Friday, February 27, 2015

Best Wishes to Lana Hendershott first Henderson County Representative for NCWN West

Lana Hendershott has resigned as representative for Netwest and NCWN. 

She served the writers in Henderson County since 2008 and proved to be a loyal volunteer for our western region. Her conscientious efforts to sell the Netwest anthology, Echoes across the Blue Ridge, to book stores and other retail shops in her area made her a role model for others. Lana participated in a panel discussion by Netwest at the Blue Ridge Bookfest and at other times, she sat at the table at the bookfest and signed and sold Echoes. She enabled her fellow writers to meet and stay connected.

I met Lana when I was Program Coordinator in 2007 – 2009. The leadership of Netwest had decided to make Henderson County a part of the NCWN West region because we had heard from numerous people in that area wanting to know if there was a writers’ group or were there any other writers in Hendersonville, Fletcher or Flat Rock. They had no way of connecting to each other and therefore did not know of other poets and writers in the area.

As Program Coordinator, I talked with Ed Southern about holding a meeting at the library and sending out invitations to all members of NCWN that lived in Henderson County. I asked Nancy Purcell and J.C. Walkup to come to the meeting and talk about their duties and responsibilities in Transylvania and Haywood Counties. We needed a representative for Henderson County, but we had no volunteers. Susan Snowden suggested that I ask Lana. Susan said Lana was one of the most serious writers she knew.

It took some persuading, but Lana agreed that evening to become a representative for her county. She has been one of the easiest people to work with and once her name was known to the members there, she was available to them when they had questions or needed her advice. Even though she felt on several occasions that she would have to resign because she was needed to care for elderly parents, she persevered and, once she reached out and asked others to help, she was able to continue.

Last year when she and Pat Vestal began the open mic event they hold each month, it immediately became a success. At the present time, I believe Henderson County has more writers and poets who are members of NCWN than any county in the far western region.

I am confident that those writers would not have become the community they are now had it not been for the efforts of Lana Hendershott and Netwest.

Personally, I want to tell Lana how much she is appreciated by me and by all the members of NCWN West. Caring writers like Lana make a big difference in the lives of others. We need more members like Lana throughout NCWN West to become leaders and supporters of writers in their counties. 

Thursday, February 26, 2015

Thanks to Lana Hendershott

From Pat Vestal, NCWN Representative for Henderson County, North Carolina

Lana Hendershott, Henderson County NCWN West Representative at the Bookfest 
at Blue Ridge Community College

A few weeks after I moved to Hendersonville in 2011, I attended BookFest at Blue Ridge Community College, a bit nervous since I knew no one in the writing community. By the end of the conference I felt like I really was a part of that community. I was warmly welcomed by several NetWest members and introduced to Lana Hendershott, the Henderson County representative.  

Everyone obviously liked and respected her, and I soon discovered why. She is a genuinely good person who had already worked tirelessly as representative for several years. She made a point of introducing me to others and inviting me to events. Lana’s helpfulness included caring for her elderly parents, which consumed a great deal of her time and energy.

I joined Lana as a co-rep. in 2013 and together we developed a monthly Literary Open Mic at the Hendersonville Library, which has become very popular. It was great to have a reliable and efficient partner with whom to facilitate the monthly event and take over when I couldn’t attend. The event attracted many local readers, a number of whom are not network members and didn’t know us.  We soon became like a big family, to which, fortunately, new members are frequently added.                     Lana’s warm, welcoming and fair attitude contributed a great deal to this. 
Late in 2014 after many years, she finally decided to relinquish her position in order to spend more time with family.  Obviously, she received warm accolades and appreciation at her last meeting as representative in December.  

As the January “meet and greet” prior to the reading was underway, big smiles and welcomes broke out as Lana quietly entered the auditorium to relax in the audience, still supporting local writers.   

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Women Who Have Made A Difference

Jack J. Prather has interviewed and written a most interesting book on Six Notable Women of North Carolina. Our own NCWN West member, and first woman Poet Laureate of North Carolina, Kathryn Stripling Byer is one of them. A number of Byer's poems are included with her memories of growing up in southwest Georgia and moving to the mountains as an adult.  

Photographs of the subjects' families and their peers throughout their careers create even more interest in each woman's story. The journey of Kay Byer begins with her childhood years and moves on to her school years. She discusses her marriage, her family and, of course, poetry. I like that she gives advice to young poets. "I think writers should imitate and assimilate what they love, and what speaks to them, and then innovate." A sense of place is most important in poetry according to Byer. 

