“Good poetry begins with seeing increasingly clearly, in increasingly various ways; but another part of poetry’s true perception is found only in relinquishing more and more of the self to more and more of the world.”
My favorite place in the world for poetry is the Skagit River Poetry Festival. This May 21 -22, it's where you want to be. Every other year, on the third weekend in May, the little town of La Conner, WA transforms into a truly magical poetry venue. I've seen Naomi Shihab Nye read morning poems at 8 AM in a local church (no church service except her words); I've heard Elizabeth Austen perform her work in the Northwest Art Museum and listened to Rachel Rose in the town's community hall. The Skagit Festival is where poetry matters as much as the air we breathe. This year the line-up includes Sherman Alexie, Terrance Hayes, Ted Kooser, and Valzhyna Mort.