Wednesday, August 25, 2021

Now Might as Well be Then

My poetry book Now Might as Well be Then, was published by Finishing Line Press. 
I was honored when poet, Scott Owens, wrote a review of my book. I was thrilled because Scott is a poet whose work I greatly admire. I have almost all of his books and a CD with his poems. 

I am publishing his review here because Amazon is not selling my book anymore and many folks think the book is out of print.
Read the review, please, and if you would like this book, you can order it from me or from Finishing Line Press for $12.00. If you order from the publisher, I do not receive any payment. 
If you order from me, I make a small profit.  The book makes a lovely gift and I will be glad to sign it for you.  I will also send you a free copy of another poetry book. Please share this post with others. 

Posted By Scott Owens to Musings at 3/10/2010 02:31:00 PM

There are no surprises in Glenda Beall’s new book of poems Now Might As Well Be Then. The title gives it all away. These are poems about timelessness, specifically about the timelessness of human experience. There are no surprises, but there is great joy. Not that every poem tells a joyful story. Quite the contrary, some of the best poems here are the most tragic. But even in these poems, there is great poignancy, and in that poignancy the joy of recollecting, of being reminded of how it feels to be human, of having, in fact, those feelings cathartically intensified through the poems.

Beall begins the collection with a love poem that celebrates the timelessness of a relationship. The speaker in the title poems says, “You brought me spring in winter // youth when I was old, / you found my childhood self.” If not for the dedication of the poem which announces who is intended by the indefinite second person pronoun, one could easily read this as a celebration of many things--god, nature, the mountains of North Carolina—and interestingly, any of these meanings would fit for the poems that follow as these poems celebrate the presence and influence of all of these elements.

One suspects, in fact, that the relationship between speaker and mate in “Now Might As Well Be Then” is inseparable from that between speaker and place. That suspicion is supported by the next poem, “Mountain Seagull,” in which “Lake Chatuge wraps the mountains, / lapping love,” and the speaker says “My spirit soars above the scene / a seagull far from home, / But yearning to embrace / and build a nest.” Four poems later in “In the Dark,” the theme of timelessness in this relationship appears again, as does the title of the collection and the first poem: “Here I am years later, listening to your soft breath / and feeling your warm smooth skin. / In the dark, now might as well be then.”

The timelessness Beall reveals to the reader is not the magical, mysterious, miraculous sort of timelessness that remains inexplicable and unearned. 
Beall, instead, makes clear in poems like “Woman in the Mirror” that the timelessness she speaks of is fostered through the vital effort of memory: “What happened to those days / I ask the woman in the mirror. / Gone, she says, all gone, unless / you can remember.” The final line break of that poem becomes an impressively empowering device, creating both an imperative and a confirmation for the reader to carry into his or her own life.

To show us how this creation of timelessness is to be done, Beall practices her own imperative throughout the poems in this book. She remembers the sound of rain in “Listening for the Rain” and is reminded of her father:
Too late for the corn, my father says,
across the bridge of time.
Maybe it will save the pasture,
give us one more haying
before summer ends.

She goes on, then, to recall other events from her childhood, the tragic story of “Roosevelt” (perhaps my favorite poem in the book), the story of her “Father’s Horse,” another story of tragic loss in “Clearing New Ground,” and finally, the beautiful and touching concluding poem “Blue Moon Every Twenty Years,” which successfully reminds the reader of all of Beall’s themes by tracing the singing of a particular song every twenty years, the last time when the singer was somewhere around 70 years old and still proclaiming, “I’ll sing your song for you again / in twenty years.” Just so, these poems will sing to the reader, again and again, reminding us to embrace life through our relationships with people and places and to make those relationships timeless through the vital habit of memory.

--Please leave a comment. It will not appear immediately, but I will read it and respond to it. Thank you.

Tuesday, August 24, 2021

Lisa Turner's New Book

One of my favorite writers and a good friend, Lisa Turner has written another book to help us with our homes. Lisa is a very intelligent and interesting woman. I am always amazed when I think about her building her own airplane and flying it. She was the girl who wanted to take Shop in high school instead of Home Economics. She appears as a guest on podcasts and writes a blog that is helpful to all of us who write and want to publish. Visit her here.

