Eco Artists Sharon Kallis (r) and Rebecca Graham (not in photo) from the EartHand Gleaners Society are creating nest hats for our residents bird poets Jami (l) and Kevin (middle)
The Vancouver Board of Parks and Recreation with Fresh Local Poets, Jami Macarty and Kevin Spenst are conducting Words for Birds, a creative inquiry exploring "If Vancouver were a bird..." The City of Vancouver is on a quest to select a permanent city bird. Take the survey here. Stay tuned for a time and place to meet up with our bird poets!
Greetings Word Colleagues!
Poets Bonnie Nish, Mark Hoadley, and I had a blast, reading poetry to marketers, who were super lovely and open to us serenading them with poems entitled: "Odes to Onion," "Eggs," "Cherry Tomatoes," "Peaches," "Blueberries," Potatoes," etc.
Many listeners also shared poems or stories about poetry with us. There was a wonderful sense of enthusiasm for poetry and the Parks Board/ VPL initiative.
We handed out poems, recipes, calls for submissions, LOTS of Fresh Local Poetry pins, and generally reveled in the words of poetry.
Some kids wrote with and recited to us, too. Here's one by Chloe: "Strawberries like red sweaters."
A bunch of marketers and vendors said they'd tweet or acknowledge the special initiative on FaceBook. We had our picture taken with tins of salmon after we read a poem about eating fish. We read to a vendor selling potatoes, who asked to keep the "Potato" poem, which he wanted to put up in his store--and so on we spread the poetry love!
I loved every splendid minute of it.
See some of the photos of our revelry!
Thanks & Poetry Love to all,
Jami (catch up with Jami on the Drunken Boat blog. Drunken Boat is an online literature and arts community.)
"It was new for me to say to unsuspecting folks, "Would you like to hear a poem?"
...the poems began a conversation, which seemed satisfying to all of us. It certainly was for me."
"This was such a pleasant experience! Writing poetry specially for a wide and family-friendly audience really focused the intention of my poems towards forging connections with people by being candid and using the senses! Very memorable for me.
Spenst connected with a very cute and frank little kid who gave him 1000/10 for his reading, only to came back 5 mins later to say 2000/10.
My fave moments were when I read an excerpt from Kroetsch's Seed Catalogue, (the badger, gun, father narrative) to an elderly man whose wanderlust was still going strong, after which Jeff read his Hornby Island poem to him, and the lovely man told us a bit about his life and being in the Air Force.
Thanks so much for having me, it was a real treat. It felt so good to have my words be of service to hearts and fruits and veggies!" Shazia Hafiz Ramji
Just have to say that this Market had some true poetry-lovers. It was not a surprise then that one young lady gave Kevin a 1000 out of 10 for his rendition of "Alligator Pie"! (Then came back later and upgraded to 2000 out of 10!) What can we say - it's true he is that and more!!!
We can't say enough about this partnership with the Vancouver Public Library. Derrick (Central) and Patrick (Joe Fortes) and Rod (sorry Rod not pictured - also from Joe Fortes) had people choose their favourite local branch(es), created amazing buttons with the patrons, promoted our Fresh Local Poetry and were just all-round the best cheerleaders for this project. Oh, and they are super-organized. We are looking forward to working together again!!
Our Free Range Poets read so many poems that we have to say that Nelson Park and the West End Farmers Market is definitely Poetry Central! Congratulations to Jeff Steudel, Shazia Hafiz Ramji, and Kevin Spenst. You showcased your amazing talent at this fantastic Market.
Our last Farmers Market of the season! Join us at the West End Farmers Market, Saturday August 13th starting at 9 am. Free Range Poets of the day will be Shazia Hafiz Ramji and Jeff Steudel.