I found the interview with Sharon Decker, former NC Commerce Secretary and Duke Power VP, one of the most intriguing. Decker is one of the women who broke the glass ceiling in the man's corporate world and political arena. Her energy and ambition to make a difference makes her an excellent role model for young women of today. She says she loves negotiating and bringing divergent ideas to the table where opinions can be changed or resolved into a peaceful solution. 

Kathy Reichs is a successful novelist and the inspiration for the television show, Bones. She studied physical anthropology at Northwestern and earned a Ph.D. She became an anthropology professor and one of only two women to attain full professorships in that department at UNC Charlotte.
"Blending science and crossing boundaries is a recurring theme for me," Reichs says.

It was her interest in physical anthropology which combines the human people studies with the hard sciences of biology, biomechanics and physiology that led her eventually to forensic anthropology.

Another woman of note, Reichs is one of only 101 forensic anthropologists to ever be certified. She began thinking about writing a novel in 1990, but in 1994 she completed her debut novel, Deja Dead, which found its way to a junior editor at Scribner. Publisher Susan Moldow offered Reichs a two-book deal worth 1.2 million, and the rest is history. She stays busy with book tours, writing novels and producing scripts for the TV show, Bones.

Other notable women in Prather's book are Jennifer Pharr Davis, World Appalachian Trail Record Hiker, Anne Ponder, Chancellor Emerita, UNC at Asheville, and Millie Ravenel, Founder, Center for International Understanding.

Jack Prather does an outstanding job of asking the right questions and editing the stories he collected. I hope this book is in our libraries and in our schools. These women have blazed trails that younger generations will now find easier to follow. Life doesn't always run the course we plan, but we make choices, and that is where Prather reveals the humanistic side of each of his subjects in this book.

See the podcast of Jack's interview on Your Carolina:

This book can be ordered on
Jack J. Prather

Review by Glenda Council Beall,
writer, interviewer, and director of Writers Circle around the Table 

Sunday, February 15, 2015

Hat's Off to Laurence Holden

Congratulations to Laurence Holden, poet and artist who lives in north Georgia. See more about Laurence's work at the  links below.
Laurence Holden will have recent poems appearing in March issues of Snapdragon: a Journal of Art & Healing, and Pine Mountain Sand & Gravel, vol 18, 2015.

The Artist's Path: On The Trail Between Art & Nature
Laurence Holden: Portfolio

Friday, February 13, 2015



Cherokee County
Mary Ricketson

Lucy Cole Gratton

Clay County 
Glenda Beall

Janice Moore

Henderson County 
Patricia Vestal

Nancy Jane Zelman

Jackson County 
Kathryn Stripling Byer

Newton Smith

Rosemary Royston

Karen Paul Holmes

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

NCWN Executive Director Ed Southern to receive award

The North Carolina Writers' Network Executive Director, Ed Southern has been awarded the prestigious Ethel N. Fortner Writer and Community Award, Photo

"St. Andrews University will present the 2015 Ethel N. Fortner Writer and Community Award to North Carolina Writers’ Network Executive Director Ed Southern on March 5."

Ed has headed NCWN since 2008 and the organization has grown and served more writers over the years.
Read more about Ed and the award at this link:

On a personal note, I was program coordinator for NCWN West, (Netwest) when Ed came on board. I had heard good things about him and was excited to know we were going to be in good hands. Right away, I asked Ed to come to our far western area and meet all the writers and poets scattered in these mountains. And for the first time since the early 90s, the  Executive Director of NCWN came out here and talked with us. Even more important, he listened to us. Our promised funding sanctioned by the  NC Arts Council had been terminated, but Ed promised he would see that it was resumed. He did as he promised.

I know all of our members and readers join me in congratulating Ed Southern on receiving the Fortner Award.

Monday, February 9, 2015

Three Poems from Peg Bresnahan, poet from Transylvania County, NC

Peg Bresnahan’s second poetry collection, In a Country None of Us Called Home, was published by Press 53. Peg is a member of the North Carolina Writers’ Network. She received her MFA in Poetry from Vermont College of Fine Arts in Montpeliar. Her work has been published in numerous literary journals and anthologies. 
She lives in Cedar Mountain, NC with husband, sculptor, Dan Bresnahan. 

Kathy Smith Bowers, former Poet Laureate of North Carolina said of Peg’s latest book, "This is one of the most beautifully crafted and moving collections I have read in a long time."  

