The Poet's House

November 2013


It was a logistic dilemma from the start, "The Poet's House", that is. How to move a 1912 farmhand bunk house with a rotted out floor a 100 miles to Seattle in one piece. Tricky business and not for the faint of heart. The owner had listed the 12 ft. x 16ft. structure on Craigslist for the purchase price of $1000. A good deal but with the requirement, of course, that the new owner remove the little house at his or her expense.

Many people were interested, but soon found the cost to move the structure prohibitive. As would anyone working on a tight budget. It was a deal breaker for many.

Anne Hagen saw the ad on Craigslist and called the homeowner and Nickel Brothers and another house moving company immediately to get prices. Nickel Brothers said they had received several calls on the little bunk house out in Snohomish, Washington and were quite interested. Nickel Brothers gave an estimate of around $15,000 to move the house and on inspection said Anne's back fence would have to be taken down to allow a 50ft. trailer to maneuver a tight alley to get the small house into her backyard. Definitely not a workable solution. Helicopter or crane maybe, to lift the little house over the fence and onto a foundation? Well, probably not.

Anne got online again looking for an affordable house mover. She scoured Craigslist for hours until she ran across an ad for "Ty of Tacoma". After talking to Ty she knew she had found the right guy for the job. Ty had a small, low to the ground trailer and a forklift. And lots of experience moving large objects of all kinds. Perfect.

With a bid of $4000 Ty Taylor (PAC Rentals LLC.) headed out to Snohomish to secure and strap down the little house for transport. Not really a problem for a professional who made it all seem very doable all of a sudden. And the price was right too.

Two pilot cars escorted the little house along a round about way to South Seattle. On arrival Ty quickly switched his truck out for a forklift and gently guided the tiny dwelling safely down the tight alley and made a sharp right hand turn into Anne's backyard. Sweet.

About four weeks later the yard was excavated by Mike Swope & Co. and a small foundation was poured by the father and son team at JLW Construction out of Lynwood. Ty showed up with his rollers and tackle and rolled the little house gently onto her foundation, as she sits to this day. Solid as a rock and pretty as a peach.

Getting the small bunk house from Snohomish to South Seattle and on a foundation was just the first step in what turned out to be a three year project. With Anne Hagen's vision and the expertise of contractor Jason Leschinger "The Poet's House" became a reality.

A combination of the best of the old and the new.

Salvaged materials used to restore the interior include fir flooring, fir v-board, a 4 ft. Claw foot tub and Victorian corner sink, a Putnam Library ladder, antique Chaise lounge, antique door hardware and lighting fixtures and much more.

Reclaimed materials were sourced through Craigslist, eBay, Second Use and Earthwise in Seattle.

"The Poet's House" has all new electrical and plumbing throughout including radiant floor heat. Also the little house is fully equipped with wi-fi, security system and iPhone/iPad compatible devices such as a flat screen HD TV streaming Netflix and YouTube with Apple TV.

"The Poet's House" is a unique artist live/work space, 250 square feet with a sleeping loft and nestled in the heart of Seattle's southern urban farm region.







Don Barrie's Museum Tour 9/22/2012


PBF President Anne Hagen and PB Artists' Co-Op Founder Don Barrie











"Passion unites businesses on 19th Avenue East" Capitol Hill Times 2012/06 by Kris Parfitt


"Hippies, artists and prostitutes - Oh My!" Capitol Hill Times 2012/05 by Kris Parfitt


"Seattle's Smallest P-Patch" Capitol Hill Times 2012/05 by Kris Parfitt




Responses to "Pea-O'd" in the Seattle Weekly 1/3/07;

an article about the Pelican Tea Garden P-Patch.



No Free Ride
Well, let's see. I started my day by writing a check for $45 to the P-Patch program to renew my garden plot for 2007. Then I wrote a check for $250 to the P-Patch Trust, to be matched by Microsoft, which will be used to support the program by purchasing property for gardens, tools, and other garden materials and paying fees for less well-off gardeners. As I've done the past six years, in 2007 I'll likely devote well over 100 hours of my time to Bradner Gardens Park, a city gem which exists largely because of the tireless efforts of volunteers. "Squatter"? "Renegade plot"? The city as a "funding source"? Is John Metcalfe kidding? ["Pea-O'd," Jan. 3.]

