Monthly Newsletter July, 2014, D. Bradley
Gathering together in Town Hall, instead of the library this month, we sat in a circle and quickly engaged in the continuing conversation related to our up and coming Chap Book. We have been searching for a catchy title, and interested in collecting some sketches and photos to enhance our written words. After we listened to our writers’ share their latest gems, we hit pay dirt with a possible title for our book before departing. Our readings this month continue to charm us, one and all. One topic began with a suspenseful retelling of the true story of a combination of an early spring trip on Indian Lake with family, stormy weather and water, and a discovered wallet at the water’s edge.
The assigned word, “whisper” captured a GPS “whispering” directions through the streets of Philadelphia in search for a Montissori Charter School. This piece, titled 168 Little Faces captures the joy, hope and love of a grown daughter and her accomplishments as a CEO of a school and for the potential of the 168 little faces of children who attended this school.
The issue of the name “Washington Red Skins” became a new topic in the latest “Odd” piece, entitled Oops. In the town of Something two characters worked as radio announcers during a football game. Since the hometown Lemmings were playing the “Red” Skins, the announcers were challenged to remove the word “red” from their descriptions of the game.
We were enchanted with three poems. In the first, Hunters, Gatherers, memories of two sisters and parents during a vacation together came to life. The sisters were inspired by items in the camp store, and adventurous collections began. One Time, a second piece recreated the story of a hospice patient who had once spent two weeks as a Rockette. Finally in Psalm 1998 the author recreated feelings of helplessness and hope when her husband had suffered a heart attack.
In Fowl Play or The Case of the Disappearing Chicken, the author traveled back in time to her teen aged years living nearby to her friend, Peter. Peter and his many brothers lived in a large Victorian house with many rooms, double walls, and even a trap door in the attic. Peter’s mother was constantly attempting to feed her hungry brood. When food starting disappearing, including even raw chicken pieces, Peter’s mother was sure one of her hungry boys was playing a trick on her. Finally, they discovered that a homeless man had been living in their attic under the trap door, and apparently required a little nourishment. Truth can be stranger than fiction.
Finally, a new member introduced herself and talked about a memoir course she had taken. Her teacher used a variety of items to inspire her students. She encouraged their written work to be like “snapshots” of a period or time in their lives. The word “snapshot” instigated a spark. We suddenly agreed that this might just be the word we have been searching for to put into the title of our Chap Book.
***Next meeting will be: August 20th at 1:30 in the library.
***Our next assignment will be one of two: Survival or Trespass
I have chosen a poem from my son, Adam’s book, Tell Me a Story of the Wild which I believe might relate to those of us who have aged a bit, with a wrinkle or two.
Hope you enjoy this:
Your Morning Commute
I love waking in the mornings
to see you studying the lines on my face,
like a wrinkled map
with routes and freeways—
And I can always tell
when you come across the intersection
where our paths first crossed—
your gaze pauses, then travels up
to the cul-de-sac of my eyes
where, as if returning from a long journey
you greet me with a smile.
Adam F. Bradley
(His book is available on Amazon)