Printed Matter Vancouver Thanks Angst Gallery Director Leah Jackson

As you have certainly heard by now, Angst Gallery has closed. One of the best places to see art in downtown Vancouver is no more. While you may assume that the pandemic is to blame, the decision to close the gallery was made much earlier. Since Leah Jackson founded the gallery in 2009, it was an essential space for community activism, music, private events, art classes, writing workshops, and (since 2015) home to Ghost Town Poetry Open Mic. In addition, she forged significant partnerships with local arts organizations including Mosaic Arts Alliance (which she helped found), Southwest Washington Watercolor Society, Inner Light Photographic Arts Society, and Dengerink Arts Supply.

Leah Jackson and Christopher Luna by Morgan Paige

While we will find another home for Ghost Town Poetry Open Mic when it becomes safe to gather in person again, we will miss Angst Gallery terribly.

Images from our final reading at Angst Gallery on March 12, 2020

featuring Mindy Nettifee

Ghost Town Poetry Open Mic began at Ice Cream Renaissance in 2004, moved to Cover to Cover Books in 2007, and followed bookstore owner Mel Sanders from her original location to a new spot on St. James after the first store was damaged by fire. My wife Toni Lumbrazo Luna has co-hosted the event with me since 2007, and we recently added Ghost Town regular Morgan Paige as a co-host. We had eight great years with Cover to Cover; when the bookstore closed, there was only one place I could imagine as a suitable substitute: Angst Gallery.

There was something great about holding our monthly poetry reading in a big beautiful space that had new art every time we gathered. In fact, many of the Ghost Town Poetry regulars were among the more than 350 local artists whose work appeared in Angst Gallery shows over the years. Whenever Printed Matter Vancouver, the publishing imprint, writing coaching, and editing service Toni and I co-founded, needed a place to host an event or workshop, Leah always happily agreed.

Toni Lumbrazo Luna and LaRae Zawodny at the Book Launch for Toni’s Driven by Hope

When I first met Leah Jackson, she was the director of the Sixth Street Gallery. She was (and remains) an art dynamo and a straight talker, a quality this New Yorker has found sorely lacking in the Northwest. We became friends, and she provided me with a space for literary events including a Gertrude Stein reading, a 50th Anniversary Reading of Allen Ginsberg’s Howl, and trans author Aaron Raz. She was also the first person to accept my visual art for exhibition in Vancouver.

Later, when Leah opened Angst Gallery and Niche Wine Bar, she allowed us to use both spaces for poetry and music performances, a bilingual poetry reading series, a regular poetry and jazz jam session, and poetry workshops with writers including John Sibley Williams, Dan Raphael, David Meltzer, and myself. She also suggested a coaster poetry contest. Many of the poets who won the contest had their first publication on a Niche coaster.

Leah is so active behind the scenes that many do not realize what we owe her. For example, we would not have a Vancouver Arts District without her tireless advocacy, her willingness to attend city council meetings, and her dedication to showcasing local artists in her gallery.

After 17 years of fighting to make our streets safer for bicyclists and pedestrians, Leah succeeded in persuading the City Council to create protected bike lanes along Columbia Street:

I was deeply honored when she proclaimed me to be the poet laureate of her two businesses as a way to acknowledge my contribution to nurturing local poets and writers. Later, when Clark County named me its first poet laureate, I felt that Leah had paved the way, and she jokingly told me that I would always be “her” poet laureate.

Vancouver’s Downtown Association honored Leah Jackson and Angst Gallery with its
2019 Van-Tastic Award

Of course, Leah isn’t going anywhere. We strongly encourage you to continue supporting her by buying food and wine from Niche Wine Bar (, which is open for takeout and dine-in service. In fact, Leah continues to curate art shows at the Loo-vre, Niche’s art gallery, and the bar continues to display work by several local artists.

We have no doubt that Leah will continue to contribute to our vibrant arts community in ways big and small. Nevertheless, I speak for many when I tell you that the closing of Angst Gallery is an immeasurable loss. There will be no replacing this magical and nurturing public space which has meant so much to so many in our community.

