Saturday, December 28, 2013

Lulu presents Pierre-Andre Doucet January 18th at the Haven, Gabriola, BC

Lulu Performing Arts Society presents
Saturday, January 18th, 2014, 7:30pm
Phoenix Auditorium at the Haven

Praised for his sincere and colourful playing as well as for his modern and fascinating writing, pianist and author Pierre-André Doucet is rapidly establishing himself as one of Canada’s most captivating young artists.
Mr. Doucet premiered with Symphony New Brunswick in 2007, under maestro Airat Ichmouratov, and has since performed with Sinfonia de Lanaudière under Stéphane Laforest. An engaging collaborative pianist, he has worked with countless established vocalists, instrumentalists and ensembles, and has also performed and recorded with several renowned choirs and vocal ensembles, among them the Jeunes Chanteurs d’Acadie.
In addition to having been heard on Radio-Canada, CBC Radio and Espace musique, Mr. Doucet was one of seven emerging Canadian musicians to be featured online as part of Espace classique’s Flash jeunesse project. Furthermore, recent musical projects have seen him travel across Canada, from British Columbia to Newfoundland-Labrador, as well as to the United States, Germany, Belgium, Spain and the French territory of Saint-Pierre et Miquelon.

“Ticketless” tix are $20 in advance at the Village Liquor Store; $25 at the door; $5 for youth
(16 and under). For more information please email

Sunday, December 8, 2013


wish you
a happy holiday,
familiar faces with eyes
smiling, the comfort of hugs,
scent of cinnamon and allspice
cakes plumped with raisins, and mugs
 of mulled cider, rooms lit with candles, red
winter flowers or berries with green leaves,
favourite songs, board games, or long walks
in the forest knowing all these trees are
yours or that you belong to them
while birds flit 
to and from 
a feeder as
though time
itself is a celebration and all the world 
filled with joy

Friday, November 22, 2013

Thank you Naomi, Kim, Kim, Darryl, Robert, Lisa, Julie and Poetry Gabriola

It was a wonderful gathering last night to launch Lipstick Press' Beautiful Women and Robert Martens Little Creatures (Ekstasis 2013).

We couldn't have done it without you who came from far away and Poetry Gabriola. And we couldn't have had the drinks and snacks without Julie of The Old Crow Cafe.

Last but not least - thank you to all the people who came to listen. Poetry would not survive without you.

Monday, November 18, 2013

Poetry Gabriola sponsors Beautiful Poets, November 21, at The Old Crow Cafe on Gabriola

Thursday from 7 pm until 9: the evening begins with the regular open mic, then will be followed by these beauties reading their poems from the Beautiful Women anthology and other publications.

Disease and desire, mothering and the mundane propel Kim Clark’s ongoing journey between poetry and prose, page and stage. Her debut fiction collection, Attemptations (Caitlin Press), was launched in 2011 and one of its novellas has been optioned for a 90 minute feature film. Her chapbook, Dis ease ad De sire, the M anu S cript (Lipstick Press), came out in April, 2012. Her new poetry collection, Sit You Waiting, hit bookshelves in August, 2012 via Caitlin Press and she was a finalist in Theatre BC’s 2013 Playwrights competition. Professional stage-reading upcoming. She lives in Cedar on Vancouver Island.

Kim Goldberg's Red Zone collection of poems about urban homelessness as been taught in university literature courses. Her previous collection, Ride Backwards on Dragon, was a finalist for Canada's Gerald Lambert Award. She is a winner of the Rannu Fund Poetry Prize for Speculative Literature, the Goodwin's Award for Excellence in Alternative Journalism, and other distinctions. She is currently writing a nonfiction book about people sickened by WiFi and other sources of electromagnetic radiation. 

Darryl Knowles
Lives on Vancouver Island. He is an old fashioned sign painter who went on to a degree in graphic arts, and has been writing songs and poetry since Dick and Jane saw spot run.

Naomi BethWakan, Nanaimo’s inaugural Poet Laureate, has published over 40 books. Her most recent A Roller-coaster Ride: thoughts on aging (Wolsak and Wynn) and And After 80… (Bevalia Press).

