Pretzels & Bullfights~ Spotlight: Joan Barrett Roberts

Originally posted on dVerse:

Joan Barrett Roberts

Joan Barrett Roberts


POEM: Forever Here I Walk These Hills
by Joan Barrett Roberts

I walk these hills
On this November day
Cool mist layered air
Rich in harvest smells
Pine needles among the oak leaves
Sharing and relinquishing pungent oils
Peacefulness and blessings to this day
Forever here I walk these hills
I walk these hills
On this November day
Baked Honey Crisp apples and apple cakes
Warm camp fires
With embers wood smoke
Smoldering smells of Hickory Nuts
And Black Walnuts
Forever here I walk these hills
I walk these hills
On this November day
Pecan stands in the corner grove
This earth cups its hands
From the harvest red rubies and gilded golds
Thanksgiving for this day
Forever here I walk these hills
I walk these hills
November’s content
Knowing this low ebb
Playful dawn of winter’s slumber
Leave this restless heart behind
The silvery mercury…

View original 1,278 more words

Pretzels and Bullfights with dVerse Poets Pub – Spotlight Interview

I am so honored to be featured on dVerse Poetics website ~ an active on-line community of poets who share their work & knowledge with others from all over the world!

Thank you ~ I am so humbled with gratitude for all of your friendships!

POEM: Forever Here I Walk These Hills by Joan Barrett Roberts I walk these hills On this November day Cool mist layered air Rich in harvest smells Pine needles among the oak leaves Sharing and relinquishing…

September Gold

*{shared with @dVerse Poetics Open Link}

Once more
These late summer days
Unfold into glorious
September Gold

First Phase — SKY

Sky blues
At an all time high
Blue, blue, blue
So blue ~ I could even fly

Second Phase — EARTH

many harvest colors
scratch the landscape ~
old brown hardwoods
new roadside reds
bright orange edges and
yellow sunshine golds

just simple stubble
on these ancient hills
sticking out –
like an old man growing
a brand new beard

orchards sit
on both sides of the road
plentiful red delicious apples
ready for picking and
offering apple cider makings

Third Phase — WATER

summer droughts
have parched the lands
and stilled rivers
but now
from around the bend
over and across the cove
moving down river
Cyrstal Springs and
Sugar Creek waters
begin to flow again

Fouth Phase — PEOPLE

framed by tree bridges
campfires and paddle boats
new campsites dug in
tents and trailers
fill every nook and cranny

fairy tales
fly out of story books
stories abound –
cane pole fishing and
catching rainbow trout
for iron skillet cooking

tapping maple trees
for their sweet sugar sap
stirring up golden brown
home made country syrup

Fifth Phase — SPIRIT

And I . . .
watch each new sunrise
listen to the morning blue heron calls
pray for peace and some measured joy
with one step
walk out again
along these Ozark woodland trails
now through overgrown shores
waiting to hear the call to stay!

Once more
These late summer days
Unfold into glorious
September Gold


Eureka Springs Writer’s Colony at Dairy Hollow House

Staying downstairs in the Dairy Hollow House.

Staying downstairs in the Dairy Hollow House.

Writing Studio

My writing studio for the week. Windows all around the room and the desk spanned the entire wall! Wonderful

Window chairs

Apartment beautiful decor from the 1950s — turquoise, pink and greens Love the straight back chairs and the charm

I was so excited and my first day was so welcoming!

Some photos –

Me on my first day!

Taking a selfie!

Sacred Gifts

photo (49)dairyhollowcow

Dairy Hollow House Writer’s Colony in Eureka Springs, AR – First Bed & Breakfast Inn

Once upon a hill
In the fresh Ozark mountain air
A Fall Arkansas rain lingers here
Damp on God’s sweet earth

Bowed bows encircle me
As I travel down Dairy Hollow Road
Transclucent green leaves
Make a large cathedral overhead
Forming arch after arch of perfect tree bridges

I look up to my sky and see
Only slivers of sunlight
Woodland trees and leaf shadows
Spin like stained-glass images

A raven flies solo
High above the hollow
Finding its roost along rock ledges
Clear Spring is mighty clear
No run here

Oh, dear God
You give us our day
Our sacred gifts
A treasured cove of earth and sky
All these wonders to behold

And even in my own meager wanderings
Each road I travel is framed and signed by you!

crooning a tune with the moon

Originally posted on thecourseofourseasons:

moon over basel

She perches on the rail,
kicking her feet out over the water.

Smiling, she says
‘Sing to me a sad song.’

So I croon her a tune of Count Basie’s-
‘Don’t the moon look lonesome,
shining thru the trees.
Don’t the moon look lonesome,
when your baby packs up to leave.’

And in a fit of giggles, she almost lands in the river-
Steadying herself, she whispers
‘Look the buildings are sleeping.’
Standing quietly, arms folded and eyes shut tight,
they lean against each other for support
like old horses in a stable.
‘But the river never sleeps.’
‘No, she doesn’t – she holds each bank in her strong embrace,
and sings her own songs to the sleeping city.’

‘Now, its your turn to sing.’

“Moon river, wider than a mile…’

I perch on the railing, precariously between
and dreaming

‘I’m crossing her in style one day’

I drift…

View original 52 more words

Twilight Will Be Enough

Originally posted on A Thing for Words:

So many live our lives
groping from one darkness
to the next, praying
for the spark of hope
to light our way,
for we are certain
we’ll never see dawn,
never feel even sunset.