Thank you, Leah.
Christopher Luna & Toni Lumbrazo Luna
Co-founders of Printed Matter Vancouver
Co-hosts (with Morgan Paige) of Ghost Town Poetry Open Mic

Dave Corio removes the Angst Gallery sign he Jennifer Corio created for the business. He kindly re-installed the sign inside Niche Wine Bar next door.

For Immediate Release: Leah Jackson closes Angst Gallery after 12 years in downtown Vancouver

Leah Jackson

After 12 years of art shows, poetry readings, live music, and community events, Leah Jackson has made the decision to close Angst Gallery. The gallery has been home to the popular Ghost Town Poetry Open Mic since 2015. It has also provided a space for weddings, bike activism, private parties, writing workshops, and postcard-writing campaigns to support progressive causes. Jackson has served as a mentor to countless local artists and provided many of them an opportunity to display their work in public for the first time at Angst Gallery. The gallery has exhibited the artwork of hundreds of artists and became an essential gathering-place for the community in the Vancouver Arts District.

In a manifesto released in 2018, Leah Jackson laid out her vision for the space: “Since its opening in 2008, Angst Gallery has hosted solo and group shows featuring more than 300 local and national artists and cultural events including art shows, musical performances, book launch parties, art talks, classes, workshops, and the monthly Ghost Town Poetry Open Mic. Every January we exhibit a Celebration of the Male Form. We also put out open calls for special shows such as the Door Show, The Chair Show, Petals, Myth-o-Logical, and Family Corvidae. We have partnered with local arts organizations including Dengerink Art Supply, Printed Matter Vancouver, Inner Light, Southwest Washington Watercolor Society, and Art at the Cave. Angst Gallery has also participated in downtown mainstays such as Art in the Heart, Cruise the ‘Couve, and Sip and Stroll. More than just a place to show art, Angst Gallery is also a safe space for community discussion, where all people are respected for who they are. We donate the use of the space to organizations that work for human rights and progressive social change.” Other shows of note include Women Warriors, Questionable World Leaders, and a Black History Month showcase co-curated with local artist Claudia Carter.

Jackson made the decision to close Angst Gallery before the coronavirus pandemic. She is ready to move on to a new phase of her life and focus on her second business, Niche Wine Bar, which celebrates its 10th anniversary in October.

Niche has remained open during the stay-at-home order and continues to prepare meals for takeout. On June 9, as Clark County began the slow process of reopening, Niche began taking reservations for dine-in service. Niche Wine Bar has always displayed local art. Jackson dubbed the restroom The Loo-vre, which will continue to function as a gallery with a rotating roster of local artists throughout the year. Recent shows featured the work of Toni Luimbrazo Luna and Christopher Luna, co-hosts of Ghost Town Poetry Open Mic and co-founders of Printed Matter Vancouver. In August and September, The Loo-vre will feature the work of Serena Van Vranken. Jackson reminds artists that everyone who comes to Niche enters The Loo-vre eventually.

Leah Jackson would like to express her deepest appreciation to the community for all the support she received from them over the past 12 years.

Here is what the Columbian had to say about Leah Jackson’s service to the art community:

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

Food and libation provided by Niche Wine Bar, 1013 Main Street
Sound provided by Briz Loan & Guitar:

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.

Ghost Town Poetry Open Mic Featuring Central Washington Poet Eugenia Hepworth Petty with special guests Xavier Cavazos & Connor Simons at Angst Gallery on August 8, 2019

Ghost Town Poetry Open Mic flyer August 8 2019 edit

Ghost Town Poetry Open Mic
Hosted by Christopher Luna and Toni Lumbrazo Luna of Printed Matter Vancouver
Eugenia Hepworth Petty with special guests Xavier Cavazos & Connor Simons

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

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:


Eugenia Hepworth Petty writes, shoots film, and covers things with wax and resin. In the past she had an obsession with cassette tape recorders. She prefers buses over planes. In the mid 1990s she lived in Ukraine and began using her camera more than her tape recorder, and later began making postcards, which she continues today. Most recently she co-founded and co-edits the online journal Squatters’ Press, which is dedicated to the myriad causes and consequences of the migration of sentient beings upon this earth. Eugenia’s most recent publication is the chapbook Instructions or the Apocalypse (Dancing Girl Press, 2016).

