Monthly Archives: July 2017

What Brenda Learned from Sally Elliot’s Painting


Don’t be afraid to go alone into the dark.

Sometimes you won’t know where to begin.

Sometimes you will begin many times.

If you stop you won’t start again.

Everything breathes.  Trees. Colors. Sky. Shapes. You. Everything.

The sun is always shining


From the roots of despair comes courage.

Out of courage comes breath.

Out of breath comes new beginning.

Don’t be afraid to go alone into the dark.

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Prickly Memories

In a few days I will return to Muhlenberg College for the IWWG Summer Conference. Looking through my journal from last year and found this poem I wrote in Myra Shapiro’s workshop on July 21, 2016.

mama and daddy

The mole on mama’s chin;

Bangs that landed two inches above her brow

A temper that flashed when I rubbed her the wrong way

She is attached to me by an umbilical of wounds.

Piercing memories

The white dress she stitched for my Phi Mu Pledge Dance

The goodbye she waved to the back of a Greyhound bus

“I wrote you everyday in my mind” she scrawled on that last birthday card.

A single ovary produced a daughter who never bore fruit.

Who left her never to return.

More than a container of seeds.

I trace the lines on my palm and the furrow between my brow.

I revisit scars that map a lifetime.

I touch the mole on my chin.

Once removed only to return.

July 21, 2016

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