newlondon

Ocean Beach Park 2

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Poetry box by Ana Flores

That Last Summer
by Jose B. Gonzalez

my family hanging on to El Salvador time,
summer mornings my father would strip off our
bed sheets at six O’clock, wanting to avoid
losing out on one of Ocean Beach Park’s picnic tables,
so much was right then.


I swam in slacks that had been cut unevenly into shorts. My
father’s red arms, refusing to put on any sunscreen,
challenged the sun to a duel. My mother would overheat
in the flowers of her polyester blouse. My sister would lose
a sandal in the water and limp through splinters. And my
little brother would eat sand as if it had come out of a piñata.


lost inside all the comedy of our summer tragedies,
we would take for granted the heaven of listening
to Toña La Negra’s tunes as we chewed chicken legs
and ate potato salad, gathering near the waves for the last time
before I would go off to college, my sister would
move away from home, my little brother would stop
playing hide and go seek, my father would learn
of fruits and tumors and the ocean’s currents
would creep closer and closer to my mother’s footsteps.



Poem by Jose B. Gonzalez has published poetry in various anthologies and journals including, Callaloo, Palabra, and the Quercus Review, and he has been a contributor to National Public Radio. An award-winning educator and poet, he has been a featured speaker at colleges and universities throughout the country, is the co-editor of Latino Boom: An Anthology of U.S. Latino Literature and LatinoStories.com, and his first poetry collection has been published by Bilingual Press toward. He lives in Quaker Hill, CT.
Poetry box by Ana Flores a sculptor, ecological designer, curator, and activist. Her sculptural work focusing on cultural and ecological narratives is shown internationally and included in private, corporate and institutional collections throughout the United States and abroad. For almost two decades she has been promoting interdisciplinary dialogue and groundbreaking collaborations between the arts and sciences. She has worked with communities to design award-winning outdoor installations, parks, and programming that engage people with the cultural and natural history of their local landscapes. Flores developed Poetry of the Wild in 2003 while she was an artist in residence at the Wood River Watershed Association. The project has been traveling throughout the United States for a decade now.

Flores has been invited as a visiting artist and lecturer throughout North America, Canada, Great Britain, and New Zealand. She has also taught for many years, at the Rhode Island School of Design she created numerous community-centered courses focused on the environment and healing. She maintains a studio in Rhode Island and Nova Scotia, Canada, for more on her work visit: earthinform.com

Hygienic Art Center

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Poetry box by Karen Rand Anderson

Earthmother’s Daughter
by Nancy Brady Cunningham

Persephone pushes
against the dirt ceiling
her stonebones creak
she claws up
through frozen land
endless waiting over


she drags her body
across earthcrust edge
gulps soft air


coming into full light
she squints
as colors leak into
mirror ponds where
green reflections branch out
offer sky blue eggs
cradled in a woven nest


warmth thaws her sapling limbs
into a slow turn dance
her moss body
catches sun glints
she’s spinning now


flowering hair flung out---
honeysuckle abuzz
beneath a frenzy of bees

Poem by Nancy Brady Cunningham a published poet, and author of five books of non-fiction. She has featured at many poetry venues in the Boston area and in Southeastern Massachusetts. In 2010 the New England Poetry Club awarded her two first place prizes for her poems.

The website for her non-fiction work is: danky.com/nancybradycunningham. And for her poetry performed with percussionist Mike Morin: danky.com/design/duo
Poetry box by Karen Rand Anderson. She graduated with honors from Rhode Island School of Design in 1977 with a BFA in ceramics, and received her MFA in mixed media in 2010 through the Vermont Studio Center/Johnson State College masters program in Johnson, VT. She has completed residencies in Bulgaria through the Griffis Foundation/Orpheus Foundation, at Vermont Studio Center, and at I-Park Artist’s Enclave in East Haddam CT, and shows regionally and nationally in juried, invitational and solo exhibitions. Her mixed-media sculpture utilizes natural materials, as well as constructions from heavy paper, sewn together with bronze and copper wire, combined with appropriated objects. Karen lives in Providence RI, and has a studio at the 545 Mill in Pawtucket. contact: andersonkarenrand@gmail.com For additional information, please visit: karenrandanderson.com

New London Public Library Entrance

Lana-Orphanides

Poetry box by Lana Orphanides

Gifts
by Lana Orphanides

 

Along the pathway of yellow grasses

the blue river lightly hanging on the sky,

I search for secret things, a bright winged bird

who flies then isn’t, as if it never were,

the great blue heron sitting in the barren tree

disguised as branch but listening to the air,

 

the prison cell where someone keeps my poem,

the one with the dark door, someone I

do not know, will probably never see. We are

unknown to one another yet

she walks through my prison bars

and offers me her key.