Cavazos edit

Xavier Cavazos is the author of Diamond Grove Slave Tree (2015), the inaugural Prairie Seed Poetry Prize from Ice Cube Press, and Barbarian at the Gate (2014), which was published in the Poetry Society of America’s New American Poets Chapbook Series. Cavazos earned an MFA in Creative Writing and the Environment from Iowa State University. His poetry appears in anthologies such as Aloud: Voices from the NuYoRican Poets Café (1994), Under the Pomegranate Tree: Best Latino Erotica (1994), Verses That Hurt: Pleasure and Pain from the POEMFONE Poets (1996), and Best American Experimental Writing 2015. Cavazos’s honors include a Nuyorican Poets Café “Fresh Poet Award” (1993), Grand Slam Champion of the Nuyorican Poet’s Café (1995), and a Poetry Society of America National Chapbook Fellowship (2013). He currently teaches in the Africana and Black Studies and the Professional and Creative Writing Programs at Central Washington University.


Connor L Simons is a poet and translator based in Minneapolis. He is currently a candidate for an MFA in Creative Writing at the University of Minnesota, where he also works as the poetry editor for the Great River Review. His work has recently appeared in the Apricity Press, Indianapolis Review, Adelaide Literary Journal, and is forthcoming in the Colorado Review and La Revista Union.

Niche 9th Anniversary Poetry Contest (Deadline August 15)

Niche 9th Anniversary Poetry Contest (Deadline August 15, 2019)

Niche logo

Niche Wine Bar and Printed Matter Vancouver are seeking short poems on the theme of “community” to commemorate the ninth anniversary of Niche Wine Bar. What does community mean to you? What does community look like? How does one strengthen community?

The winning poem will be printed on wine glasses to be distributed to all those who attend the Niche Anniversary Party at the Kiggins Theatre on October 14, 2019. The second place winner will have their poem printed on t-shirts. The third place winner will have their poem printed on beverage napkins. 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place winners will gain entrance to the 9th Anniversary Party on October 14 and have their poem displayed on the screen in the Kiggins Theatre during the slide show.

October 14 is Indigenous Peoples Day. Each year’s anniversary party features short films from a particular country. This year’s films were produced in New Zealand.

CALL FOR SUBMISSIONS (Deadline August 15)

Address this question using poetry: What does community mean to you?

Submission Guidelines:

Deadline: Poems will be accepted by email only ( until 11:59pm on August 15, 2019.

Fee: $5.00 for up to three poems.

You may submit no more than three (3) poems on the theme of community for a submission fee of five dollars. Poems should be no longer than FIVE (5) lines. Each piece may be a complete poem or an excerpt from a longer poem. If the poem is an excerpt, please indicate this and give the poem title. Previously published poems may be accepted subject to the discretion of the editors. However, please indicate the publication name, date, poem title, and publication rights in the body of the submission email.

Mail or hand deliver a check for five dollars written to Angst Gallery, 1015 Main Street Vancouver, WA 98660. Only those poets who have paid the fee in full by August 15 will be considered for the contest.

If your poem is accepted for use in this project, the editors may have suggestions for edits or format changes to prepare the work for display. Whenever possible the editors will work with the author to review suggested changes. Authors will have the final decision on the edits. The editors are unable to guarantee publication of your work if they feel the edits are necessary and the author disapproves of the changes.

Authors agree to public use of their poem and photo. Niche will retain first rights to use and display the poems. From there, rights revert back to the author. Authors agree to have their work and photo appear online or in other publicity/promotions by Niche Wine Bar.

Contest Judges: Angst Gallery Director Leah Jackson and Printed Matter Vancouver co-founders Christopher Luna and Toni Lumbrazo Luna

Poem Format (please pay close attention to these directions):

Format your poem(s) in Times New Roman, 12 point font/one inch margins in one document.

