Ken Westdorp – Surrey Muse

Ken Westdorp is a longtime Surrey poet, painter and oragami artist who has just published his first collection of poems titled Gateway to Obscurity. Ken had begun writing as a child but most of his published work has been done within the last 10 years. The first thing he ever wrote was a short story about imaginary animals, and his first poem was written either for mother’s day or Valentine’s day. Earlier, a couple of his poems appeared in ‘We Are Newton’ anthology. Inspired by Frank Miller and Alan Moore, Ken is now working on a follow up collection Strength and Vulnerability that will take ‘a much broader view of the human condition and the way it relates to various aspects of the environment’.

Ken lives with his wife in the Whalley area where they devote a large portion of their time volunteering to assist homeless people living on the ‘Strip’.

Contact Ken
kennethwaynewestdorp@gmail.com

At the August 25 gathering of Surrey Muse, Ken will be our BookSigning Author. More about the event is here: august-25-gathering

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Surrey Muse gatherings take place
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‘Surrey Muse’ a poem by Val Parks

Erato
the muse of poetry
is here with us tonight,
as she has been since
the beginning of spoken word.
Poetry is in the soul of mankind;
it is Erato who draws it out,
who encourages us to speak truth,
forces us to stand exposed
and naked before the world.
She has inspired such greats as
Longfellow, Edna St Vincent Millay,
Shelley, Wordsworth and many others.
She watches over the child
composing rhymes for his amusement,
because she sees a future poet.
Erato is here with us tonight
in this community of like-minded people,
in this society of artistic expression.
She is here with us tonight
in Surrey.

Dedicated to Surrey Muse, this poem was presented by Val Parks in the open mic session of April 28/2017 gathering.

Image from Pinterest.

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Katheren Szabo – Surrey Muse


Katheren Szabo is a poet, arts activist and a vibrant community organizer. Her poems have been published in over 20 poetry chapbooks and theme based ezines including We Are Newton, Hands & Heart, Bulbs & Beauty. She is a co-founder of Cedar Bark Poets, a presentation group that meets every month; and, a regular contributor to Friends of the Grove and The Plot in Newton, Surrey. Katheren began writing poetry as code, at 11 years of age, to keep her diary safe from her older siblings. ‘I have kept it all‘ she says, ‘and now have a large pile of dusty journals that hold my poetic life within. I am not a public poet and struggle to give voice to my words. We shall embark together on breaking the mute silence of my writing on May 26th at Surrey Muse Event. See you there!’

Visit Katheren on Facebook
facebook.com/katheren.szabo
Contact Katheren
katheren_szabo@yahoo.ca

At the May 26 gathering of Surrey Muse, Katheren will begin the Open Mic Session. More about the event is here: may-26-gathering-of-surrey-muse

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Surrey Muse At Large (SMAL) with VG PlayRoom at Camp Alexandra – Feb to June 2017

Surrey Muse At Large is commencing it’s first session in January, with regular programming from February to June 2017, in partnership with Virginia Gillespie’s VG Playroom at Alexandra Neighbourhood House.

Surrey Muse At Large is an attempt to take a shorter form of Surrey Muse programming out of libraries and into communities that may not be able to otherwise access it. The concept is two-fold: to provide an interdisciplinary art and literature presentation stage with a discussion component to the local community of writers, readers and performers; and, to provide it long enough so that the possibility of emerging localized presentation groups becomes stronger. As well, the concept benefits presenting poets, authors, artists and performers by opening new audiences and communities to their work.

SMAL at Camp Alexandra will be of two hour duration, with shorter presentation and discussion time slots but ample Open Mic. We’ll be engaged at the location from November, and before beginning regular SMAL programming in February, we’ll launch a couple of poetry books by local authors in January, introduce SMAL, and get input from the participants. At the end of the June gathering, the local group may decide to continue in their favored ways.

We are privileged to be working with Virginia Gillespie, who, among other things, is passionate about combining word, sound and image- she had been working on different projects to bring various forms and expressions together, and having SMAL at Camp A is a step in her continuing journey. Through VG PlayRoom, Virginia offers a larger vision in community building and organizing, of which, this year, SMAL is a part. Surrey Muse has supported VG PlayRoom to apply for a cultural grant from City of Surrey to help engage Surrey’s diverse arts communities. As well, we share Virginia’s desire to re-vitalize the Camp A community by generating regular art and literary activities at that historic location.

SMAL is one of the two projects that Surrey Muse had initiated in 2016 to celebrate our Fifth Anniversary this month. The other project was the July-October trial run of Surrey Muse Writers to determine if there was need for a drop-in critique group for writers in Surrey. Surrey Muse Writers will continue once-a-month on regular basis from Spring 2017.

For more information and feedback
VG PlayRoom : vgplayroom@gmail.com
Surrey Muse : surrey.muse@gmail.com

Details will be posted here
surreymuse.wordpress.com/projects

Fauzia Rafique
Coordinator, Surrey Muse

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Be the first Poet Laureate of the City of Surrey – Apply Today

Press Release
March 20, 2015

poet laureate poster Dateline June 30, 2015

Surrey Muse is delighted to announce that the City of Surrey is looking for its first Poet Laureate!

It’s a two or a three-year term. Eligible are the poets who use ‘spoken word poetry, written poetry, or multimedia demonstrations of poetry’ and who ‘reside in Surrey or the Lower Mainland (with preference given to Surrey residents) or to poets who are strongly connected to Surrey through their work, who have an established body of work, and who have been acknowledged for prominent contributions in their career.’

The Poet Laureate ‘will be chosen to act as an ambassador’ for the City of Surrey and the People of Surrey, ‘advocating for literacy and the literary arts and helping to raise the status of poetry, language, and the arts’ in the everyday lives of Surrey residents. And so, we encourage poets from diverse backgrounds to apply. Applications are sought by the City of Surrey in partnership with Surrey Libraries, Cultural Development Advisory Committee, Surrey Arts Services, Surrey International Writers’ Conference, Arts Council of Surrey, Creative Writing at Simon Fraser University, Semiahmoo Arts, and Surrey Muse.

To apply, and for more information
surreylibraries.ca/poetlaureate
poetry@surrey.ca

Surrey Muse is grateful to Author Heidi Greco for putting this project in motion, to Surrey Libraries (SL) for taking it on, and to the City of Surrey for funding it. Appreciation to Alison Rajah, Barbara Cooper, Barbara Gould, Carol Girardi, kc dyer, Ursula Maxwell Lewis and Wayde Compton for their guiding roles, and special thanks to Meghan Savage and others at the SL for making it happen.

Fauzia Rafique
gandholi.wordpress.com
For Surrey Muse
surrey.muse@gmail.com
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