Coastal Oregon is a beautiful place. I consider myself fortunate to live so near the Pacific ocean.
Being by the ocean has always had a powerful, calming effect on my natural state of crippling anxiety.
Plus, there is a wonderful sense of community in my hamlet of Tillamook county. People look out for one another. I love attending the monthly pot lucks and meeting all the interested and talented folks.
And of course, there are the local dairies with charming cows and the comely coastal range mountains.
Really, beauty everywhere you look.
And I certainly don’t miss Seattle traffic, where it often took 2 hours to go 30 miles or less.
But what I do miss is where I was going in all that traffic, 2, 3, sometimes 4 nights a week:
to poetry readings!
I miss attending poetry readings where the air is filled with poetry!
Where the audience is filled with poetry lovers.
Where I can indulge in my love of poetry with fellow poetry lovers.
Talk poetry nonstop.
What’s really sad is that there is not a single bookstore in Tillamook.
Not even a used bookstore.
Though we do have a wonderful library.
But when I asked the library if I could arrange poetry readings there, they said no.
So guess what I went and did?
I asked if anyone in my community would want to join me in a poetry book club.
And 9 people said yes!
We had our first meeting and it was wonderful!!! People had such interesting and insightful comments about the poems we discussed from Lois Parker Edstrom’s Night Beyond Black.
It was so much fun, people want to do it again–the last Wednesday of every month!
I feel so lucky there are so many local folks open to discovering poetry along with me.
I’m not alone with poetry any longer.
And then, the wonderful poet Christine Swanberg from Illinois came to the Oregon coast for a brief visit!
If you haven’t read her work, you really should.
The first poem in her most recent collection made me weep for joy.
And now I have this secret plan to bring more poets to Tillamook!
Well, not so secret since I am mentioning it here.
My husband and I are working toward procuring a guest cabin.
And that means someday soon, I can lure poets and artists of every description to come visit me here in Oregon.
Who doesn’t want a wonderful retreat by the beach?
Okay, so it’s cold and rainy most of the time in Oregon, and the sea water temperature doesn’t even top 50 degrees in the summer, but it is so beautiful here.
I want to share all this beauty with my writer and artist friends so they can make even more beauty out of the beauty they discover here.
And beauty alone can be more than enough.