Inspired by the Poetry Coalition programming for March 2019, the theme for SpeakEasy 23 is Poetry & Democracy, with work by regional poets and a special guest appearance by Washington State Poet Laureate Claudia Castro Luna. Please mark your calendar for Saturday, March 2, 2019, and join us at 7:00pm, at the Mount Baker Theatre Encore Room in Bellingham, Washington.
“What Is It, Then, Between Us?: Poetry & Democracy”
The question “What is it, then, between us?” is an excerpt from the poem “Crossing Brooklyn Ferry” by Walt Whitman. In addition to Whitman being recognized as a poet whose work forged a new kind of American poetry, which both expresses democratic ideals and contains painful truths about our country’s origin, throughout 2019, many libraries, museums, schools, and cultural organizations will be marking the 200th anniversary of Whitman’s birth, which took place on May 31, 1819.
In light of Whitman’s bicentennial and his influence on American life and literature, Poetry Coalition members aim to demonstrate how poetry can positively provoke questions in their communities about timely and pressing issues, spark increased empathy and understanding, encourage civic and grassroots engagement, and contribute to public debate and dialogue.
SpeakEasy 23 is pleased to add local voices to the conversation. Please see the SpeakEasy page for a complete list of poets.