Photos from Dan Raphael and Christopher Luna in conversation at Powell’s Books October 27, 2019

On October 27, Powell’s Books presented dan raphael in conversation with Christopher Luna. The event commemorated the publication of Manything, dan’s 21st book of poetry.

dan raphael’s new book got it’s title from the wide variety of visions, voices and vocabularies among the 65 poems For 4 decades dan’s been active in the northwest as poet, performer, editor and reading host. Most Wednesdays dan writes and records a political poem for the KBOO Evening News.

Larry Smith, editor of Caliban, wrote: “It is appropriate that Dan Raphael’s Manything has come out in the year of Walt Whitman’s 200th birthday. Raphael is one of the few poets since Whitman to have such a complete delight in the multiplicity of the world. His integration of the objects of man’s making with the wildness of nature is liberating. The poet’s body parts can function independently and often co-mingle freely with dirty streets, rain, bottles, squirrels, and the sun. Manything is a vision, one that moves us beyond our complacency, making us less sure that the world we navigate daily is what we think it is. Like Louis Aragon in Paysan de Paris, Raphael awakens us to the ecstatic possibility that we might fall right through the sidewalk.”

Christopher Luna served as the first Poet Laureate of Clark County, WA from 2013-2017. Luna has an MFA from the Jack Kerouac School of Disembodied Poetics, and is the co-founder, with Toni Lumbrazo Luna, of Printed Matter Vancouver, a small press which also provides writing coaching, editing, and manuscript review for Northwest writers. He and Toni co-host the LGBTQ+ friendly, all ages and uncensored Ghost Town Poetry Open Mic, founded by Christopher in 2004. Luna’s books include Brutal Glints of Moonlight and The Flame Is Ours: The Letters of Stan Brakhage and Michael McClure 1961-1978. His first full-length collection of poetry, Message from the Vessel in a Dream, was published by Flowstone Press in 2018. A revised and expanded version of Ghost Town, USA, which features poems and observations of Vancouver, WA from a New Yorker’s perspective, is forthcoming from Uttered Chaos Press.

At the event, Christopher read the following tribute to dan, inspired by their friendship and by dan’s latest book:

For Dan Raphael

walking around the neighborhood
like Frank O’Hara on shrooms
“cosmologies between [his] fingers”
full breakfast in his belly
dan becomes the street

impervious to rain
or despair over
encroaching fascism

only a guy who spent
three decades at the DMV
can truly grok the spiritual fortitude
it takes to resist
the soul-killing serpents
of end days-capitalism

& the paranoia of
the dispirited proletariat
to soar past all prohibition
levitate beyond pessimism

he who sees
what we do not
“rooted like a tree”
limbs swaying like
antenna jostled by the wind

picking up
electromagnetic waves
as he swings to & fro
barefooted
hypersensitive
connected

possessed
by vision
potent enough
to crack a heart open
blow yr mind

or part the fog
we muddle through
to avoid the pain
of living

 

Celebrate 15 Years of Ghost Town Poetry Open Mic with Rod “Kenny” Nelson and your hosts Christopher Luna and Toni Lumbrazo Luna at Angst Gallery on November 14, 2019

Ghost Town Poetry Open Mic Flyer November 14 2019

Ghost Town Poetry Open Mic
Hosted by Christopher Luna​ and Toni Lumbrazo Luna​ of Printed Matter Vancouver​
Featuring Rod Nelson​

7 pm
Thursday, November 14
Open mic sign up begins at 6:30 and closes at 7
$5 Suggested donation