Others live in the sun-bright
moment of now.
They follow illumination
from within to find their way
through the dark times
until the Great Light
they enter.

And there are those of us,
like me, who’ve been through
the dark, the light,
and back again. For me,
the twilight will be enough,
as long as I feel the blind warmth
of your hand guiding me.
A super-quick 100-word draft, written in a parking lot this morning, shared with my friend Anthony Desmond, for the latest Poetics prompt at dVerse Poets Pub.

View original

Journal Writing

Journal Writing
Eureka Springs, Writer’s Colony

Saturday Morning, September 6

Making a morning cup of tea
Sitting at my writing desk
It is still dark night
A street lamp light
Moves gold through woodland trees
Casting shadows upon shadows

Outside the Peach Blossom Room
A bottom porch of sorts moves you along stairs or around to the front
A beautiful garden hosting bright orange and purple Zina’ blooms
Standing on a ledge a large pot of basil to grace our meals

A soaking Arkansas rain yesterday
Leaving cool mountain air refreshed and muted damp earth smells
The trees still seem to be sleeping too
I listen for any sound – proof that night is turning into day
I hear nothing at first, no bird song, no wrestling of leaves
Then from far back into the woods
I hear tree frogs, beautiful night sounds
Calling their lonesome songs
As they cradle our heads while we sleep
“Hush, my darling, close your eyes and rest”
We still need time to gently summon life to awake once more!

Sunday morning, September 7

A nightlight suddenly has been turned off
The black smoke screen of night
Gives way to twilight’s raising eyebrow
Painting the sky a light pale blue grey
Bathing the day in a holy shroud

I rise early before the dawn
Holding on to sacred spaces in the midnight hour
Before the awakening hour of day
Dairy Hollow
Fills these deep woods with stories yet untold
It is so very quiet, you can hear yourself say, “hush”!

I walk this vibrant path
Stone upon stone
Laid by bare hands upon this sweet earth
Held in a grey misty day
Knowing a moment within my soul
Truth suddenly considered
Connecting mortar
Capturing brightness stolen from the mist
Touched and then worked into something new


I push myself I awake
Before twilight danced upon the sky
Wrapped in a warm blanket from a night’s rest
My cottage door steps right into the hillside
Large grey rain-soaked stones led upstairs and around to front
A second path of grass and earth follows the house around
I need to feel the air . . .
How is the outside?
How is the day?
I have to step out even if it’s just for a while
Listen to sounds & just be part of God’s day!

Sunday afternoon, September 7

Walking down the cobblestone sidewalks
In the middle of shops and streets converging
I quickly get lost into the city
Noticing the sights and sounds of Eureka Springs

Corners are everywhere
Edges softened by the rain
Sitting on a public park bench
Watching others talking and walking by
I say, “I’m not in a hurry”
“Don’t mind me, I’m just sitting here”

Monday Night, September 8

Full Moon Over Dairy Hollow

There is a super moon rising
The last one for summer
I’m outside sitting with the moon, Neptune and Pluto too
Taking in the soft hugs from the moon above
Framed by hollow tree bridges lining every roadside curve
The sky only opens when you near the top of the hills
Or climb toward one of the springs
Just at the edge of country wildness
I meet two red foxes as they scurry under the hillside

In a Land O’ Nod and sleepy Ms. Nibbles
Tucked into the hillsides
On Spring Street, Main or the Middle Street
Casa Colina and Stone House sleep before midnight
But the main Lady, Crescent Castle and St. Elizabeth from Hungary
Shine their lights to adorn the night

Congratulations Maria Cantrell 2014 Individual Artist Fellow for Arkansas

River Valley Writer Award 2014

River Valley Writer Awarded 2014 Arkansas Arts Council Artist Fellowship

ALMA, Ark.The Arkansas Arts Council named Alma resident and Do South Magazine Managing Editor, Marla Cantrell, a 2014 Individual Artist Fellow for her work in short fiction.  Marla grew up in the River Valley and writes about Arkansas’ people, heritage and culture.  Cantrell is the only writer from the River Valley to be selected this year for the prestigious award.

The Artist Fellowship is Cantrell’s second recognition of 2014.  Earlier this year, Cantrell, a member of the Borderliners Writers’ Group in Fort Smith, won first place in the White County Writers Contest at the 2014 Arkansas Writers’ Conference.  Aside from her publications in Do South Magazine, Cantrell has also been published in Show Off Anthology, Deep South Magazine, Long Story Short, Word Haus, and the Center for Writing Excellent, 3rd Annual Fiction Anthology.

The Arkansas Arts Council announced the 2014 Individual Artist Fellowships Tuesday.  Fellowships are awarded annually to artists in Arkansas in recognition of their individual artistic abilities.  These fellowships enable artists to set aside time for creating their art and improving their skills. Three artistic disciplines are selected each year as categories for the awards.  The three categories for this year are Literary Arts: Short Story Writing; Performing Arts: Directing of Theater Productions; and Visual Arts: Works on Paper.

Cantrell and the other fellows will be recognized at a reception, co-sponsored by Historic Arkansas Museum, on Friday, October 3, from 6-8 p.m. at the museum on 200 E. Third St. in Little Rock. The reception is free and open to the public. Seating is limited; reservations are required. For reservations, call(501) 324-9766. Cantrell’s work can be read at and  You can follow Cantrell on Twitter at @WritinginARK.