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Lou Liberty Author and Poet

Pappy Shell & The Jenny Mule - By Lou Liberty
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I practice mindfulness, writing, and taiko drumming in Albuquerque’s North Valley. For years, I led students through Dante's Hell and Faulkner's Yoknapatawpha Co., Mississippi. I’ve also worked as a master storyteller.

Lou Liberty ~ Author and Poet

When I'm not writing, playing taiko, or on a contemplative walk, I let the dog out and I let the dog in. I also cater to the cat’s every whim. In what little time that is left in my workday, I marvel at the world.

Everyone and everything has a story. As a two time National Endowment for Humanities Fellow, I’ve had the privilege to research stories in England, the Netherlands, Belgium, France and Italy. Among my published works are novels, prose, poetry, essays and histories.

Most recently, I studied taiko with KODO, on Sado Island, Japan, having been selected for their KASA Mix program.

Storytelling

I have loved stories since birth because my grandmother poured them into my ears and therefore into my heart from the time I was born. She lived with us and we shared a room until her death when I was 13.

My grandmother was of Appalachian ancestry. She came by storytelling naturally. Had she lived in those mountains instead of south Texas, she would have been considered a “Grannie”, a wise woman and a keeper of lore.

So I learned about storytelling and from stories early in my life and have treasured them always. My becoming a storyteller has been a natural process, part of my essence. I know my love for literature is founded in my love for the stories I received as a child.

One of my favorite categories of stories are those told in families. These are the stories that are repeated at weddings, funerals, reunions, and other gatherings. These kinds of stories remain alive and evolve with each teller.

Ethel Shields

Family stories are perennial. Passing through the generations, each version has its individual slant and authenticity depending on the teller. More than anything, these kinds of stories have at their core a defining of identity, an answer to the eternal human question, “Who am I?”

The Art of Renga
Poetic Conversation

Lou Liberty : Writing Worksop
$85.00
Online Regsitration coming soon!

Date & Location
TBA

Learn this ancient art of playful poetic conversation in a limited enrollment, one day
worksop. Orgami envelope making and decoration included. Renga wrting is idealy suited to or modern technology.

Limited to 10 participants.
Course materials are included.

A fictional character, the Lady Murasaki started a lasting poetic movement in ancient Japan.

To receive a poem and make no in-kind poetic response was to have no heart. It revealed
the person as lacking feeling, having no soul or manners. Communicants were shown to be barbarians rather than whole and civilized persons.

* Refunds for cancellations given up to 3 days before workshop.
** Location info will be emailed to you.

 

Praise

  • Its technique, its method, its nuts and bolts but much more than that. Working with Lou is exciting and liberating. I don’t fret like I used to when I sit down to write. Now I embrace my creativity!  — Amy Atkins, Emeritus Professor - Special Projects, UNM
  • Lou understands writing and equally important, she understands publishing. Spend time with Lou whenever you can. You will treasure the moments you did when you sit down to write your books.  — Robert E. Vardeman, Author
  • Lou Liberty is not only a stellar poet and writer, she’s also an exceptionally gifted teacher. Count on being inspired. You will have your writing practice transformed and bountifully enriched!  — Dale Harris, Editor, Central Avenue  and Malpais Review

Upcoming Workshops

April 13, 14 & 15, 2018 in Albuquerque, NM  — Register Online! Or, download the Cash/Check Registration Form

Books

Pappy Shel & The Jenny Mule - By Lou Liberty

Pappy Shell & The Jenny Mule
Pappy Shell And The Jenny Mule is the story of a man born into a hard-scrabble life and his quest for that something better that is the essence of the American Dream. Paul's story is a stirring tale of risk and redemption. His dreams and his pursuit of them are often reminiscent of the Grail Quest. Set within a context of family secrets and stories, Paul's journey begins just before the Great Depression, progresses through WW II and into the latter 20th Century. At the end of a long life, can Paul make amends for generations of wounding and loss?

Buy the book:       Amazon | Barnes & Noble | iTunes

Bearing Witness: 25 Years of Refuge, by Lou Liberty and Margy O'Brien

Bearing Witness: 25 Years of Refuge
New Mexico Book Award winner for 2008 in Nature/Environment, Bearing Witness: 25 Years of Refuge, is a collaborative effort between writer Lou Liberty and artist Margy O’Brien. The 70-page book is a collection of watercolors, poetry, and prose celebrating the Rio Grande Nature Center’s habitat and wildlife. The book covers all aspects of the Nature Center: insects, birds, ponds and intangibles such as the wind and seasonal changes. Bearing Witness was published by La Alameda Press.

Editions sold out and now out of print.

Constant Possum: The History of Sandia Preparatory Schoo, by Lou Liberty

Constant Possum: A History of Sandia Preparatory School
In 1932, Congresswoman Ruth Hanna McCormick Simms founded the Sandia School in Albuquerque. Closed because of WWII, it was re-established in 1966 by Ruth’s niece-in-law, Barbara Young Simms. Today, Sandia is as a much-respected independent college prep school. Sandia’s epic tale reflects the history of New Mexico and the world. The award-winning book contains many photographs by the renowned photographer, Laura Gilpin.

Buy the book:       Sandia Prep School

Transition and Legacy - SPS at 50, by Lou Liberty

Transition and Legacy: SPS at 50
The decade 2000 to 2010 has been a lively one at Sandia Prep. Remarkable courage, a building boom, a digital revolution, national acclaim and new school leadership are only some aspects of the story. Prep’s extraordinary bequests to future generations of students as the school approaches its half century complete this engaging, celebratory tale. Transition and Legacy - SPS at 50 shows the reader once again how and why Sandia Prep is an exceptional place.

Buy the book:      Sandia Prep School

Poetry

In addition to prose, writing poetry is a favorite occupation for me. It takes me a long time to gestate and write a novel. The quicker, more in the moment experience of writing poetry balances my other writing efforts. Writing poetry hones my ability to observe and express with economy and clarity. Occasionally I will share with you a favorite poem. This first one is about my grandmother who told me stories.

Prose Poem For My Grandmother

          After you killed the rattlesnake in the garden with the hoe, you told me that it had to be done. You had talked with the snake, tried to convince it to live elsewhere. The rattlesnake made its choice to live within people space and to threaten danger, you explained to me.

          And when the bull snake came, you welcomed it with ceremony and thanked it for guarding against raiders to your bounteous crop. I did not know then how exceptional your conversations were.

          The garden flourished that year as you labored and sang the songs handed down to you from Appalachian ancestors. In its center were sunflowers making a golden crown rewarding your hard work under the hot south Texas sun.

          This year I grew sunflowers for the first time since helping you in that childhood garden long ago. Each morning I tended them with loving care, watering them as guard against the hot days, breathing their earthy aroma into my soul as guard against the world's sorrows.

          I have gazed into their seeded hearts and known the spiraling forth of their fertility as the reflective song of my soul and the recurring gift of your touch on my life.

          There are no rattlesnakes in my garden, only a small garter snake snuggled beneath the stalks and your memory among the petals of sunlight, your song rustling the green leaves of my heart.

©Lou Liberty, 1998
Please do not repost my work without obtaining written permission. Thank you!

Contact


Lou Liberty
125 Green Valley Rd NW
Los Ranchos, NM 87107-6015
lou@louliberty.net
1-505-450-4846


Painter & sculptor, Dennis Liberty, is Lou's husband.
His print gallery can be viewed here:

http://purchase.dennisliberty.com