Kate Marshall Flaherty offered a session on May 18.

Kate Marshall Flaherty has over 30 years experience in animating and facilitating interactive and inspirational workshops in writing, editing, and poetry writing, fiction and memoir.

She is certified in the Amherst Writers Method of facilitating workshops and has worked with every age group and community, from Grade Two Classrooms to Seniors’ communities. She has been a “Poet in the Schools” throughout Ontario and all of Canada. She works with musicians as well, and has created a fundraiser music and poetry workshop that has been around Canada, from Cobalt out to Jasper; which has raised over $1600 for the Alzheimer Society of Canada alone.

From Kate

What a thrill it was to have a full house of poets for Write Around the World on May 18th. We started with an intro, the land we are on and one image each, then had a meditation to ground us and settle in that liminal state of image and dream; we took risks, made word webs of associations, lists, chose lines from powerful poems, and played with words. It was an inspiring morning of awesome sharing and affirming mirroring, all in the safe container of the AWA Method.

Jump to Barbara Krasner’s piece.

Jump to Jenn Pipp’s piece.

Jump to Debbie Kuchciak’s piece.

Jump to Laurel Karry’s piece.

Jump to Kate Marshall Flaherty’s piece.

Ancestor Manifesto by Barbara Krasner

I believe in the collective memory

of my ancestors, especially the females,

that seeps through my DNA

and courses through my consciousness.

I believe in the traditions of my people

practiced over five thousand years

that connect Ukrainian President Zelinsky

to all of us no matter where we live.

I believe in the voices of my ancestors

whispering to me in dewy moments

their sacred and sage advice

that I cannot ignore.

I believe that I still have much to learn

and with the guidance of my ancestors

I will seek and secure those lessons

I can pass on to future generations.

That Becomes Song by Jenn Pipp

(dedicated to Staghorn Jenn Pipp Sumac) ©2022

Staghorn sumac. I think that is you. But like many in your youth you resemble others.

Tree of heaven. Other trees with their many pointed leaves. Soon your fuzzy red limbs and your nearby elders make it clear who you are. I delight in your abundance.

Your abundance is the abundance of birds

And the abundance of insects

You generously lend yourself to the human practice of dying fibers

Your fruits delicious to beings of all kinds

But you are more than that

You also exist for yourself

Although I don’t know quite what your existence is like. And although I know I can never slip far enough out of my humanness to be fully in your flesh, I imagine what it’s like to sit in the warmth of the earth in your body  pushing upwards towards the sun.

Your slow stretch upwards to  my eyes for you feels like

A reach?

A breath?

Something I can never know.

What is it like to know what you know?

The turning of the land and arrival of square houses

Is your presence here the action of birds and oversight of distracted people? Or did the people before me allow you to stay while shovels dug your kind out of the earth nearby?

I want you to know we share this place

We belong to each other

Today I organically move about the yard, pushing out clicks of a mechanical mower acquired at our neighbors garage sale. I dodge you and our slender bright green neighbor Pennsylvania Sedge.

Host to dozens of caterpillars

That become butterflies

That become birds

That becomes song

That powers the earth

And today I noticed a new friend, cinefoil on the hill and made a touchdown-like gesture.

Excited that this plant arrived on its own to a slope that is rewilding itself.

This is what I live for.

Return to Childhood by Debbie Kuchciak

I believe in the winnowing hands of Mother Ocean, washing out to her depths the chaf of adulting. In the wracklines of her ebb? Childlike delight and joy.

I believe in sunny prides of dandelions spreading golden lustre dust to bumbling bees in a dance along a hillside. Bumble along in mirth, make a wish, blow and join the dance.

I believe in marshmallow clouds that shift high on a warm spring day. Cottonball giants feint, parry and flunge serpentine wyrms, writhing round sabres of pearl vapour. A fount of treasure for the young at heart.

 jaune by Laurel Karry

a juicy tang of lemons

and pineapples


a parched tongue

on an August afternoon;

sunflowers, dandelions,

tansy, and broom


to cyclists

on a Provençal highway;

gelatinous orbs

of sunny-



cached inside

strained spinach

and Hollandaise;

goodbyes imprinted on

snot-stained panes of glass;

jaundiced photographs

spirited away

by social viruses;


steeped in nicotine;

anxiety, and






body fluids

spit and spewed

over checkered slacks asleep

Sherbourne Street

sewer grates;

ricotta, cottage, and camembert


under stay-fresh


chunder puddles

of inexperience

pooling on



after 2 a.m.

pub crawls.

It’s the colour of finches.

Poem of the Moment by Kate Marshall Flaherty

Her baggy pants held by rainbow suspenders, men’s

pants, perhaps, but they suit her frame and are loose

for foraging; she rides a grown-up tricycle

with a green milk crate duct taped to the back, bottles

and cans rattle as she pedals, whistling to stop, dismount

then open blue bins to peer inside for glass. I ask

does she want our Mother’s day wine bottles? Her smile

alights on me like a sunny May moth. She winks. Mother’s she whispers like a prayer.

Thank you for joining us for 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!

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