RASP was founded in 1997 to promote literary arts and activities in Redmond, Washington, and the surrounding area. We meet on the last Friday of each month, from 7:00 PM to 9:00 PM at VALA Eastside in Redmond Town Center7525 166th Ave NE, Suite D140 (directions). Open mic signup begins at 6:30 PM. RASP also holds a monthly writing critique group at the Redmond Regional Library on the second Tuesday of each month from 6:30 PM to 8:45 PM. All events are free. Please join us!.
In August 2013, the Redmond Association of Spokenword published Here, There, and Everywhere, a collection of 120 poems by 70 poets who have participated in RASP's monthly reading series as featured or open-mic readers. The book's poems appear in three sectionshere, there, and everywherethat celebrate a full range of poetry from this active region of the Pacific Northwest. Editor Michael Dylan Welch has been curator for RASP readings since 2008. Enjoy the pictures
Copies of the RASP poetry anthology, Here, There, and Everywhere, are available at RASP's monthly readings. You can also order copies through CreateSpace ($15.00 each plus shipping). For contributors, a limited number of discounted copies are available (for more information, please contact Michael Dylan Welch ).
"To have great poets there must be great audiences too."Walt Whitman
Virginia Woolf spoke of having a room of one's own in which to write. Writers of all kinds know that they also benefit from having a community in which to thrivean extended family where they can share and test their writing ideas. Without an attentive audience, trusted feedback, and a dash of praise, that room of one's own can potentially become a prison rather than a sanctuary. But with the right community, the writer can indeed flourish.
The Redmond Association of Spokenword, also known as RASP, provides an energetic community and sense of belonging to writers in and around the city of Redmond, Washington. It expands the sanctuary of the writer's lonely garrison, encompassing fiction, nonfiction, and poetry. While this anthology honors poetry, it is part of a larger context in the RASP communitya full range of writing by the group's talented participants.
In the years since RASP was founded in 1997, the organization has had many accomplishments. It is my hope that this book contributes to the group's successes, but also celebrates the accomplishments of its individual contributors. The poets whose work you'll read here include new contributors and longtime RASP regulars, as well as many of the best-known poets of the Seattle area who have been guest poets at our monthly readingsfor which I have served as curator since 2008. The interactions of all these poets enlarge not only our community but influence the broader poetry community of the entire Seattle area and beyond.
The heart of each RASP meeting is its open-mic reading. That's where RASP's experienced and first-time participants find a platform to share their work. And it's where many first-timers have become experienced. Reading work aloud to an attentive audience helps each poet refine his or her performance, while the audience hones its listening skills. Together, careful reading and listening has helped to build a strong and supportive community.
The poems in this anthology120 poems by 70 poetshave naturally fallen into three groupings. The first section, "Here," encompasses 22 poems about the Pacific Northwest, and sometimes more specifically the here and now of poetry readingsperhaps even of RASP itself. The second section, "There," gathers 28 poems that point to geographical locations farther afield. The third section, "Everywhere," with 70 poems, is not just a catch-all for the remaining poems but a celebration of the range of diversity present in the RASP community and the many styles of its poetry. The assignment of poems to particular sections may be subjective, but I trust that you will find some aspect of the sectional theme in each of that section's poemsand also enjoy each poem on its own terms. Together, I hope these three sections take you on a rewarding triphere, there, and everywhere. Thank you for reading.
Michael Dylan Welch, Editor
Many hands contributed to this anthology. Michael Dylan Welch first proposed the project, and the entire board of the Redmond Association of Spokenword refined the details of his proposal. This included setting a length limit of thirty lines, the practicality of which precluded longer work that would more accurately represent the range of our contributors. RASP president Michael Heavener initially publicized this project through the group's website and mailing list. He had extensive help from Laura Lee Bennett and Elizabeth Carroll Hayden who contacted key participants of the Redmond Association of Spokenword, past and present, including featured poets at our many monthly readings. Assistant editors Laura Lee and Liz then worked long hours to receive and compile the submissions. Except for a number of last-minute submissions, all poems were scored anonymously by a team of reviewers, using a scoring rubric developed chiefly by Laura Lee and Liz. Michael Dylan Welch also read all submissions anonymously and then made final selections after comparing his preferences with the average scores and comments of the review team. The team's scores frequently pushed selections in one direction or another, but all final selections were Michael's, who sought to be as inclusive as possible. Many thanks to the review team, which consisted of Rebecca Meredith, Allison Ohlinger, Heidi Stahl, and Vonnie Thompson (who did not score their own poems), and to RASP board members not already named: Pamela Denchfield, Bill Hayes, and Mike Meredith. And thanks again to Laura Lee and Liz for going above and beyond by tightening many of this book's nuts and bolts. They did a stellar job of pulling everything together from here, there, and everywhere. But above all, thank you to the ever-surprising and talented RASP community for offering its poems for consideration and for supporting this lively literary arts organization through thick and thin for sixteen years.
The following poets have contributed poems to the RASP poetry anthology, Here, There, and Everywhere. Thank you to these poets for their contributions. Links to sample poems by selected poets will be added later.
RASP plans a number of readings for Here, There, and Everywhere, at which we invite contributors to read their work from the book. All readings are free and open to the public. The following readings have been planned so far (check back for updates and additions).
| Saturday, February 14, 2015, at 4:00 p.m.,
| Green Lake Branch Seattle Public Library,
| 7364 E Greenlake Dr. N, Seattle
| to be recorded for radio broadcast
October 18, 2013, 6:30 p.m.
VALA Eastside art gallery
7303 164th Avenue NE, Redmond Town Center, Redmond
November 13, 2013, 7:00 p.m.
Park Place Books
348 Parkplace Center, Kirkland
January 8, 2014, 7:00 p.m.
Duvall Visitor Center, 15619 Main Street, Duvall
February 3, 2014, 7:00 p.m.
Third Place Books
17171 Bothell Way NE, Lake Forest Park, WA
If you have suggestions for a reading venue, please contact Michael Dylan Welch . If you are a contributor to the book and would be interested in organizing a reading yourself, please let us know.