Beth King’s “Full Moon in the Leaves” after Brian Lackey

imageBeth King photographed June 17, 2017 at Hickory Museum of Art for Art of Poetry as she shares her poem inspired by the Brian Lackey collage sculpture. Photo courtesy of Gin Hurley.

Beth King
After “Past Lives” by Brian Lackey

Full Budding Moon in the Leaves; A Spring
Primrose and Trillium Conscience; Still
A Forecast of a Heartfelt Summer;
Prayers in Easter’s Evening of Restoration.

Sometimes, I Confess, I Do Just Sit
And Think; Sometimes, I Do Just Sit;
But, I Risk Reprisal and Reprimand
Being Labeled Libelously Indolent.

I Persist in My Being Me; Resolute;
Twine of Red Yarn; Tangled Within
A Bride-To-Be’s Endless Reverie;
The Absent Groom’s Undoing.

It’s the Witch Moss That Betrays Me;
I Know Inside Me, I Could Never Be That
Fluffy-Haired Girl Living Inside the Box;
Poetry, Like Jesus, Has Freed Me.

Posted in Uncategorized | 2 Comments

Details for September Art of Poetry Submissions

imageFollowing are details for the next Art of Poetry at the Hickory Museum of Art:

The submission deadline is September 2, 2017 and the reading will be September 16 at 2 pm.

To submit, simply go to the museum and write poems about the works on exhibit. Please note the dates of eligible exhibits below. Submissions should:
-include name of the artist and the title of the inspiring work
-be typed in the body of an email (do not send attachments)
-be sent to Kelly DeMaegd at
-Art of Poetry will use no more than 3 poems per individual poet
-Art of Poetry reserves the right to decline work that may not be appropriate in content, or of literary quality as determined by its panel of judges. Poems that are overtly political or religious in nature, or poems that are not appropriate for all ages, will not be considered for this program.

Approximately 20 poems will be selected to be displayed at the museum and to be read by the author (or selected substitute reader) at the reading. The reading is free and open to the public. Audiences have ranged from 15 to 45 people. After the reading, with permission of the poet and artist, poems will be posted on the Art of Poetry website at

Eligible exhibits are as follows:

ENDANGERED: Joel Sartore Retrospective
Binder at the 2nd floor Floor Reception Desk – Available July 18)**** Exhibit opens September 16,
PAST LIVES: Brian Lackey Installation (Through September 17, 1st floor Shuford, Regal & Gifford Galleries)
MICKEY & PAUL: The Early Days (July 22 – January, 1st floor Whitener Gallery)
BEER TYPE LOGOS: Matt Everley (Through September 17, 1st floor Entrance gallery
Recent Acquisitions to the Permanent Collection (Ongoing, 2nd floor Windows Gallery
ANIMAL MENAGERIE: Sam Passantino (Ongoing, 2nd floor Objects Gallery)
Glass from the Permanent Collection (Ongoing, 2nd floor Objects Gallery)
DISCOVER FOLK ART (Ongoing, 3rd floor)

Reminder: If you have not signed up for the William Wright workshop on September 23, 2017, please contact Betty O’Hearn at for the registration form.

Hope to have your poetry in the next Art of Poetry event!

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Gene DeMaegd’s “Radio Head” after Brian Lackey


Gene DeMaegd evolved from an Art of Poetry supporter to a participant when this collage by Brian Lackey inspired him to put pen to paper. Stop by Hickory Museum of Art and see what moves you! Photo courtesy of Gin Hurley, taken at the June 17, 2017 Art of Poetry event.

Gene DeMaegd
After “Past Lives” by Brian Lackey

cruising the back roads of Indiana
in a sweet ’66 Chevy van
wearing my black bandana
hoping not to run into the man
slamming in a cassette,
feeling no regret,
cranking up the volume,
only to hear a grinding sound
radio’s eating up the tape

I thought I was listening to Magic Bus,
but, to my dismay, I hear
Another One Bites The Dust

Posted in Uncategorized | 5 Comments

Tracy Hawkins’s “Hanging Balls With Sticks” after Jonathan Brilliant

imageTracy Hawkins photographed with the whimsical sculpture that inspired her at the June 17, 2017 Art of Poetry event at Hickory Museum of Art. Photo courtesy of Gin Hurley.

