In this week's book section of the paper, after writing about two programs intended to celebrate Seattle poetry that don't quite work, I wrote:

Having a strong poetry scene in Seattle is, to my mind, valuable, and lord knows I haven't done enough to support Seattle poetry in the pages of this paper.

It's one of my regrets about the first nine months of my job. So, in an effort to introduce myself and others to Seattle poetry, I'm starting a Friday feature on Slog.

McSweeney's has popularized the idea of the poetry chain, in which a poet shares a poem and chooses the next poet to share their work. I'm starting a Seattle poetry chain here. I've asked Doug Nufer, who is a great Seattle poet and also a huge supporter of the vibrant Seattle literary community, to start the chain. His poem is seasonally appropriate:

The First Star Spangled Noel
by Doug Nufer

The first Noel the angel did
Say can you see
Certain poor shepherds
By the dawn's early light
What so proudly we hailed
In fields they lay tending their sheep's
Last gleaming

Whose broad stripes
Saw a star rising in the east
O'er the ramparts we watched
And to the earth it gave
Gallantly streaming

And by the light of
Red glare
Three wisemen came
Bursting in air
To seek for a king
That our flag was still there

Noel, Noel, Noel, Noel
Born is the king of
The land of the free
And the home of the brave

This poem is available in Nufer's great last book, We Were Werewolves. A review of that book is here. And here is video of him reading the poem:

Tune in next week to see who Nufer chose for the next link in the chain.