forest, Illinois, Ukiah, CA, and other places & writes an American Sentence every day.
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