Robert Martens grew up a village Mennonite, and so feels quite at home in the village of Gabriola. His poems address the loneliness of our times and attempt in some small way to heal the malaise. Robert has co-edited and co-written a number of books, including Half in the Sun, an anthology of Mennonite west coast writing. He has a manuscript of poems which he hopes will soon be published.

"ROBERT MARTENS' book "little creatures" must be read with caution, for inside its covers is a jumble tumble playground of poems, a riff on the existentialism of insects, creatures of twilight, and six-chambered souls. And oh, for a thousand legs to flea the flea, the fly, the rat, the snake, and crickets with moods. Shelled things and slimy, furry, and wondrously winged. Blood junkies that buzz in the night, hump pump the skin, tickle and creep, expire. Humans, too, in the book, transfixed by the brilliance of sun mirrored on beetle’s back, the poet, line after line, leading readers into the sadness of things. The glory."

-- Elsie K Neufeld, personal historian, poet, essayist and editor.

For further information or to sign up for the open mic portion email Lisa at, or Janet at

Deep gratitude and thanks to Poetry Gabriola and The Old Crow Cafe.

Saturday, November 16, 2013

Moon Language: November 17, 5pm at Phoenix Auditorium, The Haven

Join us from 5pm-6pm(ish) tomorrow at the Phoenix Auditorium for Moon Language, an intimate and eclectic musical journey that includes classics, covers, poetry, and improvisations featuring pianist and vocalist, Leah Hokanson, with special guests Tim Harrison on guitar and vocals, and Saburo Murata on saxophones.

Tickets are $15 in advance at Village Liquor Store, $20 at the door, and $5 for youth (16 and under). For more information please email

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Congratulations to Naomi Beth Wakan

Nanaimo's inaugural Poet Laureate. 

Here are some of the books published with Naomi's writing:

As well as her extraordinary accomplishment in publishing forty books, Naomi has always supported the achievements among new poets through poetry workshops on Gabriola Island.  Her wisdom and knowledge goes beyond literature, science, healing and peace, and includes that rarest of gifts - inclusive compassion.

Naomi is held in high esteem for these many reasons by all who have the fortune to work with her.

Friday, October 4, 2013

Tanka Workshop led by Naomi Beth Wakan at Old Crow Cafe October 17th

Calling all writers (or non-writers, come to that) who would like a fun hour or so of trying the oldest continual form of poetry writing in the world - tanka.

These five-liners can contain anything including the kitchen sink.

Within their five lines you'll be able to express the universe. Not an idle promise.

The facilitator is Naomi Beth Wakan, who recently performed her book of tanka that she wrote with David Bateman ("pause").

Naomi has been short-listed for the position of First Poet Laureate of Nanaimo and is well-known for her two recent books of poetry (which include many tanka) "Sex After 70", and "And After 80" (available at Page's Marina).

Time: October 17th, 7-8 pm
Place: The Old Crow Restaurant, Gabriola
Cost: by donation

Hope you can make it.

Monday, September 30, 2013

Submission call for young writers ~ Writing for Peace: DoveTales

2014 DoveTales Guidelines

DoveTales, an International Journal of the Arts, is an extension of our mission to promote writing that explores the many aspects of peace.  Our purpose is to expose young writers to a diverse collection of thoughtful works by established and emerging writers. The journal will also feature works by the winners of our annual Young Writer Competition.
There is no fee for submission, but please read our guidelines carefully.
The theme of our 2014 issue of DoveTales is Contrast. As in our first issue, we encourage contributors to take a broad view of the definition within the context of peace.
Submission guidelines here.

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

BEAUTIFUL WOMEN in New Westminster

launch of

BEAUTIFUL WOMEN an anthology

from Lipstick Press 2013

with poets

Sunday September 15th, 1-3 pm

followed by OPEN MIC

Host: Janene White
at Renaissance Books / Coffee Bar
43 6th St New Westminster
near Columbia SkyTrain Station 604-525-4566

Shelley Haggard writes, acts, does photography and watercolour painting, and works as a house painter. She has self published an anthology of poetry and photography called The Haggard Road.

