ONLINE: William Stafford Birthday Celebration

Wednesday, January 19, 2022 - 7:00pm to 8:00pm

The Lake Oswego Public Library and Friends of William Stafford present an evening of poetry in honor of William Stafford on Wednesday, January 19 at 7pm via Zoom. Registration details below. 

Each year the Lake Oswego Public Library and the Friends of William Stafford celebrate the birthday of William Stafford. Born in Kansas in 1914, William Stafford later moved to Lake Oswego, Oregon and taught English literature at Lewis and Clark College. Stafford published numerous volumes of poetry and prose during his lifetime including Traveling Through the Dark, for which he won the National Book Award in 1963.


Featured Readers

Erin Coughlin Hollowell lives at the end of the road in Alaska, where she directs Storyknife, a women writers retreat, and the Kachemak Bay Writers’ Conference. Her poetry collections Pause, Traveler and Every Atom are published by Boreal Books, an imprint of Red Hen Press. Her collection Corvus and Crater is forthcoming from Salmon Poetry in 2023.

Emmett Wheatfall lives in Portland, Oregon where he writes, records, publishes and performs poetry. Fernwood Press, an imprint of Barclay Press has published 2 books of Emmett's poetry. His collection titled As Clean as a Bone was published in May 2018 by Fernwood Press. As Clean as a Bone was a 2019 Eric Hoffer Award Finalist as well as a da Vinci Eye award finalist. Our Scarlet Blue Wounds is his latest collection and was published in November 2019.

Patty Wixon was the first president of Friends of William Stafford, and served on the Board for ten years. Patty spent several years volunteering in the William Stafford Literary Archives, producing five decades of Stafford’s readings and interviews on 97 CDs. For twenty-five years she helped organize two series in Southern Oregon of visiting writers who presented public readings and gave workshops to students and teachers. Patty’s poems have appeared in regional and national literary journals in print and online and in six anthologies. She has four books of poetry, most recently The Great Hunt and Other Poems, published by Cyclone Press 2021. In 2014, Patty and her husband received Oregon’s Stewart H. Holbrook Literary Legacy Award.

Vince Wixon’s most recent book of poetry is Laying By, published by Flowstone Press in 2017. In the late 80s and early 90s he coproduced videos on William Stafford, collected on one DVD, William Stafford: Life and Poems. After William Stafford’s death, Vince and Patty Wixon helped set up the William Stafford Archives. Vince helped make the first cut of poems for the Stafford’s The Way It Is: Selected and New Poems. With Paul Merchant, he edited three other Stafford books, including Sound of the Ax, a collection of Stafford’s aphorisms and aphoristic poems. On the Stafford Archives website, you can read Vince and Paul Merchant’s article “William Stafford and His First Publishers: The Making of West of Your City and Traveling through the Dark.”