Guest Artists

Guest Artist Lucille Femine

December 29, 2017Richard Rensberry, author at QuickTurtle Books®
I am joined today by Children’s book author Lucille Femine. She is the author and illustrator of LET ME SEE WHAT I COULD BE.

I am going to take the liberty to jump right in here with a few questions before I present an illustrated excerpt from the book. My first question for Lucille is, what inspired you to write the book, LET ME SEE WHAT I COULD BE?

I used to make up stories for my children when they were going to sleep. I wanted to call on that memory, but mostly I wanted to communicate something meaningful to children that would reach them on a deeper level, giving them the message that they really can be anything they want.

Thank you. I’ve known you as a prolific watercolor artist. Which came first? The illustrating or the writing?

On this book, the writing came first, then I illustrated it.

I believe you have illustrated two other children’s books, as well. Can you tell us a little about those?

Yes, I was commissioned to illustrate a book called HANNAH BANANA AND HONEY and later a book written by David Carus called, ANIMAL DETECTIVES.

What are your goals or future plans in the children’s book arena?

I have another book in mind called, “The Man Who Hated to Do the Dishes”. I get a laugh out of everyone I say that to so I’d better write it! Not sure exactly when. Before my husband died, we were writing it together, so it will also be a tribute to him as well. In fact, at his memorial, a good friend came to me and said he had just told her to finish the book! She knew nothing about the book and mentioned it by name.

I look forward to you writing and publishing it in the future. What are your social media links where you can be followed and contacted?

I use mostly Facebook and occasionally Twitter and Pinterest. I have a newsletter which I put out every few weeks. And my website, artbyfemine.com plus Etsy by same name, ArtbyFemine.

Thanks Lucille. I’d like to present everyone with an excerpt from LET ME SEE WHAT I COULD BE, written and illustrated by Lucille Femine.

light of moon

I could be the light
of the moon   

bark of tree copy

or the skyline at noon.

skyline

I could be the bark
                   of the tree

wings of bee

or the wings of a bee.

 

twinkle dog's eye

I could be the twinkle
in my sweet dog’s eye

cloud in sky

or a cloud in the sky.

bird in meadow

I could be a bird
                   in the meadow;

green jello

I could even be green jello.

 

 

 

GUEST ARTIST, RACHEL HUTCHESON

IMG_9779

Today my guest artist is Rachel Hutcheson, aka blacksheeprebelgirl joining us from Nashville, Tennessee. Her website is blacksheeprebelgirl.com  She can be found on Facebook and Instagram under the same moniker. Here poetry is unique and sparkling with wit. I am happy to share some of her sparkle here today. Enjoy!

 

Beyond the Sky

I did not believe the sky would
shatter. But I watched it break
and crash to earth. Now
there are pieces of sky
everywhere. People are pulling
it out of the ground and taking it
home, not knowing what it is. I
don’t think we will ever find all
the parts, so when we put it
back together there will be
holes in the sky. We will have to
get used to looking at the land
beyond the sky. And they will
have to get used to looking at us.

 

More

Do you ever get
the feeling there
is more than meets
the eye, but you
don’t know what it is?
I think life is like that.
I think death is like that.
I think you are like that.

 

The Fence

There’s a fence around my
mind keeping flowers of
thought and paths of reasoning
in place. I don’t think I like it. I
want my mind to climb over the
iron and break free of its
limitations. I want to plant fresh
flowers and build new paths on
the other side of the fence.
I want to have conversations on
the outskirts of habit and
reasoning.

 

Cabinet Poet

She sat in a cabinet underneath
her sink and wrote poetry. The
main subjects of her work were
water pipers and Comet.
Critics found it fascinating
and she got a deal with a giant
publisher in New York. Now
she lives in a high-rise and can’t
fit in a cupboard anymore. So
she writes about regret. Her
work is bigger than ever.
Good for her!

 

Tired and Dramatic

She was tired of
the world. She
said it had lost all
its beauty. So she
wrapped herself
in gossamer and
disappeared. She
was always quite
dramatic. I loved
that about her.

 

Memories

Sometimes memories
sneak out of my eyes
and roll down my
cheeks.

 

When and how did you become interested in creative writing? 

I think I realized I was interested in Jr. High, we had to write poetry and journals for an English class.  I’ve written randomly on napkins and notebooks for years and filled what I had in folders to perhaps do something with one day.   I came to Nashville 8 years ago and have been learning the art of songwriting since then.

 What motivates you to write?  

I want to create things that are incredible.  Things that last, things that move people, things that entertain and inspire. Everything motivates me, I love to write and I am interested in doing what it takes to become, what I hope is a great writer.

I love your work because it is unique in perspective.  Can you tell us a little more about your background as an artist?  

Thank you so very much.  I started taking acting classes in the fourth grade.  I studied voice and dance as well.  I’ve performed in a hundred plays and musicals leading to thousands of performances on stage.  I studied theatre in college and performed for many years as an improvisational actor in LA and Chicago.  Now I write songs with artists in Nashville every week so I am always creating.

Who are a couple of your favorite artists? 

Van Morrison, Nina Simone, Ella Fitzgerald, Larry McMurtry, Wilbur Smith, Tennessee Williams…on and on and on.

Thank You, Rachel. When I first read your work, one of my favorite lines from a song came to mind.  “The future’s so bright I gotta wear shades.” by Timbuk 3. You write like that.

 

Richard Rensberry, Author at QuickTurtle Books®

 

Guest Artist, Glenys Doull

It is my privilege to introduce Glenys as part of our Guest Artist Series.  I believe she is an important poet of our times and for the people.  Unencumbered by the literary judgements of intellectuals, she is part of the movement to return poetry to the people–where it rightfully belongs.  I hope you take the time to enjoy her wonderful skill of imagery and verse.

