Gold Writing Workshop May 26

Join Swimming with Elephants Publications, LLC and StrangeFlock Gallery for the  a new series of Writing Workshops scheduled for the last Sunday of each month.

The StrangeFlock Gallery will be open from 12pm – 4pm.  Writers of all genres are invited to be inspired by the monthly artwork in the gallery by completing Ekphrastic Writing Prompts or partake in a more constructed workshop hosted by local and national guest writers. The structured writing workshop taking place between the hours of 1pm – 3pm.

Suggestion donation for the workshop is 5$ and can be made in cash at the time of the workshop or through Paypal by clicking here. All proceeds will be split between the workshop guest host and the Gallery. No one will be turned away for lack of funds.

Our guest workshop host for May 26th will be Katrina K Guarascio who will talk about finding inspiration and story with ekphrastic writing. She has three writing prompts prepared which writers of all genres can use,

The featured artwork for the month of May is a group conglomeration called Odd Birds and includes four different artists with a variety of subjects and mediums.

 

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Gold Writing Workshop April 28, 2019

Join Swimming with Elephants Publications, LLC and StrangeFlock Gallery for the first of a series of Writing Workshops scheduled for the last Sunday of each month from 12pm-4pm.

The Gallery will be open from 12pm – 4pm.  Writers of all genres are invited to be inspired by the monthly artwork in the gallery by completing Ekphrastic Writing Prompts or partake in a more constructed workshop hosted by local and national guest writers. The structured writing workshop taking place between the hours of 1pm – 3pm.

Suggestion donation for the workshop is 5$-10$. All proceeds will be split between the workshop guest host and the Gallery. No one will be turned away for lack of funds.

Our guest workshop host for April 28th will be Zachary Kluckman and his workshop is entitled: “Flipping the Drama Script” which will discuss the Karpman Drama Triangle and the roles we take in relationships with people, and then doing some generative writing from the thoughts produced.

The featured artwork for the month of April is by Paulina Lopez. If you do not get a chance to view her work through the month, this will be the last opportunity to enjoy her display.

About the host for Sunday, April 28th, 2019:

Zachary Kluckman, the National Poetry Awards 2015-2016 Slam Organizer of the Year and 2014 Slam Artist of the Year, is a Scholastic Art & Writing Awards Gold Medal Poetry Teacher, Red Mountain Press National Poetry Prize recipient and a founding organizer of the 100 Thousand Poets for Change program, now recognized as the largest poetry reading in history. Kluckman has appeared multiple times at the National and Individual World Poetry slams and tours the nation as a spoken word artist. Recently he was one of 3 poets invited to represent the United States at the Kistrech International Poetry Festival in Kenya. He is the former Spoken Word Editor for Pedestal magazine and has authored two poetry collections.

New and Upcoming Publications from Kat Heatherington

Kat Heatherington, author of the bones of this land, and Swimming With Elephants Publications’ 2017 chapbook competition winner, has been busy!

Three of Kat’s poems have been accepted to the forthcoming Manzano Mountain Review winter issue, but to keep you warm and waiting, you can check out the Sky Island Journal, another New Mexico-based creative writing journal; they will publish a piece by Kat in their upcoming issue on October 20th.

And available to read right now, four of Kat’s poems have been published in a small collection entitled Erotix: Literary Journal of Somatics. What looks to be a promising and awakening collection, it is described as a journal that “explores the poetry and prose of the erotic experience in many different forms.” Included in a baker’s dozen of writers, 51wjF6pvWjL._SX311_BO1,204,203,200_Kat helps to “explore the idea of what it is to be adventuring in a body: what is it to connect with others? What is it to experience intense sensation? What is it to transform? What is it to live in this particular body that we have?” Further, it uses “erotic touch, somatics, BDSM, love, and more,” and surely holds the promise of shedding light on one’s most intimate thoughts and mindset. I, personally, can’t wait to get my hands on a copy; won’t you help support Kat and buy a copy, too?


Kat Heatherington is a queer ecofeminist poet, sometime artist, pagan, and organic gardener. She has been living in Albuquerque since 1998, when she moved here to earn a Master’s in English at UNM.15871565_10210320273297158_5000576831974740644_n

In 2007 she collaborated with a group of three other unrelated adults to buy land in the Rio Grande Valley and form Sunflower River intentional community, sunflowerriver.org.  Ten years and many life lessons later, Sunflower River is still going strong, and still providing plenty of material to write poems about.

