Holding Out Hope

kelowna-poetry-wall

For the past several months Lesley-Anne Evans has been curating the social media campaign Holding Out Hope.

Beginning with a commemorative poetry wall (see CBC article here) immediately prior to the demolition of Metro’s drop-in centre, Metro Community members are invited to share words that humanize and build understanding. Lesley-Anne and others listen, record and share.

Holding Out Hope invites Kelowna’s marginalized and vulnerable ‘others’ to be known, rather than passed by in fear, disinterest, or hurry. Stories are raw, surprising and authentic. Some of our storytellers are homeless, some live in shelters, halfway houses, and the suburbs. All share the poverty of living ‘outside’ an inner circle, a poverty of relationships. All share a hunger to be loved and to belong.

Holding Out Hope is a powerful and risky exchange. Each candid photo puts a face to a name. Each story becomes an opportunity to see the humanity we all share.

Where do we find the courage to let ourselves be challenged and transformed so that we might rise up as messengers or peace and unity? I pray and hope that this…may encourage more and more people to risk crossing the barriers that separate us, and to risk becoming friends with those we have rejected, so that they too might rise up in hope.

Jean Vanier, Tears of Silence, A Meditation

 

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Sage-ing Journal and journeying together…

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Amanda Kelly, Lesley-Anne’s friend.

Earlier this week, Sage-ing Journal released its Winter Issue #14, and within those pages, the article “Writing A Friendship,” documenting a chapter in the story of two writers who find one another and begin to journey together. One writer/poet is Lesley-Anne Evans, and the other, her friend of almost a year, Amanda Kelly. Together, Lesley-Anne and Amanda are exploring the way they can sustain a stable and supportive friendship that is cross generational and open to change. Their collaborative article in Sage-ing Journal touches on their discovery process.

An excerpt from the article:

Q ~ What is your biggest struggle as a poet/writer?

LA: Isolation, feeling like I’m not contributing to “real life.” or what I’m doing has value. I think we all need folk to remind us that we are not alone and what we do really matters.

A: My Achilles heel as a writer is a paralysis that often comes out of the exhausting demands of my perfectionism. When I have my fingers poised over the keyboard, my mind twitches and suddenly my chest feels as if it is contemplating collapse. In desperation I ask myself is what I have to say even worth saying and will it be what I want to say? I eventually regain my breath, whether if it’s five minutes later or the next day; I keep going. Writing will always hold insecurity, yet it is often one of the few things I feel is feeding me nourishment.

With this Sage-ing Journal publication, Amanda celebrates her first publication of poetry and prose. Congratulations Amanda!

Sage-ing Journal is a gift of love and conviction, produced fully by volunteers to “honour the transformational power of creativity. We are a quarterly journal intended as an initiative for collaboration and sharing. We present the opportunity for the free exchange of wisdom gleaned from creative engagement. We invite all ages to contribute their discoveries.”

Sage-ing with Creative Spirit, Grace & Gratitude, invites you to engage with them. You may contact the Editor, Karen Close at karensageing@gmail.com.

KNOW YOURSELF. BE YOURSELF. LOVE YOURSELF. SHARE YOURSELF.