Live Virtual Group Session: 6PM EDT July 11th 2022

Thank you to everyone who joined us for this session!

Thirty-two participants engaged with The Artist by William Carlos Williams, posted below. We noticed first the form of the poem, which evokes Mr. T’s sudden movement—an entrechat—a performance on the page. In the discussion that followed we wondered not only “[w]hat goes on here?” (a line in the poem) but also: who does the title name? Is it Mr. T, the woman in the wheelchair who sees and applauds his scissored leap, the poet who performs the movement with words, or we readers, who bring our puzzle pieces from close reading and see all these possibilities?

Our prompt was:  Write about a moment of unexpected beauty. or Write about a leap. The prompted writing brought moments of beauty: traveling and asking where we are going; arrivals and departures, dogs and hummingbirds, the leap of a trout, a series of movements in ballet before a move to hospital corridors, a last kiss, and the generation of more than one unanswered question.

Thank you everyone for your participation in this evening’s narrative choreography!

Participants are warmly encouraged to share what you wrote below (“Leave a Reply”), to keep the conversation going here, bearing in mind that the blog of course is a public space where confidentiality is not assured.

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Please join us for our next session Friday July 15th at 12pm EDT, with more times listed on our Live Virtual Group Sessions.

 The Artist by William Carlos Williams

Mr. T.
                    in a soiled undershirt
his hair standing out
          on all sides
                    stood on his toes
heels together
           arms gracefully
                    for the moment
curled above his head.
            Then he whirled about
into the air
             and with an entrechat
                     perfectly achieved
completed the figure.
             My mother
                     taken by surprise
where she sat
             in her invalid’s chair
                      was left speechless.
Bravo! she cried at last
             and clapped her hands.
                       The man’s wife
came from the kitchen:
            What goes on here? she said.
                        But the show was over.

© by owner. provided at no charge for educational purposes

16 thoughts on “Live Virtual Group Session: 6PM EDT July 11th 2022

    • al3793

      Like WCW’s poem, your speaker has me imagining this cat that leaps out of an exquisite pose. Also the light and the sheer curtain add to my visual experience.

      Liked by 1 person

  1. Melissa Adylia Calasanz

    Narrative Medicine July 11.2022
    write about a moment of unexpected beauty
    write about a leap
    (i chose leap)
    Melissa Adylia Calasanz
    with each leap i have landed
    where . i am . supposed to be…
    Park . Enter . Register .
    Type . Cut
    Move on to the next
    find your space
    do you belong
    learn the choreography
    claim your light
    shine your light
    switch lines!
    that moment when it’s time to turn it on
    the basics for evaluation
    tombe pas de bourre              glissade assemble
    tombe pas de bourre              glissade jete
    RUN! RUN! tour jete!
    and then
    you’re done
    30 years later
    repeating the process
    from a studio to clinical settings
    and now
    your membership
    a leap
    to breathe
    I’d rather return
    to the processes
    of artists
    than those hallways
    it’s not possible
    to help one heal
    from within
    a diseased system
    anterior posterior
    superior inferior
    [parallel interior exterior]
    a return
    to the studio
    to the stage to the screen
    my body my voice
    is prepared
    with each demi plie
    with grace,
    Melissa Adylia Calasanz

    Liked by 3 people

    • Scarlet Kinney

      It seems that the choreography the dancer once loved was impossible to translate into and equally graceful choreography in a clinical setting where genuine healing is often not possible due to its fraught atmosphere and perhaps dysfunctional conditions?


    • al3793

      Your speaker’s short lines and verses pose a complicated construction and story. This stanza’s double dilemma articulates how challenging professional life is for the speaker.
      it’s not possible
      to help one heal
      from within
      a diseased system”

      I still feel like there is a love story embedded here – a labor of love.



  2. About a moment of unexpected beauty~~~

    We anticipated the day of delivery.. the day my granddaughter was to arrive into this world.
    This important day had been preceded by numerous medical tests and prodding to make sure she would enter this world safely.
    I was called in to see her shortly after she was delivered.

    She was beautiful, a little worse for wear by the journey from womb to the outside world.
    She was immaculate… her pink cheeks and legs squirming.
    She may have been born with an extra chromosome but also with extra love.
    An angel who is given to us to hold close and guide on this journey of life.

    My granddaughter is now 4 years old, and I think to myself how grateful I am to have her in my life.
    She brings joy to my life, a smile to my face, and a warm feeling to my heart.

    Liked by 1 person

    • al3793

      Michele, “born with an extra chromosome, but also with extra love” manifest in the love that abounds around her. Perfectly imperfect beauty, as we are all meant to be. Andre


  3. Scarlet Kinney

    The Leap

    If we leap together,
    Hands clasped,
    Hearts beating as one,
    Into the dark night
    Of the abyss that looms before us,
    Will we fall and fall and fall
    Into nothingness, as we fear,
    Or will we unexpectedly
    Soar like eagles over its expanse,
    To arrive safely
    On the distant mountains
    That are calling us.
    Daring us to reach for them?


    • Scarlet, I’m inclined to believe we will soar… the issue being if “our hearts are capable of beating as one”. With the divisiveness and bias present in today’s world, it is something that will require a strong commitment and truly seeing the reality of it all staring us in the face.


    • al3793

      Scarlet I hear your speaker responding to the call of the mountains. While there are risks unified hearts are up for the task. Lovely! Andre


  4. al3793

    A trek two miles above the level of the earth
    the top of the world, nearly alone,
    breath taking
    a carpet of yellow and white
    nascent Rocky Mountain spring
    trying to break through
    the frost left over from night
    the warm sun attending to that
    the air crisp and cool
    just enough to nip the cheek.

    Daring to disturb what seemed utopian
    the drab deer hair fly drifted drag free
    along the sparking ripple – a perfect drift.
    The diminutive wild brown trout
    butter bellied with brilliant spots, brown, red and blue
    garb suitable to a wedding,
    kissed the water’s surface.
    The line tightened and the rod tip danced
    for just a moment and the undaunted Salmo Trutta
    leapt, breaking the surface
    twirling in mid air, like the ballerina’s entrechat,
    attempting escape, spraying cool mist that harbored
    a momentary rainbow reflected by the morning sun.


    Liked by 1 person

    • Wow, quite a sensory description of your trek 2 miles above the surface of the earth…the spring breaking through the morning frost and you fly fishing to catch the elusive prize! Beautiful and I can see it all in my mind’s eye.

      Liked by 1 person

    • ebethnm

      What a beautiful poetic description. I especially love from “the diminutive wild brown trout butter ….”
      I can see it on a plate, or at a wedding, or dancing in the air!


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