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Water is the new muse for Poetry on Buses

Popular poetry program launches a region wide effort in 2016-17

SEATTLE (February 8, 2016) – After a successful reboot in 2014, Poetry on Buses is now going region-wide, sharing locally-sourced poems in at least eight languages across multiple transit systems, an online portal, and in communities across King County.

The program will be formally announced and launch to the public on Earth Day, April 22, 2016 and detailed information will be available at Residents will have through October 2016 to submit poems for consideration and the poetry will roll out on transit and online in April 2017, just in time for National Poetry Month.

Poetry on Buses is expanding this year thanks to funds from Seattle Public Utilities (SPU) 1% for art funds. In celebration of this, residents will be invited to submit poems on the theme of water. Exploring a water-related theme has local resonance as well as universal significance; water defines our geographic landscape and impacts our health and wellbeing on a daily basis, and offers rich poetic possibilities.

A series of community poetry workshops will be held during the spring and summer months to encourage the public to submit poetry, explore the theme and multiple poetic traditions, and foster creative thinking and expression. Community liaisons and poets in Amharic, Chinese, Punjabi, Spanish-speaking and Urban Native communities will create custom, bilingual workshops to reach Seattle and King County’s diverse communities.

The program is further expanding to present poems on a broader range of buses, light rail, street car and station venues. This is in thanks to a partnership between 4Culture, the Seattle Office of Arts & Culture and Sound Transit.

About Poetry on Buses

Poetry on Buses began in 1992 as a partnership between 4Culture and King County Metro Transit to present poetry from the local community on placards found right above bus seats. It was rebooted in 2014-15 with poems and workshops in five languages, an online poetry portal (showcasing 365 poems – one new poem released every day of the year) and a focus on Metro Transit’s RapidRide.


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arts logoOffice of Arts & Culture | Seattle The Office of Arts & Culture envisions a city driven by creativity that provides the opportunity for everyone to engage in diverse arts and cultural experiences. The Office is supported by the 16-member Seattle Arts Commission, citizen volunteers appointed by the mayor and City Council. Find out more at Follow @SeattleArts or


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4Culture As the cultural funding agency for King County, 4Culture works to make our region vibrant. Using lodging tax and percent-for-art funds, 4Culture’s four main program areas—arts, heritage, historic preservation, and public art—put public resources to work in your community.