B.A., The Evergreen State College, 1998
M.F.A., Warren Wilson College, 2000
M.A., St. Martin's University, 2010
If we were doing a psychodrama using the Lord of the Rings as a template, right now I would be playing The Queen of the Elves, a.k.a. The Lady of LIght, who gives Frodo the little crystal orb thing and says, "Use this to find your way in dark places." I am currently doing Expressive Arts Therapy with homeless teenagers in the midwest, which means every day is a journey into the soul of our future. My heart is wide open. I have poems and essays in various places. Below is a link to the latest one.
I’m now a therapist intern at a homeless shelter for teens in a major American city. And, wouldn’t you know it, yesterday I was gently told by my very kind supervisor that it’s best if I don’t touch the kids, even lightly on the arm. If the teens want to hug me, she said, “sideways hugs” are okay (I’m pretty sure this is the kind of hug that Puritans gave to people they didn’t really like). These guidelines about not touching the homeless kids are founded on the truth that most of them have been abused in various ways, and haven’t known much safe or loving touch from an adult. The rationale is partly that we don’t want to re-traumatize a kid by causing a flashback or cellular memory. In other words, no need to make more energetic or psychic work for a child than she/he already has going on. While I understand this rationale, I also wonder how the homeless kids are supposed to learn what safe and loving adult contact is like, when every safe and loving adult in their life is banned from touching them.
Latest Publication Title
"The Soul of Touch," TruthSeekers, 2010
How did Evergreen help you in your career?
The most important part of my Evergreen experience was working with Pete Sinclair, who was one of my great mentors. One day while I was freaking out in his office, he looked me square in the eye and said, "You're a poet. This is your gift, and this is all to be expected in the life of a poet."