Weekly Update 3.18.19
"These days I write more consciously and willingly. Sometimes I trick myself into writing to escape more daunting tasks like arranging dinner-parties or washing the kitchen floor. More often I write to expunge the memories and images I have been carrying around for years. When I succeed in putting those moments down on paper, I feel liberated from them in both positive and negative ways. It’s as if I’ve stepped outside those experiences and have objectified them so that they are no longer a part of me. I still ‘own’ them but they no longer own me."
Irish Born Poet and University of Vermont Senior Lecturer
Friends, this week has been incredibly difficult. We want to once again thank you for your continued community efforts in and around Windham County and for your core moral belief in justice and equality. At times it can feel like your presence at an event or meeting doesn't matter when so much is happening around us; take this email as a gentle reminder that your very presence at a meeting or event alters it, for the better. You are valuable, you are needed, and you matter.
We continue our series on Women's History in Vermont this week with a nod to an immigrant from Ireland who makes her home in Vermont, in honor of St. Patrick's Day today. This week we spotlight Irish born Vermont poet and educator Angela Patten.
Angela Patten is a native of Dublin, Ireland, and has lived in the United States since 1977. She received a B.A. in English from UVM and an MFA in Writing (Poetry) from the Vermont College of Fine Arts.
She is the author of three poetry collections, In Praise of Usefulness (Wind Ridge Books) which celebrates the extraordinary in ordinary things, Reliquaries and Still Listening (both from Salmon Poetry, Ireland), and a prose memoir, High Tea at a Low Table: Stories from an Irish Childhood (Wind Ridge Books), which combines recollections of growing up in Ireland with some unexpectedly traumatic experiences as a young adult in America.
Her work has been widely published in literary journals and anthologies including Birchsong: Poetry Centered in Vermont and The White Page/An Bhileog Bhan: Twentieth-Century Irish Women Poets (Salmon Poetry).
Angela’s poem “Tracks” won the 2016 Cape Cod Cultural Center National Poetry Prize. In 2012 she was awarded a Kroepsch-Maurice Award for Excellence in Teaching. She has received grants for poetry from the Vermont Arts Council and the Vermont Community Foundation and has been Visiting Writer at Stonecoast in County Kerry, Ireland and The Frost Place, Franconia, NH among others.
Ms. Patten now lives in Burlington, Vermont, and is a Senior Lecturer in English at the University of Vermont. Please enjoy a sample of Angela Patten's poetry below.
The Pancake Artist (Angela Patten ©, LiveEncounters.net 2017)
She only cooked them once a year
on Shrove Tuesday so we didn’t dwell
on the looming Lenten fast
as we raced home after school
to see her lift down the big black frying-pan
and heat it over the blue gas burner
until the fat spat and sizzled.
She’d hoist the milk jug full of batter,
pour a creamy stream into the pan,
tilting and tipping it to a seamless circle.
We hovered famished at her elbow
as the humps and craters formed—
brown sienna over khaki, burnt
umber over buttermilk. It was all
in the timing. One flick of her gifted wrist
and she’d landed it like a fish
on your plate. You rolled it with sugar,
a squeeze of lemon, scarfed it down.
Then it was back to the end of the queue
until your turn returned again.
No rest for her aching shoulders
until we were all contented sinners,
licking our lips, as full as eggs.
-To experience Ms. Patten’s poetry as read by the author please click below: https://www.cctv.org/watch-tv/programs/irish-womans-voice-poetry-angela-patten
-To read about Ms. Patten’s upbringing in her own words, click here: http://greenmountainsreview.com/why-write-18-angela-patten/
-For current information about Ms. Patten and her husband, please click here: http://www.carraigbinn.com/index.php
-To read more of Ms. Patten’s poetry, please click here: https://poethead.wordpress.com/2018/07/23/glendalough-sonnet-and-other-poems-by-angela-patten/
HAPPENING TODAY, SUNDAY, MARCH 17th, 2019
Say No to Hate: Faith Communities Stand Together
Sunday, March 17th, 2019 in front of St. Michael’s Episcopal Church (at the corner of Bradley Ave and Putney Road, Brattleboro, VT, 05301). 1pm.
Please join the Brattleboro Interfaith Leadership Association as we come to gather to mourn the loss of those killed in the Muslim massacre in Christchurch, New Zealand. We will stand against acts of violence and hatred against Muslims as well as all forms of hatred.
Bring a sign that is specifically related to standing against hatred and bigotry and that reaffirms your stance with our Muslim brothers and sisters.