Franci Louann’s recent publications have been in Silver Bow anthologies, Grace Grit & Gusto—Profiles of Remarkable Royal City Women (Vivalogue) and Jack Layton: Art in Action (Quattro Books). She manages Poetic Justice.

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Lipstick Press Taking a Break for Reflection and Reorganization

Lipstick regrets to say that we are unable to publish new manuscripts at this time as we need to re-structure our practice.

Since 2009 we have published some beautiful chapbooks by experienced and new poets.  It has been a beautiful journey but now we must stop and consider how to proceed so we can, at least, cover expenses.

Many of these publications are still available, except Picket Fence Diaries and Grief Blading Up.  If you wish to purchase any at this point please contact or leave a message on our Lipstick web page.

This blog will continue to run and cover updates regarding our poets and other announcements on poetry.

Thanks to all who have submitted, have worked with us, have ordered books or promoted them.

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Where in the world is Franci Louann?

Rumours are flying! Franci Louann is travelling across Canada bringing copies of Beautiful Women to sell at various locations.  Lipstick Press will be keeping in touch with Franci to report where she will be, as she takes to the skies, the roads, and the rails to bring Beautiful Women to Canadians everywhere and anywhere.

There may be a reading in New Westminster in September.

There are also rumours of a launch happening in Nanaimo in the fall too.

Watch this space for sightings of Beautiful Women behind a mic and between the covers.

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Elsie K. Neufeld author of Grief Blading Up has a birthday today

and to help her celebrate, Lipstick Press is awarding her the 2013 Literary Facebook Status Update prize ... which is ... well, um, this post here.

Wishing you happiness and success, and of course, many fans.

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Naomi Beth Wakan and David Bateman at The Old Crow Cafe July 18th

is happy to present


reading from ‘pause’— response tanka

TIME:        JULY 18TH, 2013, 7:00 pm - ALL WELCOME

Contact for information and

Naomi Beth Wakan, Gabriola’s resident and profuse poet, and Toronto performance poet, David Bateman, (who will be familiar to Gabriolans from the performances he has offered at Poetry Gabriola Festivals) will be presenting a reading of their dual-written poem “pause” at the Old Crow Café, Folklife Village, Gabriola, at 7 pm, on July 18th.

Soon after the 2010 event “Canada Speaks,” held at Dragon’s Lodge on Gabriola Island, where David offered a presentation, Naomi and David began to correspond by email and created, over the course of eight months, a full length manuscript in tanka form that chronicles their responses to a diverse array of life circumstances. From forms of drag and masquerade found in both culture and nature, to the daily chores of keeping homes in the city (David), and within the rural setting of Gabriola (Naomi), both poets strove to navigate the essence of an ancient form of Japanese poetry in order to reveal that that essence itself lies within so many opposing, contradictory, fleeting, and at times beautiful instances of reflection, meditation and celebration.

As a kind of call and response across generations, genders, and geographic sites, from two very different poets, pause explores the ways in which tanka can elegantly defamiliarize the familiar and bring two disparate voices together in conversation.

no matter 
how many words we say
to each other
the essence lies in the spaces between
the essence lies in the pauses                                                   (from ‘pause’)

The generous support of The League of Canadian Poets and Poetry Gabriola is gratefully acknowledged

Saturday, June 29, 2013

Happy Birthday Al Rempel

Author of The Picket Fence Diaries has a birthday today.  Hope it is happy Al.

Since publication of the chapbook, Al has published Understories and This Isn't the Apocalypse We Hoped For and been published in many anthologies.

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Haiku in Other Forms & Rengay Roundup July 21 on Gabriola

July 21, 2013

In Other Forms
The Gabriola Commons
675 North Road (opposite the elementary school)
10 am – 12 noon
Suggested donation $5

Rengay Roundup
The Poetry Yurt
At The Gabriola Commons
1:30 – 4:30 pm
Registration $10

At The Gabriola Commons Main House (Suggested donation $5)

9:55 am Welcome
Naomi Beth Wakan – Poetry  Gabriola
Vicki McCullough – Pacifi-kana

10 am – 12 noon

Haiku Moments on the Camino
Harvey Jenkins

Harvey introduces his memoir of pilgrimage on the popular Compostela de Santiago. He will talk about his personal choices in the use of prose and haiku to capture special moments and document his France-into-Spain journey.

