1. You might think this PB&J sandwich is a photograph, but it’s actually an oil painting! This amazing piece of art was created by Mary Ellen Johnson of Hartsville, South Carolina.
“My work explores the deep connection that food has with humanity. I find the subtle and yet not so subtle power it possesses fascinating, The main focus of my work is to capture this deep connection. My paintings delve into the complicated and curious relationship that we have developed with food throughout our existence. Food has a direct link to our survival and has bound its roots deep within our cultures, societies, and families. It’s everywhere we go and it has worked itself into a pinnacle part of our everyday lives. It’s like a language really because we charge it with so many connotations and meanings. The smell can take you back to a time long ago, the sound of things like bacon frying in a pan can perk you up in the morning, and the sight alone can make your mouth start salivating. Food has great power over us and I’m interested in showing this power in my work. I want the viewer to be confronted by these lofty monstrosities of food and ponder their own relationship with the food that they eat.
Hello and Welcome to Poetry Friday at Alphabet Soup!
Please help yourself to a cup of tea and an Apple Pumpkin Walnut Muffin (recipe here). The footed teacup will make it easier to amble from blog to blog as you savor all the wonderful poems, reviews, and poetic musings others are sharing today. The muffins are a Fall tradition in our house — no better way to celebrate the season than to bite into apples and pumpkin at the same time. 🙂
I don’t know of many writers whose blog entries read like poetry, but I do know that her words nourish, sustain, and make me want to become a better writer and person. You could not ask for a kinder, more sensitive or astute guide as you navigate the day-to-day challenges of a writer’s life.
This lovely collection of finely wrought inspirational essays, organized by the “seasons” of writing a book (Spring: Beginning, Summer: Moving Through the Middle, Fall: Revising, Winter: Finding an End), is a unique, intimate, revealing ‘innerscape’ laden with deep, gentle wisdom — what a privilege to peek into the soul of this writer!
As Jeannine describes the stages and different aspects of writing poetry, fiction, and biography in metaphor-rich prose, she turns your tired perspective on its head, continually challenging your assumptions.
Oh, to revel in the possibilities of language, linger with the hummingbird hovering near the honeysuckle, celebrate the discovery of just the right historical detail or turn of phrase! Then, to inevitably know the yin to the yang — grief at the loss of a dear friend, staring rejection in the face, learning how to accept the vagaries of the publishing industry without losing faith or direction.
Views from a Window Seat champions the steadfast hope whose name is ‘writer.’ It is a gift to all who read, write, love words, and who might be curious about the heart and mind of a poet. Treat yourself to a copy and give it to your friends this holiday season.
Here’s an excerpt from “Slim Books,” where Jeannine discusses balancing her role as a biographer, “who needs to be exhaustive,” with the poet, “who travels lightly.”
Once I get my facts straight, once I’ve described, say, a bird, with the slant of every feather distinct, I shut my eyes and listen for what flies, flutters, or fails. I shake the poems like doormats. Phrases tumble. Some are swept past the margins and stay there. A few find places in other poems. Some spots need a bit more mystery, and I nudge them around corners, away from the bright light, to let shadows do their work.