SPLAB Seattle Poetics LAB
The SPLAB mission is to present poetry events, develop the audience and resources to support poetry, lead a bioregional cultural investigation using poetics and poetry festivals as main methodologies and build community through shared experience of the spoken and written word.
4801 Rainier Av S Apt 308
Seattle, WA 98118
The non-profit organization known as SPLAB was founded in 1993 and in 2009 moved to Seattle and the literary arts aspect of our programming, which started in 1996, became the main focus. In nearly 25 years we have facilitated visits by Michael McClure, Diane di Prima, Joanne Kyger, Anne Waldman, Victor Hernandez Cruz, Nate Mackey, Brenda Hillman, George Bowering, Daphne Marlatt, George Stanley, Jerome Rothenberg, Eileen Myles, Wanda Coleman, Ed Sanders, Adrian Castro and many more. We have presented interviews by Allen Ginsberg, the poets mentioned above and authors like Jean Houston, Rupert Sheldrake, Father Matthew Fox, Riane Eisler and many others, with over 500 interviews having been conducted since 1993.
We are in year five of a 20 year Bioregional Cultural Investigation, which began in 2012 and has seen the staging of four iterations of the Cascadia Poetry Festival, with the 5th scheduled for Oct 13-15, 2017, in Tacoma at the State History Museum. This fest will be a merger of the Tacoma Poetry Festival, which was staged twice and the Cascadia Poetry Festival. The fundraising expertise and the site of Tacoma as the town for the annual festival, promise a new level of success from previous iterations of both events, as the CPF has been chronically underfunded and the Tacoma fest was run by people who had never before worked together and had never created the kind of large literary gathering SPLAB has perfected over the past 23+years. Of our last fest, Jared Leising, emcee for the final reading stated:
"Thank you, Paul.
And thank you all for being here, in one of the most amazing stores in the world, (Open Books) and at the closing reading for the fourth Cascadia Poetry Festival. Before I introduce our readers, I want say a few words about this festival and what it's meant to me. I've attended the last three festivals, and this year, like the two years before it, in Nanaimo and in Seattle, when Seattle U was our host, it's been dynamic-for me and my students, who I've brought to all three festivals. When I say dynamic, I mean the festival feels like a good poem. It has layers to it and makes these leaps that few conferences and festivals do. To me, that's what matters, keeps me coming back, and it's in part thanks to all of you, but largely because of Paul Nelson. Someone who doesn't get enough credit for the work he's done, the people he's influenced, and the perspective he's offering all of us with this amazing festival. So, thank you, Paul."
In addition to the fest, we have helped create the 1st bioregional poetry anthology: Make It True: Poetry From Cascadia; twice staged a MOOC (with Cascadia College) on Innovative Cascadia Poetry. A third is set for Fall 2017; conducted interviews with some of the bioregion's brightest and most accomplished poets, activists and indigenous leaders (www.AmericanProphets.org) and have created tremendous awareness of bioregionalism, a deep take on eco-poetics, so necessary in our climate-endangered times.