By Lucille Clifton

I have to thank Goddard advisor Rick Benjamin for singing this poem to us yesterday. It’s about time I overcame my prejudice against poetry, don’t you think?

to my friend, Jerina

when i found
there was no safety
in my father’s house
i knew there was none
anywhere. you are right
about this, how i nurtured
my work not myself, how i left
the girl wallowing in her own shame
and took on the flesh
of my mother. but listen,
the girl is rising in me, not willing
to be left to the silent fingers
in the dark, and you are right
she is asking for more than
most men are able to give,
but she means to have what she has earned,
sweet sighs, safe houses, hands she can trust.

Credit: Copyright © 1987 by Lucille Clifton.

Fragments of Interest

no-self portrait
no-self portrait
no-self portrait

Loving the Queer Pissed Off Collective (QPOC),

this slideshow of Allen Ginsberg with Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche,

the Undoing Borders Manifesto,

thrilled about a victory for Sogorea Te / Glen Cove and indigenous land defense,

and wishing I could read Spanish well, so I could tear into el libro de Pan Y Rosas.


hope you’re well, friends.  sorry for the patchiness of late.  reforestation will soon begin.

love, katie

Abstract Photos

My fellow student Doug — a film, photography, and lighting teacher — showed us some incredibly beautiful images today where he made photographs of the ocean look like abstract paintings. Naturally, I couldn’t wait to fool around with my camera, trying to teach myself this new way of looking at things.

My images didn’t quite achieve abstraction, but ‘messing up’ on purpose — “making the familiar strange” — is a not-too-boring and awfully enjoyable way to spend an hour.

purple 2

The Practice of Contemplative Photography, a book by Buddhist meditators Andy Karr and Michael Wood, who themselves were inspired by some of Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche’s photographs, has been calling my name for over a year now. Time to finally check it out of the library and practice some of its exercises. (They used to have a web site with exercises and example submissions, but I can’t find it anymore . . .)