October 2020 Voicing Art Poetry Reading + Poems

inspired by the theme of ‘FALLING’ + the ‘with water in sight’ art of cynthia rosen

IT TAKES ALL KINDS TO RAISE A VILLAGE | McClain Jeffrey Moredock [in memoriam]

Two roads, a ferry, and a lake
Do not a city make
Nor hamlet so I read
For hamlets have no churches
Nor government to lead

But the lovely intersection
Of travel wet and dry
Are perfect for the village
That lives in my mind’s eye

Now those who visit, those who stay
Are not quite all the same
Each has its own perspective
Each sings its own refrain

The village has old timers
And latecomers in its fold
Plus an influx of summer folks
Who leave when it gets cold

Now toss in all the travelers
Who are only passing through
Some stop and have a bite to eat
And all enjoy the view

The mixture of humanity
Creates a potpourri
Which means within the village
People often disagree

Of course they hate the winter
And warmly welcome summer
But when it comes to politics
Its glum and even glummer

No unifying vision
No common cause for all
But rather each to owns the cry
On Main Street or Town Hall

But the village seems to thrive
And remains a lakeside treasure
For residents and visitors
All love it in full measure

June 2015

From Poems from Essex & Elsewhere

McClain Jeffrey Moredock

THE FALL | Heather Swick

[inspired by “Hidden Treasures” by Cynthia Rosen]

The dust and the ashes fell away
And what was left is what has been there all along…
Good will
Right relations
And a vision of a truth of who we are.
And a vision of the treasure and truth each of us can share with one another and with the world.


Trees in golden robes

Sing peace for Tibet

On the wind; as if for the

Dalai Llama assembled. 

The song moves through 

Me and I pause, with another

Step my shadow falls behind 

And I emerge; back lit by

News print, bill boards, and 

Pop up galleries, painting a 

Collage of the way home

before the fall | Cyndi Zahid

& I steal back the pieces of myself 
they are all I have to hold on to 
& I cling to them until they are worn 
smooth and small with the weight of my want 
& surely there’s a memory of this
somewhere in the fibers of my hands
& arms they make do while I find minutes
of my life to steal for myself again

LEAF DAZE | Robin Reid

Light on leaves
Brings the stun
Bleating yellow
A red so red that pain is seen
And orange conjuring taste
Leaf by leaf in some mindless mindful way

Don’t hesitate
We are falling
Falling falling falling falling
One by one by one and altogether
Holding on makes no matter
No matter at all
Fall – it’s the only way

Unless to stay behind and shrivel
Becomes the fate chosen
By no one but for few destined
With leaves once in bright unison color
Our view and vision will change from peak
To barren. Full chloroform green
Gone… oxygen production done           
Another season leaves. Come again

FALLING | Elle Dooley

[inspired by two autumn paintings and “Wading in the River”  by Cynthia Rosen]

Roasting fires, round metal cylinders
Hatch green chile peppers tumbling.
Sha-chuk sha-chuk sha-chuk
Open flames char the pods,
release the sweet smoky smell.
Rising, it marries pinon smoke
from kivas lit to soften evening’s chill,
cool fingers against the skin.
Sky blue as a razor’s edge
deliquesces into dusk.
Inky darkness rises from the valley,
the Rio Grande silent between its banks.
Yellow leaves of aspen
stab the night before vanishing
to reappear at dawn.
Fiesta lights in the foothills
Clink of ice in margarita glasses
Autumn in New Mexico.

HEAVEN + EARTH | Laine Driscoll

[inspired by “Of Heavens and Earth” by Cynthia Rosen]

“A oneness made by the stroke of the tongue.”
Multi-dimensional, exotic flavorings,
Colorings of kaleidoscopic nature
Into an evolved palette.
The horizon built on a centered perspective,
Scrub brush cotton candy directly in your path,
Just ahead, mirror lake
Paints the golden rose petal sun tea which is your
Tender respite from shore living.
Across the way is licorice forest hazard –
Like the scrubby land, it’s easy to get tangled in.
Early cool grey potato sky opens from the mountain blue.
From that vantage there is no divide.
Heaven and earth are one.
Geometries soak up the essence of it all.
Blurring and rounding the sharp edges
That cut your mouth in life.

Safety first.
Then freedom

If safety currently unavailable, try:

  1. Eye gazes (plushie, drawn, human, animal or other)
  2. Wind on body (beach, city, arctic, A/C, via brisk walk or other)
  3. Rump shake (i.e. shake your booty. Note: if not in mood, try disco.)
  4. Sunlight bath
  5. Forest trail breath
  6. Friend check-ins
  7. Flower sniffs
  8. Self-hugging
  9. Soul-cuddling
  10. Spirit-saluting
  11. Art appreciation

Safety is first. There is life all around (meaning ALL around… every spore is a living being. Some are fox, some are deer, some are bird. They make life. They are parts of lives. Other lives work with them. Those lives work with others. Say hi. You are safe.)

Safety is first. But after safety – freedom…


[inspired by “With Water in Sight” portfolio by Cynthia Rosen]

“Critter footed clad
in the salamander sediment

Disturbing dehydrated delirium


Dizzy debris

Cranes in the crested corona

Prepared to plank into the potent past”


Falling flat on your face – standing up freed.

Falling into someone’s arms – gaining strength.

Falling down a rabbit hole – the world’s mysteries awaiting 

Falling off the edge of a cliff – taking flight, soaring high. 

