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Tag Archives: “Ellen Taylor”

As we hurtle toward the winter solstice…why poets excel at business

Here is a wonderful Rockwell Kent painting, and a photo of my Maine coon cat George contemplating the snow outside.

Recently Portland Poet Laureate Marcia Brown sent out a link to an article by John Coleman in, of all places, the Harvard Business Review, in the issue of 10/27/2012.  It addresses the question of why poets make good business employees and managers.  Coleman asserts that poets can, among other skills, simplify the complex, develop empathy, and “infuse life with beauty and meaning.”  I love this idea and agree with it.  I’m one of those not-so-rare people with  “mixed” academic training in lit, writing and law (there are far more lawyer/poets around than you might think). I worked in the corporate world for about 20 years and found it rewarding in many ways.  I like to think that one can balance practicality with creativity, and that when you cross into another realm, one can be enriched by it, because there is much to learn.

Kent painting snowIMG_0529

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Maine – Talentland

AfternoonInWonderland Brooking

It’s a truism that Maine is overflowing with talented people – writers, artists, musicians, creative types of all kinds. One of the delights of publishing poetry books in Maine is using art and photos by people I know whose work I love, often the poets themselves, on book covers. For me, showcasing both poetry and art in an alluring package is one of the most fun parts of publishing. Feast your eyes on some examples on our website: covers by Ruth Bookey, Ellen Taylor, Mike Albert, Nancy Henry, and Donna Asmussen, to name a few. (This picture is called “Afternoon in Wonderland” by Westbrook artist Mary Brooking, whose paintings enliven the covers of Jack McCarthy’s beautiful book ALMOST A REMEMBRANCE.) Quite a few MPP poets have musical talent, too. We are close to releasing a book by Maine’s own inimitable Stan Keach, a “triple threat” poet, musician and artist who illustrated his upcoming book NOTHING IS REAL (more details about this soon). I am grateful that I will never run out of excellent poetry to publish, or wonderful art for covers.

New Year

blanket-of-snow

Here is a lovely poem by Moon Pie Press poet Ellen Taylor about that bittersweet task of putting away the holiday decorations. I’m done with the job at my house, after three days that featured a lot of snow shoveling, too. Our weather has certainly been conducive to getting a lot of reading done. May your 2014 be peaceful and prosperous and include the joy of poetry.

UNDECORATING

Alone I unhook the glass bulbs
from needly fingers of pine,
wrap them in folds of newsprint.
Wooden ornaments require less care.
They lie together in shoeboxes
where they will spend the year nestled
with attic mothballs and mice.
Strings of lights fall like strands of pearls,
and except for wisps of tinsel
the tree is green once again.

The crèche is packed away with tissue paper.
All through Advent, baby Jesus has been moving
from manger to apex of the stable roof
because my nephew, almost five, has decided
that if Jesus is God, then he should fly.
Now the angels lie down with the shepherds,
the sheep, the donkey, and the Holy Family
are put to rest for another year.

No one will help with the undecorating,
I remember my mother saying. She is right.
Perhaps it is a ceremony of one,
one custodian sweeping up
after the final performance,
still humming the tune
of the night’s final song.