Poems on Buses
September 03rd, 2019
The Association of Book Publishers of British Columbia (ABPBC) has announced the 2019/20 Poetry in Transit poets:
Garry Gottfriedson (Kamloops) — Clinging to Bone , published by Ronsdale Press
Eve Joseph (Victoria) — Quarrels , published by Anvil Press
Michael Kenyon (Victoria) — Lamb, published by Pedlar Press
Curtis LeBlanc (Vancouver) — Little Wild, published by Nightwood Editions
Laura Matwichuk (Vancouver) — Near Miss , published by Nightwood Editions
Hilary Peach (Gabriola Island and New Westminster) — Bolt , published by Anvil Press
Barbara Pelman (Victoria) — Narrow Bridge , published by Ronsdale Press
Pamela Porter (Sidney) — Likely Stories , published by Ronsdale Press
Marion Quednau (Gibsons) — Paradise, Later Years , published by Caitlin Press
Patricia Young (Victoria) — Short Takes on the Apocalypse , published by Biblioasis
Each year a collection of poetry car cards is produced featuring the work of BC-authored poets that will be featured on BC Transit buses and other BC Transit spaces.
“The Poetry in Transit campaign offers passengers a window into a different mental space during their daily commute,” says Heidi Waechtler, Executive Director of the ABPBC. “We often hear from riders who remember seeing a poem from fifteen years ago and comment on how the words have stayed with them.”
Poetry in Transit has been running since 1996, making it the longest-running poetry on transit program in Canada. Poems eligible for the project must be by writers who reside in BC and published in book form by Canadian publishers.
Poems are submitted by publishers and selected by a jury. The 2019/20 jury members were poets Evelyn Lau and Rob Taylor, and Shirley Dalton, Marketing Representative with TransLink.
This year’s campaign will be launched at the Word Vancouver festival on Sunday, September 29, 2019, at the Vancouver Public Library Central Branch. Former Vancouver poet laureate Evelyn Lau will host readings by Michael Kenyon, Hilary Peach, Barbara Pelman, Pamela Porter, and Marion Quednau, taking place at 1:45 p.m. in the Yosef Wosk Poet’s Corner.
Festival-goers are also invited to board the Poetry Bus, a vehicle displaying all of the 2019/20 poems.
Poet Kevin Spenst will be onboard the bus from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. inviting attendees to create their own poems.
During September, the selected poems will also be featured on bus shelters around Metro Vancouver, with space provided through the City of Vancouver’s Transit Shelter Advertising Program.
Over the next year, transit riders are invited to tag their Poetry in Transit sightings on social media using the #PoetryInTransit hashtag to be entered to win a book prize pack.