Stan Burriss

Photo by SHARE member
Stan writing poems at a SHARE
encampment, Tent City 2

Street poet Stan Burriss has been active in the homeless organizing group SHARE since its beginning in a tent city outside Seattle's Kingdome in 1990. He has been a part of Real Change since he joined the editorial committee early in 1995. Whether he is attending an author reading at Elliott Bay Books or a shelter funding meeting with a member of the City Council, he will be writing a poem on a napkin or a coffee cup, and he will give it away before he leaves. With all the poems Stan has given away, his room at the Morrison is still piled with them, on cups and on napkins, on torn pieces of paper bags and scraps of scavenged paper. A lot of them make their way into Real Change, and recently one of Stan's fans donated funds so that Real Change could publish a chapbook of Stan's poems. Elliott Bay Books finally had Stan doing an author reading.

Stan has read with StreetWrites a number of times. I swear that Stan could read the Seattle telephone directory and make grown men cry and women climb the walls. The man has a voice.