 Lisa Turner is a former aerospace manufacturing engineer who is now a freelance columnist for Sport Aviation and KITPLANES magazines. Lisa is also the home improvement columnist for Clay County Progress, the local newspaper in Hayesville, North Carolina.

See her author page and all of the books she has available.

Check her out and let me know what you think. Read one of her books and give her a review on 

Wednesday, August 11, 2021

Want to write poetry? Take this workshop with poet and professor, Catherine Carter

 Saturday, September 11th, 1:30-3:30 PM

Fee is only $25 and beginners, as well as more experienced poets, are welcome.

Carter will teach a two-hour workshop for NCWN-West via Zoom from 1:30-3:30 on Saturday, September 11th.  Wherever you live, if you can get Zoom on your computer, you can participate in this class.

The workshop focuses on using the addition of internal slant rhyme to poems to echo off existing keywords and increase poems’ music, along with close attention to the impact of lines’ end words. 
For the first hour, poets will look at published poems and the ways in which their sounds enhance their content. 
For the second hour, participants will work on enhancing the sounds in a short poem of their own and, if they like, share the results with the group. 

Participants are asked to have on hand a HARD COPY of a draft of a short poem of their own, less than one page long, for this activity.

To register: Send a check or money order for $25 made to NCWN-West, %Glenda Beall, 581 Chatuge Lane, Hayesville, NC 28904. We need to receive the fee by September 6, and we will then send you the link to the class. 

Sunday, July 25, 2021

A life-time-learner

I have realized I am a life-time-learner and each day I am able, I find and learn something new. Today I learned about freezing bubbles and how they change as they freeze. My friend in Australia posted photos of bubbles she blew outside where it is very cold right now. When we have summer in the US, they have winter in Australia. I enjoy reading my friend's blog posts and learning about flowers, animals, and life in a country I will never visit in person. Thanks to her, I visit virtually and she educates me about her life and her location on this earth.  

Since learning on Zoom has become a large part of my life in the past year, I am taking classes from Jane Friedman's group and the instructors are knowledgeable and interesting. The best part for me as my income doesn't grow while the expenses all around me increase, is Jane's classes cost only 25 to 30 dollars.

I don't know why I was blessed with this curiosity that pushes me to read and learn all I can about humanity and the life of plants, animals, and the small creatures that inhabit and improve our lives here on earth. I take joy in watching the butterflies and the hummingbirds that visit my deck garden. The squirrel that slips by Lexie's notice and finds something that interests him is fun to watch. He pays me no attention and only runs when my little canine friend finds he is there.

With all the problems I endure because technology in today's world is always changing and forcing me to learn more or forcing me to throw up my hands in defeat, I am so grateful that I can sit at home and converse with like-minded people around the world. I can see my great-nephew's baby who is less than a year old and lives miles and miles away from me. All I have to do is turn on my computer. 

If I want to visit Ireland, I go to my television set and search for Ireland. Soon I am traveling the roads, visiting the pubs, and meeting the people who live there.

Although I did not enjoy most of the classes I took in college, I did enjoy history. Now I can learn all I want to know about the world's history while sitting in my own home. Some might wonder why do I want to know so much about things that don't pertain to my life or that will not benefit me in some way. My family history is amazing to me. My ancestors made a journey from far over the ocean to reach this land. They came to find freedom and opportunity back when the native inhabitants, Native Americans, lived where we live today. I like to follow the families as they moved from Jamestown down to North Carolina and finally into Georgia and north Florida. I want to know why they moved south and where did they settle. Why did I happen to be born in Albany, Georgia instead of North Carolina or Florida?

A map of the Old Wagon Road. In the mid-1700s European colonists, many arriving from ships in or near Philadelphia, began traveling south along the trail in search of land for new homes.

 You can have knowledge without wisdom, but you can’t have wisdom without knowledge. 

 If we all learned as much as we could, it would help us to live in this world of today where ignorance of the past has been a painful lesson many have had to learn the hard way. 

I hear from others how much they despise the idea of taking down statues of Confederate Generals. "Why are they suddenly so offensive?"  A friend asks in disgust. 

Because we were not taught the real impact of our history on all the people living here, we don't know that these statues have not suddenly become offensive. They have been symbols of slavery and the infringement of rights on a whole culture of Americans ever since politicians embraced them in the Jim Crow days as a way to keep black people "in their place."