Angst Gallery
1015 Main Street
Vancouver, WA 98660
angstgallery.com

Food and libation provided by Niche Wine Bar,
1013 Main Street

Sound provided by Briz Loan & Guitar: http://briz.us/

LGBTQ+ FRIENDLY, ALL AGES, AND UNCENSORED SINCE 2004

Rod Nelson

Rod Nelson is a spoken word poet in Central Washington. Rod Nelson’s work focuses on modern day social issues and addresses the divide between rural and urban America. He was born in Kansas but grew up in Selah, a small town in Central Washington. After completing his education in Seattle, he returned to the Yakima Valley and has lived and worked here since 1979. He was the first- place finisher in the YVCC Black Box Poetry Slam in 2017, and finished second in that contest in 2016 and 2018. He was the first- place finisher in the Litfuse Poetry Slam in 2018 and 2019, and finished second in that contest in 2017. He was a presenting poet at the Ellensburg Poetry Prowl in 2018. His poem “ A Note From Mallory’s Progeny” was one of the winners in the Yakima Coffee House Poet’s Poetry Contest in 2017 and was published in its chapbook that year.

A Failing Grade in Right and Wrong 101

Fifty-eight dead in Vegas
the Dow gains a hundred -fifty
bump-stock sales soar
Senators send thoughts and prayers.

Fifty-eight glass-eyed corpses,
on blood-soaked pavement.
the Hobbesian contract broken again
interview the girlfriend
talk with the brother
autopsy the brain
dissect for answers
but no lobe of morality
no Center for Right and Wrong
just indifferent gray matter
upon indifferent gray matter.

500 years after the birth of the church of reason
evil fairies gone from the town well
demons removed from the plague
but where is our heart?

Our ministers recite Psalms:
Lean not on your own understanding,
but trust in the Lord with all your heart.
Ancient rules,
conceived in mysticism,
chipped in stone,
gave the world faggots for the bonfires of medieval Christendom.
An eye for an eye,
a lie for a lie,
and soon the whole world was ignorant.

Seventeen dead in Parkland
Ten dead in Santa Fe
the sabbath brings eleven dead in Pittsburg.
Our leaders serve lukewarm soup to the survivors,
mirroring our lack of empathy.
And when you stare into the abyss,
the abyss stares back.

But, hey, the bulls are running hard down on Wall Street.
Adam Smith rolls in his grave,
Kant’s categorical imperative rolls its eyes at charitable deductions,
and Jesus asks, where is the love brother?

In an affluent society,
goodness only comes baked in a Sarah Lee Pound cake.
Perhaps Vonnegut was right,
it’s all about moiling for more money,
lusting for better copulation.
Reason,
harnessed by the Id,
to gang-rape the Ego,
outfox the Superego.
Mill’s Utilitarianism blushes.

Gin and tonic golfing
and Wimbledon watching
on the working man’s dime.
College admission bribing
Watergate
deflate-gate
blood-doping
pussy grabbing
gas lighting cover-ups,
cram the victims face in the vomit of her own sorrow,
drag the spouse on Oprah’s stage,
blinking in the glare of the apologetic melodrama.

Born-again sinners!
Just like the johnnies-come-late -to -Jesus
in the God squad pod at the County jail.

Lost in the wilderness,
where is our compass?

Another head -chopping video on the ‘net,
our politicians promise revenge.
An eye for an eye,
and soon the whole world is blind.
In heaven, Jesus and his faithful scribe Mathew shake their heads,
the Dalai Lama grimaces,
and Gandhi’s ghost cries in the night.

500 years after the birth of the church of reason,
the boy who paints rainbows,
the girl who tends her own garden,
still live with the stink of burning flesh.

Our nation,
blessed
with Mr. Smith’s prophesized wealth
but this pearl
as cold and hard as a bullet.
Where has our heart gone?

dan raphael in Conversation with Christopher Luna at Powell’s Books on October 27

dan raphael in Conversation with Christopher Luna
Sunday, October 27 at 2:00 PM
Powell’s City of Books
1005 W Burnside St.
Portland, OR 97209

Manything, poet dan raphael’s 21st book, begins with a description of the Rapture from downtown Portland and ends talking about cosmological babies with a couple universes of experience and imagination in between. Raphael will be joined in conversation by Christopher Luna, author of Message From the Vessel in a Dream.

manything

Preorder a signed edition of Manything

Event description from dan raphael’s Facebook event page:

Manything, dan raphael’s 21st book, is just out from Unlikely Books. He’ll read a couple then be joined by Christopher Luna, the poetic heart of Vancouver, WA in talking about Manything, exchanging poems, and other topics.

dan raphael’s new book got it’s title from the wide variety of visions, voices and vocabularies among the 65 poems For 4 decades dan’s been active in the northwest as poet, performer, editor and reading host. Most Wednesdays dan writes and records a political poem for the KBOO Evening News.

