Collections that work (and those that don’t)

Have I mentioned how much I adore book club?  We read work that I love, work that I have difficulty with, and sometimes work that just isn’t up to par.  I have to say I’m not too thrilled with my selection this time around.  Still, after talking with Carrie this morning (sipping coffee, feeling the way-too-cool breeze off of Green Lake) I again realized how important it is to read both the good and the bad.  It’s all well and good to fall in love with books, but I think it’s the ones that don’t quite work that are almost more helpful.  If you can see into a book and watch its moving parts as it stumbles along it’s a bit easier to see how to fix it.  Or at least, how the errors of the book can be avoided in our own collections.  A flawless book works so smoothly it’s difficult to remember that it is still working.

My own progression on projects is going in starts and stops, but after a very encouraging Heroes meeting last night, talking to more amazing people at the Hugo House and helping a handful of third graders write poems yesterday I’m feeling all sorts of excited.  I’m already making plans to go climbing on Sunday and the weather seems to finally be taking a warmer turn.

On a personal note, I had my final day in the classroom up at Olympic Hills Elementary. Waving goodbye to class I’ve been helping tutor was a little sad.  Girls came up to hug me and ask me to stay, and as I walked toward the bus stop, past the playground, a few jogged along waving and shouting goodbye.  I’ll miss them, even though I was only there for a few weeks.  It’s hard to not feel like I abandoned them to the summer, and I don’t know if I’ll see any of them again, or if they’ll even remember me if I do.  I feel like I was really helping a few of them, and I was even able to dazzle the boys with my X-Men knowledge.  I wish them all the best.


Any Poets out there?

Enter this!  I’m just posting up our press release, but if you have any questions, feel free to shoot me an email.  It’s a great magazine, and you know you want to win the subscription…

Poetry Northwest Introduces The Pitch

Poetry Northwest introduces the quarterly poetry competition The Pitch.  Each round features a writing prompt drawn up by a notable writer and work submitted must adhere to the specifications outlined in the prompt.

Pitch #1, Find Direction Out,  features a prompt by Seattle poet Rebecca Hoogs.  Among her many engagements and achievements as a writer, Rebecca Hoogs is the curator of Seattle Arts & Lectures Poetry Series and the author of the chapbook, Grenade.

Work can be submitted via email as a Word.doc or pdf attachment to (only these formats can be accepted) and include in the email message your name, address, phone number, and month/year of birth. One entry per person. Please include your legal name in the email address, even if you wish to be represented on our site by a pseudonym. Full rules can be found on

Two finalists will be selected by the editorial staff for a public vote. The finalists will appear on at the end of the quarter for which their pitch submission is received: for spring and summer, September 15; for fall, December 15; for winter, March 15. Voting will last three weeks. The winner will be published on the site in perpetuity, and will receive a one-year subscription to Poetry Northwest.

Photo Essay

Memorial Weekend was gloomy and rainy until, of course, we went to the gym to climb.  Then the sun emerged.  Still, friends and dancing and breakfasts and coffee.  The days are starting to feel like they last for days, sun barely down as I get ready for bed.  I’m trying to get to sleep earlier, to rise earlier.  Stretching and a little yoga this morning with my housemate, coffee and oatmeal, and now headed off for coffee with my aunt.  Falling in love again again.  I know I am always joyous when I’m writing here, but isn’t that better than dreary and sad?  There is so much to enjoy in life, despite the way we (as people in general) can crash into each other with disasterous results.  I am writing letters again during the slow periods at work and sending them to someone I know is worth the time.  I am keeping my room clean(ish).  I am writing more.  I am reading more.  I am taking pictures.