Celebrating Local Poetry in Central Washington

A meeting place for Yakima regional writers

New — Online Open Mic

Online Open Mic - May 2020
Link HERE to visit our
Online Open Mic

We decided to offer an Online Open Mic venue using the same guidelines as our Open Mic Night gatherings. We hope you enjoy our poets and their thoughts in these trying times…

With the COVID-19 situation, our Open Mic Nights have temporarily been derailed. But we want to keep our poetry community engaged.

We invite all the poets in our YCP community to send in ONE POEM PER ENTRY.  The first 30 poems that come in DURING THE MONTH will be posted on this web-site.

We are asking that the poems you submit should address our current “times” — the pandemic and/or sheltering, holidays, family, or just the seasons. So, lots of room to run there. 

We are also accepting videos of poets reciting their entry poems. Videos must be in .mp4 format.

A YCP committee will review poems for consideration of audience and readiness for posting.

Email Yakima Coffeehouse Poets for more information.

A special invitation from Washington State Poet Laureate Claudia Castro Luna:

I want to tell you about a new project I am launching to document through poetry, flash memoir, mini essay, how we are coping inside our respective homes with the isolation order. I know we will soon be coming out of isolation but we will remain home bound, I think, for awhile. The project is called…

I would love it if you would contribute your work – an observation – a poem.

I am interested in work that references the way our physical spaces have been transformed, impacted, repurposed by having to be at home 24/7.

I am typing this from my bedroom for instance, where I have brought in a small table to be able to work as my regular workspace is in an open room where everyone comes and goes at all times.

This project asks you to consider the poetics of your home and how its physical and emotional character is changing during this time. The home, whatever that may be for someone, is a space we each know intimately and can therefore represent poetically by sharing our memories, frustrations, daydreams, and also by by describing its physical configuration.

—Thank you, Claudia Castro Luna


Submissions go to:

Yakima Coffeehouse Poets – About us

Poets and poetry lovers who live in Central Washington State will find these pages informative.

The Yakima Coffeehouse Poets is a registered Washington State non-profit corporation formed in 2014 to represent the interests of poets and poetry lovers of Central Washington.

Central Washington, roughly speaking, is bound by the Columbia River to the east and south, the Cascades Crest on the west, and the Wenatchee River on the north.

YCP twenty-fifth
Twenty-fifth chapbook
“Echinacea” cover art by Barbara Smith Gilbert

If you live or work in this area, or have roots here, you are eligible to participate in our annual poetry contest and to read at our regular Open Mic Night events. Original poetry only, please!

If you live outside Central Washington, we invite you to enjoy the poetry published on our website. If you are visiting Yakima, our home base, you are welcome to attend and read at our Open Mic Nights which are held at 7 p.m., the second Wednesday of the month September through May.  This year we are located at the Larson Gallery, on the YVC Campus, corner of W. Nob Hill Blvd & 16th Ave, Yakima.

Yakima Coffeehouse Poets

Yakima Coffeehouse Poets – Update

These are unusual times, and certainly worthy of writing about. With that in mind, we would like to thank Elaine Smith, Kathleen Smith (no relation), and Terry Martin for providing the following online resources which all poets and poetry lovers out there in Coffeehouse Poets Land will find interesting:

Poetry Un-Bound
New York Times – National Poetry Month
Poetry Foundation

Yakima Coffeehouse Poets

— Annual Poetry Contest

Linda Brown, left, and Linda Pier just couldn't resist the beat of the music.
Linda Brown, left, and Linda Pier just couldn’t resist the beat of the music, Test Tube Poets, at the 2019 Contest Reading Event. (Oh yes, there was poetry, too!)

Submissions are closed for 2019! Questions, contact us at:

Yakima Coffeehouse Poets

Yakima Coffeehouse Poets – Publications 

Twentieth: Selected Coffeehouse Poems
Our goal with the poems in the anthology, Twentieth, is to draw out more Central Washington poets and give courage to those who have more poems to offer for the future.

These poems represent the best of the past 19 years and include all the poets whose permission could be gained. You’ll notice that some poets have several poems because they won our annual contest several times.

Visit our Publications page to see examples of our local talent. You can also Contact Us to order your own copy of available chapbooks.

Poetry Contest & chapbook
Our 2019 Poetry Contest reading event was held October 22, 2019, at the Larson Gallery, Nob Hill & 16th Ave, Yakima. Visit and enjoy samples and information about this year’s successful event! More info…

Past chapbooks
Our most Meetings and Contest Readings are held in the Larson Gallery on YVC’s campus, Nob Hill Blvd & 16th, Yakima. Current chapbooks (and some past chapbooks) are available at all meetings.

A gracious Thank-you for all that contributed to this wonderful publication and event.

You can read samples of the Twenty-second, through Twenty-fifth poems from their respective Publications page.

Yakima Coffeehouse Poets