'Stafford's Lens' slideshow illustrates Oregon poetry
The Beaverton City Library presents a slideshow of William Staffords work as a photographer, capturing images of Oregon poets, on Sunday at 2 p.m. as part of the Oregon Reads 2014 project.
Jeremy Skinner will present the photography slideshow, and Tim Barnes will provide a poets perspective on the featured writers and read a poem by each.
William Stafford touched many readers with his poetry, and were excited to share this and other remarkable facets of his life, said Abigail Elder, library director.
Starting in 1966, Stafford began to chronicle his travels and the poets he met through photography. He set up his own darkroom to develop black and white negatives and prints. After returning home from poetry readings, Stafford would develop prints and send the best to the subject while keeping a personal copy.
In addition to taking photographs of poets, Stafford took self-portraits as well as photographs of his family, friends, colleagues and students at Lewis & Clark College. Upon his death in August 1993, Stafford had assembled a collection of more than 16,000 negatives.
Skinner has a masters degree in history, focusing most of his research on Oregons literary history. For 12 years, he was an archivist and special collections librarian at Lewis & Clark College, where he worked with the William Stafford Archives and was managing editor for William Stafford: An Annotated Bibliography. He is currently the library director for Oregons Curry Public Library.
Barnes recently retired from Portland Community College, where he taught literature, composition and creative writing. He authored several books of poetry and is on the board of the Friends of William Stafford. Barnes is the editor of Friends of William Stafford: A Newsletter for Poets & Poetry. He is also the creator and compiler of Everyone Out Here Knows: A Big Foot Tale, a picture book for children based on a Stafford poem.
This event is hosted by Lean Stenson, a Friends of William Stafford board member, author and host of the Studio Series in Portland, a monthly poetry reading and open mic.
This year marks the centennial of Staffords birth, and the Oregon Library Association has committed its 2014 Everybody Reads statewide program to the work of Oregons most celebrated poet. Libraries throughout the state will provide a variety of programs, conversations and activities sharing Staffords legacy as a writer, teacher and witness for peace.
The Beaverton City Library is located at 12375 S.W. Fifth St.