Fraser Valley Poets Society

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  • A Poets Passion Revisited

    A Poets Passion Revisited by T M Broadworth

    A Poets Passion Revisited by T. M. Broadworth - A collection of personal writings and photo art celebrating the complexities of life.

  • A Familiar Shore

    A Familiar Shore by Emily Isaccson. Stories of four women told in poetry, parable and myth

  • The Healing Power of Nature

    The Healing Power of Nature - cover image

    The Healing Power of Nature by Satwant Kaur Pandher. This full-color hardcover book contains over 50 poems and many photos. Click on image for details.

  • Calendar

    Calendar - ebook cover

    Calendar by Violet Nesdoly. Contains over 50 poems that explore the rhythms of the year, nature, life & the family. FREE! Click on image for details.

  • A Poetic Kaleidoscope

    A Poetic Kaleidoscope - book cover

    A Poetic Kaleidoscope by T. W. Goodrich: "... something for all readers: short, long, deep, simple, painful, and hopeful poems" - Reviewer (Click on image for details.)

  • the space between the eyes

    the space between the eyes - cover

    A first collection by Nicholas Roberts, the space between the eyes contains over 50 poems. Click on image for details.

  • Hours From A Convent

    Hours From A Convent  - Cover

    Hours From A Convent by Emily Isaacson. Poems from the perspective of a young nun. Click on image for details.

  • Magnoliye De Phul

    'Magnoliye De Phul' by Satwant Pander was inspired by Satwant's love of nature. Click on image for details.

  • Colours of My Heart

    Colours of My Heart - Poems by Surjeet Kalsey. Click on image for details.

  • Fritzy

    Fritzy is a novelette, by Donna Bishop based on Fritzy's childhood. Informative reading for a ten year old. Delightful reading for an adult. Click on image for details.

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Archive for the ‘Poets’ Category

O Canada – book launch

Posted by Violet Nesdoly on June 27, 2017

Just in time for Canada Day, the Fraser Valley Poets Society launched their latest anthology, O Canada: Celebrating 150 Years.

Society President Brayden Sawatzky opened the evening by welcoming us and reading his foreword to the book. Editor Alvin Ens and Associate Editor Violet Nesdoly described the 18-month process that brought the volume from idea to completion. Violet, Alvin, Terry, and Ted read poems from the anthology, and Robert Martens concluded the first part of the evening by reading a poem by Erin Fisher (who contributed to the book but died before the book was published).


Front cover of O Canada; Editor, Alvin Ens; FVPS President Brayden Sawatzky; Associate editor Violet Nesdoly; T.W. Goodrich; Robert Martins; Terry Broadworth (Photos © 2017 by V. Nesdoly)

The intermission began with all book contributors posing with the specially designed cake for a photo, followed by the singing of “O Canada.” (Only two contributing poets missed this evening: Erin Fisher and Nicholas Roberts.)

Thirty minutes slipped by quickly as we purchased books, nibbled on Canada Day goodies, shared conversation, or found a quiet corner to get acquainted with this latest joint endeavour.


Intermission: We gathered for a group photo, then bought books (T.W. Goodrich at the book table), mingled, and munched on cake and treats (Photos © 2017 by V. Nesdoly)

The last half of the evening was filled with O Canada contributors reading selections from the book. It was a thrill to hear our founder Donna Bishop read “Halkomelem: The people of the River; The People of the Land.” At 90+ she’s still going strong!

We listened to poems as diverse as the description of a bad dream (“The Ice, the Sea and Me” – Shelley Haggard) to a tongue-in-cheek look at interesting Canadian community names (“Canada: This Place I Call Home’ – Brenda Firth).

Alvin Ens also read several factoids—alerting us to another feature of the book—75+facts about Canadian history, Canadian literary history, and Fraser Valley Poets Society history sprinkled throughout.


Open mic readers: Donna Bishop, Shelley Haggard, Jody Aubry, Craig Warren, Alexandra Webb, Priscilla Laudon  (Photos © 2017 by V. Nesdoly)


More open mic readers: Satwant Pander, Brenda Firth, Alvin Ens, Michael Linburg, Terry Broadworth, Brayden Sawatzky (Photos © 2017 by V. Nesdoly)

O Canada: Celebrating 150 Years is now available for purchase ($20). Want one? Contact T.W. Goodrich.

The Fraser Valley Poets Society will now take a summer break. But plan to join us when we meet again on September 11, 2017 (6:30-8:30, Clearbrook Library, 32320 George Henderson Way, Abbotsford B.C.).

