Mod Pop

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Modernism Week in Palm Springs, and I just had to indulge in a little poetry pop-up poolside before we headed home to snow, not spring, and not palm trees. The poems, freed from the confines of my carry on bag, fluttered in the warm desert breeze. I wonder who will find them this time? Maybe the hip chick from LA, one door down. Maybe the guy in the fedora and big sunglasses? Maybe Kathy or Gary as they move seamlessly around their generously restored Mid Century gem making their guests feel at home.

The Monkey Tree Hotel really is the perfect place for a little splash of poetry.

And a chilled beverage by the pool. Martini anyone?

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Poems, like prayer flags

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This week I was reminded that not all is good, and not all is good for me. I want to un-see what I saw, erase forever the images that popped up on my computer screen immediately after an opera video I was watching on Youtube. No warning, and there it was, cruel, shocking, and cutting through my soul like a knife. I didn’t know what to do. I gasped. I turned it off. But my mind played the images over and over again. I was hooked into darkness for a time.

And then, serendipitously and providentially, I was invited into a soul healing activity that is beginning to help me forget what I saw, not that I saw it, but take the edge of pain of it away.

A friend invited me to join a social media love challenge, posting only good messages. I’ve always tried to be that kind of person, but this week I’m being more intentional.

And then yesterday, as I sat alone on my porch on Canada Day and began to feel a little sad about that, I read this,

…become more conscious of the ways everyday acts and objects are inherently sacred when performed and regarded with intention. When we focus on whatever we are doing, we discover that God is in the midst of our work.

The Artist’s Rule, by Christine Valters Paintner

And then, maybe because of my soul pain and somewhat forced solitude, my heart turned to the thought of hanging up some poems, like little flags, like little prayers, and joining others in their space of being, for a time. Silently walking in their midst and offering my small blessings to them all. So I went, and I pinned PUP around the busy and quiet spaces, and I felt new life welling up in me. I didn’t feel so alone. I didn’t feel so dark and cut off. I performed a sacred act, just as the person who finds a poem will perform the sacred act of reading.

And I thank you God for showing me another way of you in the midst, of everything.

Rotary Centre, Kelowna

Rotary Centre, Kelowna

How the poems felt about it…

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It was a blue bird day, and the poems were alert in their lively cling to the wire, their flutter of twos and threes. The wind cleared their heads of winter, and they soon realized the grape vines clinging beside them were similarly inspired, weathered arms held up to the sun, green ideas budding out in the warmth and light. And then the moment came when a woman reached out and touched one of the poems. How it felt to be chosen and held like that, the woman’s eyes intent on each lettered scar, the nakedness of lines. How the women read, gently, to last letter of last word. DSC_0040 DSC_0041 DSC_0039 DSC_0037 DSC_0036 DSC_0035

Home, sweet poem…

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At the last minute I tucked a few poems and some bull clips into my suitcase. Thought, why not…maybe there will be an opportunity for a walk through the neighbourhood where I spent my teen years. And maybe I will leave a sprinkling of poems there bringing everything full circle to embrace who I was and who I am now. It would be fun.

So one cold sunny morning I got up early and set out with my poems. I’d forgotten how cold winter treks along Mill Street were walking to Richmond Hill High School so many years ago. My legs and finger tips were soon numb, but a prickly feeling of excitement kept me going. And the beautiful setting, the glorious day. I walked around the Mill Pond, then back home through a park at Pleasantville School, pinning poems along the way. And the very last poem found its place on my parents garage wall trellis.

This is how one Richmond Hill resident described what happened next. She left this note on my Facebook page;

“Came across some Pop Up poetry by Mill Pond this morning and was totally smitten with what I read…magical. What a wonderful way to start the day. I found them all! I followed the trail and read one after the other….such a treat! The local paper snapped some shots as well…I think there were many pond goers enjoying your words!” ~ Veronica

How unexpected! Maybe the paper will print something, I don’t know? I will keep you posted! UPDATE: Seems they did…HERE.

Here are some photos of the install;

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Happy 2015 every one!

Lesley-Anne Evans

laevans.ca