Monthly Archives: September 2013

Audubon Adventure

“Fabulous! What a great audience!” That’s what I said when Ethan asked about my “Buzzards and Poems” talk at the Arkansas Audubon Society’s fall conference Friday night.

Scene of Arkansas countryside

Starting with the two-hour drive from Springdale to Harrison, everything went beautifully. The Arkansas countryside was picture-perfect. Although I didn’t snap any photos myself, I saw rolling hills, farmland, chicken houses, barns, and roadside attractions. Most memorable signage was for an eatery called “Hog Trough BBQ.”  Continue reading

Author, Author!

My claim to authorship is rather thin, since—outside of career—my writing is usually devoted to personal projects rather than public ones.

That’s starting to change. On October 5, the Springdale Library will host an Arkansas Author’s event and I am one of the participants. At the event, I’ll promote my writing and book illustration. I may also have to explain the photo of myself that appears in the library’s announcement. It’s the one at the top of this blog, but without the three monkeys … which leaves me looking rather impudent toward my audience. Anyway, if you’re nearby with free time, please come to the library that afternoon with your support.

Thanks!  ♥ ~Jo

Dreaming: Monolith Man

Illustration of tapered monolithYou know dreams. Maybe I was observing this person or maybe I was this person—a young, fit man who kept leaping from side to side over a monolith while facing forward. The dark granite-like stone column tapered slightly toward the top and the man’s chest passed very near the top at the apex of his leaps. His sideways leaps were slow and graceful, as if launched from a trampoline, and they were accomplished in slow motion. Continue reading

Rhyming Dictionaries

Tools and Fools

“Argue for your limitations and they’re yours.”
~ Richard Bach

Poets should avoid rhyming dictionaries like a pestilence*, I used to think. These “aids” too easily form a crutch, distract, or lead astray. Instead, poets should develop access to their abundant internal writing resources.

Guitar Strings

Lyrics combine poetry and music

A music video converted me from this foolishness. It featured lyrics by Leonard Cohen and showed that one of this renowned poet-musician’s favored tools was a rhyming dictionary. Immediately after discovering this, I abandoned my self-imposed rule of avoidance.

The switch initiated some learning: Continue reading

A Beautiful Time


Basket of flowers

Mother’s cemetery bouquet

Today, September 20, is my mother’s birthday. My Dad and most of his children gathered at Mother’s gravesite tonight, and it was a beautiful time. We siblings put out a big basket of silk flowers and—since we had a notion it might be carried off, as sometimes happens—we put a weatherproofed note deep within the bouquet. It said:

Continue reading