Now that we are good friends
Now that we have been
To the edge of life and death and back together
I want you to know
I am sorry I ever called you names
That I didn’t appreciate your beauty
That instead of calling you a miracle
I called you weak
I was wrong
You are the gift I get to keep my whole life
And I would not trade you for anything
It’s hard to wait two weeks between these interviews, and I’ve been especially impatient to share Amanda Wood’s story with you all. Amanda shares her experiences growing up multi-racial and multi-cultural in the Okanagan, and how she navigated her identity over the years as she attempted to find her place personally and in her community. Amanda is a textile artist living, and working, in Vancouver, B.C. with her husband and two children. She is passionate about sharing art-making with others, and as a teaching artist with kids and adults, she works on making a creative space for all kinds of learners. Her work has been shown across Canada, and has also appeared in Uppercase Magazine and in the book Strange Material: Storytelling Through Textiles. Say hello to Amanda, and don’t be shy to chat in the comments!
This month’s article by Lori Boland from the YWCA Metro Vancouver is extra timely in the midst of our current conversations around the systemic issue of harassment of women and girls in film, media – really, on all levels of our existence. The theme for this month is Sexualization, and Lori Boland shares with us how a documentary film on hypersexualization changed her life.
I am delighted to officially begin the Personal History series with Larissa Gessner. Larissa was one of the first women to contact me when I put out the call for submissions, and it was clear from the start that she was basically a dream interviewee – warm, funny, prompt, and detailed! Her enthusiasm is infectious in the best way possible.
Larissa arrived in Texas from São Paulo, Brazil when she was five years old – just a few years later, her family moved again to Canada, where she lives today. Larissa shares her experiences as an immigrant to North America with humour and thoughtful observations on the differences between Brazilian and Canadian culture as she grew up. Say hello to Larissa, and don’t be shy about sharing your own thoughts in the comments (and/or send me a line at firstname.lastname@example.org if you’re interested in sharing your own story with us).
The gold of the trees shimmer
Against the pale blue sky
There comes the sound of your laughter
Pushing me over the edge
Cozy in your embrace against the sharp wind
Autumn changes, and chants
From birds flying south
I feel love overtake my heart
Gifts of gold
In between the trees
Why fear the cold and the rain
When I have you to love?
Why look to the spring
When no day is guaranteed? Continue Reading
“Stories matter. Many stories matter. Stories have been used to dispossess and to malign, but stories can also be used to empower and to humanize. Stories can break the dignity of a people, but stories can also repair that broken dignity…When we reject the single story, when we realize that there is never a single story about any place, we regain a kind of paradise.”
– Chimamanda Ngozi Adichi (The Danger of a Single Story)
There is always room for more stories. In particular, I feel that we need to make even more room for diverse stories. I am extremely proud to announce the start of my new series for Peaks & Harbours, Personal Histories. On the third Tuesday of each month, women from around the globe will be generously sharing their personal stories with you. I am overjoyed at the response from everyone, and those that continue to contact me. The ability to share stories on this platform that are multi-cultural, multi-racial, and diverse in experience is incredibly meaningful for me, and I hope for you too.
You have always been a child of wonder
Speaking to the waves and kissing flowers
Writing on napkins, the stories of your heart
Singing lyrics into the wind and the wayward sun
You tried your hand at this and that
And still within you the yearning stirred
And the words flowed down and out
As if there was no recourse
So, be a poet, if you can’t help it Continue Reading