(310) “Don’t let your heart be broken by this world”

What a day. What a day. What a day.

In my history with the Sanibel Writer’s Conference, this was the best.  From beginning to end — not one false moment.

Here is my Haibun commemorating this golden day.

Nick Flynn

Bright day. Leaving all my worries behind. Stepped into the courtyard. Talked with another participant about Yiddish words. Small classroom for Nick Flynn’s memoir workshop. Chocolate chip muffins. He arrives. He looks like his name would be Nick Flynn. Light blue eyes piercing. And how is this for synchronicity — there is a wolf on his black shirt. In small letters it says GODDESS. He says, “Trust the images your self-conscious gives you.” And I’m here. Trusting. Conditionally. As he advises. I told him of the synchronicity. We hugged. Then shrimp tacos at Doc Ford’s. Leslie Jamison on Flash Memoir. We study a piece of writing. She says, “Write into the mystery of your life.” Then the prompt: Write a letter to a stranger. I find one from 1981. I write to surprising understanding. I read out loud to the class. Emotion erupts. I hold back tears more than once. My back spasms. Who knew that had been buried so long? Another prompt. Dangerous objects. The stories we tell are charged with electric emotion. This is a climatic, memorable afternoon of my writing life.

Leslie J

No-see-ums are biting when we return to the courtyard. Inside the auditorium I write this while a panel discussion goes on. Soon the cocktails and music and conversations with new friends will ensue. It has been a perfect Friday. And it is only 4:10 PM.

Giant dragonflies

Oversee the gathering

Writing is our call.

clouds Dragonfly

Then the concert.

Bern sang like Dylan

His Martin guitar ringing

Slide into the sound.


Dan Bern finished the night with this song. Here it is from a previous Sanibel Conference. He is better than ever. I will be singing this for a long time to come: Don’t let your heart be broken by this world.


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