Thursday, October 8
1015 Main Street
Vancouver, WA 98660
Food and libation provided by Niche Wine Bar, 1013 Main Street
in the Vancouver Arts District
LGBTQ-FRIENDLY, ALL AGES, AND UNCENSORED SINCE 2004
With our featured reader, Sarah Webb: A former Vancouverite, Sarah Webb now lives in the Texas Hill Country with her hound dog Rex, and reads frequently in Oklahoma and Texas. Her poetry collection Black (Virtual Artists Collective, 2013) was selected as a finalist for the 2014 Oklahoma Book Award and the 2014 Writers’ League of Texas Book Award. She served as Poetry Editor for the University of Science and Arts of Oklahoma’s interdisciplinary journal Crosstimbers for many years, and is presently a member of the editorial committee for All Roads Will Lead You Home and a co-editor of Just This, a magazine of the Zen arts.
The Altruism of Birds
By Sarah Webb
Ravens clamor the flock to a hidden feast
hark and hoot to show the way.
We’ll assume it’s for the usual reasons–
courting or potlatch
or the bullying strength of numbers.
Why are we surprised?
After all, people share
and often for no reason we can name.
Men share, and wolves share.
A raven may tip his wing to a hunter.
A badger may shelter a boy in his den.
A roadrunner adopted a man I knew.
The bird would bring him lizards
lay them at his door as a cat might.
Once she brought the egg of a wren.
Once she came right up to the man
as he sat in the shade of his patio,
and she looked at him.
Her eye had that bird glint
that might mean anything–
pride in her prowess,
yearning for the touch of his beak
or delight in the glare of the sun
and the taste of snake
before it is given away.
By Sarah Webb
We start from the place that is empty.
Even in a mass of clay
there is that empty spot.
The thumb finds it
and follows its prompting,
presses out from it
and feels its yes
From it bowls form
And in my chest
there is that empty spot
that widens with each breath
in a sweet yes.
I feel it press, press out,
but how to name what it forms?