We should keep learning and we should keep an open mind about what is happening to others, even those we don't know personally or we have avoided most of our lives. Children should be taught about our past, the good and the bad. As a white child growing up in the deep south, I learned nothing about slavery except Uncle Remus stories where everyone was happy. As a young person who fell in love with Gone with the Wind, I wanted to believe that all black people lived happily with their white owners. Because I didn't know of the racial hatred or prejudice that abounds in this country, I was ignorant until I was an adult and learned the truth. 

I will continue to learn and reflect on my life as long as my mind is working properly. I will continue to teach others, to share my wisdom gained over the many years of my life. I was told by a friend recently that I am the most mission-driven person he knows. 

My mission is to learn, to love, and to share in hopes of making this world a better place. 

My readers, my friends, I hope your world is filled with light, hope and good health in the coming week. I wonder what you will learn this week that makes you a better person or that helps someone be a better person. Let me hear from you, please.

Monday, July 12, 2021

Why Do You Write?

Bobbie Christmas, editor and writer, published this article on LinkedIn

Why Do You Write? is a good question to ask yourself. Bobbie answers this question and tells us what we should do according to who we write for, who we want to read our words, where we hope to publish, and what we want to do if we publish a book.

Students gather around the table for a class in my studio before COVID

I have scheduled my next writing class for September 27 - November 1, Mondays 2:30 - 4:30 PM.

The classes will be on Zoom as my last several classes have been. The Institute for Continuing Learning will sponsor the class. Visit to see when registration begins for this class. 

Check the calendar for all 2021 fall classes. No matter where you live if you can get Internet coverage and can connect with, you are welcome to join locals in my region of the Appalachian Mountains in my class. 

Saturday, July 3, 2021

Writers Circle around the Table - images from the past ten years

My dear departed friend and neighbor, Ginny Walsh, Barbara Gabriel, Staci Bell around the table in the early days

Scott Owens, prolific and talented poet from Hickory NC taught here many times. We hope to have him again.   
Scott has a new poetry collection, Sky Full of Stars and Dreaming that I recommend. It includes some poems from his earlier books and new poems as well. His poetry is heartfelt and relatable to anyone who has empathy for suffering in our world. Sometimes I cry and sometimes I smile when reading his words, but I always enjoy them.  Read one of his poems here. 

A very popular writing instructor, Steven Harvey, an English professor at Young Harris College who is now retired. His students at Writers Circle loved him. Maybe he will teach for Writers Circle again one day. He has written many books and my favorite is his memoir, The Book of Knowledge and Wonder, a memoir about the suicide of his mother published by Ovenbird Books as part of the "Judith Kitchen Select" series.

At this class we had a man attend. Gene was working on his first book and now he has written his third.
Front right, Jo Carolyn Beebe is a delightful writer of historical fiction. 

Michelle Keller taught classes on genealogy. We all learned so much. She has found that she and I are distant cousins because we both have an ancestor descended from Francis Posey who came to this country when it was being settled.

From 2010 until 2020, we enjoyed meeting and learning together at my studio
The students became my friends and the instructors became friends that I cherish today. 

Who knows what the future holds with this virus crippling our country and the entire world, but maybe we can once again have people gather around my table and leave with a smile and a feeling that they can write that book, that poem, or article they always wanted to write. 

Tuesday, June 15, 2021

Mainstreet Rag Publishing is going strong

Often I receive news that one of our western NC writers has published a book with Mainstreet Rag Publishing Company.

Today I checked out the website and found recommendations for submitting to contests. I think the judges' comments are excellent and could be of help to all of us who enter our poems or our poetry books in competitions. 

MainStreet Rag Publishing Company has been publishing the print magazine, The Main Street Rag, uninterrupted since 1996. Among its features are poetry, short fiction, photography, essays, interviews, reviews, and commentary. I was honored to have a couple of my poems published in the literary journal some years ago.

If we subscribe to the Mainstreet Rag magazine, our fees for submission to contests are discounted. I feel safe recommending Main Street Rag because they have been around a long time, and M. Scott Douglass, Publisher/Managing Editor is well-known and employs excellent editors and judges for his contests.  Read more at :