Have a joyful Canada Day and a safe, happy, poetic summer!


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Blue Moon for Spirit Path

Posted by Violet Nesdoly on September 17, 2016

A Blue Moon reading and book launch were the features of FVPS’s first poetry night after the summer break, September 12th.

Brayden Sawatzky, Erin Fisher and Michael Linburg, co-creators of the just published anthology Spirit Path began the evening by each reading selections from their segments of the book.


Brayden, Erin & Michael pose with Spirit Path (Photo © 2016 by V. Nesdoly)


Brayden Sawatzky (Photo © 2016 b V. Nesdoly)

Brayden intrigued us all with four poems from his “Garden of Poets” section—21 poems that describe inspiration he has gained from the society and individual members of it. He supplements these poems with quotes from the Bible and other sources.What a gracious and affirming beginning to a book by three authors.

He also read from other sections of the book. A poem of his I found particularly poignant begins:

“On highways to our destinations
traveling with our heaviness
wishing for lightness of being
our cares will slow us to a stop
dangerously close to devastation…” – from “Lightness of Being” – p. 61.


Erin Fisher (Photo © 2016 by V. Nesdoly)

Erin Fisher surprised us all by presenting writings of hers longer than just a few lines. But even in the longer selections, her poems retain the cryptic distillation of which she is such a master. The three sections: “early, early words,” “early words,” and “later words” illustrate how she has grown in the skill of editing herself, stripping away all that is extraneous to the sinew and bone of metaphor and suggestion. To wit:

“in my mind’s eye a friend,
a bond that cannot be grasped,
would you interrupt every snowflake
to verify its beauty?” – from “early words” p. 156.


Michael Linburg (Photo © 2016 by V. Nesdoly)

Michael Linburg entertained, probed, and inspired us with his well-crafted pieces. He delivered the clever ending to his poem “Randomness” with just the amount of deadpan its punchline wanted:

“And if by chance
You happen to find
That things are not falling
The way you want
There is the distinct possibility
That it was me” – “from “Randomness,” p. 214.

But it was his poem “I Am,” full of its hard-earned affirmations that will stick with me long past the evening.

Well done, you three (and Alvin Ens, who got the book ready for the press)! This 266-page book sells for $20. Contact Brayden Sawatzky for details on how to get your own copy.

After a short break for refreshments, catching up, buying books etc., we reassembled for the open mic portion of the evening. Thirteen poets delivered the usual varied smorgasbord of poems, from our founder Donna Bishop’s rendition of “Encouragement’ to Terry Broadworth’s poem about learning to love herself. (Only 12 are pictured. I read too but there is no photographic proof.)



September 12, 2016 FVPS Open Mic readers (Photos © 2016 by V. Nesdoly)

Thanks to all who came out to read and listen!

Now mark your calendars for our next poetry night, Monday, October 3rd (6:30-8:30 p.m., Clearbrook Library, 32320 George Ferguson Way, Abbotsford, B.C.). It will be another Blue Moon Reading featuring Robert Martens reading from his most recent book Hush. An open mic will follow so come prepared to share something with us.

Also, remember that the deadline for submitting to our 2017 anthology in honour of Canada’s 150th birthday is quickly approaching (October 15th). See all the details on the Home page.

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Open Mic begins National Poetry Month on the right foot!

Posted by Violet Nesdoly on April 6, 2016

April is National Poetry Month. I hope you’re enjoying something poetic.

Unfortunately I (Violet) wasn’t able to attend last Monday’s poetry night (April 4th). Terry Broadworth who was there writes:

Thank you to all that came out to listen or read their poetry at Monday’s Open Mic. What a delightful evening meeting new folks and greeting old friends.

Thanks for the photo collages, Terry!

PhototasticCollage-2016-04-04 FVPS 3

Readers at the April 4 FVPS Open Mic.

PhototasticCollage-2016-04-04-FVPS 1

April 4, FVPS Open Mic attendees and readers

PhototasticCollage-2016-04-04-FVPS 2

More readers and the audience – April 4, 2016 Open Mic.

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Last spring reading launches another book!

Posted by Violet Nesdoly on June 17, 2015

An excellent and happy meeting of the Fraser Valley Poets Society took place on June 15th.

Michael Linburg launched his new book All My Paths Are One.

Michael Linburg reads from his new book All My Paths Are One. (Photos by T. W. Goodrich)

Michael Linburg reads from his new book All My Paths Are One. (Photos by T. W. Goodrich)

There were new faces to meet and greet (always a happy sign).

