Photos and Video from Ghost Town Poetry Open Mic’s National Poetry Month Celebration Featuring Clark County Poet Laureate Armin Tolentino at Art at the Cave, April 14, 2022

Thank you to everyone who attended our National Poetry Month Celebration Featuring Clark County Poet Laureate Armin Tolentino at Art at the Cave on April 14, 2022. Here are some photos and videos from the evening.

Armin Tolentino performs Billy Joel’s “Vienna” by Joann Boswell

We were also blessed by this lovely tribute to the Ghost Town Poetry Open Mic community from series regular Brittany Braswell:

To The Poets

You Poet,

You write of the sad things,

Death, Suicide and heartache,

You stand before us,

Words flowing out of your mouth like the tears that have flowed down your cheeks,

You sad poet,

I love you,

You Poet,

You write of poems that are driven by hope,

You stand before us,

With metaphors of love and light,

You fill the room with positive energy,

Remind us not to forget to feel and to hope,

You hopeful poet,

I love you,

You poet,

You write to the stars and to the moon,

You stand before us,

The room turns to a galaxy,

I close my eyes and can see the milky way,

You interstellar cosmic poet,

I love you,

You poet,

You write about the uncomfortable things,

You stand before us,

You make us feel not alone,

You speak of the things we don’t know normally talk about,

The things that keep us up at night,

The things we tuck deep down inside of us,

You uncomfortable poet,

I love you,

You poet,

You write about science,

You stand before us,

Presenting to us a whole new way to look at a biosphere,

Showing us that poetry can be about whatever your heart feels,

You scientific poet,

I love you,

You poet,

You write of that trip you had last summer,

And the summer before,

You strand before us,

With an aura shining of hot pinks and bright yellows,

You define chakras,

You make us feel what you felt,

It is almost an out of body experience as I hang on every word you say,

You psychedelic poet,

I love you,

You poet,

You write of memories,

You stand before us,

Sharing the cabinets of your mind,

Creating an intimacy to the room as we all drop our walls and embrace each other,

Learning about where you come from,

You memorable poet,

I love you,

You poet,

You write of funny,

You stand before us,

Bringing laughter and light- hearted moments to this space,

You bring us together as we share a giggle or two,

You comedic poet,

I love you,

You poet,

You write in music,

You stand before us with poems that show up as lyrics,

You turn this gallery to a dance floor,

You musician poet,

I love you,

You poet,

You write about love,

You stand before us with a heart that is falling,

Or with a heart that is breaking,

Your tales of the heart make me want to love again,

In all the deep messiness of the word,

You love poet,

I love you,

You poets,

You bring so much to this space,

Your experiences, your light, your laughter, your love,

You write feelings into words,

You savor moments turning them into forevers,

I take your words, scribble phrases into my notebook,

Those are the things I want to remember you by,

You beautiful,

Room full of poets,

I love you.

Armin Tolentino reads to the crowd at Ghost Town Poetry Open Mic
Armin Tolentino
Ghost Town Poetry Open Mic co-host Morgan Paige watches Armin do his thing
Bruce Hall reads his work to the Ghost Town Poetry community
Bruce Hall
Fiona Murphy reads poetry in public for the very first time
Fiona Murphy
Jim Martin, a Ghost Town Poetry Open Mic regular since thr series was founded in 2004

Thanks to Art at the Cave for hosting us, for Terri Elioff for handling setup, breakdown, and book sales, and to everyone who read or listened. Here is the lineup of readers:

Grace Valentine

Eileen Elliott

Jim Martin

Elmo Shade

Toni Lumbrazo Luna

Bruce Hall

Joann Boswell

Brittany Braswell

William Erickson


Becca Smolen

Ian Caton

Fiona Murphy

John Miller

Aurora Bodenhamer

Cliff Wilson

Erin Iwata

Style Versatile

Esme Deltac

David McIntire

Igor Brezhnev

Camille Gray

Elizabeth Entity

Post pictures and video in the comments below and/or on our Facebook page:

For more info about the reading, visit:

Ghost Town Poetry Open Mic and Printed Matter Vancouver Present A Book Launch Event for Reach Out, Reach In by Leah Klass

Ghost Town Poetry Open Mic

Featuring Printed Matter Vancouver Author Leah Klass

Hosted by Christopher Luna and Morgan Paige



7 pm

Thursday, May 12

Art at the Cave

108 E Evergreen Blvd

Vancouver, WA 98660

$5 Suggested donation

Donations can be made in person or through Christopher Luna’s PayPal account ( Include a memo stating that the money is for Ghost Town Poetry. The suggested donation is five dollars.