At the Jordan Street Cafe'

I didn't know who she was and I don't
know who asked her but suddenly
this woman standing at the restaurant door

about ready to leave in raincoat and boots
was singing Puccini's "Vissi D'arte" from Tosca.
Someone turned off the CD player

and we all listened as Tosca's torment
for her dead lover took flight. Questions
to the God she felt had left her, soared 

over tables and bar stools, cruised down a hall
to the kitchen where even the chef paused.
It didn't matter we couldn't speak Italian,

each heart knew its own breaking,
every face translated its grief.
The aria froze us like a tableau—forks 

in midair, a waiter with full tray held high,
the bartender in front of the mirrored wall
of bottles and glass about to pour a draft.

Everyone heard her music.
Some from cages. Some winged.
Some tethered to a fire, to ropes of ash.

At the Sunny Ridge Retirement Center

During Harriet's memorial service,
Frances leaned, put her head
on my shoulder and died—quietly 

as if she didn't want to interrupt 
Harriet's program. 
The minister didn't see us,

no one knew except me. At the piano,
Mary played the introduction 
to Going Home. Everyone thumbed

their hymnals for page two hundred forty-three.
I didn't know what to do, since Frances
still looked like Frances, only not quite

and she was ninety-five. I put my arm
around her so she wouldn't fall
and waited for someone to notice.

Through the French doors 
finches squabbled at the bird feeder.
The squirrel we call Rocky

contemplated his next move.
A laundry truck rolled by. 
I looked down at Frances' navy blue crocs,

the ones she claimed felt so much
like bedroom slippers
she could wear them anywhere.


Yesterday you asked if our life would change
because of your heart attack.
I grabbed the sheet of air between us
and gave it a good shake
to make a commotion
jump-starting the no that roared from my throat,
poured off the walls of our house.

Today I can't seem to finish anything,
my trail littered with little piles of intentions.
I could blame it on what I dreamed last night—
you know how in a dream
you need to talk to someone
and that person's always out of reach,
just leaving? If you do go before me

I will give away your empty shoes,
walk the dogs until we're all exhausted,
buy half a bag of groceries.
But for now I lie beside you, listen
to you breathe each breath, hitchhike
a ride with them into our future.

You can order Peg's book from Press 53.

Interview from 2008 with Nancy Simpson, co-founder of NCWN West and former Resident Writer for JCCFS

Recently, I had the opportunity to interview poet, Nancy Simpson, former Program Coordinator for the North Carolina Writers' Network West. Although I’ve known Nancy for thirteen years and always admired her, I had some questions about her writing and NCWN West. As you will see, her answers are most informative as well as candid.

GB: Nancy, you have been a practicing poet for thirty years. What inspired you to be a poet?

NS: As it happened, the 
N.C. Arts Council in Raleigh sent some poets to read at the Moss Memorial Library in Hayesville. I remember there was also a local poet on the program, Janice Townley Moore. Before that night I had only written rhyming poems. When I heard those poets read free verse poems, it changed my life forever. Something clicked. I remember thinking, Oh. That is what I have heard in my head all these years. I came to believe that poetry is a slanted way of seeing the world. When those quirky thoughts came, I started writing them down. That is how it began. I started studying free verse poetry immediately. I took classes with Dr. Steve Harvey, and I consider him my beloved teacher and mentor. I traveled far and wide to every writing workshop I could find. I went to hear every poet I could. I bought and listened to the great poets on tape. I could not get enough. Now, after all these years, I still can't get enough. Practicing, studying, and teaching poetry is my life.

GB: You earned your MFA at Warren Wilson College. Was that before you became Program Coordinator for NCWN West?

NS: I earned my M.F.A. in Writing in 1983. I began working with Marsha Warren, then Executive Director of the North Carolina Writers’ Network, to establish N.C.W.N. West in 1991.

GB: Early in your writing career you published with the best journals such as the Georgia Review and Prairie Schooner. How often has the Georgia Review chosen your poems, and what other fine journals published your work?

NS: I had three poems in The Georgia Review when Stan Lindberg was editor. I had five Poems in Prairie Schooner. Other poems were published in four editions of Southern Poetry Review, and recently SPR chose to reprint "Grass" in their upcoming 50th Anniversary Issue. Some of my poems have been in Indiana Review, Florida Review, Seneca Review and New Virginia Review. I've also been pleased to have poems in Appalachian Journal, Appalachian Heritage and Journal of Kentucky Studies.