Larry Smith, editor of Caliban, wrote: “It is appropriate that Dan Raphael’s Manything has come out in the year of Walt Whitman’s 200th birthday. Raphael is one of the few poets since Whitman to have such a complete delight in the multiplicity of the world. His integration of the objects of man’s making with the wildness of nature is liberating. The poet’s body parts can function independently and often co-mingle freely with dirty streets, rain, bottles, squirrels, and the sun. Manything is a vision, one that moves us beyond our complacency, making us less sure that the world we navigate daily is what we think it is. Like Louis Aragon in Paysan de Paris, Raphael awakens us to the ecstatic possibility that we might fall right through the sidewalk.”

Christopher Luna served as the first Poet Laureate of Clark County, WA from 2013-2017. Luna has an MFA from the Jack Kerouac School of Disembodied Poetics, and is the co-founder, with Toni Lumbrazo Luna, of Printed Matter Vancouver, a small press which also provides writing coaching, editing, and manuscript review for Northwest writers. He and Toni co-host the LGBTQ+ friendly, all ages and uncensored Ghost Town Poetry Open Mic, founded by Christopher in 2004. Luna’s books include Brutal Glints of Moonlight and The Flame Is Ours: The Letters of Stan Brakhage and Michael McClure 1961-1978. His first full-length collection of poetry, Message from the Vessel in a Dream, was published by Flowstone Press in 2018. A revised and expanded version of Ghost Town, USA, which features poems and observations of Vancouver, WA from a New Yorker’s perspective, is forthcoming from Uttered Chaos Press.

Ghost Town Poetry Open Mic Featuring Jonathan Oak at Angst Gallery on October 10, 2019

Ghost Town Poetry Open Mic flyer October 10 2019

Ghost Town Poetry Open Mic
Hosted by Christopher Luna and Toni Lumbrazo Luna of Printed Matter Vancouver
Featuring Jonathan Oak

7 pm
Thursday, October 10
Open mic sign up begins at 6:30 and closes at 7

$5 Suggested donation (for featured poet)

Angst Gallery
1015 Main Street
Vancouver, WA 98660

Food and libation provided by Niche Wine Bar, 1013 Main Street
Sound provided by Briz Loan & Guitar
LGBTQ+ FRIENDLY, ALL AGES, AND UNCENSORED SINCE 2004

Jonathan Oak is the author of two poetry books, Sutly fucked ↑ and Things I Forgot To Say, as well as the upcoming novel Jerry. He has lived and performed in Portland for the last six years. He was part of the VAMP reading series in San Diego and a fixture in the Phoenix poetry and music scene. He was on three Slam Nationals teams, hosted a poetry radio show, worked underground theater in San Francisco, and ran writing workshops for 15 years.

Niche 9th Anniversary Party at the Kiggins Theatre on October 14 featuring Community Poetry Contest Winners and short films and wine from New Zealand

Niche logo

Niche 9th Anniversary Party

Featuring short films and wines from New Zealand
and our poetry contest winners

6-8 pm
October 14, 2019

Kiggins Theatre
1011 Main St
Vancouver, WA
98660

Tickets are available to purchase for $15 in advance at Niche Wine Bar (1013 Main Street) or $20 at the door on the night of the event.

Please join us for the Niche 9th Anniversary party at the Kiggins Theatre on October 14, 2019. This year’s celebration features short films and wines from New Zealand in honor of Indigenous Peoples Day.

