Sunday, September 24, 2017

Your Story Matters

Hello poetic friends!

I'm getting really excited about OctPoWriMo 2017! Last year did NOT go as planned for me and I am ready for a writing reboot. I am SO glad that Morgan has invited me to be a part of this again and am looking forward to sharing prompts and poems with you throughout October.

During our month long challenge last year, we were hit by Hurricane Matthew and our apartment flooded. I was also enrolled in art school (and taking a creative writing class) at the time and was completely overwhelmed as my life seemed to be spinning out of control. I hung in there with sharing prompts, but didn't get to read as many of your poems as I wanted. I also seemed to lose my own writing "mojo", so much so that for the first time in many years I didn't even participate in National Poetry Writing Month back in April.

This past Thursday, I attended an amazing show at the Chrysler Glass Studio in Norfolk, Va. My husband's niece Heather Sutherland and her fiance' Tyler Gordon were the featured glass artists, but the show concluded with a young poet performing two original works. (I will have to find his name and share it, but it escapes me at the moment.) Friends, his spoken word performance had me weeping. This teenage boy reminded me just how important our words are, how critical it is that we share our stories through our poems. I spoke to him afterwards and thanked him for affecting me and for demonstrating the power of words.

The lesson in this for me is that sometimes life happens. When it does, it can distract us from our writing, keeping us from sharing our stories and shattering the silence. However, the muse is never silenced forever. There are new stories to tell, new poems that need to be written.

I am committed to this project. Will you commit to it with us? A poem a day for 31 days can sound overwhelming, but you are not in this alone. We will be here cheering you on and encouraging you.

Because your story matters.

Amy McGrath

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