In Part 2 of our conversation, poet Ysabel Gonzalez and I talk about how the poems in her collection Wild Invocations explore relationships and identity, and interrogate expectations, disappointments and arbitrary life timelines. Ysabel shares how poems help her express different parts of herself and get in touch with "characters" within her that need release. We discuss why it sometimes feels easier to write about tumultuous relationships with unavailable people than to write about healthy, loving relationships. Ysabel expresses her desire to write not just from heartache, but also from peace and joy. And, she talks about the nuance she's finding in her relationship to her family's homeland of Puerto Rico.
Today, I’m sharing my conversation with Ysabel Gonzalez, poet and author of the collection Wild Invocations, published by Get Fresh Books in 2019. Ysabel is also my friend and colleague at the Geraldine R. Dodge Foundation, where she is Assistant Director of the Poetry Program. In Part 1, Ysabel and I talk about the seeds of Wild Invocations, some of the challenges that ultimately helped her learn how to use her voice, and how she grapples with writing and speaking about difficult topics like grief, mental illness and white fragility. Ysabel shares her poem “How to Unlearn Being a Princess,” and we begin talking about the transition from girlhood to womanhood.
If you want to hear us continue that conversation, and talk about relationships, embodiment, and celebrating love, return here tomorrow for Part 2 of our conversation.
You can find Ysabel online at ysabelgonzalez.com
Today's episode features a truly delightful guest: Florence Hamer, a woodworker who lives in her self-built tiny house, and spends her time carving spoons, turning bowls, enjoying nature and baking cakes.
In our conversation, Flo describes the path that led her to her beautiful tiny home, from growing up on her mother's woodland, to learning to carve spoons at university, to living in a van in Australia for six months.
We talked about Flo's relationship to living against the grain; how she adventures amidst and despite worry; the romance vs. reality of tiny-house living; and treading lightly on the earth.