Poets & Poems
We are pleased to introduce you to twelve poets who responded to a call for poetry based on scenes in several Shoreline parks. The commissioned poems are all new creations. You are invited to read, listen, reflect, and experience the natural environment through the creative and inspired lens of the following poets:
Kilam Tel Aviv
Janee J. Baugher (coming soon)
Eileen Walsh Duncan
James B Moore
Hop Nguyen (coming soon)
Jorge Enrique Gonzalez Pacheco
Shin Yu Pai
Download maps for a self-guided tour.
About this project
In the Call for Artists we asked that the poems be short enough to post and record, 14 – 20 lines in addition to title. Most are then laminated for display on custom-fabricated poetry signposts, while a few are offered as take-away copies. Each signpost will feature a short description of the program and a QR-code link to the poet’s work, including a voicefile or Sound Cloud link where the spoken versions (often in several languages) can be heard. Our goal is to bring artists, especially artists of color, into the regional and global conversation as primary interpreters of landscape. Content, while driven in part by locations in parks, ranges from the fragility of nature to the challenging cultural and political moment.
Translation of the poems was provided by Katherine Wickhorst (Jorge Enrique Gonzalez Pacheco); Shin Yu Pai (Eddie Tang), Raul Sanchez (Raul Sanchez), and Language Link.
As the seasons unfold, we’ll rotate some of the poets who wrote about the same location so that visitors will eventually get to see three or even four poems in succession that share visual and other sensory details in common. Farther ahead, a plan for a booklet is in the works as well as a group reading before a live audience in a post-pandemic world. We look forward to that with great anticipation and meanwhile invite comments at email@example.com or on our Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/shorelineart/.
Just as poets from the Tang Dynasty (618 – 907) would write poems about famous landmarks that had previously been visited by poets in the past, we hope that as the project unfolds over the course of several seasons, the same effect of layering poems and creating linked verses over time may emerge.
The locations occur mostly in Shoreline Parks near features of the landscape like glacial erratics or madrone trees. Twelve are currently on view, each one appearing on custom-fabricated signposts meant to evoke Forest Service signage.
The project was made possible through a grant from the Washington State Arts Commission and the National Endowment for the Arts.