As part of Niche’s 9th Anniversary party, Niche Wine Bar and Printed Matter Vancouver held a poetry contest on the theme of “community.” Our winning poets are Denise Campbell, Pat Sciuchetti, and Sharon Wood Wortman.

During the celebration, emcee Christopher Luna will introduce the winners, who will read their poems to the crowd. The winning poems will also be displayed on the screen in the Kiggins Theatre during the slide show, a Niche anniversary party tradition.

Please contact Leah Jackson at nichewine@gmail.com with any questions about the event.

Christopher Luna’s Fall 2019 Creative Writing Workshops [UPDATED 8/24/19]

Christopher Luna will lead a series of classes and workshops this Fall. Most of these occur year-round. The best way to stay up-to-date on his activities is to sign up to receive The Work, a monthly newsletter for poets in Portland and Southwest Washington: printedmattervancouver@gmail.com

christopher by alisha jucevic
Christopher Luna in his office/studio, photographed by Alisha Jucevic for the Columbian

Christopher Luna served as the first Poet Laureate of Clark County, WA from 2013-2017. His first full-length collection of poetry, Message from the Vessel in a Dream, was published by Flowstone Press in 2018. Luna has an MFA from the Jack Kerouac School of Disembodied Poetics, and is the co-founder, with Toni Lumbrazo Luna, of Printed Matter Vancouver, a small press for Northwest writers which also provides writing coaching, editing, and manuscript review. He has hosted the popular Ghost Town Poetry Open Mic in Vancouver, WA since 2004. Luna’s books include Brutal Glints of Moonlight, GHOST TOWN, USA and The Flame Is Ours: The Letters of Stan Brakhage and Michael McClure 1961-1978.

According to Rae Latham, a writer in Christopher’s Monday morning poetry writing class at Multnomah Arts Center, “Christopher is the poetry alchemist who helps us discover gold.”

POETRY WRITING

Poetry Writing at Multnomah Arts Center

MAC_logo_withTransparency

Poetry as a means of expression, exploration, and experience is available to everyone. Write poetry in response to prompts and read a variety of published poems that you can use as inspiration. Read and respond to one another’s work in this supportive setting, paying close attention to revision.

Mondays from 10am – 12:30pm: This class is full. 

https://apm.activecommunities.com/portlandparks/Activity_Search/lit-arts-poetry-writing/116363

September 30 to December 2

Except:
Monday, November 11

OR

Mondays from 1:00 – 3:30 pm: Seats still available as of 8/24/19.

https://apm.activecommunities.com/portlandparks/Activity_Search/lit-arts-poetry-writing/116364

September 30 to December 2

Except:
Mon, November 11

MEMOIR WRITING

Clark College
1933 Fort Vancouver Way
Vancouver, WA 98663
Anna Pechanec Hall
Room 114

Memoir Writing at Clark College, Tuesdays from 1:00 – 3:20 pm September 24 – November 26: Everyone has a story to tell. Each person’s life is filled with adventure, mystery, trouble, and triumph. Memoir is a powerful way to demonstrate the interconnectedness of all human beings. See yourself as a part of history, documenting the story of your life.

For more information or to register, visit:

https://ecd.clark.edu/classes/class.php?SKU=9613

WRITING YOUR LIFE STORY

Oct 3 – Nov 21

Angst Gallery
1015 Main Street
Vancouver, WA 98660

Christopher is also offering an eight-week workshop/writers group called Writing Your Life Story at Angst Gallery on Thursdays from 10:30am – 1:00pm, October 3 through November 21.

Document your memories for your family or for possible future publication. Complete short timed writings as well as weekly take-home assignments. Give and receive feedback in a safe, informal environment. Christopher will introduce the participants to the techniques of creative nonfiction storytelling which uses the content of one’s life as the foundation for narrative. He will introduce current examples in popular nonfiction and memoir to assist the process. Participants will be encouraged to share their writing in a safe environment (no one will be required to share their stories) with the option of receiving feedback from the facilitator and other students. We will work to achieve the following goals:

1) learn the key elements of successful storytelling in written form,
2) create a living document for yourself, your family, or others,
3) delve into or build upon your written skills.