Kat’s work primarily addresses the interstices of human relationships and the natural world.  She has several self-published chapbooks, available from the author at yarrow@sunflowerriver.org.  Her work can be read at https://sometimesaparticle.org.

All Things Grow… even in the crisp autumn cold.

Lately I find myself in a transition phase of recognizing where my own trauma and anxieties end and I begin. This poem, “All Things Grow” by Lydia Havens, performed with Kate Noel, at this summer’s National Poetry Slam in Denver, paid tribute to that transitional phase; and while I didn’t get a chance to see the poem performed in person, I read reactions to it left and right and, upon reading it (and seeing the video), felt a growth inside of myself.

I believe that’s the true meaning of poetry: feeling yourself grow and flourish in the moment, alongside another person, because of another person’s experience and words. I think there’s something especially enchanting about poems like that, and furthermore something enchanting about Lydia — they have this remarkable talent of being explicit and raw and shaping it into something beautiful, something that… grows, far beyond the usual expectations of what one thinks of when they walk into a poetry slam. And that might be one of my very favourite things about Lydia Havens as a writer, too: they are so far beyond the typical slam artist. Instead, they are the true definition of a poet. In a few brief words, they are walking, talking, magical, lizard-y poetry themselves.

“All Things Grow” by Lydia Havens, performed with Kate Noel

bless every poem about trauma,
& struggle, & loss i have written
thus far, for getting me this far.
bless all the space they needed to take up. bless them for knowing
when to step away.

bless all the songs i cannot
listen to anymore because
nostalgia & association will be
the death of me. bless the fact
that i am not dead yet. bless
the fact that i don’t know
where my abuser is anymore,
and i am okay with that.

it doesn’t mean i’ve forgiven him,
but it does mean i’ve forgiven myself.

bless my mother for believing me.
bless my mother for driving me
to all the psych wards, then picking me
back up after discharge. bless
my mother for believing in me.

bless my friends for carrying me home.
bless my friends for making me a home.
bless the city of Boise. bless all the light
it gives us, even at night. bless all
the rivers, even when they want
to overflow. bless the scars on my arms
that faded, and the ones on my face
that didn’t. bless all the ways i spill
like metal secrets against the floor.

bless the glitter always on my hands,
and the becoming. bless the way
my hair is growing out. bless the meds
that worked until they didn’t. bless the way
i never stopped working.

bless the fact that once, i thought
i didn’t know how to write a happy poem.
so bless all the cliches i am learning to love
because i like being a happy person
more than i like being a good writer.
bless vulnerability. bless bravery.
bless whatever it is i’m doing right now,

because everyone that’s ever hurt me
has tried to make me quiet—drown me
in the frantic water i just learned how
to endure. this is not a survival song.
this is the song I sing because I’ve survived.
the opportunity for the joy i have always deserved,
because i have always deserved to take up space.

that’s all. that’s all.

(text posted with permission)
You can visit Lydia’s website, here, and further support them by buying their book, “Survive Like the Water” and, of course, watch the video performance of “All Things Grow” again and again.
Don’t forget to follow them on instagram for magical selfies, and on twitter for more updates about poetry and their life in Boise.

 

Bill Nevins

Bill Nevins

 

Bill Nevins grew up Irish Catholic near and in New York City in the 1950’s and 60’s. He moved to northern New England and raised his three children, one of whom, Special Forces SFC Liam Nevins, died in combat in Afghanistan in 2013. Bill has lived in Albuquerque, New Mexico since 1996.

His poetry has been published in Malpaís Review, Green Left Weekly, The Rag, Central Avenue, Sage Trail, Adobe Walls, Más Tequila Review, Special Forces Charitable Trust online, Maple Leaf Rag II, The Heartbreak ridgeCornelian, KUMISS, and other publications. His journalism is found in The Guardian, Forward Motion, Z Magazine, RootsWorld, Hyper Active, Trend of Santa Fe, EcoSource, LOGOS, Thirsty Ear, ABQ ARTS, Local iQ, TM Transmission, The Celtic Connection, Irish American News, An Scathan/Celtic Mirror and other journals.

Bill Nevins hosts second-Wednesday monthly poetry readings at The Range Cafe in Bernalillo, New Mexico. He can be contacted at bill_nevins@yahoo.com and at Bill Nevins on Facebook.

Bill Nevins’ collection of poetry, Heartbreak Ridge, is now available from Swimming with Elephants Publications.

 

author photo credit: Mark Fischer