I share the following with gratitude to Sandra L. Balint, Taylor Collins, Dr. Michael Klaper, Ronald Bell, Sherry Pedersen-Thrasher, Susan Lennon, John Reid and Reverend Heng Sure.
"THOUGHTS ON THE BEAUTY OF LISTENING"
BY SANDRA L. BALINT
I was delighted to receive "Thoughts on the Beauty of Listening," in which Sandra, a "fellow" member of the International Women's Writing Guild, beautifully describes and distilled the book's essentials. How special it was to see them through her vision and written with care by hand...
COLLAGE AND BLOG POST BY TAYLOR COLLINS
Taylor Collins, an artist and former President of the National League of American Pen Women, tagged me one morning when she posted this wonderful collage photograph featuring poems from "The Beauty of Listening."
Taylor also wrote a blog post about "The Beauty of Listening" and her use of this image as a writing prompt. To read Taylor's blog post, click here!
POEM BY DR. MICHAEL KLAPER
Dr. Michael Klaper is one of a few doctors who changed my life more than 20 years ago through his writings. Since then, I've had the pleasure of meeting him, and I gave him an early version of "The Beauty of Listening" (while still in progress). What an inspiration it was to receive this lovely, heartfelt poem in reply...
Poet, Poet, burning bright,
Your words convey a soul in flight.
One scarred by Love's battles, and healing still
Yet, unbowed and undeterred, of steel will
Who sees through pretension with vision clear
Verse born of wisdom, from victories over fear
Words of passion, words of pain
Words of triumph, of hard-won gain
Your heart of beauty is a gift for the ages
Revealed in your words, engraved on the pages,
Lighting the way, giving hope to all
That despite the wounds, the heart stands tall
Kudos to you, for your book, for your gift
I'll read you again, when I my spirit needs lift
You're a beautiful soul, Eve, and a wordsmith true
Know I'm a fan, sending my thanks to you.
~ Dr. Michael Klaper
POEM BY RONALD BELL
Ronald Bell, CEO, Collaborative for Positive Integral Change, also shared this poem as a fun, creative book review of "The Beauty of Listening" on Amazon. I especially enjoyed seemingly effortless motion from "Playful-like-jumbling-gym of words" to secret, sacred-like places...
I feel the need
to express my appreciation
to Life --
for your book of poems,
for your creative imaginative
of words --
that serendipitously carry one
into sweet, delightful, wonder-full,
even sacred like,
spaces and places
hiding right in front of our noses.
~ Ronald Bell
CENTO (COLLAGE POEM)
BY SHERRY PEDERSEN-THRASHER
Sherry created a new poem in the form of a cento, composed of lines from eleven different poems in "The Beauty of Listening." Her fascinating new poem took on the theme of the disillusionment of the fairy tale. Sherry also created a painting of the poem, which I hope to share soon, too! But first, here's Sherry's cento...
I live in a postcard. Where do you find the stories? Standing tall he says "You need me" "I'm empty" she says staring at her drained glass. Fooling with words as you drink the ink from that spot. She is a few scattered hours where the sidewalk ends to pour a little more. He gets down on one knee, she hears her sister's voice "Did I see that movie yet?"
~ Sherry Pedersen-Thrasher
Created with lines from "The Beauty of Listening"
COLLAGES BY SUSAN LENNON
I also received, in response to the book, a burst of creativity and colors from artist Susan Lennon. Amidst images for flowers, locks with keys, openings, unfoldings and music, were thoughtful words of hearts opening, inner lives explored, and, beneath a little bird, the words: "Sitting still... thinking... dreaming..."
Beside the first collage, Susan wrote a note that described "The Beauty of Listening" and the listening message expressed within it as "an urgently needed attribute in our noisy world, along with the need for 'the tender touch of kindness...'" (from the poem, "Paper Dolls")
(Without finding and seeking permission from every artist whose work appears in the collage, I can't share the artwork here, but I hope I've done it some justice by description.)
THOUGHTS ON THE BALANCE OF GENTLENESS AND SAVAGERY BY WRITER & PHOTOGRAPHER JOHN REID
Your book of poems.... It's full of striking images and ideas presented in language that is both accessible and magical. For my sensibility, the balance of gentleness (e.g., "You say you didn't do a thing. You simply listened.) and emotional savagery (e.g., "But first I have to pry it from the finger of another woman's fist.") makes this collection "real." After all, isn't balancing gentleness and savagery pretty much what we all do from day to day? The answer, "Yes!" is found in the pages of The Beauty of Listening.
LOVELY RESPONSE TO THE BOOK & "POEMS THAT LISTEN"
FROM REVEREND HENG SURE, PhD
Just spent time with "The Beauty of Listening" and my heart is richer by image upon image.
After reading and stopping with favorite vignettes I went through it again for the photos and visual poems.
My day, full of noise and travail, has been gifted by poems that listen.
Thank you again to those whose contributions I've shared here as well as to those who endorsed the book and all who who have responded to the book through mail, email, artwork or blog and social posts. Listening to you is a beautiful experience!