Haibun Origins
Sonja Arntzen

With a few choice examples, Sonja will trace the origins of haibun in Japan from the poem-diaries of the 10th and 11th centuries through to the development of haibun as an independent genre in the 17th and 18th centuries. The focus will be on how entwining poetry into prose narratives of journeys and personal life opened up possibilities for expression that were not available to poetry or prose narrative on their own.

Haibun in the 21st Century
Susan Constable

Susan will read some current examples of the haibun form by authors from several different countries around the world. Touching on a variety of subject matter and styles, these examples will exemplify what is considered praiseworthy in modern day haibun.

Break: 10:50 – 11:00 am

Photo-Haiga Approaches and Visions
Carole MacRury, Jim Swift, and Michael Dylan Welch

Traditional Japanese haiga combined brush art (sumi-e) with a haiku poem done in brush calligraphy. Three photo-haiga artists present their unique perspectives on the evolution of haiga in the digital age.

Lunch break: 12 noon – 1:15 pm

Gabriola Photography Club

Local photographers will once again show photos produced in response to haiku by
poets with a connection to the Gabriola Haiku Gathering.

In the Poetry Yurt
at The Gabriola Commons
$10 registration fee

1:30 – 4:30 pm

Rengay Roundup
Michael Dylan Welch

Join Michael in exploring the collaborative linked verse form of rengay—consisting of six haiku or haiku-like verses by two, three, or six writers on a thematic focus. Combine the shared social benefits of renga and renku with a shorter, more accessible, and more readily publishable linked form of poetry. Come prepared to write collaboratively and have fun. For more info on rengay, visit

Contact Janet Vickers at to register.

Our facilitators:

Vicki McCullough, regional coordinator for Haiku Canada and a long time haiku volunteer with the Vancouver Cherry Blossom Festival, has organized the program for this gathering.

Harvey Jenkins is a long time member of Haiku Canada and received a Sakura Award from the Vancouver Cherry Blossom Festival in both 2011 and 2012.
His haiku has appeared in many magazines and anthologies.

Sonja Arntzen is a leading translator of Japanese classical texts, including Ikkyū and the Crazy Cloud Anthology and The Kagerō Diary.

Carole MacRury  has received many awards for her widely published haiku, tanka and photographic haiga.

Jim Swift is a leading exponent of photographic haiga and photographic tanka.

Michael Dylan Welch is founder of National Haiku Writing Month (NaHaiWrMo) and the Tanka Society of America, and cofounder of the Haiku North America conference, and the American Haiku Archives.

Susan Constable’s award winning haiku and tanka have appeared in numerous journals. She is currently the tanka editor for the on-line journal, A Hundred Gourds.

Special thanks to our sponsors and supporters

Gabriola Optical
#2–580 North Rd. 247-7223

Monday, May 20, 2013

Chap Book Launch - Woodwinds by P. C. Vandall

Hear P. C. Vandall read from her new chapbook

Wednesday May 22
7 - 9 pm
675 North Road

Pamela is a Gabriola poet and writer who resides here with her husband and two children.

Her work has appeared in numerous magazines, anthologies and websites. She is currently working on her first full length poetry collection.

Refreshments and books available to purchase.

For further information:

Friday, May 17, 2013

Susan J. Falk's Art Show - May 11, 2013 - McLellan Forest East

"Artist Susan J. Falk was inspired by the McLellan Forest East in Glen Valley, Langley and created many stunning paintings of the forest. Over 200 poets contributed poems to help save this forest, and Susan incorporated 12 of the poems directly into her paintings. On May 11, 2013, the poets joined Susan in celebrating her installation, by reading their poems next the paintings. The art is being sold by silent auction and partial proceeds will benefit the Watchers of Langley Forests (WOLF). The installation may be viewed until May 26 at The Fort Gallery in Fort Langley, 9048 Glover Road."

