Tag Archives: surprise

SOLC Day 14: Finding a Poem

My face-to-face meeting with directors of California Writing Project sites all over the state became a Zoom meeting in light of the Corona virus pandemic. I was not looking forward to hours in front of my computer screen, I knew I would miss all the informal opportunities for conversation and camaraderie. But I was wrong. Today’s meeting was energizing and comforting and brought much-needed connection and shared experiences with others who can relate in a world that is suddenly so filled with uncertainty.

Our rich conversations had me jotting down phrases, words I couldn’t forget. And during my beach walk this afternoon, they started to become a poem of sorts. So here’s the early draft…not quite done, found in the words of my colleagues.

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Just Wait


In a roiling cauldron of virus brew

we swim

blindly dodging infection

unwilling to get out

sure if we can’t see it, it’s not there


The pandemic spreads

morphing from fear of illness

into a pandemic of disappointment:

canceled events, weekend plans, the coveted spring break

we resist–just this once, I’ll be okay

wash your hands, pump the hand sanitizer


It’s time for each of us to listen loudly

to hear voices of those at risk

each of us is a single brick, interlocking, interconnected

whether we want to be or not


Distance physically

but not emotionally

wash your hands, cough into your elbow

cancel your plans and check on your neighbor

find ways to inject an inoculation of connection

without passing the virus


Write more, read more

Facetime with Grandma, phone call to Dad

and wait…



(And an image from this afternoon’s trip to the grocery store. Empty shelves are so unexpected!)

Weekly Photo Challenge: Surprise

Do you speak in images? Enjoy taking photos to document your experiences or just to express what you notice in the world? Love to share them with others? Welcome to the weekly photo challenge! I post a new challenge each week…check in regularly and join the fun!

Sometimes as I am going about my life I see something that stops me in my tracks and makes me think.  I’m having one of those kind of weeks.  On Monday I had a meeting to do some planning with colleagues…that happened to take place in the San Diego Natural History Museum.  I love meetings there–the grand old building oozes character, and when I walked in the conference room on Monday, I was surprised to see there was a tusk on the floor!  I couldn’t resist a shot!


Over the weekend the weather continued to be unseasonably warm (into the 80s on the coast!), so the beach was the best option for a walk.  As we walked along I was surprised when I spied this man on a ladder.  You can see that he is right along the shoreline, perched on the top, with his big camera lens pointing at the surfers navigating the larger than usual waves. Did he carry the ladder from his car, does he live nearby?  Does the ladder make a difference in his photography?

ladder photographer

Further down the beach I was surprised by the pop of color from the orange umbrella.  It felt like a fall leaf turning in the sea of greens and blues.

orange umbrella

Earlier this week I took a photo of the palm tree that graces our school playground.  And later in the day came across a new editing app for my phone.  It was fun to play with the different effects and lenses.  Here is the surprising result.

palm app

And this morning on playground duty my eye was drawn to the purple boa on the playground bench.  Who wore their boa to school…and who left it on the bench?  Will this person be surprised when it is missing?


So what has surprised you this week?

You can post your photo alone or along with some words: commentary, a story, a poem…maybe even a song! I love to study the photographs that others’ take and think about how I can use a technique, an angle, or their inspiration to try something new in my own photography. (I love a great mentor text…or mentor photo, in this case!)

I share my photography and writing on social media. You can find me on Instagram and Twitter using @kd0602. If you share your photos and writing on social media too, please let me know so I can follow and see what you are doing. To help our Weekly Photo community find each other, use the hashtag #surprise for this week and include @nwpianthology in your post.

Be on the lookout for those things and situations that surprise you this week.  I can’t wait to see surprises through your lens!