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Street Roots writing group offers safe place to share

by Cole Merkel, Staff writer

The Street Roots creative writing group has been meeting every Wednesday at 9:15 a.m. for the past year with a simple mission: to create a safe, inclusive space for anyone who wants to join — for one meeting or many — to discover the transformative power of writing. The rules are easy: After reading a selected poem or short story, participants can write whatever they want, even if it doesn’t follow the prompt, and then share their work with the group.

The results have been profound with writers discovering new voice every week through poetry and short stories on subjects ranging from cats to patriotism to the holidays. Each participant brings his or her own unique experience and point of view and uses these perspectives to compose poem and narrative that reflects his or her place in life on a particular day. The group is often a safe place to escape: one hour every week where participants can put aside the harsh realities of living on the streets, enter the open, non-judgmental atmosphere of the Street Roots office and connect human-to-human over the basic, healing power of writing and personal reflection. This page features a sampling of some of the word composed in the group.

In celebration of National Novel Writing Month, the four meetings in November will focus on aspects of novel writing, including outlines, setting and character development. All are welcome to join.

Come The Rain (By Denny Walker)

Rain seeks the embrace of mother earth

journeys the path of least resistance

Flows untiringly to the sea by many tributaries

destiny unfolding moment by moment

foretold by the ages

Never resting, never questioning

obeys only its own instincts

Pounding rocks to dust, carving gashes

on the face of its matriarch

Pulling, pushing, carrying, un-tethered,

and eroded victims to another abode

to await the coming of another rain.

Fallen Angels (By Ray Vaughan)

Falling down

Can you tell me what is going down?

As sand of times flow through my veins

Is it reality or is it insane?

As sands of times flow through me

Tell me, fallen angels, what do I see?

People living in the streets,

Hungry, cold; no shoes on their feet.

Fallen angels, are you there?

Tell the truth, you just don’t dare.

Police harassing most they see

People imprisoned without need.

More for power, self, gain, and greed.

Fallen angels, tell me why.

All you say is one Big Lie.

President says “Let’s fight a war.”

Tell me, Mr. President,

“What are we fighting for?”

Is it for liberty? Freedom?

Rights we need?

Or is it for oil? Religion?

Money, power, and greed?

Fallen angels, fallen down

Fallen angels hit the ground

Sands of times flow through my veins

Telling me, all’s insane.

Fallen angels

you know what else I see

as sands of times flow through me.

History of Nature (By Dennis K. Rollins)

History is a vein in sorrow.

It is a shallow ending

It is a day given too quickly

First it’s noon, then it’s midnight

Two skills you learn in a day:

How to speak and how to walk

Never fight.

Years gone by

Days turned into months

Time goes quickly

For the essence of a raindrop is the value of the rain

It’s a circle of faith for it dries up the next day

When the sun comes out.

For the price we pay is in vein

Just a solid bit of history

For the sky has a value in it

Like dirt has a value

Dirt is gravity like the sky

Its gravity is the clouds

Deep, high above the mountaintops

Yearning for enchantment not plague

The trees are radiant to the dirt

To bring poisons out of our air we breath

For history is only a beginning but an ending

Of Nature.