Just Poets Annual Picnic & Le Mot Juste 2017

On Saturday, June 3rd, Just Poets held its annual picnic. This event always gives JP members a chance to catch up with each other as well as celebrate the publication of our yearly anthology Le Mot Juste

The 13th edition of Le Mot Juste is dedicated to our good friends, Michael & Carolyn Czarnecki of FootHills Publishing. Celebrating 30 years of publishing, Michael & Carolyn have hand-made every LMJ edition.

The 13th edition of Le Mot Juste is dedicated to our good friends, Michael & Carolyn Czarnecki of FootHills Publishing. Celebrating 30 years of publishing, Michael & Carolyn have hand-made every LMJ edition.

This year's editor, Kitty Jospe, shared a write-up of our big day:

A hearty thank you to Karla Linn Merrifield who hosted the Just Poets annual picnic for the third year in a row.  In addition to a feast of delicious foods, we had a visual feast of poetry, starting with a couch covered by books generously donated by Bill Heyen. As he modestly said, it’s because his publishers are going out of business.  Karla suggested that people wanting to match his generosity make a $5 donation to Just Poets.  I believe she meant in particular for the hardcover copy of Hiroshima Suite with the stunning cover illustration by DeLoss McGraw, The Fish, but certainly, there were so many other books to choose from.

Other poets brought works as well--the top drawer of a chest was open to disclose titles.  Facing the couch was a delightful photo display Bart White put up of members and their activities.

After we ate, Bart gave a lovely overview of all the activities of Just Poets and all the people who worked behind the scenes to create wonderful programs and community connections.  He read a poem by Maril Nowak as an example of the fine work produced in JP meetings.                      

Mahone Bay, Nova Scotia
Mid-afternoon waves rising to collapse
waves jazzing the pebbled shore
waves in a shimmy of sunlight
waves in a rupture of the bag
of diamonds on the pier.

It’s like this:
When you watch the water dance
you have to dance along.
When you watch the water toss
its treasure you have to grab for it.
When you watch the water’s weave
you will wear that new coat home.

After Bart's brief but pointed year-in-review, we had a fantastic read-around where everyone shared a poem of their own. Some read from this year's Le Mot Juste, others recited new material or old favorites.

It was a great day, a beautiful display of exactly what this group has to offer. As Karla, our gracious host, remarked at the conclusion of the day: "Damn, we're good." I could not possibly agree more.