BACK ROW (L to R) Heidi Greco, E.D. Blodgett, Jamie Reid, Susan J. Falk, Susan McCaslin, Christopher Levenson, Ray McGinnis, Celeste Snowber, Catherine Owen; FRONT ROW: Daniela Elza, Roni Haggarty, Fiona Tinwei Lam, Pam Galloway, Elsie K. Neufeld.

Two Lipstick authors - Heidi Greco and Elsie K. Neufeld wrote poems included in that 12.

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Happy birthday Kim Clark

Kim's poem "Whether you like it" appears in the Beautiful Women anthology and her chapbook of poems Disease and Desire also is still available.

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Beautiful Women Unleashed

"Being essential, authentic, unfazed, theurgical, incandescent, flawed" and "utterly lovable" - is beautiful to Honey Novick, one of the poets in this anthology.

For Katherine L. Gordon beauty begins with love. "Love me as I am / For I am the softness of the world".

Whether you like it or not, says Kim Clark a "Beautiful Woman / is the one / who reflects your worth / [and] magnifies / your joy".

Darryl Knowles lists the strong women we see in history, on the screen, and includes "all the women in this world / who ever gave a f ... k / and never gave up."

Kate Marshall Flaherty remembers learning cursive writing in Grade 4 "under Miss Reed's giraffe lashes, / blinking" for she was the one who inspired her to write.

As a child L. Muirhead "never did want to be a girl / had always fit in with the boys" until her mother insisted it was time to wear a bra. When her brother's friend teased her about it she bloodied his nose.

Angeline Schellenberg's Oma lets down her long hair and suddenly she becomes a young girl again running through the grass.

"Like a soldier marching forward / you fought for independence" writes Debbie Okun Hill in her memorial to the journalist Malvena Hope Morritt.

Shelley Haggard recalls Jackie Ciano whose "vision / that the men who go fishing / create new lines and new knots / that the whales might escape" lived long enough to see the results of her crusade.

Waldemar Ens pays tribute to Feist - "unafraid / taking chances on the edge of disaster / fiery feet dancing on the rooftop ledge".

A mother's wisdom: "there’s no curfew / come home when it’s over / don’t drive fast" is the muse for Franci Louann's haiku.

Can a woman be beautiful when she is laid out in a casket? Louise Carson thinks so -"You model it for us
in sky blue with white hair, / your fastidious fashion sense / intact / before the flame".

Vikash Kumar attributes beauty to the dream "Of another world / A new realm, a divine vista".

Joy Donnell invests beauty in the imagined daughter as the centre of herself  "& find you to be not a woman but a world / walking so high gravity evades".

Beauty has long represented ideals and for Kim Goldberg one ideal is strength, courage: "caked in cow dung and dust, nothing / to slake her burning thirst, her sun-baked / lips, but her own thin spit".

For Vuong Pham, resignation. "rainy night— / somewhere else / the stars shine".

Weighing skin deep beauty with beauty on the inside, Naomi Beth Wakan, asks what "may prevent me being seduced / by a pair of wild brown eyes"?

Can beauty exist within the womb? Pd Lietz writes "moist muscle pulsating / I laboured to be smaller / she implored me to be mightier".

"For in the end it is / to one another that we turn, hands / groping in the dark" writes Ronnie R. Brown.

Heather Brager paints a full circle from the edge of woman-as-object to "the synonym of / protector, the /
reckless bard / a strumpet, girl".


Published by Lipstick Press
767 Chelwood Road, RR #1
Gabriola BC V0R 1X1

ISBN: 978-0-9880043-3-7

$10.00 plus shipping.

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Woodwinds by P. C. Vandall now available

Lipstick Press is pleased to announce the publication of P. C. Vandall's first chapbook titled "Woodwinds".

Pamela is a Gabriola poet and writer who resides there with her husband and two children.

Her work has appeared in numerous magazines, anthologies and websites. She is currently working on her first full length poetry collection. When she's not writing, she's sleeping.

