Idea: an Improbable Places Poetry Tour

With the announcement below, we’d like our readers to think about two things: 1) if you live on or near the north shore, to contribute to or attend the Improbable Poetry Tour described below, or 2) if you’d like to have poetry more integrated into your community, then begin an Improbable Poetry Tour yourself in your own town. Here is info on this month’s improbable tour:

Decommissioned Power Plant will be Powered by Poetry on July 2nd

Submission Deadline: June 27, 2014

The Improbable Places Poetry Tour, hosted by Colleen Michaels of Montserrat College of Art, is seeking poems about the Power of Work and the Work of Power for a most unique reading opportunity. On July 2, 2014 from 7-9 pm, the massive turbines of the iconic Salem Power Plant will turn silent and the hum of poetry will kick in.

Approaching its fifth season, the Improbable Places Poetry Tour poetry has brought poetry to unlikely places like bike shops, Laundromats and tattoo parlors on Boston’s north shore. We close out this season with the rare opportunity to experience poetry in an industrial space that will be open to the public for the first time. Footprint Power and Montserrat College of Art have been collaborating all semester to create art that documents the lives and work of the power plant employees. If you have a poem that speaks to the power of work or the work of power, we want to read your submissions.

Submissions can be sent to colleen.michaels@montserrat.edu no later than Friday, June 27, 2014. If chosen, you must be available to read your work in Salem, MA on Wednesday, July 2nd, 7-9 pm.

If you are interested in attending (where else will you have the chance to wear a hard hat, see an art exhibition, and tour vintage operating equipment all at one poetry reading?), you will have to preregister by emailing ArtandPower@footprintSalemHarbor.com. Please note that you will be required to produce a valid photo ID to enter the site.

For further details, please visit: http://www.montserrat.edu/blog/category/improbable-places-poetry-tour/

And for you who’d like to start your own Improbable Tour, here is more about how Colleen got started the North Shore program going:

What is an Improbable Poetry Tour?

Colleen MichaelsThe Massachusetts north shore Improbable Tour was started five years ago by the enterprising poet Colleen Michaels who directs the Writing Studio at Montserrat College of Art in Beverly, Massachusetts. Colleen was concerned about Montserrat students, Beverly, and poetry.  She wanted to introduce everybody — to get students to know the town, to get the town to know Montserrat and poetry. She says, “One day I was walking by a bike store, and I just walked in and asked them if they’d be interested in hosting a poetry reading. They agreed, and that was the start of the program, now sponsored by the Mass Cultural Council.” As another sign of the success of the program — some businesses that have hosted the program have asked it to return.

How does the tour work?

First, Colleen scouts out a local establishment — laundromat, bicycle shop, paint store — and then she asks her students and community poets to write a poem that reflects an aspect of the place. For example, for the paint shop she asked poets to write a poem on a color, and, for the decommissioned power plant of the July meeting, she is asking them to write a poem on the power of work or the work of power. She announces the subject and gives poets a good month to hone their creation.

So for you North Shore folks, here’s your assignment for July. And for the rest of the state (and elsewhere) here is Colleen’s announcement, which goes out to individuals and organizations who are interested:

Decommissioned Power Plant will be Powered by Poetry on July 2nd

Submission Deadline: June 27, 2014

The Improbable Places Poetry Tour, hosted by Colleen Michaels of Montserrat College of Art, is seeking poems about the Power of Work and the Work of Power for a most unique reading opportunity. On July 2, 2014 from 7-9 pm, the massive turbines of the iconic Salem Power Plant will turn silent and the hum of poetry will kick in.

Approaching its fifth season, the Improbable Places Poetry Tour poetry has brought poetry to unlikely places like bike shops, Laundromats and tattoo parlors on Boston’s north shore. We close out this season with the rare opportunity to experience poetry in an industrial space that will be open to the public for the first time. Footprint Power and Montserrat Collage of Art have been collaborating all semester to create art that documents the lives and work of the power plant employees. If you have a poem that speaks to the power of work or the work of power, we want to read your submissions.

Submissions can be sent to colleen.michaels@montserrat.edu no later than Friday, June 27, 2014. If chosen, you must be available to read your work in Salem, MA on Wednesday, July 2nd, 7-9 pm.

If you are interested in attending (where else will you have the chance to wear a hard hat, see an art exhibition, and tour vintage operating equipment all at one poetry reading?), you will have to preregister by emailing ArtandPower@footprintSalemHarbor.com. Please note that you will be required to produce a valid photo ID to enter the site.

For further details, please visit: http://www.montserrat.edu/blog/category/improbable-places-poetry-tour/