Posts Tagged ‘poems’


NorthWest Poetry Update- December 2017

December 15, 2016

Painting is silent poetry,

and poetry is painting that speaks.


Many of you know that I am now the co-owner/ manager of a new independent new and used bookstore, BookTree located at 609 Market Street in Kirkland, Wa 98033.

We had our Grand Opening on November 5th. It has been an overwhelming,                             and rewarding journey creating a new bookstore for Kirkland. A few Sunday’s ago the Seattle Times featured our store! We’ve had several author events, a holiday party and the beginning of our brand new workshop/reading/open mic series.

BookTree on Facebook here.

BookTree Website here

Seattle Times Feature on BookTree


Michael Dylan Welch -Third Saturday Workshop and PoetryIsEverything Reading/Open Mic

  • Saturday, December 17, 2016
  • 4:30pm  to 8:00pm
  • FREE

Former Redmond Poet Laureate  Michael Dylan Welch will lead a free workshop “Haiku Can Help: Focusing Your Prose and Poetry.”  from 4:30 to 6:00 p.m. and be the featured poet for our Third Saturday PoetryIsEverything Reading and open mic. 6:15 to 8:00 p.m. FREE

The co-feature is  Michael Schein!  (he has plans to re-locate in the near future so it may be a while before you get a chance to see and hear him).

Michael Dylan Welch has had his haiku performed for the Empress of Japan and at the Baseball Hall of Fame. In 2012, one of his translations from the Japanese appeared on the back of 150,000,000 U.S. postage stamps. He was keynote speaker for the 2013 Haiku International Association convention in Tokyo, and has published his haiku, tanka, longer poetry, essays, and reviews in hundreds of journals in twenty languages, including RattleKyoto JournalRaven ChroniclesStringTownBacopaThe Writer’s ChronicleWriter’s DigestClover, and many others, the latter of which just nominated him for a Pushcart Prize. He cofounded the Haiku North America conference in 1991 and the American Haiku Archives in 1996, and founded the Tanka Society of America in 2000 and National Haiku Writing Month in 2010. He served two terms as Redmond’s poet laureate, and in 2010 was selected for the Jack Straw Writers program. His most recent books are Seven Suns / Seven Moons (with Tanya McDonald; NeoPoiesis Press), Off the Beaten Track: A Year in Haiku (Boatwhistle Books), Fire in the Treetops: Celebrating Twenty-Five Years of Haiku North America, and Becoming a Haiku Poet (both Press Here).

Co-Feature Poet – Michael Schein is the author of the nonfiction history, John Surratt: the Lincoln Assassin Who Got Away (September 1, 2015), as well as two acclaimed historical novels, Bones Beneath Our Feet (2011) and Just Deceits (2008). Mr. Schein taught American Legal History at Seattle University Law School from 1988-2003, served on the speakers’ bureau of Humanities Washington, and is Director of LiTFUSE Poets’ Workshop. His poetry is supported by a grant from King County 4Culture, and has been nominated three times for the Pushcart Prize.

Born and raised in Vermont, Mr. Schein attended Reed College in Portland, University of Oregon Law School in Eugene, and now lives near Seattle.He is a former professor of American Legal History.

Open Mic

Bring a Poem or very very short piece of prose if you would like and sign up on our list to read for between 3 and 4 minutes.


more readings- here



Here   The Poetry Department.


As I have time I will update this blog with other readings and events of interest!





NaPoWriMo Day 4 Prompt for April 4, 2016

April 3, 2016

“I think that perhaps if I had had to slow down

 the ideas so that I could capture them on paper

 I might have stifled some of them.”

― J.K. Rowling

DAY 4  – NaPoWriMo Prompt for  April 4, 2016  

Welcome to Day 4 of the NaPoWriMo challenge.  Use these prompts to inspire you to write a poem each and every day of April.

Another prompt suggested by Striped Water Poet (of Auburn, WA.) Brendan McBreen:

Find the instructions for something (an Ikea instruction works well) and write a poem that alternates a line of instructions and lines of poetry.