Tracy Hawkins
After “Building a Smaller Universe” by Jonathan Brilliant

Wrapped in your love
You got me tightly wrapped
The three of us holding it together
We being so uniquely made
We being of different shapes and shades
Not so easily broken
We shall not be divided
We are connected to each other as one
We are knitted ever so delicately
It took time
To weave this union ever so perfectly
The bond we share
Nothing will ever compare
We shall never again be in despair
Cause what keeps me close to you
Has nothing to do with tape or glue
We are flowing together with so much love
Floating in the air like doves
Watching everyone from above
It is just the three of us
GOD, me and you

Posted in Uncategorized | 1 Comment

Melissa Hager’s “Musical Madness Menagerie” after Brian Lackey

imageArt of Poetry explored Brian Lackey’s Past Lives exhibit at Hickory Museum of Art on June 17, 2017. Melissa Hager was inspired to write about this piece. Photo courtesy of Gin Hurley.

Melissa Hager
After “Past Lives” by Brian Lackey

Big move forces one to declutter,
declassify contents collected.
From a life defined by music,
a box of ticket stubs floods floor,
memories, and tear ducts.
Concerts attended, some not remembered,
the extraordinary rendered tears.
A few made me scratch my head,
rub my wallet wishing the money would come back.
Glass Spider tour experienced Bowie, Peter Frampton on lead;
Boston, singing the words to every song;
Genesis tickets procured after four freezing
nights camping around the Dean Dome.
Billy Joel with Momma and Sister,
jostling for front row with my daughter at many more.
Two decades worth of Merlefest wristbands
represents the best in Americana:
sobs as Jerry Douglas, Victor Krauss and Omar Hakim
unveiled musical genius; witnessing the young son
of a Steep Canyon Ranger pretending
to play bass on the shoestrings of his Keds.
Screaming YES, YES, YES for my favorite band, Yes.
Electric tingles at #1 show, Sir Elton John,
as the haunting strains of “Funeral For A Friend”
fills the cool evening air.
The waste basket beckons.

imageThe Art of Poetry gang behind one of Brian Lackey’s creations at the June 17 event.

Posted in Uncategorized | 6 Comments

Beverly Finney’s “Creation” after Jonathan Brilliant


It was a wonderful gathering for Art of Poetry on Saturday, June 17, 2017. This tour through Hickory Museum of Art explored exhibits by artists Jonathan Brilliant and Brian Lackey. We were excited to be joined by the museum’s new Executive Director, Jonathan Carfagno, as well.  Welcome aboard, Jonathan!

Our first featured poem for this session is by Beverly Finney and is appropriately titled “Creation”.  She was inspired by Jonathan Brilliant’s initial drawings of the museum space where he would create a one-of-a-kind sculpture using coffee sticks, lids, and various accoutrements. It is amazing to see, so stop by the museum and check it out.

Beverly Finney
After concept drawings for “The Hickory Piece, 2017” by Jonathan Brilliant

To see what
is not yet there.
Dreams not
yet dreamed.
To lift that dream
into being,
without doubt
or censor, following
the creative yen
to make the vision
real by simply

Always keeping
the dream
in focus even
as it veers,
glides, takes
you aside
for consultation,
pulling you
into its swirl
and swoop, until
you and the dream
are one.

Posted in Uncategorized | 3 Comments

Kelly DeMaegd’s “Escape From The Bolshevik Revolution” after Anya Fisher

Art of Poetry’s Kelly DeMaegd reads her haunting poem inspired by Anya Fisher at the March 18, 2017 event at Hickory Museum of Art. The Fisher art piece was part of Woman Made, exhibited through April 2017. Photo courtesy of Roger and Ginny Sanford.

Kelly DeMaegd
After “Female” by Anya Fisher

Fifteen years old
weaver, Lazarev
Textile Factory, Moscow.
Worked twelve hour days
for thirteen rubles a month.