Include your name, address, best phone contact, and email at the top left of the page.

Include the poem’s title in bold with one blank line between the title and the body of the poem.

Poems should be single-spaced with one blank line between stanzas.

Poems may not exceed five (5) lines and must be your original work.

These five (5) lines may be excerpted from a longer poem, if indicated as such.

Poems must be saved as a Microsoft Word document with this extension: your last name+Niche Poetry. Example: Rhodes+Niche Poetry

How to Submit:

Type Niche Poetry Contest 2019 into the subject line of the email.

Include in the body of the email:

The title(s) of your poem(s).

Contact information: name, address, email, and best phone contact number.

For previously published poems, indicate the publication name, date, poem title, and whether you own the publication rights.

Include your poem(s) as a separate attachment in Microsoft word.


Note: You will receive confirmation that we have received your submission(s).

Ghost Town Poetry Open Mic Featuring Emmett Wheatfall at Angst Gallery June 13, 2019

Ghost Town Poetry Open Mic Flyer June 13 2019


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

7 pm
Thursday, June 13
Open mic sign up begins at 6:30 and closes at 7

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:

Emmett cropped

Emmett Wheatfall is a published poet, playwright and recording artist. Emmett is the author of six books of poetry and a play titled Under the Red Robin, and has released five poetry CDs. In May 2018 Fernwood Press (an imprint of Barclay Press) published Emmett’s sixth poetry collection entitled As Clean as a Bone. For more information, visit

as clean as a bone cover


I saw a man with no teeth,
he smiled at me.

I bumped into a woman who had no feet,
she crawled to me.

I hugged a child with no arms; we
laughed until I cried.

A blind man called to me. Why
couldn’t I see where he was coming from?

A homeless man cursed at me,
afterward, he and I shared his beer.

A street-walker propositioned me, I
replied, thank you, but no thank you,

then named that street after her.

Some people are boxed-in. Life is like that
for some.

Life is like that.

Emmett Wheatfall, 2018

Ghost Town Poetry Open Mic Featuring Washington State Poet Laureate Claudia Castro Luna at a special time and location Thursday, April 11, 2019

Printed Matter Vancouver, Clark County Poet Laureate Gwendolyn Morgan,
Clark County Arts Commission, and ArtsWA Present

Ghost Town Poetry Open Mic
Featuring Washington State Poet Laureate Claudia Castro Luna
Hosted by Christopher Luna and Toni Lumbrazo Luna of Printed Matter Vancouver
6:30-8:30 pm
Thursday, April 11, 2019
Open mic sign up begins at 6:00 and closes at 6:30

Columbia Room
Vancouver Community Library
901 C Street
Vancouver, WA 98660


Claudia Castro Luna will be signing books at Niche Wine Bar, 1013 Main Street ( from 5-6 pm. Spend happy hour with the Poet Laureate. There will also be an after party at Niche Wine Bar at 8:30 pm.


Biographical information from ArtsWA and Claudia Castro Luna’s website: Claudia Castro Luna is Washington State Poet Laureate. She served as Seattle’s Civic Poet, from 2015-2017 and is the author of the Pushcart nominated and Killing Marías (Two Sylvias Press) also shortlisted for WA State 2018 Book Award in poetry and This City, (Floating Bridge Press). She is also the creator of the acclaimed Seattle Poetic Grid, an online interactive map of showcasing poems about different locations around the city. The grid even landed her an interview on PBS NewsHour.

Castro Luna is a Hedgebrook and VONA alumna, a 2014 Jack Straw fellow, the recipient of individual artist grants from King County 4Culture and Seattle’s Office of Arts and Culture. Born in El Salvador she came to the United States in 1981. She has an MA in Urban Planning, a teaching certificate and an MFA in poetry. Her poems have appeared in Poetry Northwest, La Bloga, Dialogo and Psychological Perspectives among others. Her non-fiction work can be read in several anthologies, among them This Is The Place: Women Writing About Home, (Seal Press) Claudia is currently working on a memoir, Like Water to Drink, about her experience escaping the civil war in El Salvador. Living in English and Spanish, she writes and teaches in Seattle where she gardens and keeps chickens with her husband and their three children. Since 2009, Claudia maintains Cipota bajo la Luna, a blog with reflections, writing and reviews.