For those living anywhere near Western Washington you might want to look at the  Poetry Day of the Week page that you’ll find in the upper right corner under PAGES.   A couple of times this month you may also find my Poetry Northwest announcements in between the NaPoWriMo posts.

If you post the poems on your blog or anywhere using this prompt… send me a link.



My DAY 2  PROMPT Poem    (regarding compassion, empathy)

Delicate butterfly, tiny hummingbird

a puppy tied to a bike rack, tail wagging — waiting

I see a heron on my walk,

a red-tail hawk above.

I think of my ex-wife and daughters’ unconditional love

kindness, support.

Everyday a gift.

Accept the goodness.

Do unto others as you would

have them do unto you.

Forgive, and be there for others

when you are needed.

Ella singing “Somebody to Watch Over Me.”

A tender touch.

Delicate butterfly

tiny hummingbird.


NaPoWriMo Day 26 – Prompt for April 26, 2015

April 25, 2015

Welcome to Day 26 of NaPoWriMo. And then there were 5! How about something random and unexpected for today’s prompt?

DAY 26 – NaPoWriMo Prompt for April 26, 2015
Go to this site right here. It will randomly generate a ‘first line’. Use it as the first line of your poem and create a poem at least 6 lines.  If you can’t get to the site for some reason… open a book to page 45, go to the third paragraph and use the first sentence as the first line of your poem.

Write an opposing view to the political poem you wrote for prompt 22.

Poets Shut Up
By Christopher J. Jarmick

stop reacting,
twitching, responding.
Few political poems
are well constructed,
fewer state views
that connect to anyone
but other deluded poets,
who aren’t really reading
poems anyway
because they are to busy
listening to themselves.

Poets who believe
their scribbles matter
are the same gullible fools
likely to believe realtors
when they say things like,
traffic isn’t that bad,
or downtown is just 10 minutes away.
They trust there’s some truth
In the sounds that escape from
the lower part of the front of the heads
of radio talk show hosts and lawyers

Maybe I shouldn’t discourage you, poet.
Your word-smithing keeps you occupied
and too busy to join together
and create a powerful lobby
that might petition lawmakers
to actually do anything
you might approve of.

Poets your fears are correct;
common sense, common courtesy,
rock-n-roll, love that lasts, honesty,
faith and poetry itself are all dead.
Deader than a rusty metaphor.
Most normal folks accepted this already
And are indeed def to your busted
Iambics and smelly feet.
All of it, water under the bridge.
If poetry mattered
there would be a fee charged
for obtaining a poetic license.
Respond, or don’t respond, just remember,
whatever happens in poetry,
stays in poetry.

Teresa’s Prompt 24 Poem

Honk Honk Honk
By Teresa Jarmick

Can you believe that?
Put your phone DOWN!

Side to side, weave in
Out around
Whew, made the light
Safe from that lollygag
Accident waiting to happen.

Oh &^%&#(
Another one, ARGGGHH.

Writers Digest Poem a Day Prompt 24 Poem
The prompt suggested writing a ‘moment’ poem.

That Moment
By Christopher J. Jarmick

. . . yesterday
that built to a crescendo
blissful feeling

35 minutes before
In the coffee shop

the young woman with
the lost look in her eye

for two seconds and
I could feel her mood

nothing flirtatious here
but I knew something in my

calmed her
helped in some way

I felt good about that
sat with my coffee and

at a table for almost
thirty minutes

almost at the door
I paused to get a hand

small bag and coffee cup in one
slipped cellphone in pocket

someone gracefully slip
past me, open the door

held the door for me
smiled, so I said:

“Thank you.”
She said: ‘ No,
Thank YOU.’

minutes later I was driving
by the lake, windows down

72 degree weather
clear Northwest blue sky

played a song I had not
heard in a long

and for no reason
I was smiling

thoughts evaporated
natural high enveloped me

cool clean air deep into
my lungs, I felt

for a moment, again.
In fact so

I didn’t tailgate the driver
insisting on going less than

in a 35 mile per hour zone
I felt too good to complain.

Teresa’s Prompt 22 Poem
Write a political poem

Gesticular Politicals
By Teresa Jarmick

You see them in cars
Moving lips and hands
Directing symphonies
Of missed notes.