Falling for love – glory to the sun.

MY DARLING | JC - The Poartry Project

[inspired by “Wading in the River”
by Cynthia Rosen]

Will you fall, my darling,
down the slope of my stooped shoulders
in your delicate pink shirt?
Or will you take a running start
up the hills of my wisdom
and leap with joyful abandon
into the cerulean sea
reflected in our humble river –
the conveyor of my dreams?

Will you roll in the dun sands
of our river’s shore, dear one,
turning your white blouse
into a sheet of papyrus
on which you will write my history
and a new constitution suitable
to your time
when no girl is cut
lest she fall prematurely
and stain her white habit?

Reflection, mine,
rippling with the distortion
of arms stirring up silt in the cleaning,
have you dropped away from me,
disappointed with the life I have made,
straining to fly free –
or do you take comfort
in my face familiar
replicated in a tiny pink shirt
and a little white blouse
tumbling playfully
into the water,
laughter bubbling
as the rich reeded flutes
of my childhood
floated downriver,
over falls after falls,
stepping into the ocean
of ancestors future and past?
Let me hold you for a time, rocking you to sleep on the banks of the river before the falls sweep you out and away to the currents of your own shores.


[inspired by the reference to “musical rhythm” in Darcie’s poem, “Fallen: At the Waters Edge”]

Church bells ringing,
Laughter cheering,
Sadness relieving,
Ground shaking,
Wonder emerging,
Harmony with discord togethering,
Sounding friendship.

SPONTANEOUS POEM | JC - The Poartry Project

[inspired by the theme of “falling” and a skunk spotted in the yard late at night]

Trundle, trundle
with a bundle,
badger goes to ground
bear badgers bark
bark startles skunk
who raises tail in
        sounded by barred owl
        lifting the latch
        on autumn.

WOOPSY | Darcie Tredwell

Woopsy doodles on my heart.
I thought you wrote <3 love,
but the heart was a scribbled “a”,
and the “v” was a messed up “n”.

SOUL, SOL AND SOLE | Darcie Tredwell

Solid soil 
On the base of ones feet
Sod smarmy 
Fills cogs of your sole

The sun stole my heart
The Sol stole
My soul 
Not your feat!

TASTE OF INDIA | JC - The Poartry Project

They say:
“You don’t know what you’re missing until it’s gone.”
I’ve never been one of those people,
an existential rolling stone –
ever rolling, rolling forward.
And in my trek towards enlightenment,
appetites have been set aside
and set in their place below the lotus.
But this pandemic
has served as the revelatory 
Eye of the Enlightening Bull.
There came a moment when the risk
of food prepared by others’ hands felt worth it,
and we turned our stiff wheels towards Middlebury.
Herbivores often suffer the slithering pain of being 
painted, tarred and feathered
as dour Puritans who have left delight behind.
But, oh, what a moment, when my numbed teeth
came alive again in fields of pillowy naan
that is all vegan, all the time, for everyone,
and suffers not for it.
To have the digestive juices stir out of hibernation to joy 
in the melange of dal and eggplant
and the eternally comforting arms of spinach and potato.
And I realized I had not realized throughout
this whole pandemic
how dulling to have prepared every meal, 
day in and day out myself, 
with my own loving hands,
and how much being in the loving hands
of someone else had been missed.
How it is like being enfolded in mother’s arms
to eat the fruit of another,
especially the comforts of an Indian mother,
whose spice takes me back to eating nuclear chana masala 
on a dirt floor in a freezing-cold hut in Rajasthan
and not being able to bear the mere smell of such dishes for years
after my initiatory death and birth into new life
through the waters of the Ganges –
to reawakening to baigan bharta
at the only restaurant with herbivore options open late at night 
in Monterey, California on my birthday – 
to my first discovery of the nirvana of masala dosa
at a now-defunct restaurant in Houston
(eaten by an anonymizing vanilla cube
of concrete and steel)
and a sense of an eternity of lives
being rocked to sated slumber
in the textures of dosa’s delicate lentil wrap –
to the unlikely joy of naan for all –
the one beloved item that is almost always out of reach –
floating in a rivulet of ghee –
in Middlebury, of all places,
gifting the taste of India.
We surely don’t know what we miss
until it’s gone.
The love and comfort of care and community
passed through the hands of another
with every spice
straight to our hearts.

16.1 | PART 1 | Roni Orenda

Pine tree-tops backlit by the rising sun 
each peak a steeple silhouette; a living temple of worship.  
The original testament, a labyrinth of annual rings.

16.2 | PART 2 | Roni Orenda

Spider Webs caste on power lines as lace spun from the needle of a solitary woman in the night, her body heat rising to the surface, mixed with what she knows and what she dare not say, now rests beaded in dew, witness to her prism of secrets woven through time. 

16.3 | PART 3 | Roni Orenda

Queen Anne’s Lace edges the path I wind, folding me into the skirts of her folly. Leaves fall like dreams and I am the witness to their wanderings. Caught up in wind, as in a frenzy of exaltation they cyclone their way toward me catching the newspaper along the way. Falling up and up, held it seems on hope alone until the weight of the headlines crashes to a skid and an abrasion.

Our Debut Voicing Art Book

Voicing Art: Poetry of Space | Place | Time
is now available!

Poetry inspired by works of art, the art of nature and the exploration of beauty, perception and insight through the cartography of the unseen.


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