Thanks to my recent trip to the library, I discovered an anthology called Rivertalk that seems to have included many Ojai-area poets. The anthology looks like it ran annually for several years until 2004. A little Googling turned up this site, which got me excited at the prospect of a local poetry workshop. I emailed Tyler, who runs a local community blog, and he put up this post. I later found out from a source I trust that Joan M. Raymund, who edited the series and is listed as Ojai’s poet laureate on the arts center page, passed away a couple years ago. Still, my request for more information has gone completely unanswered on what is otherwise a pretty active community blog. Are there any poets in Ojai? Is anyone interested in reinstating a reading or workshop series?
And why is it so hard to find local poets in the town that hosts the powerhouse Ojai Poetry Festival? What is it about poets that seems to make them more inclined to connect through print media (including the blogosphere) rather than in person? Perhaps we’re all just hopeless introverts. Or maybe everyone’s just had a lot on their minds with the recent fires. Still, it seems so much easier to identify and connect with other types of local communities. I’ve been here a year. And haven’t met any other local poets yet.