Teresa’s Prompt 23 Poem
Write an intersection poem

By Teresa Jarmick

I crossed the street from mommy to mom once in a while.
It felt like they were the pedestrians
Or passengers in speeding cars making quick getaways
With me standing still stuck inside
But the data was inaccurate, we were all moving.


Keep Writing


NaPoWriMo Day 3 – Prompt for April 3, 2015

April 2, 2015

And we are off and running in our 2015 NaPoWriMo marathon!  That’s right… it’s time to jump in and challenge yourself to write 30 poems in 30 days.  Perfectly okay if you are a first-timer or an old pro at this…we will all produce poems that vary in quality.  Some of my writes are I admit pretty sub-par but others show promise I think (don’t spoil my delusion and try to convince me otherwise).  Point is… that you make the attempt as best you can and maybe develop a habit of writing something every day.  It’s also ultimately supposed to be fun!   So post your poems if you dare, or hide them from the world if you must.  C’mon give us a peak….

DAY 3  – NaPoWriMo Prompt for  April 3, 2015

Here’s a list of 12  words. Choose at least 5 and write a poem between 4 and 10 lines.  You can try to create a meter or rhyme if you would like, or even do a Septolet  (later on I’ll tell you about that form if you don’t feel like looking it up).

Words to choose from:

bulb , market, cantankerous, filthy,

less, perception, square, blooming,

carnival, pilfer, remnant, blood.

It would be fun to see which words you choose and how you used them… so show me some of your poems please.

I’ll post what I come up with on April 5.

Some days I intend to also participate in the Writer’s Digest and Robert Brewer’s PAD (Poem-A-Day) challenge.  He has prompts which will eventually be judged by a guest judge (30 of them) for every day of April.  The ‘winning poems’ will be part of an anthology.   Some of the daily judges are NorthWest poets that I know including  Michael Dylan Welch (Redmond, Washington’s Poet Laureate 2014-2016 and RASP board member),  and Martha Silano!!!

Here’s a link to WD’s Poem a Day challenge.

Now as promised, the poems I wrote for April 1.

The Ekphrasis poem I wrote based on a photograph used in  Rattle’s Ekphrasis Challenge.  The Photo is by Judy Keown.  I entered the contest but can post the poem on my own blog.











NaPoWriMo Prompt Poem 1

Beholder Blues

By Christopher J. Jarmick


It seemed


the unobstructed views of

blue skies

were blocked

by some architect’s idea

of innovative construction.

Soon more projects announced,

rents on the rise,

and many were forced

to move.


And I also wrote a poem for the WD’s Poem a Day Challenge.

The Prompt was write a resistance poem.


By Christopher J. Jarmick


Resistance is futile

But I must try because

Groucho’s song at

the beginning of Horse Feathers

is truly my anthem:

“Whatever it is… I’m against it”.

Muse uses reverse psychology

to trick me into

playing along with this distraction.

But since the game is on,

I must resist like a revolutionary with torn

Che T-shirt and nothing to lose.

I’ll prove somehow

that it is not futile to resist at all

and simply going beyond

the friction, the sparks,

the generated heat.

I shall give myself over

to the art of it;

not the act,

not the doing or undoing but

the exhale of it…

the breath itself.


Teresa, my wife also wrote an Ekphrasis poem for NaPoWriMo and the Rattle contest:


By Teresa Jarmick


Looking up, shoulder to

Shoulder Nebraska feet brush

Conversation in air

Floating sunbursts by


Limitless sky.




Keep Writing!


NaPoWriMo 2011 Poem & Prompt for May 1, 2011 31/30

May 1, 2011

It’s  the bonus, extra inning, echo NaPoWriMo Day.

Decided a couple of Septolets were in order and a few extras that were written a few weeks ago but never included.

(see below for the Septolet form info)

Septolet for May 1 2011   1.

By Chris and Teresa Jarmick

NaPoWriMo madness

Yearly stretch

Creative gallop

Game, Art

Quick writes

Word tumble

Poetic dances

SeptoLet for May 1 2011  2.

