Sue Reynolds & Meadow Jones offered a session on May 3.

Writing for Resiliency and Wellness was a workshop that used writing in the AWA Method to facilitate resiliency and inter-connection during these times of distress and isolation.

Sue Reynolds is a psychotherapist and AWA workshop leader who offers single day retreats, multiple week courses, international writing retreats, and year long workshops to produce a book length manuscript. She is also the current Chair of Amherst Writers.

Meadow Jones is an AWA affiliate and Board Member who has led workshops for artist and activist coalitions, with teachers and teachers in training, with incarcerated populations, arts and culture classes in Cuba and has used the Method with undergraduates in courses on writing and film-making. She has recently completed her PhD in Art Education looking at arts practices and the redress of trauma.

Thank You

by Ann Bancroft

Thank you for the moment I discover my husband has gone back to sleep, his silver hair sweet on the pillow, blankets piled to his chin. We’d minutes earlier had a teasing argument about who’d pulled all the covers to my side of the bed.

“You must’ve pushed them,” I said, squeezing my lips to hide the smile.
“Blanket hog,” he said.

I notice, first thing out of bed, the absence of pain. When I walk down the stairs, lift the coffee pot, there is no accompanying sting, no throbbing. Thank you, I whisper, pulling the tight, 24-hour bra away from my wound before it begins its complaint. I feel light and energetic in the way of after-flu, of long and fruitful sleep.

My husband, though, has had a bout of digestive problems, perhaps surgery ahead. It is my turn to take care of him. We suffer the ailments of aging and receive the gifts of caring: bringing food, easing bandages, sharing the humility of bodily fluids draining through a tube that dangles under my arm. We listen for one another, late at night. We open the door first, bring the coffee, answer the phone. We plan together, a trip for when this is all over.

Somewhere far, somewhere splendid, where our bodies will stretch, hearts pump, sturdy legs climb to the top of some trail where a glorious view awaits.

Watching a Spider

by Sarah Kerr

There was a time I was so sick I was unable to walk. I sat on the porch, in between bout of intractable vomiting, and looked down. Into the garden that I never weeded, that hasn’t been touched by anyone who cared in over twenty years.

There sat, on a False Solomon’s Seal plant, a spider. My eyes, which didn’t want to work together, though sheer force of will, focused. Thoughts danced in my head: it may have been a stroke, or, as the doctor so cheerfully informed me, a brain tumour.

The spider spun on, unconcerned, gossamer threads of silk in an orderly web. I waited, then, for it to come—not the spider, but the silence behind the spider. Through the haze of medications, the bruises from blood-draws, from that cool shade in the shadow of plants, concealing a spider that in its web held all the secrets of the universe.

Thank you for joining us to Write Around the World!

For the rest of the summer, watch our blog! We are sharing writing from AWA’s yearly marathon fundraiser, which happened this year all-online throughout the month of May.

We offer this series in appreciation for the incredible community of writers and workshop leaders that sustain us. If you’re inspired and would like to be part of the fundraiser, please donate!