Washington State University landscape architecture professor and poet Jolie Kaytes reflects on the complex emotions and rational considerations about the Columbia River watershed through poems that give new ways to consider our part in the stories of the River.
A tongue stopping “f”
with a soft “ish,”
tied to a tight lipped “h”
caught on “ook.”
Hard to swallow.
Where the Palouse Band gathered,
homed their family bones
now buried by the Snake River’s
stopped up waters, slow and dumb.
Chris Forhan ’82
As Chris Forhan approached his mid-forties, feelings about his dead father began erupting in dreams and poems. Ed Forhan killed himself at age 44 in 1973, leaving behind his wife and eight children, including his son Chris, without explanation. Questions left unanswered in Chris’s family for so many years drove him to face, with an unrelenting eye, the legacy of the father who had abandoned … » More …
Luis Montaño ’76 MFA
Ocote Press: 2015
Spokane artist Luis Montaño’s book of poetry, 50 years in the making, dips deep into his childhood in New Mexico and tells autobiographical and allegorical stories of the wide landscape, grizzled veterans, and a favorite diner hangout with friends.
Montaño worked for many years as a ceramic artist and jewelry designer, as well as teaching at Eastern Washington University, after graduating from WSU. As he … » More …
Shearsman Books: 2015
Linda Russo translates the environmental characteristics of the Palouse from scenery to words in this slender volume of her poetry. The cohabitation between humans and nature is explored everywhere from a home garden to the vast wheat fields. Her other poems delve into post-pastoral themes of consumer development on farmable land:
shopping centers and cheap food production
the song of arable, or … » More …
Lisa Panepinto ’05
Three Rooms Press, 2014
Rivers flow through the poems in Panepinto’s slim volume. They whisper of the Northwest, of young people who have jumped in, of silvery fish and poison in the water. In her first collection, the Spokane native writes with a deft lyricism and of a sense of place in poems like “river metallic as veins of saints”:
“the land creates
here I am low
down bog like”
Her other poems speak of Spokane and rural roads, and music festivals and blues … » More …
Washington’s Poet Laureate brings poetry to, and discovers it in, each of the state’s 39 counties
Although my parents lived in the same house in Richland, Washington—my hometown—for 50 years, they never stopped being proud, relentless Oregonians. But in 1989 Mother and Dad celebrated Washington’s centenary in a big way. They dreamed up one of those projects that makes sense to retired couples but bemuses their children: visiting and photographing all 39 Washington county courthouses. They were even written up in the Tri-City Herald for achieving their goal, and photographed paging through their album. A family friend rediscovered the newspaper clipping more than twenty years … » More …