Red Black

Wedding theme

Kiss dance

Strangers, friends

Laughing, cake

Smooth grooves

Toast future

© 2011

Septolet Form sep-toe-lay form rules

The Septolet is a poem consisting of seven lines containing fourteen words with a break in between the two parts. First part is 4 lines, second part is 3 lines. It’s okay if a line has 3 words in it, but that means another line will have 2. Both parts deal with the same thought and create a picture.


By Christopher J. Jarmick

Strange man observed

From shadows this odd fellow

Creeps, waits, stares too intensely

Smiles strangely.

What does he want?

What is he seeing?

Why does it bother me so?

What about me am I afraid he may see?

What arrogant, false confidence will be deflated this eve?

Why is he inside my head?

What does he want?

Is it me?  Is it me?


By Christopher J. Jarmick

Don’t try so hard

Don’t force it

Take deep breath.

Take another.


one more

© 2011

Keep writing.

Poetry is everything


NaPoWriMo 2011 Poem & Prompt for April 30, 2011 30/30

April 29, 2011

Day 30!!!!!   It’s the end of NaPoWriMo 2011.   Step right in, sit right down, pick up a pen

write a poem.    Need a prompt?   Glad to oblige.

Today’s   prompt is  a  5-5-5.   5 senses, Use at least 5 of the suggested words AND have the poem be 5 or 10 or 15 or 20 lines long.

1.        A 5 senses poem.   A poem that includes all 5 senses.

2.       Here are some natural words to use in your poem  (use at least 5 of these words)

Ocean, lava  droplet,  gazelle, blossom, nest,  snake,  moon,  chirp, clouds,  field,  stream,  grasshopper hiss, green,  seed,  fur,  forest, sunlight,  chrysalis, breeze,  buzz.

3.       And have your poem be 5, 10 or 15 lines long (divisible by 5).


By Chris and Teresa Jarmick

Pine tar, sea salt air

Rocks cackling at pier told fish tales

Droplet of rain as seagulls fly inland

Sunlight trickling over forest of restless waves

Breeze blows pregnant clouds onto shore

Sips coffee, swallows, buttons up jacket

Ocean hisses, buzz is ‘bad one’s comin’”

Hands shake goodbye, boardwalk, sidewalks empty

Black sky, lightning, thunder, downpour

Truck starts, rushing  stream of  water; then stillness

© 2011

Keep writing

Poetry is Everything


NaPoWriMo 2011 Poem & Prompt for April 29, 2011 29/30

April 29, 2011

It’s the 29th day of NaPoWrimo.

What should we write today?  How about something brand new.  That almost no one has ever done before?  That’s worthy of the 29th day of this crazy challenge isn’t it?

How about a unique twist on a found poem?  Teresa came up with a new one.

We will call it a Found Fan/Drape poem.   Take a page from a newspaper, cut it in half so it’s about 11 inches in length  or take a page from a magazine  or something else with a lot of small type and words on the page.  Now fold it in half from the top to bottom.   Next fold it again… either in half again or about ¾ of an inch and fold it one way… then back the other way (like you’re making a paper fan).

When you open it back up you want to see very distinctive lines in the paper.

The words that appear on these lines are the only ones you can use.   Both sides of the paper, but you can only use the words that are on these lines.  If the words are NOT on these lines.. you can NOT use them.

You can use 1 word or 2 words or 3 words together.  You can not use 4, 5 or 6 words together.  So only 1, 2 or 3 word combos are possible.   Try to go in order and do not go back to pick up any words.  You can start in order on one side of the paper.. and flip it over to the other side and then go back to the other side if you would like.

Use these words to built a poem at least 7 lines long.

I used the Editorial Page of the Seattle Times from April 28th 2011 for this prompt.




Trump, you’re not qualified

to solve problems.

Cherry-picking  senior

Citizens by

Comb-over circus politics.

What we want

Is a tax- guaranteed

not printed off cedar needles.



Public education clearly unwise

Opt out donation

Customers can pay

Omnipresent green parking machines.

A failed experiment

That’s a bold promise.

Our staff, drug free

We offer key reasons

They can’t afford.

© 2011

Keep writing

Poetry is Everything