We will sing, pray, have some silence, and hear some thoughts from faith leaders. This is your chance to let the Muslim people of our region know you stand with them and for all of us to be visible in our rejection of the hatred that is so visible in our country today.
Gasping Whiteness: Play and Community Workshop to Benefit The Root Social Justice Center
hosted by The Root Social Justice Center and Sandglass Theater
Sunday, March 17th, 2019 at Sandglass Theater (17 Kimball Hill, Putney, VT, 05346). 1pm-3pm.
Ages 10 years+. 100% of the proceeds from the performance will benefit The Root Social Justice Center. Tickets and more information can be found at www.gaspingwhitenessputney.brownpapertickets.com.
The play and community workshop Gasping Whiteness explores the impact of white supremacy on parenting in progressive, middle class communities.
The play tells the stories of two families (one white and one African-American) as they encounter divides of race and struggle to respond. Presented as a staged reading, Gasping Whiteness runs one hour and is followed by a one hour facilitated dialogue, exploring how the themes of the play speak to our lives and our stories. The cross-racial, cross-generational ensemble includes playwright Will MacAdams and social justice educator/theatre maker Trenda Loftin (who co-directs and also performs in the piece); two Western MA child actors, ages ten and eleven; and Atlanta-based visual artist Angela Davis Johnson, who developed its visual landscape.
HAPPENING THIS WEEK, MONDAY, MARCH 18th, 2019-SUNDAY, MARCH 24th, 2019
Planning Sessions for the Climate Crisis Resolution
Tuesday, March 19th, 2019 at 6pm and
Friday, 22nd, 2019 at 16 Washington Street, Brattleboro, VT, 05301). For more information please contact 802-490-9363.
The climate crisis threatens the end of the world. It's unthinkable. We are paralyzed thinking about it, and paralyzed by denying it. I feel, strangely, that a breakthrough can only come by opening our hearts. I believe that if we admit our fears and denial, and speak with desperate perfect honesty, then we will be able to think and make progress together. Let's not dispute particular proposals before creating that moment at Brattleboro Representative Town Meeting when we can cry in love or fear and somehow be real with each other. Representative Town Meeting is Saturday at the High School.
Protest Vigil at TD Bank
sponsored by Post Oil Solutions
Friday, March 22nd, 2019 (and every Friday) at TD Bank Brattleboro (215 Main Street, Brattleboro, VT). In front of the building. 12pm-1pm. Signs will be provided
TD is a major investor in Tar Sands. TD helps to fund the Dakota Access Pipeline. What You Can Do (besides attending the vigils): If you’re a TD depositor, change banks! Founded in 2005, Post Oil Solutions is a 501c3 community organizing project in Southeastern Vermont whose mission is to help empower the people of the Central Connecticut River Valley bioregion in this era of global warming and climate change to develop sustainable, resilient , collaborative, and socially just communities leading to a self- and community-sufficient post petroleum society.
One Month in Tanzania with Kathy Kingston
Friday, March 22nd, 2019 at the Westminster West Congregational Church (44 Church Street, Westminster West, VT). 5pm. Bring snacks if you can. For more information please contact [email protected].
Kathy Kingston a homesteader and goat farmer in Westminster West, has just returned from an immersion trip to Tanzania, where she lived in the community center of a rural Tanzanian village. She will share with us what she observed of how they live and farm, what matters to them, and how the culture is influenced by colonization and capitalist pressures from the West.
We invite you to join us at this meeting of the Living Earth Action Group. We meet every Friday at 5, in the church. We strive for inclusiveness and loving wholeness of all Earthlings. Bring snacks if you can. Contact: [email protected]
The 28th Annual Women's Film Festival
sponsored by the Women’s Freedom Center
Friday, March 22nd, 2019-Saturday, March 30th, 2019 at the New England Youth Theatre (100 Flat Street, Brattleboro, VT, 05301). Times vary with performances.
The 28th annual Women’s Film Festival in Brattleboro, VT is a celebration of movies from around the world, and a platform for women to tell their own amazing stories. Over the course of two weekends 35 documentaries, feature films, and shorts will be screened. Something for everyone! With films about the arts, friendship, activism, sports, lesbian/queer lives, motherhood, gender roles, religion, fashion, radium, romance, and so much more.
Film schedule can be found here: http://womensfilmfestival.org/festival-schedule/
Tickets for individual films are $10/generous, $9/general admission, $8/discounted admission. A five-movie pass is available for $40. Passes can be purchased online at: womensfilmfestival.org/tickets , in person at Everyone's Books in Brattleboro, or by calling 802-257-7367 during business hours.
The event raises funds for the vital work of the Women’s Freedom Center, the non-profit domestic and sexual violence organization providing shelter, advocacy and support to southeastern Vermont for over 45 years.
