writer tell all



One of the things I most love about blogging (which by extension means ‘the blogging community’ both broadly and narrowly defined) is the layers of serendipity that emerge between/among individuals and themes. Take this blog hop, for instance, with its theme of ‘writers tell all.’ I have just been posting a few snippets about why women write – a particular passion of mine and the focus of my work-in-the-world.

And now the questions point squarely at me, thanks to Monica Frazer (who by the way has just joined the incredibly gracious, informative and connected WordPress family – congratulations!!!). According to the template of her invitation to me, I see two responses and a set of nominations in my immediate future:

Question 1: What are you working on? 

Two chapbooks of poetry: Turnings about the many cycles of release and return as inhabitants of the natural world; and Fruit and Seed: Digging in the Mother Garden, a collection decades in the making and finally blossoming forth this summer about mothering and its lack.

Release and launch of Hear Me, See Me: Incarcerated Women Write, an unedited anthology of the raw prose and poetry of Vermont’s incarcerated women with whom my partner and I write weekly. Our Burlington VT launch event is set for October 3; the book is currently available from the publisher, Orbis Books, and Amazon. Continue reading

the heart tends to get away from us . . .

“The heart tends to get away from us, and we write from wherever we last left it.”
–    Peter Jurich, Writers Digest, 2/11

The moment I read this quote I fell in love with it!! I love its playful attitude, the image of the wandering heart so independent, leaving us bewildered or bewitched or somewhere in between. It reminds me of my daughter, my dog, so many things I’ve witnessed in my life. I guess it even reminds me of me, how I wander away from my own thoughts, my own center, when I’m not paying close attention; when I need release, a change of pace; when I want out; when things overwhelm me; when I want another solution to a complexity that demands, demands, demands and I’m tired of giving, giving, giving.

I love its truth – how beautifully and simply this single line captures the essence of the writing process. We think we’re writing one thing, but then it wiggles away, morphs into Something Utterly Other, maybe even thumbing its nose at us or challenging us to follow with reason rather than just, well, letting the heart respond.

I also love how it speaks to aging – how often Things in general get away from us, usually of course because we left them somewhere; but how often it seems Things have a mind of their own, ambulate on their own accord either to annoy and frustrate or to test us – our patience, our creativity, our memory. In this case, we tend to try to find them, of course. And in the search, follow just this course of action: retracing our steps to what we last remember in an attempt to be led to the current location. Continue reading