Poet, Playwright, Workshop Facilitator
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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


I wake knowing I hope to squeeze a lot into this single day, unwilling to compromise any of what I have planned, and this awareness is helpful. I get right back to the poem before walking, before breakfast. I finish it. As in first draft finish. Then, it’s out into the sky and field, the woods and wetlands. It’s warming up for snow. So, as I try to glide my way over the glassy frozen wetlands I almost immediately crack through the surface. Both boots wet, the water seeps in. And I’m only starting out. It’s above freezing, and I’m not cold, so I decide I will not bother to change my boots and walk wet footed under the blue sky. When I return home, as I’m about to print the copies of my poem for the workshop, I hear a new opening stanza, so, in it goes. Off I go to the master class with Fred Marchant on the them of Illness. It’s a long and exquisite afternoon of fine poets, fine poems, and a framing introduction by Fred that is so well conceived and moving and articulate. One of the poets he references, Frank Ormsby, has a preface from his introduction to The Parkinson’s Poems, and I quickly copy this out, because it’s what I’ve always believed, and taught in my expressive writing workshops, about the healing aspects of writing, and I’m pleased to hear Ormsby express how his poems, and his Parkinson’s, have given him this insight:

Is it time I examined less dismissively the concept of poetry as therapy, for both poet and reader? Does the very structuring of a poem, the search for the right word or phrase, become, in itself, a form of stabilization, an act of ordering and controlling that may, temporarily, bring consolation?


By the time every poet’s poem has been read and discussed and the workshop ends – it runs, enthusiastically, beyond its bounds. It’s dark in the city and snowing lightly. None of us, it seems, is in a rush to get away. Someone has joked, how pleasant it would be to stay put for the storm, in our host’s cozy apartment with our illness poems and each other.

Kelly DuMarComment