Thanks to these generous sponsors for helping make the Women’s Film Festival possible: Chroma Technology Corp, SIT Graduate Institute, Thompson House, Brattleboro Area Hospice Brattleboro Food Co-op, Brattleboro Memorial Hospital, Tracy J Sloan Cpa, Windham Movement Apparel, Sobo Studio, Vermont Jazz Center, Green Mountain Crossroads, AIDS Project of Southern Vermont, Gallery in the Woods, and more.
Brattleboro Winter Farmers Market
a project of Post Oil Solutions
Saturday, March 23rd, 2019 (and every Saturday thru March 30) in the C.F. Church Building (80 Flat Street, Brattleboro, VT, 05301). 10am-2pm. Accepting credit, debit, and EBT. Crop Cash turns $10 EBT into $20 every week. Lunch cafe and live music. For info email [email protected], call 802-869-2141, or visit us at www.brattleborowinterfarmersmarket.org.
New Location! Larger and more accessible. Free Parking. All local - farm produce, meats, syrup, fresh baked goods, cheeses, fruits, cider, pickles, preserves, handmade jewelry, pottery, soaps and more. Building community every week.
ICE/CBP Resistance & Defending Human Rights Training
sponsored by Post Oil Solutions
Saturday, March 23rd, 2019 at the Brattleboro Food Coop (2 Main Street, Brattleboro, VT, 05301) in the Community Room (please use the 7 Canal Street entrance). 1pm-3pm. This training is offered free of charge, but registration is requested with your phone number. Please contact Tim Stevenson at [email protected].
ICE Checkpoints are going up unannounced (they can do this within 100 miles from the border, seacoast, international airports). People vulnerable to ICE and Border Patrol actions are being snatched away on their way to work or to appointments at an alarming rate. They are held in the Dover, NH detention facility, and deported. We need to inform and help re-direct those individuals, and at the same time demonstrate strong community resistance to ICE and CBP.
Two women, Kira Kelley (National Lawyers Guild) and Asma Elhuni (United Valley Interfaith Project) are offering trainings.We need people at various risk or inconvenience levels of involvement, from warning motorists at highway overpasses with bright banners about an upcoming checkpoint, and driving cars with signs attached in loops on the Interstate, to non-cooperation as a driver when asked for name at checkpoints, and spreading information on 'Know Your Rights' at our own "checkpoints". This training will prepare you to carry out any of these tasks. Please get back to Tim ASAP if you (or anyone else you know) would like to participate in this ICE/CBP Resistance & Defending Human Rights Training, so that you might participate in any of the kind of actions mentioned above. Thank you for considering this important opportunity.
Mother Up! Monthly Meet-Up
Monday March 25th, 2019 at KidsPLAYce (20 Elliot St., Brattleboro, VT, 05301). 5:30pm-7:30pm. A vegetarian meal and childcare for ages 10 and under will be provided. RSVP helpful, but not required. Contact Abby Mnookin for more info at [email protected].
Mother Up!: Families Rise Up for Climate Action is a project of 350Vermont that brings together families to talk about the tough realities of climate change and to participate in the transition to a healthier and safer world. Jessica Dolan, a Brattleboro MU! parent and Scholar of Environmental Anthropology, Ethnobotany, and Indigenous Studies will be presenting, "The Restorative Ecology of Peace: Haudenosaunee values for caring for community and Mother Earth." In this talk, Jess will share her doctoral research and learning journey studying Haudenosaunee environmental philosophy and relationships with land. Haudenosaunee traditional knowledge is a distinct Indigenous knowledge system that offers pathways to integrated social and ecological health, and methods for us to re-think inter and intra cultural community resilience and survival in these times of climate change.
Know Your Rights in the Era of #MeToo: A Community Conversation
co-sponsored by the Women’s Action Team, the Women’s Freedom Center
Wednesday, March 27th, 2019 at Brooks Memorial Library (224 Main Street, Brattleboro, VT, 05301). 6pm-8pm.
This is a free event. For more information please contact [email protected].
We want to empower women and all survivors of sexual violence to know their rights, with the goal of creating a community where people are not afraid to come forward with their stories. Join the Women's Action Team, the Women's Freedom Center and our guest speakers for an open community conversation.
Cara Cookson, Victim Rights Attorney
Deborah Lee Luskin, Writer, Speaker, and Educator
Michael S. Lewis, First Amendment Attorney
James Valente, Trial Lawyer
Climate Change Café Presents: Climate Vision 2020
a project of Post Oil Solutions
Tuesday, April 2nd, 2019 at Brooks Memorial Library (224 Main Street, Brattleboro, VT, 05301). 6:30pm-8pm. Free. Light Refreshments Available. For more information please email [email protected].
