Earth Day @ NorthWind

Has a nice ring to it, eh? Rob Lewis is one of three poets reading 7pm PDT Thursday, April 22, 2021 as part of the regular Northwind Reading Series. From the Northwind folk:

To celebrate Earth Day and National Poetry Month, the Northwind Reading Series and Centrum are co-hosting a Live Zoom Earth Day Reading & Discussion on Thursday, April 22nd from 7 – 8:30 pm.

We’re bringing together three poets to share a variety of poetic perspectives on the earth:  Samish Island poet Rob Lewis, Vashon Island poet Ann Spiers and Suquamish/indigenous poet Cedar Sigo. After the poets read, we’ll talk with them about their poems, their perspectives, and why they write about/for the earth. We’ll welcome the audience to join the discussion; please come with your questions.

If you’ve attended either of the last two Northwind/Centrum readings, you can use the same Zoom link. If not, please register HERE: Note: This takes you to the SurveyMonkey website where you’ll sign up to receive the link a few days before the reading.

In 2018 I interviewed Rob Lewis about his book The Silence of Vanishing Things:

Rob Lewis and The Silence of Vanishing Things

I also put Rob’s essay, Walking to the Restoration, on the curriculum for my current workshop. This essay was a huge eye opener for me and gives you some sense of what makes Rob tick and how the current debate over greenhouse gas emissions is 1/2 of the story. Wouldn’t you know the other half has the potential to be tremendously empowering and of course a validation of bioregionalism?

I interviewed Cedar ten years ago and here is a clip from that 2011 interview:

Ann is a friend and fine poet and my association with her goes back to the Red Sky era, 2000-ish? This reading looks like it will be fantastic and I love the Northwind series and its fine facilitators.

Happy Earth Day to you!

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Read/Study Mackey’s Double Trio

If not the culmination of a 40+ year serial poetry effort by perhaps the world’s leading living practitioner of that stance toward poem making, it is a huge new hunk. Matt Trease and I look forward to digging into Nathaniel Mackey’s Double Trio twice a month via Zoom. It’s my Zoom Room if you have been there before and if not, email me & we’ll send the link.

What: Reading/Study group for Nate Mackey’s Double Trio
When: April 25, 2021 & Second and Fourth Mondays at 5pm PDT
Where: Zoom
Why: From the publisher’s website: “For thirty-five years the poet Nathaniel Mackey has been writing a long poem of fugitive-making like no other: two elegiac, intertwined serial poems—“Song of the Andoumboulou” and “Mu”—that follow a mysterious, migrant “we” through the rhythms and currents of the world with lyrical virtuosity and impassioned expectancy. In a note to this astonishing box set of new work, Mackey writes:

“I turned sixty-five within a couple of months of beginning to write Double Trio and I was within a couple of months of turning seventy-one when I finished it.… It was a period of distress and precarity inside and outside both. During this time, a certain disposition or dispensation came upon me that I would characterize or sum up with the words all day music. It was a time in which I wanted never not to be thinking between poetry and music, poetry and the daily or the everyday, the everyday and the alter-everyday. Philosophically and technically, the work meant to be always pertaining to the relation of parts to one another and of parts to an evolving whole.”

Structured in part after the last three movements of John Coltrane’s Meditations—“Love,” “Consequence,” and “Serenity”—Double Trio stretches Mackey’s explorations and improvisations of free jazz into unprecedented poetic territory.

Other readers welcome. The sessions are free, though donations to SPLAB are welcome.

I have been studying spontaneous composition in poetry since 1995 and it has led me to understand the serial poem as the most open gesture possible in writing and perhaps the arts. Mackey leans on Free Jazz and that makes for a potent substrate, but Mackey has internalized Jazz, combined it with radical poetics, the indigenous wisdom of the Dogon tribe and other sources that make this book unlike any other in the history of English literature. We were blessed by Nate’s visit to the 2nd SPLAB in Columbia City and published one of our interviews with him in American Prophets. See:

Nate Mackey

And join us as we dive deep into Double Trio starting Monday, April 25, 2021 at 5pm PDT via Zoom.

Paul E Nelson

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Last Year’s Pandemic Postcard (Not Yet)

My practice each morning includes reading the journal entry from the same day of the previous year. For instance, today I read Monday, April 6, 2020. It was Day 24 of the Shelter-in-Place recommendation and I was already showing off designed masks:

Thanks Buffy!

Now that everyone here at Casa del Colibrí is post-Moderna, we are breathing a little easier and can maybe laugh a little at how we responded to the lockdown near the beginning. Starting the Poetry Postcard Fest early was wise. The postcard poem below was written BEFORE I started making the card images AFTER writing the poem, so they had not yet hit their stride in terms of a more unified gesture, which helps when work is a little on the difficult side. I write that way not for the purposes of evasion or exclusion, but because I want to see what is at the core of my being and release that which is not free. That is my wish for all humans. Ashé.

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