Claudia Castro Luna was appointed the fifth Washington State Poet Laureate by Governor Jay Inslee. Castro Luna’s term will run from February 1, 2018 to January 31, 2020. Prior to Castro Luna, Tod Marshall (2016-2018), Elizabeth Austen (2014-2016), Kathleen Flenniken (2012-2014), and Sam Green (2007-2009) held the position.

The Washington State Poet Laureate program is jointly sponsored by Humanities Washington and the Washington State Arts Commission (ArtsWA). Poets laureate work to build awareness and appreciation of poetry-including the state’s legacy of poetry-through public readings, workshops, lectures, and presentations in communities throughout the state. Laureates are selected through an application and panel review process that evaluates candidates’ proposed project plans, writing acumen, and experience promoting poetry.


Gwendolyn Morgan learned the names of birds and wildflowers and inherited paintbrushes and boxes from her grandmothers. With an M.F.A. in Creative Writing from Goddard College, and an M.Div. from San Francisco Theological Seminary and the Graduate Theological Union, she has been a recipient of artist and writing residencies at Artsmith, Caldera, Into the Depths of Winter, and Soapstone. Crow Feathers, Red Ochre, Green Tea, her first book of poems, was a winner of the Wild Earth Poetry Prize, Hiraeth Press. Snowy Owls, Egrets and Unexpected Graces, initially published by Hiraeth Press and now Homebound Publications, is a Nautilus Gold Winner in Poetry and a Foreward Indies Book of the Year Finalist in the Nature Category. Her third book of poems is forthcoming from Homebound Publications in the Summer of 2019. Her poems have appeared in: Calyx, Kalliope, Mudfish, Tributaries: A Journal of Nature Writing, Wayfarer as well as The Cancer Poetry Project 2, and other anthologies, blogs and literary journals. She is currently serving as the Clark County Poet Laureate. Gwendolyn and Judy A. Rose, her spouse, share their home and creekside walks with Naomi, a rescued Chesapeake Retriever and Cardigan Corgi mix.


Christopher Luna founded Ghost Town Poetry Open Mic in 2004; Toni Lumbrazo Luna, his wife and co-founder of Printed Matter Vancouver, joined him as organizer and co-host in 2007. Printed Matter Vancouver is an editing and writing coaching service for Northwest writers which also publishes books of poetry by Clark County authors. Ghost Town Poetry Open Mic began in November 2004 at Ice Cream Renaissance before moving to Cover to Cover Books and finally, Angst Gallery. It has been LGBTQ+ friendly, all ages, uncensored, and free since its inception. Christopher’s many years of service to the poetry community led the Clark County Arts Commission to name him the first Poet Laureate of Clark County, a position he held from 2013-2017.

Painter/Poet Scott Carstensen Honors Christopher Luna, Ghost Town Poetry Open Mic, Angst Gallery and the Vancouver Arts District at Ghost Town Poetry Open Mic Featuring Nastashia Minto March 14, 2019

Ghost Town Angst Luna Tribute Painting by Scotty Carstensen
Painting by Scott Carstensen

We were very honored to receive this tribute painting from our dear friend and Ghost Town Poetry Open Mic regular Scott Carstensen. Scott explained that he was inspired by “magic taken seriously,” a poem which appears in reading series founder Christopher Luna’s Message from the Vessel in a Dream (Flowstone Press, 2018). The painting features a few lines from the poem as well as meanings Scott found for “Luna.” It also pays tribute to Angst Gallery, Ghost Town Poetry Open Mic, co-host Toni Lumbrazo Luna, and the downtown Vancouver arts scene. Scott even threw in a nod to Christopher’s love for the Wu-Tang Clan.

