Paul E Nelson Shows Anhaya Thomas Crow Card

CPL on Long Beach Peninsula

September 19, 2022
The Cascadia Poetics Lab board met at the Sou’wester Lodge in Seaview, WA, this past weekend, September 16-18, 2022 for our twice-annual board retreat. We discussed plans for Cascadian Zen, for the visit of Pierre Joris in Cascadia in October, the success of the 2022 Poetry Postcard Fest and other much more mundane matters. Lucky for us Cate Gable is not only a fine poet, but we found out a fine singer/guitarist as well. She performed as part of our outreach weekend performance Saturday night, an event in the pavillion which included 4 poets from the Long Beach Peninsula and 4 CPL poets. Then Cate wrote about it in her weekly Chinook Observer column. Dig this:

Raising a glass

So, let me just say this — we poets had a blast sharing with each other, listening to each other, and coming together to create an island of sanity amidst our currently topsy-turvy world: a congealed Congress, war in Ukraine, the loss of species all around us, damming our rivers so salmon can’t spawn, dirtying the air so we can’t breathe, endangering the climate so that our trees can’t produce and flourish, contaminating our soil… we’re all just trying to talk about what’s happening in our lives.

So we read poetry, planned for more gatherings, promised to keep in touch, and raised a glass to ourselves and to the work of creating joy amidst these dark days. READ MORE.

To be honest, we were very impressed with the local poets, the local cuisine and, of course, the magical environment of the peninsula and Willapa Bay. Governance Committee Chair Joe Chiveney and his wife Cathy Visser got their dogs to the beach during the weekend near the mouth of the Columbia River:

Joe Chiveney Cathy Visser Dagwood and Willa

The legendary Bob Pyle:

Poet Bob Pyle

Having Bob talk about his work with Krist Novoselić and identify the species of dragonfly I saw on the Rainier Beach sidewalk last week (Blue Darner) AND the butterfly depicted on a poetry postcard I got from Jeffifer Shoemaker was incredibly memorable. We hope to share video of his performance here soon.

We would love to come to your community and discuss our work in using poetry to aid the experience of being now and here, something that sounds so basic but seems to be difficult to achieve in our busy culture.

My huge thanks goes to all the CPL board members, key volunteers, our webmaster and Cate Gable, who welcomed us warmly into her neighborhood and ensured that my fiancee Bhakti Watts would get the most remarkable gnocchi she may ever have in her life.


  1. Jennifer Nightingale

    What a pleasure to experience a but of your visit here to the Lower Columbia Pacific! The poetry was fresh and healing. In an era where there is so much darkness and cacophony, listening to great poets with both soul and humor is just what we need.

    I hope you come back this way or let me listen in again as you grace other communities.

    I’m still smiling.

  2. Splabman

    Bless you Jennifer!

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