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2011 New Blog Post Announcement
January                            SPINNING GOLD                               2014
In This Issue
Featured Retreats
Spinning Gold
Memoir Workshop
Vee Bar Guest Ranch
Laramie, Wyoming 
Vee Bar Guest Ranch, Wyoming
Wyoming, the perfect place to ride, write,
 renew and reflect.
May 31 - June 5 
5 nights, 6 days

riverside lodging,
delicious meals,
professional wranglers,
creative facilitation,
fireside chats in the lodge, and more!

Vee Bar Guest Ranch
$300 deposit
 holds yo
ur horse!
(due by 2/15)

All levels of riding & writing welcome.  

a heroine's journey
 into the  
world of story
Featured Guest
Actor & Playwright 
$1725, August 10-16 
6 days, 6 nights 
Cataract Canyon
Colorado River, Utah
Includes scenic flight
over breathtaking
No rafting or writing experience necessary! 

the ancient,
the sacred,
the everyday world
of women

12 days,
October 3-14 

the Sacred Valley,
Patacancha, Cusco,


In the deep recesses beyond what we can see or touch, in the world where the Great Mystery dwells and where our greatest works of art germinate, intertwine the roots of MIND, BODY and SPIRIT.  Our art, our literature, our music, our paintings, our sculptures, our architecture, our textiles - all these expressions spring from the creative synergism between mind, body and spirit.  


How do we transform our creative visions into artistic expressions? How does the intellect imagine form, and then breathe life into it, animating it, imbuing it with spirit?  What magic ingredient gives one story the deep resonance of soul, while another lies limply on the page?


To embody is to make manifest, to bring forth - whether on the page, on the stage, on the screen, in clay, or marble, or paper, with raw earth or molten glass, whether tempering steel or spinning gold.   


In Rumpelstiltskin, the classic Grimm's
fairytale, it was the magic words of an old song that turned the spinning-wheel and spun gold out of straw.  In Romeo and Juliet, metaphor was the magic Shakespeare used to first manifest Juliet on the page.

O, she doth teach the torches to burn bright! 

It seems she hangs upon the cheek of night

Like a rich jewel in an Ethiope's ear; 

Beauty too rich for use, for earth too dear!



In this 1870 oil painting, Ford Madox Brown vibrantly depicts Romeo and Juliet in the famous balcony scene.  In living color, we see Romeo's lips reaching to kiss Juliet's neck, we see her arm embrace him, we see the fluid movement of her night shawl, the whiteness of her bosom.  These star-crossed lovers become more than figments of our imagination.  Our eyes are able to behold them because Shakespeare's used the tactile imagery of the physical world to manifest them.


This bronze funeral urn sculpted by artist Roxanne Swentzell, embodies both the physical and the spiritual.  The figurine embraces the ashen remains of the body of a loved one, at the same time symbolically clinging to that which cannot be contained - the spirit.


When my mother died in my arms a few years ago, I clung to the vessel that had housed her spirit and felt her slip away - not her body, which had been slowly withering away for months, but
her spirit.


"What man experiences most fully emotionally," wrote Wyoming poet laureate Peggy Simson Curry, "knows intuitively but cannot explain away intellectually, is embodied in the world of symbolism."


Emotions. Intuition. Symbolism.  The mysterious workings of an artistic mind determined to create meaning from life experience. 


Twenty-four hours before my mother's death, John Gritts and I were in New York City for the American Indian College Fund's Flame of Hope Gala, where Iraqi POW Jessica Lynch and the family of Lori Piestewa were guests of honor, along with four of the remaining Navajo Code Talkers from WWII.  Lori, of the Hopi Tribe, was the first Native American woman to die in combat
for the United States Military.  John and I spent the day at Central Park with Lori's mother and father, who were now raising her two children Brandon and Carla.  Little Carla grew tired of walking, so I lifted her up and as I wrapped my arms around her, I thought of Lori, no longer alive to hold her own child. The next day, I held my own frail mother in my arms and thought of Carla and Lori, and of the circular love between mother and child.  I felt Lori's spirit reaching out to my mother and felt the invisible union of mind, body and spirit.  Someday, I thought, I will write a story about this, and then it will all make sense.


May the Spirit of Creativity bless you in the New Year, and may the artistic visions that you bring forth help reveal more than an inkling of the Great Mystery.  I wish for you all things bright and beautiful. 


Featured One-Day Writing Seminar
Mount Vernon County Club, Golden, Colorado  
Saturday, February 15, 2014
$95.00 early bird registration 
(includes continental breakfast and catered lunch)
Mount Vernon Writing Seminar  
Discover meaning through synchronicity. Deep-map your personal landscapes. Draft a cultural family Time Line. Write with emotion but without sentimentality. Explore the difference between diary, journal, autobiography, and memoir. Weave a tapestry from all those tangled threads. And more!   GET THE SCOOP HERE.  
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