I'm sure he's been inundated with e-mails disabusing him of the notion that the city's P-Patches don't pay their own way. I doubt that I have to tell him that we pay fees, hold fund-raising events, provide 99.9 percent of the labor (Parks does mow the lawn at Bradner!), and donate an enormous amount of fresh produce to local food banks. And I suppose that more than a few people have pointed out to him that using his garage to store a car in a city is considered a colossal waste of real estate in these parts.

What I want to know is this—when Metcalfe was speaking to Sandy Pernitz of the P-Patch office, did he not think to ask her how the program actually works? Or did he ask but decide that the truth was not as entertaining as a rant about his disappointment in finding his (his landlord's?) garage inaccessible? We have more than enough so-called journalists in this city who use their columns to whine about Seattle's failure to live up to their preconceived fantasies. Why amble down that hackneyed path? The fact that this article appeared under the title "News" is astounding.

May I suggest that after purchasing an umbrella, Metcalfe head on over to Metzger Maps in the Pike Place Market, just a short bus ride from Capitol Hill. He can pick up a map of Seattle and make the amazing discovery that Capitol Hill can easily be "cruised," by foot, in less than a day. That should leave him with plenty of time to devote to the practice of his craft. Perhaps we can look forward to a well-researched article on a subject that actually matters.

Elizabeth Cross

Ditch the Car
Hey, John Metcalfe: Get a life and sell the "kaa" ["Pea-O'd," Jan. 3].
Metcalfe's whining about a P-Patch blocking his garage was pathetic. He should relax and enjoy the garden. Maybe if he is nice, the gardeners might share some of their bounty next summer. And one more thing: Plants grow in soil, not dirt.
Joyce Moty

Victory Garden
As a former 19-year resident of the Pelican Bay Artists' Cooperative, which borders the Pelican Tea Garden, and as a board member of the Pelican Bay Foundation for 24 years, I am a pretty good resource regarding this matter ["Pea-O'd," Jan. 3]. That hidden piece of land was a rat-infested dump, and through my efforts, about 15 years ago, and with the full cooperation and delight of my neighbors, it became a garden.

Despite the assertion in "Pea-O'd," there was no "clandestine growing." I contacted the Department of Design, Construction and Land Use before the garden was created to ascertain if there would be any problem in having the garden at that location. I also contacted the Transportation Department. In both cases, I was told it was not an issue.

For two years, gardening was difficult, as a neighboring business kept dumping debris on the garden. In an attempt to protect it, I contacted the community garden coordinator in the Department of Neighborhoods, in the hope that the garden could become a P-Patch, but my request was declined. After 11 years of repeated requests on my part, Sandy Pernitz expressed interest. I then had to obtain signatures, in support of creating the P-Patch, from every property owner whose property borders the garden.

And that was only the beginning. . . . The foundation had to obtain volunteers to work on the garden, including hand digging a long and deep trough for the waterline, in return for a matching grant to pay for the various expenses including the water supply.

Far from being a "rogue," "renegade" plot with "squatter's rights," "guerrilla gardening," and "clandestine growing," creation of this P-Patch took adherence to a multitude of legal and bureaucratic requirements, and, yes, sometimes dealing with a neighboring "anarchist" along the way.

Anne Hagen
President, Pelican Bay Foundation



A Long Strange Trip;

Pelican Bay Foundation's 30 Year Odyssey

From the heady days of an idealistic hippie dream on Seattle's Capitol Hill in a three story abandoned building in 1969, an active artists' community blossomed which lead to the foundation's creation in 1975. Next came the cold reality of an attempted eviction in 2001; by accepting a monetary settlement, the Foundation concluded its 26 year residency.

Landing on our feet in Georgetown in JEM Arts Studio, we joined other survivors in the new millennium including the evicted Shoe Building artists from Pioneer Square. While sponsoring the Tenants' Union and Edward Reed Arts and championing for the Tashiro Kaplan building to become an artists' building, the search continued for a permanent home.

And now on May 31, 2005, after years of hard work and mind numbing searching for an affordable dwelling, the Foundation has moved to South Park to reside within the house newly purchased by the president of PBF, Anne Hagen.

We are very happy here in South Park and welcome the wide ranging possibilities that surround us. It is a fresh beginning for the Foundation and we feel welcomed by our neighbors. The civic involvement in South Park is apparent with, amongst other things, Marra Farm, the musical sculptures of the Cesar Chavez Park, the new City of Seattle Library, the murals under Highway 99, and the upcoming skateboard park.

We hope to be an asset for South Park and we look forward to future endeavors...


The Board Members of the Pelican Bay Foundation