A good time at the June 15 Blue Moon Reading (Photos by T. W. Goodrich)

A good time at the June 15 Blue Moon Reading (Photos by T. W. Goodrich)

Poetry readings were many and varied, with the original theme of summer, then a second reading of whatever was available.

Some of the June 15th open mic readers (Photos by T. W. Goodrich)

Some of the June 15th open mic readers  (Photos by T. W. Goodrich)

In brief, a good time was had by all with lots of drinks and cookies etc.

– Report and photos by T. W. Goodrich

Though we will be taking a break from formal readings for July and August, FVPS will be part of the Abbotsford Arts Council Meet and Mingle in the Park event on June 27th (Mill Lake Park near Kariton Gallery on Ware St.) – 2:00 – 7:30 p.m. 

Come by, say hello (we’ll have our own clearly marked table), and if you’re around between 2:30 – 2:50, you might just hear some of us read as part of the afternoon’s entertainment.


Our next Clearbrook Library reading is scheduled for:

September 14th

6:30 – 8:30 p.m.

Clearbrook Library – 32320 George Ferguson Way

More details to come as they are available.

For more photos of Monday’s reading and to keep informed about all FVPS events, check out FRASER VALLEY POETS SOCIETY on Facebook.

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Triple Treat

Posted by Violet Nesdoly on May 7, 2015

The Monday, May 4th Blue Moon Reading held a triple treat for all who attended. Three young poets shared their work in 15 minute segments that many of us wished would go on longer.

Olivia Sharpe was the first of our guest readers. Her existential poems were full of interesting and original imagery that linked nature to memories of childhood, school, and her present life. There was hope. There was love. There was self-acceptance, family and a broccoli farm. Her pleasing image of faithless clouds contrasted to the faithful sun is still floating around in my head many days later. Thank you, Olivia, for sharing yourself and your poems with us!

Olivia Sharpe reading poetry

Olivia Sharpe reads at the May 4, 2015 FVPS Blue Moon Reading

Mackenzie Lee, our second reader, read poems on the theme of seasons. Her poem about the library contained fabulous lines and certainly warmed the cockles of this bibliophile’s heart. She also has keen senses when it comes to nature, sharing poems about wind, water and light, and bringing people and relationships into them with skill and originality.  Thank you, Mackenzie, for your most enjoyable presentation!

Mackenzie Lee - poetry reading

Mackenzie Lee reads at the May 4, 2015 FVPS Blue Moon Reading

Open mic readings were sprinkled between the guest readings. We enjoyed the usual variety that included a light poem about a lobster by Ted, poems about his father by Alvin, a poem in the voice of a resident of a senior’s complex by Terry, a couple of poems read from A Familiar Shore by Emily, a poem in memory of Rinelle Harper by Shelley—and many more!

Open Mic readers - FVPS

Some of the FVPS Open Mic readers – May 4, 2015 Blue Moon Reading

Our final reader, Adriel Brandt was definitely icing on the cake. He read poems of nature and to nature. I don’t think I’ll ever look at a crow the same way after hearing his three-part ode to this evil, versus mysterious, versus magical bird. He also shared a poem about a library (I’m sure I saw our host room glow) and capped off his reading with a spoken-word-type performance of “I’ve got time” (well, I’m not sure that’s what it was called, but the line “I’ve got time” kept recurring). Thank you, Adriel for your stellar reading and performance!

Adriel Brandt reading poetry

Adriel Brandt – reading at the FVPS Blue Moon Reading May 4, 2015

Now mark you calendar for our next reading night at the usual time and place:

FVPS Poetry Night
June 15 – 6:30-8:30 p.m.
Clearbrook Library
32320 George Ferguson Way
Abbotsford, B.C.

More details to come.

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FVPS Spring Events

Posted by Violet Nesdoly on April 17, 2015

President Brayden Sawatzky began our April 13th reading by recognizing the achievements of two members. Emily Isaacson and Surjeet Kalsey were both honoured at Abbotsford’s recent Arty Awards. Emily Isaacson was nominated for the Christine Caldwell Outstanding Arts Advocate and Surjeet Kalsey won the award for Outstanding Artist in the Literary Arts. Ted Goodrich presented Surjeet with a framed portrait, photographed during the award night celebrations.


SK Award

The Blue Moon Reading portion of the evening featured the anthology Borrowed Gardens. Violet Nesdoly was the featured reader. She read from all four sections of the book—poems by three Vancouver area women (Jeannine Bertoia, Del McNulty, and Tracie Fisher)—as well as a few poems of her own.

