April is National Poetry Month — and in Seattle, at least, the celebration is ending with a bang, not a whimper. Those not averse to verse have a multitude of events to...
April is National Poetry Month — and in Seattle, at least, the celebration is ending with a bang, not a whimper. Those not averse to verse have a multitude of events to choose from next week, including:
Open Books’ 10th Anniversary Celebration:
Wallingford’s poetry-only bookstore has been in business for a full decade — reason enough to celebrate. Starting today, proprietors Christine Deavel and John Marshall will host four evenings of poetry reading, all at 7:30 p.m., at their store on 24ñ4 N. 45th St., Seattle (free; 206-633-0811 or www.openpoetrybooks.com). They’ll also donate 20 percent of all store sales next week to Seattle Public Library and King County Library System (10 percent each). Here’s the lineup:
Monday: MacArthur Fellow Linda Bierds reads from her new book, “First Hand,” inspired by the life of Gregor Mendel, monk and pioneer geneticist.
Tuesday: Joshua Beckman, editor of Wave Books, a new Seattle-based poetry-only publisher founded by philanthropist Charlie Wright. Beckman will read from his latest book, “Your Time Has Come.”
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Wednesday: Olympia-based MacArthur Fellow Lucia Perillo will read from her new collection, “Luck Is Luck,” a slangy, irreverent book contesting, among other things that “hard luck is luck, nonetheless.”
Thursday: Western Washington University professor Bruce Beasley will come down from Bellingham to read from his new book, “Lord Brain,” about British neuroscientist Sir Walter Russell Brain (ñ895-ñ966).
Self-Portrait: Poetry on Buses 2005:
The 60 new poems chosen to grace Metro buses this year will be unveiled at this celebration. Complimentary copies of the “2005 Poetry on Buses” book will be given to attendees, and selected poems will be read from it. 6 to 8 p.m., Tuesday, Seattle Art Museum auditorium, 100 University St., Seattle (free; 206-296-8676 or www.4culture.org/publicart/poetry).
Seattle Poetry Festival:
The versifyin’ extravaganza returns after a two-year absence. Highlights include:
Gala Opening Night Reading: Poet-novelist-filmmaker-wisecracker Sherman Alexie and Beat/post-Beat poet Anne Waldman read from their work, 7 p.m. next Friday, Illsley Ball Nordstrom Recital Hall, Benaroya Hall, 200 University St., Seattle ($25 general admission; $50 reserved seating; 206-215-4747 or www.ticketmaster.com).
Seattle Poetry Slam’s 2005 Grand Slam: Seattle spoken-word performer Karen Finneyfrock hosts this battle of the word-mongers, 8 p.m. April 30, Catwalk, 172 S. Washington St., Seattle ($12; 800-838-3006 or www.brownpapertickets.com).
Richard Hugo House Events: Three full days of readings, open mikes, performances and classes will take place April 29 through May ñ at Richard Hugo House, 1634 11th Ave., Seattle ($10 per day or $20 for three-day pass; 800-838-3006 or www.brownpapertickets.com). Among the attractions: poets from the 2005 Jack Straw Writers Program (11 a.m. next Friday, mainstage); On the Double Dutch, a Double Dutch jump-rope performance group (1:45 p.m. April 30, mainstage); several poetry-on-video programs (11 a.m., 3 and 4 p.m. April 30, mainstage); presentations by literary magazines, including Swivel, Cranky, Crab Creek Review and Seattle Review 11 a.m., noon, 2:15 and 3:15 p.m., respectively, May 1, mainstage). For a full schedule, see www.poetryfestival.org.