Monday, August 31, 2015

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Art is Everywhere!

Last weekend Robert and I attended the Interpretations III opening reception in Columbia, MO and also goofed around a lot.

While I am not a fan of the ice cream shop in downtown Columbia, I love the crap out of their bathroom : ).  You know that scary artwork you occasionally spot looking up at you from dumpsters? Well, this bathroom (and really, the rest of the ice cream shop too) illustrates that it can be rescued!  Ok, so maybe this isn't where they found their art, but I certainly like a good 'clown sent to dumpster death only to be rescued by ice cream shop owner' story.

Moving on!  This is the artist I was paired with this year!  And we are standing in front of our pieces. Because it was so crowded, the art and poetry is a little tough to see.  However, books will be coming soon!

Thursday, August 20, 2015


One of my favorite things to do at the library is to look at all the X's in alphabet books as they come through.  Most often I roll my eyes or giggle myself stupid at what people come up with. 

This X made me smile a very big unknown smile that I promptly gave to the next 50 people I saw.  

Tuesday, August 18, 2015


This masterpiece was recently displayed at my library.  This is exactly what Robert and I look like when we dance, exactly the feeling that balloons up inside of me when we twirl all over the place.  And that silly bravado that this man is flaunting?  That's definitely the same variety of silly bravado that Robert gets when he dances. 

Sunday, August 16, 2015

a.k.a so freakin' precious

This picture makes me very happy.  

From left to right: Ella Bella a.k.a. Yellow-Bellied Thug, Hunter a.k.a. Sweetest Friend on the Planet holding Ernesto a.k.a. Lil' Nugget and Rosie Posie a.k.a. The Lover.

Sunday, August 9, 2015


Last week I said goodbye to a beautiful writer friend of mine, Mary.  Mary fought a very tough battle with cancer, and I'd like to think that even though she didn't beat the cancer, she attacked the negativity that cancer brings, and she opened up a can of whoop ass on that negativity.  She smiled through the pain until the very end, even though it was only for Robert's bad jokes : ).

I met Mary at one of the writing workshops I facilitate through the library I work for.  She was writing a memoir composed of letters to the children she taught while teaching special education in the hopes that she could support educators working with autism spectrum disorders.

It was a beautiful memoir, both heartbreaking and inspirational, and Mary was passing it around to her beta readers at the time of her passing.  One of her sons has taken the baton and plans on publishing it.

Last year I was selected for an artist and poet pairing for a showing at a Missouri art gallery.  The event is called Interpretations.  Artists and poets submit their work and if accepted, are matched with a piece to interpret.  So for writers, their accepted writing is given to an artist for the artist to interpret.  Meanwhile, the writer is given the artist's accepted artwork to interpret.  I had such a wonderful time I decided to tell all my writer friends about it this time around.  I was accepted again this year, as well as Mary and another workshop attendee who helped Mary submit because she was already struggling at the time of submission.  

Mary never managed to fully write her second poem, but while she was in the hospital we talked about it and made notes.  

With her family's blessing I put Mary's words into poem form without adding any words or changing her voice.  Today, before submitting my poem, I sent Mary's off first, and it was a lot harder than I thought it would be to click send.

When our writings are matched with the artwork and are ready to be viewed at the gallery I will not be hanging out with Mary on opening night, but I still expect her to make an appearance in everyone who reads her pieces.

I am thankful that Mary's son is going to continue with her book and I am thankful that another workshop attendee helped Mary submit to Interpretations.  I am thankful Mary had room for me in her life, which was bursting with family and art and grandkids and writing and friends.  I am thankful for her tenacity and wisdom, kindness and humor.  I am thankful that she is no longer in pain and that her spirit and words are living on in so many people.