Monday, May 21, 2012

Berkeley Poetry Walk on Addison Street

Seems I missed this when I was looking for poetry walks in April. In 2003, the city of Berkeley applied art and poetry to Addison Street between Milvia and Shattuck Avenue, in the area referred to as the "theater district," since Berkeley Repertory Theater moved there. The poems are long and you must linger to read them. When a friend and I stopped on a warm May day, we were the only ones soaking in the words, and it was garbage day so some of the panels were covered by cans. 

The poetry was chosen by former Poet Laureate Robert Hass and appears to have local connections: either the poets lived here, wrote about here, or wrote about theater, dance, music, or writing. The street holds the poem, "Cotton in a Pill Bottle," by Dean Young as well as a poem I mentioned earlier called "Moment" by Hildegarde Flanner. If you can't get to Berkeley, you can still read the poems in an anthology compiled from this project, Addison Street Anthology: Berkeley's Poetry Walk

At the Milvia end, a street tree features artful metal roots. At the Shattuck end, lines from the song "Oh, What a Beautiful Morning" from the musical Oklahoma are stamped into the pavement. (Click on image to enlarge, as usual.)

Turn the corner onto Shattuck Avenue and a man that matches the color of the sidewalk asks for money.

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