Bring your ideas, notes, paper, and pen/pencil (no books required).

Open to all skill levels. The class will be limited to ten (10) participants.

Cost: $225 (cash, check, card)

REGISTER AT ANGST on Wednesdays from noon til four OR email printedmattervancouver@gmail.com to set up a time to register.

THE WORK

The Work 2017 Make Poetry Your Life

Christopher also facilitates a poetry writing workshop known as The Work, from 11:30-2:00 on the second Saturday of the month (unless otherwise noted) at Niche Wine Bar (1013 Main Street, next door to Angst Gallery and the Kiggins Theatre). Doors open at 11:15 so that you can purchase coffee, tea, and other non-alcoholic beverages from Niche and grab a snack. The workshop begins at 11:30.

“Well, while I’m here I’ll do the work — and what’s the work?
To ease the pain of living. Everything else, drunken dumbshow.”
― Allen Ginsberg, “Memory Gardens” (Fall of America, City Lights)

The Work is a drop-in poetry writing workshop for beginners as well as more experienced writers. Poetry encourages empathy and compassion, and sparks the shifts in consciousness which lead to healing, personal growth, and an interest in fighting for progressive social change.

We will read and discuss poetry, and write several new poems together. Each workshop will feature at least three timed writing exercises.

$20 suggested donation; no one will be turned away for lack of funds.

Bring a poem to share as a way of saying hello.

Shareable snacks are also welcome and very much appreciated.

Upcoming 2019 Saturday afternoon workshops will take place on October 12, November 16, and December 14.

There is also a Monday evening version of the workshop that takes place on the second and fourth Monday of the month (unless otherwise noted) at Angst Gallery (1015 Main Street).

Upcoming 2019 Monday evening workshops will take place on October 28, November 25, and December 9.

If you are looking for writing coaching, editing/manuscript review, or information about poetry and memoir classes, send Christopher an email via printedmattervancouver@gmail.com.

Ghost Town Poetry Open Mic Featuring Joannie Stangeland at Angst Gallery on September 12, 2019

Ghost Town Poetry Open Mic flyer September 12 2019 edit

Ghost Town Poetry Open Mic
Hosted by Christopher Luna and Toni Lumbrazo Luna of Printed Matter Vancouver
Featuring Joannie Stangeland

7 pm
Thursday, August 8
Open mic sign up begins at 6:30 and closes at 7
$5 Suggested donation

Angst Gallery
1015 Main Street
Vancouver, WA 98660
angstgallery.com

Food and libation provided by Niche Wine Bar, 1013 Main Street
Sound provided by Briz Loan & Guitar: http://briz.us/
LGBTQ+ FRIENDLY, ALL AGES, AND UNCENSORED SINCE 2004

Stangeland_ROlsonPhoto
Photo of Joannie Stangeland by Roseanne Olson

Joannie Stangeland is the author of The Scene You See, In Both Hands, and Into the Rumored Spring. She received the 2019 Crosswinds Poetry Journal grand prize, and her poems have also appeared in Boulevard, Prairie Schooner, The Southern Review, and other journals.

Self-Portrait with an Aubade
By Joannie Stangeland

The light must be sheer—Vermeer’s camera obscura
draws early sun, gauze filtered
through green. Leaving shadows’ blue pools,
night’s voices vanish.

Water jug, leaded glass, and ultramarine,
morning streams a sacrament—thin blessing
melts before you swallow. Tension subtle,
serene across the canvas.

Look to the window when day brushes your face,
clean strokes—the care, translucent.
Step into this skin like an artist, a flautist,
a muse. A yellow cup.

Place your eye in the middle.