 

I am so slow to rejoice in the voice of grass,

the wisdom of lilacs under the dried buds,

the leaf that forms a heart

and lies in the V of the birch,

the love that lingers hidden

everywhere underneath the edge of cloud.

 
Poem and poetry box by Lana Orphanides.She taught English and Creative Writing at New London High School for eighteen years. She received her M.A. from Wesleyan University where she wrote a collection of poems for her thesis project. She has been the opening voice at The Mystic Arts Cafe, and the featured poet at the Hygienic. Lana is a member of the Connecticut River Poets and has published a chap book, “Sea and the Sound of Wind, poems of Greece.” She is also a member of “Cerebellum”, a group which gives workshops combining art, poetry, and dance. Recently she was nominated for the Pushcart Prize.

Public Library Box

Library-Box

Poetry box by Ana Flores

Come, said my Soul
by Walt Whitman

Come, said my Soul
Such verses for my Body let us write,
(for we are one,)
That should I after death invisibly return,
Or, long, long hence, in other spheres,
There to some group of mates the chants resuming,
(Tallying Earth's soil, trees, winds, tumultuous waves,)
Ever with pleas'd smiles I may keep on,
Ever and ever yet the verses owning – as, first, I here and now,
Singing for Soul and Body,
set to them my name, Walt Whitman



Poem by Walt Whitman.

Poetry box by Ana Flores a sculptor, ecological designer, curator, and activist. Her sculptural work focusing on cultural and ecological narratives is shown internationally and included in private, corporate and institutional collections throughout the United States and abroad. For almost two decades she has been promoting interdisciplinary dialogue and groundbreaking collaborations between the arts and sciences. She has worked with communities to design award-winning outdoor installations, parks, and programming that engage people with the cultural and natural history of their local landscapes. Flores developed Poetry of the Wild in 2003 while she was an artist in residence at the Wood River Watershed Association. The project has been traveling throughout the United States for a decade now.

Flores has been invited as a visiting artist and lecturer throughout North America, Canada, Great Britain, and New Zealand. She has also taught for many years, at the Rhode Island School of Design she created numerous community-centered courses focused on the environment and healing. She maintains a studio in Rhode Island and Nova Scotia, Canada, for more on her work visit: earthinform.com

Mitchell College Beach

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Poetry box by Victoria E. Brennan

“To stand at the edge of the sea, to sense the ebb and flow of the tides, to feel the breath of a mist moving over a great salt marsh, to watch the flight of shore birds that have swept up and down the surf lines of the continents for untold thousands of years, to see the running of the old eels and the young shad to the sea, is to have knowledge of things that are as nearly eternal as any earthly life can be.”

― Rachel Carson
Poetry box by Victoria E. Brennan, Ph.D., Professor in the S.T.E.M. Department at Mitchell College with a doctorate in Molecular Biology from the University of Buffalo (S.U.N.Y. @ Buffalo). She is the coordinator of the annual Earth Day event at Mitchell College, was instrumental in staring a new Environmental Studies program at Mitchell College in 2007, and is the advisor for the Mitchell College Environmental Club.
Quote from Rachel Carson

The New London Day Park

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Poetry box by Alva Greenberg

Tethered Souls
by Alva Greenberg

Propped in cases no strings visible
the marionettes rest in silence.
Dressed and coiffed eyes wide open
their painted faces wait to reenact
the joys and sorrows which have
been scripted for them.
The scenes may change but their roles remain forever tethered to
the storylines of their creators.
Poor souls. Do they long, like Pinocchio
to find the magic which will give them life?
Standing before them I yearn to feel free.



Alva Greenberg moved to Connecticut in 1974 and began a long involvement with the city of New London as well as the lower Connecticut Valley.

She has served on the board of many local organizations including the Garde Arts Center, the Eugene O'Neill Theater Center, Child and Family Agency and the Pequot Foundation.

From 1974 to 1978 she was an owner/editor of The Gazette newspaper, a weekly paper based in Old Lyme.

After two decades of child rearing she reentered the work force by opening the ALVA GAllery, a contemporary art gallery, in downtown New London in 1997.

In addition to buying and renovating five buildings on State Street, she helped to start the Saturday Market and the New London Music Festival. She retired from her New London ventures in 2005, but continues to be an occasional writer/poet.

Riverside Park

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Poetry box by Dan Potter

Poem and poetry box by Dan Potter, sculptor and actor for the Mystic Paper Beasts mask theatre company which he cofounded in 1976, Dan grew up making paintings and sculpture, puppets and masks with his parents, Alice and Fuller Potter, two artists who married while arguing about good and bad art.