The Ghost Town Poetry community respectfully encourages you to support Niche Wine Bar, whose owner, Leah Jackson, provided a home for the reading series from 2015-2020:

UPDATED Statement on Healthy Spaces from Art at the Cave: We want to provide a healthy space to enjoy art. We have been practicing safety precautions such as regular cleaning, social distancing and mask wearing.

As a result of the removal of the mask mandate effective March 12, 2022, we will no longer require the wearing of masks. We encourage you to continue to wear a mask if it makes you feel more comfortable, and we will supply masks and hand sanitizer at the door. As social distancing has become a norm, please be mindful some will still need a bit of personal space while inside the gallery.

Art At The CAVE was established in 2017. Located at 108 E. Evergreen in downtown Vancouver, the CAVE is free and open to the public Tues-Sat, 10am-4pm, and on First Fridays when it remains open until 8:00pm. The gallery is also available to host events. Visit the website at or contact for more information


Born in Washington, D.C., Leah’s education has included attending diverse public schools and studying abroad. She learned Spanish in the homes of her friends in Falls Church, Virginia. In high school she turned 16 on a secular kibbutz, where she worked on the assembly line in an olive factory and was chased by ostriches. She later waitressed and cleaned houses to help pay for her studies in Anthropology at the University of Virginia which included a year of study abroad in Brazil. She completed a master’s degree in International Peace and Conflict Resolution at the University of Queensland thanks to a Rotary Fellowship in Argentina and Australia.

She spent the first years of her career bringing businesses from different countries together and encouraging friendships between strangers. Market research and report writing were a ticket to long weekends in Chile and high speed taxi rides in Mexico. She has also helped get social services to migrant communities, taught students how to better network and facilitated group discussions for international business people.

Leah’s greatest pleasures are making connections and reaching out to build community. Speaking many languages allows her to communicate with more people. She speaks Spanish, Portuguese and some Hebrew and German. She is committed to valuing intergenerational relationships and amplifying kindness.

After becoming a mother, Leah experienced a great shift in her understanding of the world and felt an overwhelming desire to express her need to build community and to help others find and use their voices. In tandem, she joined a kind and passionate poetry community in Portland, Oregon. With the support of the group, poetry has become a way for her to tell stories and to activate others to go out and do something good.

Learn more at

The debut collection of poetry by Leah Klass tells stories of discovering empathy through human connection. Her work is a rallying call to value our everyday interactions with other people. Reach Out, Reach In offers concrete ideas for transforming the world into a warmer, more welcoming place.

Reach Out, Reach In

By Leah Klass

Published by Printed Vancouver

October 25, 2021

Cover Art & Design by Mercer Hanau

Edited by Toni Lumbrazo Luna and Christopher Luna


ISBN-13‏: ‎ 979-8985129106

Order now:


How we are made is how we see, and from the rich mosaic of her background Leah Klass delivers kaleidoscopic poems that will persuade your vision to see this world made strange and precious. This book offers local beginnings, global consciousness, and the courage to use language for what it needs to do: sustain the sovereign self engaged in connecting the private life to the public world. Enter this book troubled, then emerge knowing “there is another way.” — Kim Stafford, author of Singer Come from Afar

I read Reach Out, Reach In straight through and want more. Leah Klass tells to the bone truth in bold narratives and chewable language. She is a thoroughly American woman who gathered new languages and a layered identity living in many countries. “Understand I am global,” she writes, and we do, seeing through her “inherited pattern recognition” a unifying grasp of culture and language that threads through her own evolution from childhood to maturity. These brave poems move with a strong beat, riding on a wide and inclusive heart. They illuminate so much of a woman’s experience through the stages of her life. For Klass, a fierce advocacy for all people developed, rooted in connection and kindness, and in her passion for acts big and small in families and communities that count toward healing the world. — Rae Latham