Returning to the Café after his well-received talk in 2017, Climate change specialist Dr Edward Cameron will present the key lessons from the 2018 IPCC 1.5C report and outline a vision for building a low-carbon, climate-resilient and inclusive economy in Vermont, throughout the United States and across the globe. He will look beyond the climate change challenge and explore how each of us can use this moment to build a just and sustainable world for all.
Edward Cameron is a Senior Advisor (Consultant) with the World Business Council for Sustainable Development. He has worked with policy makers in the U.S, as well as internationally through the UN to be more ambitious on the climate.
Common Ground for Climate Action
Sunday, April 14th, 2019, at Neighbors’ Hall at Solar Hill (229 Western Ave, Brattleboro, VT, 05301). 2pm-5pm.
Soil is the glue that holds our landscape and our communities together. The soil carbon sponge is a critical component of adapting to our changing climate and mitigating the effects of flooding and drought. Join members of the Vermont Healthy Soils Coalition to hear about the overlooked superhero for climate correction: The ground beneath our feet!
Facilitators include author Grace Gershuny of Barnet and compost and soil health educator Cat Buxton of Saxton.
RESOURCE FOR WeCAN: Rapid Response Text Alert System
When WeCAN began Song & Solidarity set up a Rapid Response Text Alert System for WeCAN Groups. Directions for signing up are on WeCAN's website, here: https://www.wecantogether.net/rapid_response We were reminded of the Rapid Response text alerts system as President Trump moves towards firing Mueller. In the event Mueller is fired, MoveOn is planning a nation-wide simultaneous protest. The trick will be to get the word out fast if/when the time comes. We are grateful to Song and Solidarity for providing this service.
STANDING REGULAR MEETINGS
Brattleboro State Representatives’ Updates and Community Conversation
First Saturday of the Month, alternating between 10am and 4pm (2.2.19 was at 10am). Location information to follow. Childcare available upon request by contacting [email protected].
As promised, all three of your Brattleboro State Representatives, Mollie Burke, Emilie Kornheiser, and Tristan Toleno, will gather in Brattleboro to host a community conversation and share updates from the first few weeks of the legislative session. Our series of monthly conversations— scheduled for the first Saturday of the month— will alternate between 10am and 4pm.
Women Veterans Weekly Coffee and Tea Social
Thursday Mornings at Brattleboro Legion Post 5 Inc. (32 Linden Street, Brattleboro, VT, 05301). 9am-10am.
All female veterans are invited to join in the Women Veterans group coffee held at the American Legion. All women veterans are welcome. You do not need to be a Legion member.
Lost River Racial Justice, Black Lives Matter-South, and People Of Color Caucus Regular Meeting
Reoccurring racial justice organizing meetings every 2nd Monday at The Root Social Justice Center (The Whetstone Studio of the Arts, 28 Williams Street, Brattleboro, VT, 05301) on the First Floor. 6pm-8pm. Childcare provided. Fragrance & nut free space.
Youth 4 Change
Meetings are held on the 1st and 3rd Mondays of the month from 5:30pm-8pm.
For more information please contact Youth 4 Change at [email protected].
5:30pm: Drop in homework time and art making
6:30pm: Meeting and Organizing
Youth 4 Change is for local-area youth 12-22 interested in political organizing around local/state/national social justice issues that are important to them. Brattleboro area advocates and educators are holding a space, and assisting youth in building a strong personal tool kit to organize for change. Using a variety of creative methods, we aim to enable youth with tools for resilience, courage and compassion, while fostering their ability to speak up about issues that matter to them, and to take action in the name of love and liberation for all people. Come explore issues of racial, economic and gender justice through art, movement, first-hand accounts and contemplative practices. Connect with area youth around the issues that matter to you and strengthen your tool kit for action!
ONGOING EDUCATIONAL PROGRAMMING
Sundays at 12pm on Brattleboro Community Radio 107.7FMTo stream live: Visit www.wvew.org
Indigo Radio, deepening understanding and making connections! IndigoRadio is a group of area educators seeking to learn through engaging with others in our community and throughout the world. We will be talking about educational and social issues both globally and locally and connecting them to our lives and Brattleboro community. Find us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/indigoradiowvew/. For archive recordings of past shows: https://soundcloud.com/user-654648353.
We'd like to encourage you to bring a friend or neighbor with you and shake off your March cabin fever at an event together this week! We look forward to seeing you and your companion there.