NPM 27 of 30 (New Mexico Declaration)

Last week I traveled to Taos, New Mexico for a creativity retreat. While I plan to write in more detail about the whole experience, I’ll whet your appetite with this poem. I wrote it on the last day (along with everyone else writing their own versions). What’s interesting (maybe?) about this exercise was that it’s named after me! I’m not kidding, the instructor actually calls it The Lizzie Wann. The reason is because she uses a poem of mine (Declaration) as a model for students to construct a poem. She has folks make a list of what they’ve done that day or how they’ve felt. Then she plays them the audio track of the poem from my CD (in this case, I performed the poem live). Then she has folks use the structure of my poem to create their own using the items from their list. It’s really quite humbling, flattering, and validating to know that this poem, my words, are being used in this capacity. She shared a story that she has taken this exercise into women’s correctional facilities and that after they complete it, they say, “I feel like a writer.” When she said that, tears came to my eyes. Anyway…here’s my New Mexico version of the The Lizzie Wann 🙂

New Mexico Declaration

today is a Taos drum & an incantation
it’s opening my curtains to a blanket of snow
memories of childhood come pouring out

today is yoga & bacon
tacos & chocolate
it’s books & writing spread across the desk
it’s a labyrinth to quiet the mind

this is about creating hearts
and drawing blind
this is the coyote call
and a brief trespass to native lands

this is ‘I get to’
this is watercolors & improve
this is more bacon

today is 5 am waking to watch the stars
this is church chimes
this is crying to being
and crying to end

it’s about connection
and respecting others’ stories

2 Comments Add yours

  1. Beautiful, and what greater validation to your poetry than using one of them for a teaching class. So proud.

  2. Sandy says:


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