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24th Annual Watershed Environmental Poetry Festival

Join us—Stand up for the Earth!

Celebrate Writers, Nature & Community


Saturday, October 5, 2019, 10:00 a.m., free
Strawberry Creek Walk:
Poetry, talk, and an easy walk along beautiful Strawberry Creek through UC Berkeley and its underground path across downtown Berkeley to the Watershed Festival at Civic Center Park. Nevada County Poet Laureate Chris Olander, River Light, leads the Creek Walk, with stops for poetry by Chris and poets Kristin George Bagdanov, Fossils in the Making, Stephen Meadows, Fire and Rain: Ecopoetry of California, Fernando Salinas, "Hanging from Shallow Roots," eco-dance by poet Sharon Coleman with Barry Ebner on acoustic guitar, with nature talk and participation throughout with Elizabeth Dougherty, director of Wholly H2O. Meet at the southeast corner of Oxford at Center, on the edge of the UC Berkeley campus.

Saturday, October 5, 2019
Noon to 4:30 p.m. • Free

Festival Main Stage • Martin Luther King, Jr. Civic Center Park • Berkeley
Over thirty poets and writers, including
Patricia Smith, Incendiary Art, 2018 Kingsley Tufts Poetry Award-winner, 2018 NAACP Image Award, Los Angeles Times Book Prize, finalist for the Pulitzer Prize, Blood Dazzler, National Book Award finalist
Dorianne Laux, Only As the Day is Long: New and Selected Poems, National Book Critics Circle Award finalist, Oregon Book Award-winner, and the Paterson Prize-winner
Joseph Millar, Kingdom, winner of fellowships from the Guggenheim Foundation and the National Endowment for the Arts
Kim Shuck, Deer Trails, San Francisco Poet Laureate

World on Fire, poetry and music theatre ensemble on climate change
featuring Naomi Newman and musicians Barbara Borden, drummer/percussionist, and Susanne DiVincenzo, bass/cello, all three are recipients of the Women in the Arts, Social Change Through Music Award 2019 at the National Women's Music Festival
World on Fire is directed by Corey Fischer (Fischer and Newman were co-founders of Traveling Jewish Theatre, 1978-2012)

Maya Khosla, All the Fires of Wind and Light, Sonoma County Poet Laureate, wildlife biologist
Ann Fisher-Wirth, The Bones of Winter Birds, co-editor of The Ecopoetry Anthology
Joshua McKinney, Small Sillion
Elizabeth Dougherty, Director of Wholly H2O
Mary Ellen Hannibal, Citizen Scientist: Searching for Heroes and Hope in an Age of Extinction
Lee Herrick, Scar and Flower, recent Fresno Poet Laureate
Kristin George Bagdanov, Fossils in the Making and Diurne
Sharon Coleman, Half Circle
Stephen Meadows, Fire and Rain: Ecopoetry of California contributor
Chris Olander, River Light, Nevada County Poet Laureate
Fernando Salinas, The League of United Latin American Citizens, ecopoet
Ken Waldman, Alaska's Fiddling Poet

River Of Words Youth Art & Poetry-winners 2018 poetry winners
California Poets In The Schools K–12 student poets
with poet-teachers
Maureen Hurley and Brennan deFrisco

Enter the drawing at noon (at the info booth) for 6 three-minute reading slots

Music by Ken Waldman and Lizzie Thompson, fiddle, cello, and mandolins

Books and Book Signing at the PEGASUS BOOK TENT

BART to Downtown Berkeley!
Civic Center Park is next to the Berkeley Farmers' Market, MLK Jr. Way at Center Street, one block west of downtown Berkeley BART.
Chairs, tent shade, and carpet squares for seating provided.
Pick up your lunch at the Farmers' Market. Bring your sunscreen, blanket, and picnic! For more info:, (510) 525-5476, (510) 612-3958


10:00: Strawberry Creek Walk—meet at Center & Oxford Streets
Nevada County poet laureate Chris Olander leads the Walk with poets Kristin George Bagdanov, Stephen Meadows, Fernando Salinas; "Hanging from Shallow Roots," An Eco-Dance with Sharon Coleman and Barry Ebner on acoustic guitar; nature commentary with Elizabeth Dougherty, director of Wholly H2O.
12:00: Welcome—Stand Up for the Earth!
Master(s) of Ceremonies: Kirk Lumpkin & Richard Silberg
Invocation: Ken Waldman, Alaska's Fiddling Poet, with musician Lizzie Thompson, cello, mandolin
"We Are Nature" Open Mic: 6 three-minute spots
Last call for Open Mic entries! Enter the drawing while the band plays!
Lee Herrick
1:00: Strawberry Creek Walk Poets:
Fernando Salinas
Stephen Meadows
Kirstin George Bagdanov
Sharon Coleman
Chris Olander
Elizabeth Dougherty
, Wholly H2O
Kim Shuck, San Francisco poet laureate
California Poets in the Schools with Brennan DeFrisco and Maureen Hurley
2:00: River Of Words Youth Art & Poetry Inspired By The Natural World
California Poets in the Schools with Brennan DeFrisco and Maureen Hurley
Ann Fisher-Wirth
Poetry and music with Ken Waldman and Lizzie Thompson
World on Fire, a poetry and music theatre ensemble on climate change, with Naomi Newman, Barbara Borden, percussionist, and Susanne DiVincenzo, cello. They will perform these poems:
1. "A Love Poem for the Earth," by Craig Santos Perez
2. "Let Them Not Say," by Jane Hirshfield
3. "Thanks," by W.S. Merwin
4. "Kitchen Table/Perhaps the World Ends Here," by Joy Harjo
5. "The Hag's Cosmology," by Naomi Newman
Mary Ellen Hannibal, Citizen Scientist
3:00: Joshua McKinney
Maya Khosla, Sonoma County poet laureate
Joseph Millar
Dorianne Laux
4:00: Patricia Smith

Visit River Village


Bay Nature

California Poets in the Schools

California Writer's Club

The Ecology Center/Berkeley Farmers' Market

Haight Ashbury Literary Journal


Juanita J. Martin, First Poet Laureate of Fairfield, CA

Left Margin Lit: East Bay Creative Writing Center

Marin Poetry Center

Milvia Street: Art and Literary Journal with the Poetree

Nomadic Press

Oakland Zoo

Pegasus Downtown – Book Tent

Poetry Flash

Reed Magazine

River Of Words Youth Art & Poetry Inspired By The Natural World

Sixteen Rivers Press

Sugartown Publishing

Zaum Literary Magazine

Click here for 2019 "River Village" Watershed Exhibitors Form—trade your exhibit fee for volunteering! Click here to pay table fee online Or mail attn: Watershed to address on form. For more information, or to volunteer or exhibit, contact

A collaboration of co-founder Robert Hass, U.S. Poet Laureate 1995-97 • Poetry Flash • Ecology Center/Berkeley Farmers' Market • Pegasus Books Downtown • Moe's Books • The East Bay Express • 100 Thousand Poets for Change

Watershed is grateful to The Watershed Keepers: individual donors, exhibitors & volunteers • This event is supported in part by Civic Arts Grant, City of Berkeley • Poets & Writers • Zellerbach Family Foundation • We thank our community partners Acme Bread Company • Berkeley Bowl Marketplace • Trader Joe's, Berkeley • Fourth Street Flowers

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