Poet, Playwright, Workshop Facilitator
Sunflower Opening.jpg


Welcome to daily nature photo and creative writing blog, #NewThisDay

Welcome to my daily nature photo blog

Writing from My Photo Stream ~ Kelly DuMar


#NewThisDay Writing From My Photo Stream

Web over the Charles

Web over the Charles

Three memories in the last twenty four hours, inspired by yesterday's blog. 

I begged my mother to buy me a six-string guitar when I was in the third grade, for Christmas, and she did. She even arranged for me to have lessons at the YMCA. I went to class, the teacher was young, college aged, male, and I was naively confident I would learn how to play. After two, maybe three, classes I stopped. Learning chords seemed too challenging. Teasing and distracting the teacher was too easy. Music wasn't a language that made intuitive sense to me. Maybe I simply did not have the discipline, the energy, the passion, to practice the chords, which might have led me to some success. 

I wanted to be a ballerina, but not because I had any talent for dance. I saw a movie about a ballerina who broke her foot and kept dancing, because she was an artist, and her sacrifice was noble. It occurs to me now this ballet class may have been in the same year as my attempt at guitar. My mother dutifully signed me up for ballet class in the church basement at the center of town. She had plenty of reservations about how suitable this class would be for me. Buying the black leotard was a pleasure. Putting it on, after school, in the basement with my best friend, was a little scary. Standing at the barre, being commanded to sculpt my body in little French phrases - this too, was not anything I had any natural talent for, and my friend, she was all expressiveness and grace. After the first class, I was struck by fit of anxiety - I knew I would not, could not, return to class and embarrass myself any further. My mother grumbled at the waste, and let me drop.

When I was in eighth grade, what a trouble maker I was. The teacher I plagued the most with my mischief, my English teacher, Mrs. Orlofsky, read my essay aloud to the class without asking my permission. She read it as an example of good writing. Mrs. Orlofsky blew my cover, my friends were shocked, and I was furious. Secretly, I accepted her praise, my natural talent. On my writing, I have never given up.

In fall, the woods smells of . . . well, mold. Organic matter droops and falls, becoming earth. Recycling itself, so to speak. And what helps this process more than anything else? Fungus, of course! . . . .

The first and most startling fungus I notice is the moon-like Giant Puffball (Calvatia gigantea—such a great name), the size of a soccer ball at the edge of the forest. Apparently one can eat this mushroom, and they say it tastes like tofu or melted cheese when cooked. . .
— Joyce Sidman, Newbery Honor-winning Children's Author & Poet, she blogs at http://www.joycesidman.com/animals/out--about-cool-stuff-i/the-mushrooms-come.html

A moon, growing in my backyard,

found me settled here, at home

it beamed its cratered brightness in my way

disrupting my complacence, claiming its fistful -

such riches, from my blackest hearty soil

holding every rightful inch of its earthly space


All photos and words copyright Kelly DuMar 2016

Giant Puffball

Giant Puffball