Reading/Publication Party for Raven Chronicles Vol. 25: Balancing Acts

RAVEN CHRONICLES PRESS & BookTree, an Independent Bookstore present

A Reading & Reception for Raven Chronicles Journal Vol. 25: Balancing Acts

February 17, 2018, Saturday,  6:15-7:30pm Free
BookTree Bookstore, 609 Market Street, Kirkland, WA 98033, 425-202-7791

Readings by:

MC: Paul Hunter, Luther Allen, Ed Harkness, Alicia Hokanson,
Thomas Hubbard, Jill McCabe Johnson, Jed Myers, Mary Ellen Talley

Join us for an Open Mic to follow the reading, 7:30-8:20pm.


Luther Allen writes poems and designs buildings from Sumas Mountain, Washington. He facilitates SpeakEasy, a community poetry reading series in Bellingham, Washington, and is co-editor of Noisy Water, a poetry anthology featuring local Whatcom County poets. His collection of poems, The View from Lummi Island, can be found at http://othermindpress.wordpress.com. His work appears in three recent anthologies: WA 129 (an anthology of poems from Washington poets, edited by Tod Marshall), Refugium, and Poetry of the American Southwest, Volume 3.

Edward Harkness is the author of two full-length poetry collections, Saying the Necessary and Beautiful Passing Lives, both from Pleasure Boat Studio Press. His poems can be found online in 2River, Atticus Review, Cascadia Review, The Good Men Project, Hinchas de Poesia, The Humanist, Rat’s Ass Journal, Salt River Review, Split Lip Magazine, Switched-On Gutenberg, and Terrain.Org. Recent publications in print journals include Chariton Review and Miramar. His most recent chapbook, Ice Children, was published by Split Lip Press in 2014. To hear Ed read “Union Creek in Winter,” (and published, not incidentally, on Jan. 21, 2017, the day of the inauguration of #45), go to Terrain.org at http://www.terrain.org/2017/poetry/letter-to-america-harkness/. He lives in Shoreline, Washington.

Alicia Hokanson, retired from forty years of teaching, now devotes her time to reading, writing, and political activism in Seattle and on Waldron Island, Washington. Her first collection of poems, Mapping the Distance, was selected by Carolyn Kizer for a King County Arts Commission Publication Prize. Two chapbooks from Brooding Heron Press are Insistent in the Skin and Phosphorous.

Thomas Hubbard, a retired writing instructor and spoken word performer, authored Nail and other hardworking poems, Year of the Dragon Press, 1994; Junkyard Dogz (also available on audio CD); and Injunz, a chapbook. He designed and published Children Remember Their Fathers (an anthology), and books by seven other authors. His book reviews have appeared in Square Lake, Raven Chronicles, New Pages and The Cartier Street Review. Recent publication credits include poems in Yellow Medicine Review, I Was Indian, editor Susan Deer Cloud, Florida Review, and short stories in Red Ink and Yellow Medicine Review. He serves editorially with Raven Chronicles and The Cartier Street Review, and still performs spoken word in and around Seattle, and at other venues around the country.

Paul Hunter has published fine letterpress poetry under the imprint of Wood Works Press since 1994. His poems have appeared in numerous journals, as well as in seven full-length books and three chapbooks. His first collection of farming poems, Breaking Ground, 2004, from Silverfish Review Press, was reviewed in The New York Times, and received the 2004 Washington State Book Award. A
second volume of farming poems, Ripening, was published in 2007, a third companion volume, Come the Harvest, appeared in 2008, and the fourth, from the same publisher, Stubble Field, appeared in 2012. He has been a featured poet on The News Hour, and has a prose book on small-scale, sustainable farming, One Seed to Another: The New Small Farming, published by the Small Farmer’s Journal. His new book of prose poetry, Clownery, In lieu of a life spent in harness, was published in 2017, by Davila Art & Books, Sisters, Oregon.

Jill McCabe Johnson is the author of two poetry books, Revolutions We’d Hoped We’d Outgrown and Diary of the One Swelling Sea, winner of a Nautilus Book Award, and the nonfiction chapbook Borderlines. Honors include an Artist Trust grant, an Academy of American Poets Award, the Mari Sandoz/Prairie Schooner Prize in Fiction, and Scissortale Review’s Editor’s Prize in Poetry; plus the Deborah Tall Memorial Fellowship from Pacific Lutheran University—where she completed her MFA in Creative Writing—and the Louise Van Sickle Fellowship in Poetry from the University of Nebraska—where she received her PhD in English. Johnson teaches Creative Writing and English at Skagit Valley College, and is the founding director of Artsmith, a non-profit to support the arts.

