A Portal Nearing Sixty

poetry and photography by
KELLY DuMAR | Psychotherapist + Artist

There is nothing more vulnerable or vigorous than a woman coming of age.

is improvised. A portal opens
out of driftwood. Far out on a beach
you cross a threshold
(daughter, you are orphaned now)
and swim into the sweep of sea
into your age of all that is yet

isn’t spun in church
on Christmas morning–it’s anchored
by branches and daylight and glitter
on a walk after rain

roots in a gorgeous empty
resting on the steps
of a wedding anniversary, your 30th–
stamped in the hollow of who has flown
you see the proof of who remains

is kneeling in the grass
near the barred feather
of an owl (you can’t see)
who is watching over
this territory
you are only
passing through

is wanting
what is
unrooted as a

is, I carried
them, all
the ones who
were seeds
never born

is a wintering wingless bird
iced in a sculpture
of flight

rushes like blood
through cracks
in the veins
of an icy mood
in your melting season




Psychotherapist + Artist

My poetry is inspired by daily life, family life, love of nature, and my nature photography. I write poetry from a strong sense of place–I live in the woods on the rural/suburban Charles River where I walk daily. #NewThisDay is my daily nature photo and creative writing blog where I compose very rough drafts of what moves and inspires me. Reflecting on the natural life cycle by taking pictures of plants, river, woods, swamps and meadows, allows me to reflect on my own process of growth and change, aging and new beginnings. I appreciate how nature teaches me to appreciate each step, each moment. Every day is a new, creative inspiration. Every photo I post and share is fresh from my photo stream each day of every season. I also teach creative and expressive writing, locally and nationally, often on the process I’ve developed–Writing Truth & Beauty–Using Your Personal Photos for Creative Inspiration. My work as a leader on the board of the International Women’s Writing Guild and the Transformative Language Arts Association is driven by my passion for inspiring others to express their truth and beauty creatively in the world. My newest poetry and prose chapbook, about my father’s Alzheimer’s, Tree of the Apple, is available from Two of Cups Press.