Always learning

Spent the better part of the day at UCSD yesterday, as a guest of my retired high school English teacher, Frank Barone, watching as he awakened the imaginations of daycampers at writing camp. I have some pictures to share with you and an awesome quote from one of his students, but first things first, we need to announce the winner of Broken Wings by Carla Stewart. Thanks to, the lucky recipient is Stephany! Dear Stephany, email me at susan [at] susanlmeissner [dot] com so we chat about a mailing address. Thanks to all who commented. If you didn’t win, do get your hands on the book. Carla is a gifted storyteller. And now for the pictures.
Back in 1975, when he was Mr. Barone to me,
Frank affirmed me as a young writer capable of being
published one day.
He honestly thought it was possible.
Good thing I believed him.
It took twenty-five years to truly take him at his word,
but his remembered faith in me propelled me.
Here he is addressing young writers
who reminded me of me.

The students are writing a poem.
First, Frank held up a purple balloon
and asked them what they saw.
Not a purple balloon, but what the purple balloon
wooed them to see.
A sunset. A giant grape. A happy raindrop.

Here he is coaxing creativity out of them.
When he asked the students to share what poetry is like,
one girl said (and I love this)
“Poetry is like music. It is not a song, but it sings to you.”
Love that.

Writing a poem with his grandson, Charlie. Cool kid.

Frank and I. Student and teacher.
Mentor and mentee. Writer and writer.
Friend and friend.

Author: Susan

This post has 3 Comments

  1. Anonymous on July 30, 2011 at 12:05 am

    What a great teacher to have, Frank Barone. It's so exciting to see young eyes light up at a sudden awareness. And I'm with you–love that quote. She is well on her way to lighting up the eyes of future readers.

    Thanks, Susan.
    Mary Kay

  2. Anonymous on July 30, 2011 at 10:36 pm

    Susan thank you for the book giveaway win! I am so excited and looking forward to reading Broken Wings by Carla Stewart. I know that the book will be a great read by the compassion and empathy that was stirred in my heart by reading the interview. Thank you both for sharing your time and talent!

    I also enjoyed the student's quote on poetry. Looks like you all had a great time!

    Have a Blessed Weekend:)


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