Jed Myers is author of Watching the Perseids (Sacramento Poetry Center), The Marriage of Space and Time (MoonPath Press, forthcoming), and two chapbooks. Recent honors include the Prime Number Magazine Award for Poetry, The Southeast Review’s Gearhart Poetry Prize, and the McLellan Poetry Prize. Poems are forthcoming in Poetry Northwest, Southern Poetry Review, and Natural Bridge. He’s Poetry Editor for the online magazine Bracken.

Mary Ellen Talley’s poems have recently been published in Cirque, U City Review, and Ekphrastic Review, as well as in the anthologies, The Doll Collection and Raising Lilly Ledbetter: Women Poets Occupy the Workspace. Mary Ellen worked for many years with words and children as a Speech-Language Pathologist (SLP) in Seattle public schools.

Neighborhood Crows, Poem by Edward Harkness

In lazy flight this afternoon, they resemble
scraps of crepe blown aloft above the sunlit
crowns of firs. They’re my aloof neighbors.
All their guttural utterances are black, cynical,

feathered with irony. The point is, they mutter,
there’s no point. They clean up our messes.
In the corner of a field they hop to a scrap
of burger still in its silver wrapper.

Tolerant as Lao Tzu, plain as nickels, they gather
on wires in squads of nine. Earning a living,
they know, depends on luck, a canny eye
and magic, which explains their sorcerer’s robes,

glossy as lacquered shadows at twilight.
Like the universe, they do not judge.
They have no comment on the divorce rate
or the attendance of gangsters at church.

Instead, they’re the lamplighters of old, lighting stars
to signal day’s end as they pass over power lines.
Imponderable, ordinary, like night itself,
they spread their wings to shelter their young,

invite their friends to dinner in a ditch
or near an upturned garbage can. When threatened
by a hawk they call in reinforcements to harry
the intruder, distracting hunter away from the hunted.

At dawn they reappear, routine as soot
but wiser. For crows are learned monks
in vacant lots, beggars who take the vow
of poverty and then take over the city.

Crows have nothing to teach, nothing to sell.
They joke, cajole, bicker and tend
to their families. They are Zen masters
of the art of blending in, always making the best

of a bad situation, as poets do who know
it’s hopeless but go on anyway with their crow visions
and dark pronouncements, feigning nonchalance
when we fail to understand their off-the-cuff

commentaries, those suggestions they offer in order
to survive the coming apocalypse. If we paid attention,
we might even learn something—not merely
how to face the day when the comet strikes or the missiles

rise from their silos, but how to live in the now,
how to start anew, how to be better than we’ve been
and, despite the madness of our time,
how to get along with our neighbors, how to thrive.


Edward Harkness is the author of two full-length poetry collections, Saying the Necessary and Beautiful Passing Lives, both from Pleasure Boat Studio Press. His poems can be found online in 2River, Atticus Review, Cascadia Review, The Good Men Project, Hinchas de Poesia, The Humanist, Rat’s Ass Journal, Salt River Review, Split Lip Magazine, Switched-On Gutenberg, and Terrain.Org. Recent publications in print journals include Chariton Review and Miramar. His most recent chapbook, Ice Children, was published by Split Lip Press in 2014. To hear Ed read “Union Creek in Winter,” (and published, not incidentally, on Jan. 21, 2017, the day of the inauguration of #45), go to Terrain.org at http://www.terrain.org/2017/poetry/letter-to-america-harkness/.

He lives in Shoreline, Washington.

Art at the Hopvine Pub, Winter, 2017-2018


Join Raven Chronicles January 6 to March 4, 2018, celebrating 2 local artists: Irene Akio, and Chris Crites; @ Hopvine Pub, 507 15th Avenue East, Capitol Hill neighborhood, Seattle. Curated by Les Morely, co-sponsored by Raven Chronicles.

 

Irene Akio, “Ordinary People”
January 6-February 3, 2018. 
With this body of work Akio chose to explore portraits of ordinary people, both friends and strangers she has come across in her everyday life. She used bright pastels to emphasize the radiance in each of us.

Chris Crites, “Bag Paintings”
February 4-March 4, 2018. Artist reception Thursday, February 15, 7:00 pm. 
For over 18 years, Crites has used the brown paper bag as his canvas to examine criminal portraits from the past, as well as crime scenes and accidents from history.