GB: I know several of your poems have been chosen for anthologies and reprinted in books.

NS: I had poems reprinted in four editions of Anthology of Magazine Verse, Writers Choice, and Word and Wisdom - 100 Years of N.C. Poetry. My poem "Night Student" has been published and reprinted, upon request, nine times. It was recently included in Literary Trails of N.C. Seven poems were reprinted in the new anthology of Appalachian Poetry from McFarland Press.A new poem, "Carolina Blue Birds" is included in the anthology, The Poet's Guide to the Birds, forthcoming in 2008 from Anhinga Press.

GB: You published Across Water, a poetry chapbook and a full length collection, Night Student. Tell how that came about.

NS: The editor and publisher of State Street Press, Judith Kitchen, asked me if she could choose some of my poems for a chapbook manuscript. I had just met her in the M.F.A. Program at Warren Wilson College. I didn't know she owned a press. She chose and arranged the poems and published Across Water.
Two years later Judith Kitchen asked to see my manuscript again. After reading it, she called and said she had the title -- Night Student--and that although State Street Press published only chapbooks, she intended to publish my full-length collection. I was fortunate. I was very happy. To me, it is amazing. As years passed, Judith Kitchen became a dear friend. The biggest honor is that she asked me to be her best woman at her marriage ceremony.

GB: You dedicated many years to the NCWN West and, as Program Coordinator, mentored writers here in the mountains. Many have gone on to publish their work. However you continued publishing your own poems in literary journals, and you edited Lights in the Mountains, the NCWN West anthology published in 2005. How did you find the time when you also held a full-time job as a public school teacher?

NS: True. I taught in Clay County public schools for 26 years. After I earned my MFA, I taught 11th grade English and I taught English Composition part time at Tri County College. Later I switched to Continuing Ed so I could teach creative writing. At the same time, I co- founded N.C. Writers Network West and took on the job of Program Coordinator. I then was asked to serve as Resident Writer at John C. Campbell Folk School. At one time I was teaching full time and had three paying part-time writing related jobs. At the same time, I kept writing poems. I kept submitting them and getting them published. I do not know how I did it. It was not hard. Writing consumed my life.

GB: In recent years you lost a sister and a son. How has your writing helped you deal with your grief?

NS: I believe practicing poetry is a way to learn how to live. Yes, writing helped me deal with death and grief. Losing my sister was hard because we were close and most of my life she lived near enough that we could talk every day. She prodded me to write a specific historical novel and, before her death, she handed over all of her research. Every day I look across the driveway at her empty house. At night, it seems darker on the mountain without lights in her house. I honor her best by writing the novel. Sometimes when I get stuck, I imagine her telling me where to find the answer on which page of her research. Sometimes I imagine her saying, “Only 127 pages! Get to work!”

The death of my son from Cancer last summer was the hardest thing I've ever had to face. I was with him through surgery which took place during Christmas week at Emory Hospital in Atlanta. I thought he soon would be coming home, but his progress stalled and he stayed in the hospital. His brothers, who live in Atlanta, promised to take good care of him. One was employed as a nurse at Emory and checked on him often. I talked with my son two or three times a day, but grief set in. I became depressed. I had two completed poetry manuscripts that were circulating among the poetry presses, but I did not think about that very much. One day I found myself shuffling the manuscript pages, shifting poems from one manuscript to another, changing page numbers, even changing the title of one of the manuscripts. When I told a good friend what I was doing she said, “Oh No. Don't do that.”
I know she was concerned that in my depressed state, I might ruin the manuscripts. I stopped and thought about it. I knew I was doing the right thing. Other than the life of my son, there was nothing that could keep my mind focused. There was nothing else that made me want to get out of bed in the morning. Your question is how has my writing helped me deal with grief? Practicing poetry at the most dreadful time sustained me. When my son came home to Hospice, I put my poems away. I did not need them because I had my son, and I had an important new job to learn - how to be his nurse.

GB: As Writer in Residence at the John C. Campbell Folk School, you are in contact with writers and teachers all over the United States. What do you look for in choosing faculty for the Writing Program at JCCFS?