Violet Nesdoly reads from Borrowed Gardens
The always welcome time of refreshment  was followed by an open mic where seven poets read their work—poems that ranged from sea fantasies, to memories of working in a nursing home and studies of interesting characters.

Open Mic readers April 13, 2015
Thanks to all who came out and made this a fun and memorable evening!

Our next Blue Moon Reading is just around the corner. Mark your calendars for May 4th, when three guests Adriel Brandt, Mackenzie Lee and Olivia Sharpe will share their poetry with us.

There will be an open mic.

Blue Moon Reading
Featuring the poetry of:

Adriel Brandt

Mackenzie Lee

Olivia Sharpe

Monday, May 4
6:30 – 8:30 p.m.
Clearbrook Library
32320 George Ferguson Way
Abbotsford B.C.

All are welcome to attend this FREE POETRY READING and OPEN MIC.

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First Blue Moon of 2015

Posted by Violet Nesdoly on March 24, 2015

Emily Pohl-Weary was our guest and featured Blue Moon reader on Monday, March 23rd. She began the evening with a short introduction and show-and-tell of the many  projects in which she’s been involved over her years of writing as a member of Toronto’s literary community.

Then she told of a shooting in her Toronto neighbourhood in 2006 that touched her and the lives of those close to her.

We listened spellbound to the poetry in Ghost Sick, the book of poems she published earlier this year, which delves into the numbness, shock, disbelief, outrage, and eventual return to equilibrium she experienced as she worked through this tragedy. Her “poetry of witness” was raw, moving, and challenged me, and I’m sure many of us, to be more  vulnerable, honest, and transparent in our own writing.

March 23 Blue Moon Reading with Emily Pohl-Weary

March 23 Blue Moon Reading with Emily Pohl-Weary

Coffee and chatting was followed by the workshop part of the evening. After some periods of silence, broken only by the sound of scribbling pens and a few groans, we ended the program on a light note by reading our list poem creations.


Thanks so much, Emily, for a most enjoyable and interesting evening!


We meet on April 13th for our next Blue Moon Event.

BG-coverI (Violet Nesdoly) am the featured reader that night. I’m excited to introduce three poet friends with whom I’ve worked for seven years. Though none of them will be with us  in person, I’ll be reading their poems and a few of mine from the anthology Borrowed Gardens that we published jointly in December of 2014.

There will be an open mic following the Blue Moon feature. Everyone is welcome to this free event.


April Blue Moon Reading:

April 13, 2015
6:30 – 8:30 p.m.
Clearbrook Library – 32320 George Ferguson Way
Abbotsford, B.C.

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First Blue Moon reading of 2015

Posted by Violet Nesdoly on March 5, 2015

We’re excited to have Emily Pohl-Weary, current Writer-In-Residence at University of the Fraser Valley as our guest on March 23rd.

Emily will read from her just-out book of poems, Ghost Sick, and do a workshop. There will be no open mic on March 23rd.

The public is warmly invited to this free event:

Monday, March 23rd, 6:30-8:30
Clearbrook Library
32320 George Ferguson Way,
Abbotsford B.C.

FVPS Poster for March 23, 2015

FVPS Poster for March 23, 2015

Then mark your calendars for April 13th, when Violet Nesdoly will be the featured reader, sharing selections from the anthology Borrowed Gardens (authored by four Vancouver area poets).

There will be an open mic on April 13th.

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Two readings begin FVPS year

Posted by Violet Nesdoly on March 3, 2015

A Rhyme and Reason at the Cottage

On February 28th, nine Fraser Valley Poets Society members gathered with residents and outside guests at the Cottage (a Fraser Health complex in Abbotsford) to enjoy a shared love of poetry.

Poetry Society members and residents took turns reading to the crowd. We heard original poetry as well as old favourites. It was a wonderful hour of sharing words and friendship.

A big thanks to Terry Broadworth who organized the program and was our MC for the morning.

FVPS members read at the Cottage #1 - February 28, 2015

FVPS members read at the Cottage #1 – February 28, 2015

FVPS members read at the Cottage #2 - February 28, 2015

FVPS members read at the Cottage #2 – February 28, 2015

First Open Mic of 2015

Two days later, on Monday, March 2nd, we gathered again to officially get our reading year underway with an Open Mic evening.

The whole evening was given to reading our work. We circled the table at least three times. It was especially gratifying to welcome some new poets to the reading.

It was a good start and we’re looking forward to a great year of Blue Moon readings and open mics.

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