Originally from the Upper Peninsula of Michigan, I moved to Lawrence, Kansas in 1998, and moved to Lansing from Kansas in 1999. I missed my writer’s group in the Upper Peninsula, and the support we gave each other for our writing. I came up with the name “Writing at the Ledges” and even designed a flyer, but kept delaying actually posting the flyer or sending out a press release to encourage writers to attend the first meeting until 2004, when I met Candy-Ann Little at Rally of Writers. Candy said she would love to help me kick-off my idea for a writing group in Grand Ledge. Finally, after planning over cups of coffee at the local cafe, we held our first meeting in July of 2005 at the newly opened Sweet Linda’s Cafe. I teach at Lansing Community College, so when I’m busy grading papers, Candy handles our marketing and promotion opportunities. It has been a very productive partnership and we are both amazed at how big our group has grown over the past few years. It has been a truly rewarding experience to see new members join and watch their writing develop and grow. In 2008, we published an anthology titled “Small Towns: A Map in Words.” As one of the editors, I put in many late nights proofing our final copy, but all the hard work was worth it. We are very pleased with the success of our group endeavor.
On a personal note, I write poetry, creative non-fiction and started my first novel. It is a slow process, however, as teaching takes up most of my energy. In the spring of 2008, I spent two weeks as a Writer-in-Residence in the Porcupine Mountains. Here is a link to the Writer’s Residency program for anyone interested: http://www.porkies.org/
In 2009, the Porcupine Mountains Wilderness State Park celebrated its 90th birthday. Some of my poems from my residency were displayed with photographs at the park’s Visitor’s Center. I have included one of the poems from the display below.
I find the rocks on a picnic table at Presque Isle —
smooth, polished by river currents.
Some child left them for me to discover.
One is white, silky as an eagle feather,
another is branded with inky black,
the third is rich, mellow brown tinted with a coppery hue.
Such a simple find: three stones on a picnic table.
I am amazed at the way they lay in my palm,
still warm from the afternoon sun,
bestowed upon me:
The grace of this day,
a walk to Manido Falls,
the branch of cherry blossom
waving in the wind.
Please life, don’t intrude,
let me be amazed awhile longer.
© 2008 Rosalie Sanara Petrouske
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