NS: In the 
John C. Campbell Folk School Writing Program, I look for a writer who has book publications or is widely published in good magazines. Second, I want someone who has teaching credentials, who has taught writing before or has teacher training somewhere in their background. Third, and most important, the instructors who come to teach at JCCFS must fit into the non competitive environment. We have "no hierarchy and no lowerarchy." The best teachers can sit in a circle with their students and teach them well. Lectures go over like a lead balloon at the folk school. We now have a lovely set up with classes held in the living room of Orchard House and in the new writing studio which is attached to Orchard House. I will not say the teaching style we want is casual. No. A week at the folk school is the most intense kind of learning. But, it is not similar in any way to college classroom and never shall be. We only have 18 writing classes a year now and the schedule is filled through 2009. Still, I am always on the look out for good writing instructors.

GB: You have two new poetry manuscripts finished. Give us the names of each and tell us the themes of these works. Have any of the poems in these manuscripts already been published?

NS: One is LIVING ABOVE THE FROST LINE. The other is INTO THE HEART OF THE GLACIER.The poems were written over many years. I took a NCWN Advanced Poetry Class with Kathryn Stripling Byer. What she read was one manuscript with 150 poems. Kay said it should be two different manuscripts, and she advised where to break them apart. I will always appreciate her direction. LIVING ABOVE THE FROST LINE, which was first titled Accounting, is written in the voice of a woman who lives alone on a remote mountain in Appalachia. Her concerns focus on specific values: Worth of Persons, Family and Concern for our planet. Nineteen of the poems have been published.INTO THE HEART OF THE GLACIER is also written with the same southern voice of a woman living alone on a mountain. Glacier is a love story, the ancient Eurydice story turned backward and set in our time. Twenty-two of the poems have been published.

GB: On June 7, you will teach your first poetry workshop for NCWN West. You have taught at Tri-County Community College, John C. Campbell Folk School, and the Institute of Continuing Learning at Young Harris College. How did it happen that you never taught a class for NCWN West?

NS: Thanks for inviting me. I can hardly wait to teach this Netwest Saturday Poetry workshop on June 7. To answer the question, I was the Program Coordinator and my main job was to help the representatives in each county get the kind of writing programs they wanted. At that time 
NCWN sponsored four Saturday workshops a year in the Netwest region. I was eager to teach, but it would not have been ethical to do so at the time I was on the NCWN payroll. I was busy editing and producing an anthology. Each county had character and ideas of its own. I worked hard at setting up critique groups, if that was what they wanted, or Saturday writing workshops. I was busy keeping two Netwest representatives in each county. It would not have been appropriate for me to teach a Netwest workshop.

I am happy to say that over the years, NCWN invited me to be on their Fall Conference program three different times. NC Women Writers invited me twice to be on their program; once when held in Asheville, and later when held in Greensboro. You can see I stayed busy, but now, yes now, I can say I am a happy woman to be invited to teach a Saturday Poetry Workshop for NCWN West.

GB: .What do you expect students to take away from this coming class, Advance Your Poetry?

NS: ADVANCE YOUR POETRY is an all day workshop for practicing free verse poets. My goal is to focus on their poetry and their poetry writing process. We will talk about how they started writing poetry, where they are now in their writing career and what is their next step, and the next, and the next. I expect the students to take away direction and a folder marked in bold letters: MY POETRY CHAPBOOK COLLECTION.

GB: Nancy, I’m delighted you took the time to answer my questions so our visitors on can know more about you and about NCWN West.

NS: Glenda, thank you for asking.

Interview by Glenda Council Beall

Tuesday, February 3, 2015

The Dancing Years, poetry, by Barbara Groce

In memory of one of our dearest members, Barbara Groce. Barbara passed away Monday, February 2.
A book of poetry, The Dancing Years, by Barbara Groce was released by Cardinal House Publishing in 2012. 

Upon moving to the North Georgia Mountains in 2007, Barbara turned to poetry as an outlet for the childhood and lifetime memories pressing for release. Although she had never written, she poured her energy into learning. She attended a number of classes and workshops, including the annual Writer's Conference sponsored by the Blue Ridge Arts Center. Numerous area, regional and national poets shared generously to mentor her. Barbara is a member of the Georgia Poetry Society, North Carolina Writers Network, the Kentucky State Poetry Society, the Shallow Enders and her local church poetry group.

Barbara's poems have been published in Pegasus, journal of the Kentucky State Poetry Society, Reach of Song, 2011, annual publication of the Georgia Poetry Society, Wild Goose Poetry Review, Spring 2011 and local newspapers. She has won awards from the Kentucky State Poetry Society (2009, 2010, 2011) and the Illinois State Poetry Society (2010). She published two Chapbooks, Appalachian Girl and Christmas Legends.

