They’re indomitable. Here’s what they’re up to this month:
Sally Ashton, current Poet Laureate (2011-2012)
In her second year as PL, after having organized countless readings and sold-out workshops and finding a way to display poetry on the bus lines of San Jose through a program called Silicon Valley Moves, she’s out there doing more.
Sally just appeared at the Willow Glen Reading of Poetry Center San Jose, where there was standing room only, and even that was hard to come by. Unfortunately I couldn’t attend, but I’ve received two Emails, a Facebook post, three phone calls, and a chance meeting in a book store, all telling me what an unforgettable reading it was.
This month she’s bringing together a group of readers who will share a favorite poem in their native language as well as in English. The audience will get to enjoy both music and meaning. Poems will be read in Urdu, Chinese, Hindi, Japanese, English, Portuguese, Spanish, German, Swedish, Farsi, Italian, and Vietnamese.
This one I won’t miss. It’s called Voices from Around the World~A December Favorite Poems Reading, on Thursday, December 6 at 7pm at Stevens Creek Barnes&Noble, 3600 Stevens Creek Blvd., San Jose.
Nils Peterson, Santa Clara County Poet Laureate, 2009-2010
I’ve set up my computer to start the day with the website “Your Daily Poem.” Last week I was pleasantly surprised to find Nils’ fine poem, “Morning Sun of a Fan” as the selection of the day. He conflates gardens and football, a not-so-easy task. Here’s the link: http://www.yourdailypoem.com/listpoem.jsp?poem_id=1294 His poetry, in my humble opinion, continues to get deeper and richer.
There’s an opportunity to hear Nils read this coming Thursday, in Willow Glen, a town-within-the-city-of-San Jose. He’ll read at the Willow Glen Library, 1157 Minnesota Ave, San Jose, at 7 PM on Thursday, December 20th. It might be smart to get there early as the event, free to the public through the generosity of Poetry Center San Jose, is likely to be well attended.
Nils taught English and Humanities at San Jose State University, where he is now Professor Emeritus. Four years ago, he was selected as the first Poet Laureate of “Silicon Valley.” Through a variety of creative means such as a community-written “County Poem,” “Thirty Poems in thirty Days, Poems about Santa Clara County,” and a “Haiku-ish Wall,” he touched thousands of lives throughout the county and greater Bay Area.
But Wait There’s More: No, not Ginsu knives . . . a absolutely stunning sound recording, sent via Nils with the following note:
A number of years ago, I took some prose translations of Greek poems and tried to turn them into poetry for my Valentine's Day reading. Last year, my chorale, The Symphony Silicon Valley Chorale, commissioned a well-known British composer, Will Todd, to set them to music. Now at least one of them is getting a little wider circulation. You might enjoy listening to 170 young people singing it. Nils Here’s the link to this great music:
Causes Kevin Arnold Supports
Poetry Center San Jose, East Palo Alto Police Activities League (EPA PAL), Squaw Valley Community of Writers, Yale Writing Conference, Gold Rush Writers