Here is what writer Naomi Beth Wakan ("And after 80...") has to say:

Woodwinds is an apt title introducing a very welcome fresh new voice, Pamela Vandall, for the bittersweet sound of woodwinds is echoed so well in her poetry.

Her imaginatively metaphored pieces dig deep into archetypal images, however her characteristic striking rabbit's-foot-kick in her final lines not only adjust the poems into small miracles of tenderness, but also bring the reader back to the sharpness of reality. A fine first book.

Here is a sample of Pamela's poetry ~


He's the sound of pine and cedar crackling
in a forest, chain oil greased in his palms,
the low lying rustle of salal, sword
ferns, and chanterelles underfoot.  He's snow
crunching under heels of boots, the trumpet

of geese overhead, the drizzle of rain
off black silk boughs. He's the thwack of logs,
the flop of a jean jacket, the swoop
of waxwings to air as the axe catches
glints of light.  He's the shake of leathery

drenched leaves, the brush stroke of branches, 
the sprinkle of saw dust in his damp brown hair.
He's the sound of the wheel barrow creaking
towards the house, one tire deflating soft
as a stiff breeze in snow.  He's the sound of fire

wood being split and stacked, winters breath
haloed in hemp smoke. It's the flutter
of his rumpled blue shirt tied round his waist,
the thump of logs piled beneath the window
sill in tidy rows.  It's the lumbering 

footsteps on stairs, the squeak of the screen door,
the spark of a Red Bird match.  This man who
scarcely says a word can divine a chore
into music.  He witches sound like water
from a woodpile, resonating a pitch

that flows a perfect cord between us.

Published by Lipstick Press
767 Chelwood Road
Gabriola BC V0R 1X1

ISBN:  978-0-9880043-2-0

$10.00 plus shipping and handling
To order email:

Saturday, April 27, 2013

Art can change your mind and change the world

Dear Han Shan Poets:

A local artist in Langley named Susan Falk has been inspired by McLellan Forest and by some of the poems of the Han Shan poets to create a series of forest paintings in which she has embedded phrases from selected forest poems. Unfortunately, Susan was able to work with only 13 of the many excellent poems contributed to the initiative.

On Saturday May 11 from 12-3 pm at The Fort Gallery in Fort Langley, Susan is having an art show opening during which thirteen of the Han Shan poets will be reading their forest poems.
You are most cordially invited to attend this wine and cheese gala if you happen to live within a reasonable range of the area. If not, I’m sure you will be with us in spirit.

Susan is conducting a silent auction of her work whereby proceeds from the sale of the paintings will go to the continuing work of WOLF (Watchers of Langley Forests) to ensure that the forest is officially and permanently protected.

It would be a pleasure to see some of you there to support our endeavour and your fellow poets. Perhaps there will be future occasions where I am free to invite more of you to perform your work.

Please circulate the attached e-vite widely to your friends and associates. It contains all the pertinent information.

All the best,
Susan McCaslin

Sunday, April 21, 2013

Oops I missed Robert Martens birthday

which was yesterday.  

(This is the danger of keeping tabs on birthdays - some get missed.)

Robert Martens is the author of Poltergeist which was published in 2011 and shortlisted for the bpNichol Chapbook award in 2012.

Hope it was happy Bob.

Monday, April 15, 2013

Poetry goes Swish

Marion Quednau
...says Marion Quednau who is organizing a reading to celebrate National Poetry Month, April 18th, in Gibsons. Doors open at 6:30pm at Swish (309-287 Gower Point Road, Gibsons)

Three BC poets will be reading - myself (Janet Vickers), Heidi Greco - previous Surrey poet-in-residence, and Gibson's new bard, Marion Quednau - one of the five 2012 Canada Writes Poetry shortlist.

Admission is free.  You can find more information in Thursday, April 11th issue of The Local.

We gratefully acknowledge support from the Canada Council of the Arts and the League of Canadian Poets

Lipstick Press is not publishing books now

Dear Poets Sorry to let you know we have not been publishing chapbooks since 2010. We did some online publishing - mainly for social iss...