When he was ten, his father entered Dan’s first 3D painting/sculpture icognito in the first Whitney Biennale Exhibition, and when it sold to a Texas oilman, they bought a welding rig, and in 1956 Dan began showing sculpture at Anne Fuller’s Stonington Art Gallery.

Moving from welded assemblages in his teens to pottery in his thirties, anatomical drawing in his forties, and lost wax bronzes and plasma cut sculpture in his fifties, he now shows in galleries on Long Island, Rhode Island, the Cape, Connecticut, Mexico, Istanbul, and Hanoi, as well as New York.

Dan is a graduate of the Putney School, Harvard College, and the Graduate School of Design (after a year of working for Paul Matisse as a designer and another studying at the Ecole des Beaux Arts in Strasbourg). He studied with Alex Tzonis, Ricardo Porro, Deane Keller, Don Gale and Peter Zallinger.

Over the past two years, following invitations into Ana Flores’ Poetry of the Wild project, he has created two poems for trees in public spaces. The first, in Riverside Park, New London was destroyed; in a mirrored box with gifts a stencil read: “Long before you came, I was a seed, longing for you.” The second arrangement hung inside a habitable hollow tree that stands by the water before the Mystic Arts Center. Many small gift discs, each read E A R T H as letters in a circle on one side, and on the other: EAR, HEAR THE EARTH; ART, THE HEART.

Garde Art Center

Garde-Art Center

Poetry box by Jeanne Sigel

Ode To A City I See
by Jeanne Sigel

Seagulls soaring as high as our dreams,
Proudly announcing their arrival
As they lay claim to seasoned roof tops.


O, city as wide as a smile
Reflecting the beauty of a bright future
Amidst its gritty past


Learn from your fair and bronzed skin children
With ice cream smeared faces
Digging for treasures
In the warm sandy beaches
Of imagination


What was lost can be found


If only
you believe



Ocean Beach Park

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Poetry box by Diane Barcelo

While Gazing at a Painting of Tie-Dyed Butterflies
by Rhonda Ward

While Gazing at a Painting of Tie-Dyed Butterflies with aquamarine and turquoise wings over a backdrop of gold-leaf sunshine, I am reminded of the time I faced the praying mantis, rubbing his greedy hands together as I bent over to tie my shoes, paralyzedby the rhythm of his prayer.


In my mind, he was giving thanks for what he was about to receive. Before the praying mantis, I caught butterflies and bees in jars with holes hammered into the lids, was unafraid to step up to the bright purple flowers in our back yard and hover over a fuzzy yellowjacket, poised jar in one hand, lid in the other waiting for him to light on the sweet stamen.


But the praying mantis was alien with his bulging eyes, triangular head and stoic stick figure. I almost believed he would have me for his meal then remembered my shoes were made for running.


After the praying mantis, I gave up catching butterflies and bees, throwing rocks and walking the trusses of the train tracks with my brothers. That was the year my mother made me take ballet.



Poem by Rhonda Ward who currently lives in New London, Connecticut. She has appeared at many venues to read her work including the Bowery Poetry Club in New York City, the University of Massachusetts at Dartmouth, Arts Cafe Mystic, the University of Connecticut at Avery Point, Curbstone Press’ Poetry in the Park series, and in England at the International Women’s Arts Festival in Kendal, Cumbria. In 2008, Ward was a judge for the Rhode Island State Poetry Contest.
Ward's poems have appeared in numerous print and online literary journals including Long Island Quarterly, Temper Review, Siren, Burning Word, and the anthology Burningword Ninety-Nine: A Selected Anthology of Poetry, 2001-2011.

Ward’s CD collection of her poems, As I Live and Breathe...Poems, highlights the passion she brings to her readings with styles ranging from traditional to performance.

Poetry box by Diane Barceló who received her B.F.A. from the Corcoran School of Art, Washington, DC in 1982 and her MFA in sculpture from the University of Maryland, College Park in 1989. Residencies include IPARK (East Haddam, Connecticut), the Banff Center for the Arts (Alberta, Canada), Byrdcliffe Artists Colony (Woodstock, NY), a foundry internship at Johnson Atelier (Trenton, New Jersey) and the Griffis Foundation (Sophia, Bulgaria). Awards include the 2006 sculpture fellowship from the Connecticut Commission on Culture and Tourism. Her mixed media installations, works on paper and photography have been shown in galleries and museums in the United States such as the Mattatuck Museum, the University of Connecticut (Avery Point and Stamford Campuses), The Corcoran Gallery of Art, Mitchell College, Roanoke College and Rosemont College. Her work has been reviewed in The Philadelphia Inquirer, The Washington Post, The Washington Review, The Observer and The C-ville review. Diane Barcelo lives and works in New London, Connecticut. postmedium.org/dianebarcelo, or picasaweb.google.com/dianebarcelo