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

Woman raising her arms (sycamore bark), my morning walk

Woman raising her arms (sycamore bark), my morning walk

In the place that is my own place, whose earth
I am shaped in and must bear, there is an old tree growing,
a great sycamore that is a wondrous healer of itself. . .

Excerpt from The Sycamore - Wendell Berry

The perfect refreshment of a ten hour sleep. How rare and wonderful to receive this gift last night and wake from this much needed rest into the busy and demanding and rich and emotionally, intellectually engaged day. It’s after 7:00 when I head out the door into warmth and bright sunshine. I go looking for the pollinator garden that my friend Suzi told me about; it has been here for the last two years on campus. I go to find it, and find it gone, possibly replaced by a temporary building. The landscapers are mowing and trimming – and spraying a pesticide at the base of a neatly mulched hardwood. Instinctively, I hold my breath to protect my lungs from the lingering toxins. Futile, I supposed. But we don’t spray our grass, our yard, our woods; the Trustees don’t spray where I walk. No pollinator garden, a shame. But I go to the creek where the willows weep in the daylight and the water ripples. This park has sycamore trees, and I walk under them looking for beautiful shapes of bark. I find one that looks to me, resting on the clover and grass, like a woman raising her arms over her head. There is so much power and joy in these remarkable days, spent with women, in large rooms and small; in large conversations and deep. In Vanessa’s advanced poetry workshop, she read Sylvia Plath’s “Tulips” to us, and a hush fell among us. We held our breath, stunned with the beauty and power of this poem, and sharing it together this morning. At lunch, another faculty member and I met, to deepen our friendship, and we did. The Play Lab was hard, satisfying work. The plays are taking shape. The collaboration is working. Risks are being taken. Growth in scripts and in women. I witness a moving moment, after the workshop: one writer in tears, sharing with the other writer, about how she relates to the secret revealed in her play. It’s a big door opening between them. They hug. A healing has begun. The sycamore, it knows how to heal itself – our IWWG community is a place where women support each others healing all day long every day.