Thank you, Scott.

Printed Matter Vancouver would also like to thank everyone who attended the event, those who shared their beautiful poems with us, and especially featured reader Nastashia Minto, who blew us away with her powerful set featuring poems from her brand new book, Naked: The Rhythm and Groove of It. The Depth and Length to It..

Please join us next month when our featured reader will be Washington State Poet Laureate Claudia Castro Luna. Please note special time and location.


Christopher Luna Interviewed by People of Vancouver, WA

Printed Matter Vancouver co-founder Christopher Luna was recently featured on People of Vancouver, WA:


Christopher would like to thank Steve and Emily for this wonderful video. He is also grateful to Leah Jackson for her many years of support for The Work and Ghost Town Poetry Open Mic. Finally, a hearty shout out to those who attended the workshop at Niche that afternoon (and appear briefly in the video): Stella Guillory, Diane Corson, Denise Campbell, Suzanne LaGrande, Robert Syverson, Paula John, Cathie Padgett, Sonja Gellerson, and Bruce Hall.

THE WORK Ginsberg and Stein

Here is the text which accompanies the video on the People of Vancouver WA YouTube Channel:

Christopher Luna is a poet, teacher, editor and was the first Poet Laureate for Clark County. He has been hosting Ghost Town Poetry Open Mic, since 2004, and we caught up with him at his writing workshop, also known as The Work, which is held on the second Saturday of every month at Niche Wine Bar on Main St.

“The name for the workshop comes from a couple of lines in a poem by Allen Ginsberg called Memory Gardens, where he says ‘What is the work? To ease the pain of living. Everything else, drunken dumbshow.’ I interpret that as let’s, as poets, in a culture where our work is not always completely understood or respected, let’s take it seriously enough to look at it as work. I think there are some people, even other writers, who don’t see poetry as work because they tend to be shorter than novels. I want to encourage poets in the workshop to own being a poet. To have fun, but to take the work seriously.”

Ginsberg himself co-founded the Jack Kerouac School of Disembodied Poetics in Boulder, Colorado, where Luna earned an MFA in Writing and Poetics. It was there that Luna learned about outreach, developing writing workshops and going out into the community to teach. After becoming Clark County’s first Poet Laureate, he launched the Poets in the Schools Program, which continues sends writers into local educational settings to lead poetry workshops to this day.

For more information about Christopher Luna’s coaching and editing services, Ghost Town Poetry Open Mic, or The Work, visit

Music: Bass Walker – Film Noir by Kevin MacLeod is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution license (😉

Ghost Town Poetry Open Mic Featuring Tim Whitsel at Angst Gallery February 14, 2019

ghost town poetry open mic flyer february 14 2019

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

7 pm
Thursday, January 10, 2019
Open mic sign up begins at 6:30 and closes at 7

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:


Tim Whitsel believes in the power of dogwood blossoms. He may have migrated west on a solitary bicycle at the age of nineteen. He remembers the cheekbones of the first girl he kissed. He studied with David Waggoner, James Welch and Stanley Plumly at the University of Washington. For six years he curated the Windfall Reading Series at the Eugene Public Library. His poem “Mudflat Allure” won first prize at the 2013 Northwest Poets’ Concord. We Say Ourselves appeared in 2012 from Traprock Books and Airlie Press published his full-length collection Wish Meal in 2016.


A cabin on a snowy river made
lonelier by threadbare conifers.

French doors, three glass teeth
facing the direction of the storm.
Everyone is away for the day.

Cinching their ballcaps snug
for a comfort they don’t feel.

