Due to Covid-19 restrictions, the Storytellers group has not be able to have in-person meetings; however, that has not stopped our very creative members from making new art!
This month we worked on the Strangers Project where participants expressed their artistic talent through introspective poems and paintings to tell a stranger something about themselves. We want to send a huge shoutout to our members for their hard work on this project and for sharing their talents.
These are some of the poems our participants chose to share:
What would I like a stranger to know about me?
I’ve had a very full life. I am grateful for being able to achieve this, which has kept me going during times of despair, such as these.
At the age of 19 I had a job and responsibilities beyond my years and experience. Being timid and foolish, I rarely asked questions, but rather learned by listening and watching. I was fortunate to satisfy my early desire for travel before I turned 30, my job had taken me to 6 continents. I was diagnosed with Progressive Multiple Sclerosis at the age of 29.
I get frustrated when trying to complete a simple task, due to this “little inconvenience” I’ve lived with for 25 years. It slows me down but I’m grateful that I haven’t given up…yet. I’ve learned that when I’m forced to slow down to the point where I can only sit still and “be” in that moment. Often, the only thing that can get me through days overrun with frustration is yoga, meditation and gratitude for life path I’ve chosen, which introduced me to becoming a human “being”, after spending my former years as a human doing. This has helped me accept the fact that the many things I used to do oh, I can no longer do.
A moment of self-reflection Karen L.Hollis
I am a woman still discovering myself. I say that because when life throws you for a loop or two survival is our greatest instinct. There are times I feel there are two of me. Coincidentally, I happen to be a twin, almost a mirror image of myself but also as different as night and day.
Often there is this small voice within who is not so confident. Many times afraid to speak up because of the little girl who grew up in foster care and too many tramas along life’s journey.
The small voice is not so confident and feels hesitant and overwhelmed trying to avoid negative consequences and conflict.
Then there’s the bold confident voice which never misses an opportunity to take advantage of a teachable moment along the way. I’d like this voice to show up more often, but these last few years have knocked the wind out my sails. This put me in my own personal quarantine, long before the rest of the world started theirs.
Instead of being on Life’s Roller Coaster, which has a definite destination. Most days I feel like I am on a carousel encapsulated in a snowglobe. On the carousel, with the same old music and the same starting point and destination, with the only change being my mode of transportation around and around up and down Within a repetitive circle . Some of life’s lessons have taught me many things, along life’s journey I’ve had to begin again and again and again.
I need my world to be larger than that carousel. I’m at a point in my life where now is the time to dare to dream and find my voice which was so instrumental in paying it forward by teaching, counseling and helping others in many capacities. Now, I feel like I need to feel present in the world. If not now then when?
My inner self transcends my outer body,
Nestled in a core of gentle quietude.
Tangled round my nucleus,
My neural neutrons zing
A frantic orbit,
Side-swiping protons that
Balance my existence.
The atom of my being
The self I want to be
And man I am.
— Nick Pentzell (2020)
I am very friendly, happy, lovable, kind, helpful, compassionate, and a good listener. I am usually the one people come to when they need someone to talk to and I know I have people that are there for me like I am there for them. Even though sometimes I want to tell them to go away I do not because I know that this is the only way I can help.
Here are a couple of the paintings created this month by AR: