New years bring stacks of resolutions, the climb toward light, taxes, reflections on civil rights, toppled resolutions, and more. Lucky for us in Oregon (and some others around the world) we celebrate social justice and equality and crystal imagery every year through William Stafford. January marks a migration. His poems are a flock landing every year. Or maybe I'm the one that gets to fly into his poems and feed seasonally.
If you haven't been to a Stafford reading, you should go. What happens is that 3-4 people get up and read one of his and one of theirs, often in response to his, and then, the audience is invited to read one of his. Oh, the poems are gentle and accessible and poignant. What happens is that everyone in the room realizes he or she is a poet, he or she is gifted with the ability to set down in words some impression, some insight, some flash. Everyone is able and invited to write.
Here is a list of all the readings in the metro area. Click HERE.
I'd like to invite you to two of them in which I am involved:
Wednesday, January 16, 6 to 8pm
Clackamas Community College
19600 Molalla Ave.
Oregon City, OR 97040
Roger Rook Hall 220
Sunday, January 27th, 1:30 pm,
Molalla Public Library, 201 E. 5th St., Molalla, Oregon.
Hosted: by Larry Anderson and Kate Gray. Sponsored by the Molalla Writers Group.
Featuring: Larry Anderson, Brian Biggs, Maureen Cole,
Kate Gray, Carol Hausholder, Steve Slemenda, and Esther Wood, who will
read Stafford and Stafford-related poems followed by
reader/audience discussion of his work, life, stories, anything else of
pertinence. Guests are warmly invited to read their own work and/or
related poems. Those not interested in reading poems may sit back and
enjoy! The film, “Traveling in the Dark” will be shown, with a short
discussion to follow.
Contact: Kate Gray.
Stafford invites everyone to write. I do, too.