Saturday, October 18, 2008

Donna & Bonnie Henderson

Intro by Marianne Klekacz:

In 1995, Bonnie Henderson joined CoastWatch and adopted a mile-long stretch of beach known as Mile 157 between the Siuslaw and Umpqua river outlets to the Pacific Ocean.

On her regular patrols of "her" beach, she became intrigued by the variety of detritus washed up onto the shore. Her discoveries included glass fishing floats, brand new athletic shoes, dead birds, a dead whale, a half-buried shipwreck, and a "mermaid's purse" (If you're wondering what that is, you'll have to read her book, "Strand" to find out).

She began to try to track the debris back to its source. Her curiosity led her to Washington and ultimately to Japan and China. Along the way she learned that the Japanese call our treasured glass floats "gomi" (junk) and are amused that we collect them. She learned about the movements of sand along the shore, the intricacies of trans-Pacific container shipping, and the devastation that can result when oil is spilled into the ocean.

She then set what she had learned down into a book, "Strand." It's a fascinating read.

Please welcome Bonnie Henderson.

Airlie poet Donna Henderson is a busy woman. She is a mixed media artist, a licensed clinical social worker, has a private practice in psychotherapy, teaches at Western Oregon University, has published two chapbooks (one of which was a finalist for the Oregon Book Award in 1997), and will be publishing a full-length collection of poems, "The Eddy Fence," in 2009. She is widely published in journals and anthologies and teaches poetry workshops at The Attic in Portland.

It seems to me that Donna uses the imagery of lyric poetry to explore questions raised by other areas of her life. Her poetry tackles posers like the nature of death and identity. Her poetry is fluid and musical, and she often performs it to musical accompaniment.

Please welcome Donna Henderson.

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