Blowing on their hands one at a
time so their placards don’t fall.
Follow the Money, Hear ME

unwilling to be fenced like cattle
or fly south like trumpeter swans.
Tim Whitsel
May 10, 2018

Ghost Town Poetry Open Mic Featuring Reggie Marra September 13 / Narrative Healing Workshop September 14

Ghost Town Poetry Open Mic flyer September 13 2018 cropped

Ghost Town Poetry Open Mic

Hosted by Christopher Luna and Toni Partington of Printed Matter Vancouver

Featuring Reggie Marra, Connecticut Poet and author of Killing America: Our United States of Ignorance, Fear, Bigotry, Violence and Greed

7 pm

Thursday, September 13

Open mic sign up begins at 6:30 and closes at 7


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


head shot

Reggie Marra is the author of four books of poetry and four of nonfiction, including And Now, Still: Grave & Goofy Poems and Killing America: Our United States of Ignorance, Fear, Bigotry, Violence and Greed. He has conducted poetry-writing and adult development and healing workshops since 1997, including work with the NEA’s Poetry Out Loud program, the National Association for Poetry Therapy, the Connecticut Higher Order Thinking (HOT) Schools program, the Transformative Language Arts Network, Teleosis Institute, the Arts Alliance of Northern New Hampshire, HealingNewtown, the National Speakers Association and in schools throughout the northeastern United States. Reggie is an Integral Master Coach,™ a Voice Dialogue practitioner through Bridgit Dengel Gaspard, and Nature Based Soulcraft® practitioner, through Bill Plotkin and Animas Valley Institute. Prior to 1997 he spent 21 years as a teacher, basketball coach and administrator in secondary and higher education. Learn more at


The music stops.
The young women holding hands,
their tank tops, shorts, boots, long
flowing brown hair, and the young
man in a black tee, blue jeans and
boots to their right, capture a neon-
backlit American summer evening.
They run, semi-crouched, amid
food and beverage containers
strewn across the open space while
those behind them kneel, crawl,
crouch and cower along the fence,
unsure where the shooter is and
when the shooting will stop.
If ever.

From Killing America: Our United States of Ignorance, Fear, Bigotry, Violence and Greed.

Killing America Cover

Killing America: Our United States of Ignorance, Fear, Bigotry, Violence and Greed is Reggie Marra’s fourth book of poems. As with his This Open Eye: Seeing What We Do (2006), Marra unflinchingly sees, writes and shares with the reader verbal snapshots of his country’s late 20th- and early 21st-century culture of violence as it manifests at home and abroad. His poems both grieve slaughtered school children, unarmed black men, ambushed law enforcement officers, church-, concert- and movie-goers, military veterans and victims of American foreign policy violence in the Middle East, and indict the leaders who refuse to act amid, or implicitly condone, the ongoing slaughter.

ISBN: 978-0-9627828-8-6

135 pages | 6×9 paper

Cover Art: Whose Heaven? by Ray DiCapua Charcoal and ink on paper | 48” x 72” Copyright © 2003 by Ray DiCapua

Go to Amazon in September:

Approximately 546 copies of this book will be sent to the September 2018 occupants of the United States Senate, House of Representatives, Supreme Court and White House. We’ll be raising money to do that: https://www. politicians-in-dc

Ongoing updates and poem excerpts at:

Narrative Healing: Transcending the Illness Narrative Workshop with Reggie Marra

6:30 – 9:00pm

Friday, September 14

Angst Gallery

1015 Main Street

Vancouver, WA 98660

Cost: $35

RSVP to by Thursday, September 13

Narrative Healing: Transcending the Illness Narrative

“It is true that the mind is restless and difficult to control, but it can be conquered… through regular practice and detachment” (6.35)  – The Bhagavad Gita, c. 500-200 BCE.

The power of story to heal was understood 2,000 years ago. We now have over 30 years of research that confirms this philosophical, intuitive understanding. This workshop will engage you in your own narrative healing process, introduce the salient history, philosophy and research, and prepare you to write and revise your story from a salutogenic, rather than pathogenic, perspective. Deepen your abilities to embrace your own healing and nurture that of your clients, patients, students or loved ones. Find out: do you have your story – or does your story have you?

Whether you are navigating your own personal healing, coming to terms with the ongoing cultural and societal healing that is necessary to address American violence at home and abroad, or the larger global issues of pain and suffering, story matters. Your narrative impacts what you see, how you see and what you can do next. Join us on ….. for an experiential introduction to narrative healing.