Creative Arts and Healing
HEADING NORTH -- Summer Vacation 
Dear friends and seekers who accidentally arrived at my site

Summer greetings!

Tomorrow at crack of dawn I head up to Ithaca NY to visit Ann, my college roommate and friend of 52 years. We have a cottage on Lake Cayuga for a week (and no internet!). Swimming, walking, reading, eating, writing, talking, sleeping, is the menu that so satisfies! I have purchased a small elegant Haiku journal and plan to fill it, day by day. When our time is up, Ann will take me to the train station in Syracuse and I'll take a six hour leisurely trip through the countryside, arriving at Springfield, Massachusetts where my old Liberation News Service buddy Allen will meet me. He lives in an Octagon House he built himself way back in the 70's, has a huge garden, loves to play Scrabble and cook and hike and swim. While there, he will introduce me to an archivist at UMass in Amherst who has expressed a strong interest in obtaining my papers (my life-long literary output). That includes more than 500 journals, a few published books, reams of poetry, short stories, essays, sermons, letters, collages, photographs... I joke that it's amazing i've managed to live a life while creating artifacts for posterity!!!

Along those lines, I came up with an idea to organize (compile) my manuscripts into slim chapbooks for archival purposes and potential distribution to the wider world, later. Under the rubric SINGING BIRD PRESS, I have put together four and intend to continue for the next several years, maybe even hiring a literary assistant to help me with the technical aspects (while i continue to prepare the MS into their best form.) It is a joy to finally take work that has sat in a box, a file cabinet, or my hard drive for a long long time, and put the words between covers, what we call hard copies, as well as in electronic form. I call this creating "The Little Library of Ka" that I will continue for years to come. The truth is that i keep writing too, so the task is endless, and fulfilling, and my own "manifest destiny."

We all have a legacy, taking different forms. My garden homestead is also a legacy, the forest of tomato trees, the camellia bushes that have become trees, avocados planted from seed now home to cardinals and sparrows and chickadees, the stone pathways, the garden art, Rose Cottage restored as a personal temple. My daughter is part of my legacy, my beautiful Alana, who lives nearby and works for a local architectural firm, who creates gourmet meals, who willingly plays Scrabble with me, who has her own lifestory, ambition,

Those of you who have followed my journey all these years could be considered part of my legacy too -- the interwoven strands of friendship guiding, upholding, forgiving, challenging, affirming me day by day, year by year. Thank you.

May all who read this have a summer vacation of your own, however you define it. A trip to the beach, the mountains, the local park, date nights with a spouse, little honeymoon getaways, good books, time to lay back and watch the clouds change shape, hear the rain tap tap on the roof of your get away cottage...

I thank my husband Tom for taking care of the garden, our cat Georgie, parakeet Monet, and the whole homestead while I am away. When I return, be on the lookout for vacation haiku!

Leaving my garden
to discover other worlds
pen in my pocket


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