These poems are used by permission and copyrighted by Glenys Doull.

 

Sweet Peas

Heavily scented warm
summer air draws in
buzzing bees eagerly
seeking precious nectar.

Sweet peas swarm up
netting on the old shed wall
a perfumed rainbow
tapestry of many hues.

Pale pastels to bright
reds, purples, pinks,
blues and lilacs paint a
masterpiece on old timbers.

Rich pickings for the
school children’s flower show.

 

Blackbird In The Rain

In steady light rain
low clouds compress
the light’s dull glare.
The blackbird’s feathers
sparkle under their fine cloak
of minute droplets.
His chuckles and shrieks of glee
from the clothesline pole
fill the garden as he raises
his head, half spreads his wings
in the sensual joy
of tiny moist diamonds.

 

Far Away

In her early fifties with
grown children flown, yet
no one in her life replacing
the long gone husband, while
her erratic workplace called
for voluntary redundancies,
her thoughts turned to the
family friend who had often
visited on business from
his distant home country.

After his next visit
they increased emails and
long distance phone calls.
Finally she was ready,
took redundancy on her
workplace’s next call,
sold up, moved far away
to his home for her
country would not allow
him to live with her there.

His country allowed her to
live there in a happy life and
marriage for over ten years.

Until her body betrayed her,
tiny blood vessels burst in
her brain letting go of her
memories so that she only
wanted to be in the land
she used to know for
over fifty years.

He could not live there
with her, to care for her.

She could no longer
live alone.

 

Dog’s Domain

The dog’s backyard is her domain,
a vital part of herself.
She polices it, sniffing out
marauding cats and prowling hedgehogs.
The cats are routed
at high speed
with growls and loud barks.
She bites the curled up hedgehogs
then cries when their spikes
pierce her tongue.
Now she is led firmly inside
to have the spikes removed.

The luxuriant foliage of the vegetable garden
with fascinating odors
is minutely nosed at row by row
for possible animal scents.
The gardener works under her surveillance,
pulled up weeds are all sniffed.

The sunny concrete path is a warming pad
for middle aged limbs and back,
the shady trees a summer refuge
for a panting matron in a fur coat,
the deck an airy resting place.

Her inspection of her domain complete,
the dog stretches out
dozing in the sun.

 

ABOUT THE WRITER

 

Over the years I have worked as a librarian, clerical worker, call centre operator. Also for over thirty years I taught five to eight year olds at primary school level. I have been single for some years now, and have no children. However I am involved with children in my extended family, and still have an active life even though I am no longer in paid employment.

My time of paid employment ended some years ago. With national unemployment soaring, I went overseas for eighteen months to earn a living until I reached the age of eligibility for our retirement benefit. I had hoped to work part time for some years while on the retirement pension but local unemployment was still high. I have pulled in my belt, adjusted my life style, traveling round town by bus and on foot, and settled down to live on my reduced income.

 

 

 

Guest Artist Glenys Doull Interview

When and how did you become a poet?

After I went on to our retirement pension I was trying to decide what I would do to fill my days with more stimulation once I realized I would not be able to get part time paid employment. I met a former co worker on the street one day, who said that while she was still working she had nonetheless enrolled for polytechnic courses just for the interest after working days at a fairly monotonous job. 

It occurred to me that I would enjoy writing. Not being at all sure what I wanted to write, I enrolled in four one semester courses in creative writing at our local small university which lasted throughout 2013. They covered fiction, non fiction, and poetry. I passed all four courses, then tried different types of writing throughout 2014. I found it hard to maintain interest in writing fiction, which was much longer than poetry, and moved to a focus on poetry which is more satisfying to my interest in words and their usage. I had already done better on the poetry course to my surprise, so I moved on to poetry writing. A number of occurrences made it clear that the type of poetry that interested me was not perceived to be “literary” or “academic” in the 21st century. I decided to seek a forum for my writing on the internet. By mid 2015 I had a body of poems written, and decided that I could sustain my writing enough to post them on a blogging website. I posted on Tumblr from July to December 2015, then switched to WordPress from November 2015.

.

I love your work because it highlights strong images of everyday life. Which poets, if any, inspired you to write in your particular style of poetry ?

I completed a Bachelor of Arts in English Literature in the 1960’s, after doing well in English at secondary school, but retained no great interest in literature after university. My serious reading was focused on what I needed to read for my teaching, and other interests such as family history research and gardening. For relaxation I tended to read relaxing fiction, with an occasional “literary” book. So I came to literature almost completely fresh, as if I had been away from it for some time. I enjoyed reading the poems set for our course work, and our classes and seminars in a small group were interesting and informal. As I read other contemporary poetry in books and magazines I found myself unable to relate to much of the 21st century “literary” or “academic” poetry. 


I found it annoying that some topics were thought to be more literary than others, that the everyday matter was excluded. It also annoyed me that children are not “literary” even though everyone has been a child at the start of their lives and should understand key moments and high points of their lives. Often mundane moments indicate crucial points in our lives, and those moments are very illuminating. Some of my poems about elderly people with dementia are about those telling moments.

In recent years I have particularly enjoyed poems by William Carlos Williams and Emily Dickinson. I also enjoyed poems by Gerard Manley Hopkins in my last year at school, although a recent rereading of them did not bring to mind those poems which we then read and studied.

On WordPress I have enjoyed poems by a number of writers including Kym Whysall Hammond on “The Cheeseseller’s Wife, Sofia Korogliou on De Rerum Natura, Maureen Sudlow on kiwis-soar.com, and Chris Hancock, and Rachel McAlpine on “Poems In The Wild”, to name just a few.

You can read more of Glenys’ work at wordpresscom7862wordpress.wordpress.com 

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