The Dancing Years is a comprehensive collection of Barbara’s poetry.  She previously published two chapbooks, Appalachian Girl and A Legendary Christmas.

Barbara will be missed by all who knew her.

Read more here.

Sunday, February 1, 2015

SEPTEMBER 20, 2008 - After a Week of Hearing the Word by Nancy Simpson

Recently I sent out an email to  members with two links for early posts of this blog, but I find now that those links to  many of the post in 2007, 2008 do not work. You can go to Archives and find most of the early posts however.
Nancy Simpson, co-founder of NCWN West, our mountain writers organization, in the early 1990s, sent me this early post that portrays the activity and enthusiasm we had in 2008.
Saturday, September 20, 2008


Michael Beadle and Glenda Beall

Jo Carolyn Beebe

Bill Queen and Nancy Simpson

Hello Friends of Netwest,

Something is happening. The seasons are changing. It's difficult to keep my feet on the ground. I'm telling you. I'm flying off the earth. It started last Sunday at Koneheta Park in Cherokee County at our 17th annual picnic. There have been a lot of good Netwest 

I've missed only one. The Cherokee County members out-did themselves. They welcomed writers as far away as Jackson and Haywood. There were also writers from Clay,Cherokee and some from Georgia. The food was the best ever. I didn't see one Ingles cake on the table.
Playwright, Gary Carden was the featured writer. He was born to entertain. He paid homage to Appalachian poet, Jim Wayne Miller who exhorted in his poem: "Come home to your father's house."

There were at the same time, near us, some boys practicing baseball with their coach. The boys could not keep their minds on the game. Every time Gary Carden raised his voice, shouting, "Come home to your father's house," a boy would miss hitting the ball or would miss the catch. The louder Gary Carden read Jim Wayne Miller's famous words, the more the boys missed the ball and the louder and the meaner their coach yelled insulting words at them.

Sitting between Gary Carden, who was telling his heart out and between the boys who wanted to drop the ball and come over to see who was talking, drawn to poetry I believe, and sitting there in hearing distance of their mean-mouthed coach, who needed someone to gag him, I almost lost my way for a moment. What a presentation from our special guest! The readings continued with old favorites such as poets Brenda Kay Ledford and Mary Ricketson reading their newest poems. You must know, my ears also love to hear those new and younger voices and there were some of those. As it turned out, it was the best NCWN West annual picnic ever.

Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, I tried to get my feet back on Terra Firma. On Thursday evening I went to John C. Campbell Folk School to our scheduled monthly reading. Each month two of our members read there to a captive audience. By that I mean, they read to the folk school students who have come from all over America to learn a craft. In the audience we also have local writers and Netwest members who come to support the program.

The featured writers were two of Netwest's most accomplished: fiction writer Jo Carolyn Beebe from Hiawassee, Georgia and poet, Michael Beadle from Canton, N.C. Oops. I started losing traction, floating. What a show! I enjoyed Jo Carolyn's stories. They were filled with vivid imagery. As she read, I felt as if I were turning the pages of a book with colorful illustrations.

Michael Beadle is a performance poet. He started reciting loudly, pacing, looking at me. I lost myself. What a joy to remember that there are different kinds of poetry. He recited free verse and read haiku to the beat of a drum. It was inspiring. His best was a free verse poem about a boy wanting his estranged parents to kiss again, so he creates a kiss by taking his father's coffee mug and without washing it, pours his mother a drink. Where their lips touched the mug, he had their kiss. It's the kind of lyric poem I long to hear.

On Friday, (just yesterday) all I wanted to do all day was write. I wondered if my life could get better. I reheard poems and phrases in my head. I floated on joy.

But the week wasn't over yet. Netwest had scheduled the award winning play, Birdell, by Gary Carden. Gary had donated the play to Netwest for a fundraiser. It was to be performed in Murphy. I went out into my garden to gather flowers to be used as props, got dressed and went to help set up for the play.
I knew I would enjoy this play written my our own Gary Carden. But, I was not prepared for this moving story, set in Appalachia long ago. I was not prepared for the professional, outstanding performance of Bobbie Curtis, who took me back to that time in the mountains. She made me laugh and she made me cry, the emotions that remind me I am human. 

Up, up again.

Yes, after a full week of taking in the word, the word itself, I am still floating. My thanks to all of you who are responsible for my elevated condition. Don't worry about me. Don't call my doctor. I'm fine. I'm alive, healthy and happy.

Nancy Simpson
Consultant, NCWN West