Slept shoulder-to-shoulder
with other girls
on wooden pallets,
crusts of rye bread
no longer available
they ate acorns,
weeds, tree bark.

There were whispered rumors
of deceased relatives
ground into sausages
starvation killed thousands,
typhoid fever ravaged.

She would not describe
how she escaped,
what was required
of a young, desperate girl.

She fled with nothing
except a scrolled amulet
and bolt of cobalt cotton
color of the Baltic Sea.

Join Art of Poetry this Saturday, June 17 at 2 pm at Hickory Museum of Art. We gather at the museum lobby entrance, then venture through the museum to explore current exhibitions through poetry. Hope to see you there!

Posted in Uncategorized | 3 Comments

Beth King’s “Barren Trees of Winter” after Betty Garrou

Beth King shares her poem inspired by the Betty Garrou painting at Art of Poetry on March 18, 2017 in the Hickory Museum of Art. Photo courtesy of Roger and Ginny Sanford.

Beth King
After “Two Groves” by Betty Garrou

Barren Trees of Winter with Shining Stars Above

Your Tendril Branches do not Frighten Me

Nor Seek to Possess Me

I Do Not Shriek from You

Or Taunt You Like Dorothy

No! I Applaud and Praise Your Goodness

As You are the Guardians of the Night

The Protectors of the Darkness

He and She Who Keep the Evil Away

The Stars Above You Make You Shine

With Incredulous Intensity

Luminous Against the Seeming Dank and Wicked

Drapes of the Nighttime Stillness

As the Creatures of the Wildness Sleep

You are Their Dreamcatcher

Dear Barren Trees of Winter

Let the Sparkling Stars Light Your Way

Although You Shall Live Forever and a Million Days

A Place in Heaven’s Everlasting Eternity

Is Reserved for You

A Place Where You, Also, Can Dream in Peace

Until the Sunlight of the Dawn Returns

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Douglas McHargue’s “Pretend Parade” after Maude Gatewood


Douglas McHargue paints another lovely picture through her poem about the Maude Gatewood piece from the WOMAN MADE exhibit. She is photographed at the March 18, 2017 Art of Poetry event at Hickory Museum of Art.  Submissions to be considered for the June 17 stroll through the museum are due by Saturday, June 3, 2017. Photo courtesy of Roger and Ginny Sanford. 

Douglas McHargue
After “Umbrellas” by Maude Gatewood

Rain falls like stringed silver.
The woman does not see,
it is an annoyance
to her day, her life
on city concrete
that turns her face
to stone, her arms
granite slabs that feels
nothing, not even the man
who brushes against her
as they pass, umbrella shields.

Rain like this fell
in my old picture book,
kids walking to school
on shining sidewalks
past quaint shops,
laughing, talking,
a pretend parade
of people they were not yet,
but could be, nurses,
firemen, policemen,
fathers, mothers.
They called out Hayfoot,
Strawfoot, for left, right,
and marched together
into class where,
the story goes, they turned
into girls and boys again.

And what will this woman be
someday, that day when
she can feel arms,
what will she do with them
on that day of an unlocked door,
a folded umbrella.

Posted in Uncategorized | 2 Comments

Brenda Smith’s “Broken” after Noelle Rassmussen

imageArt of Poetry’s Betty O’Hearn reads the poem written by Brenda Smith at the March 18, 2017 event at Hickory Museum of Art. Photo courtesy of Roger and Ginny Sanford. 

Brenda Smith
After “Revelations” by Noelle Rassmussen

Dead and forgotten,
abandoned, neglected, leaning
so many dolmens in the field
Where are they now?
Spirits still hovering?
Dust, dirt, worms?
Old markers, their bodies
nourishing new life
casting shadows
shading wildflowers
stirring genetic memory
objects for a game
Leapfrog through the centuries
misspelled, misshapen letters
names echoing back through time
Descendants now living gaze on
wondering who was it
that left your marker so bereft
wars, hard times, sickness– all
march on into new springs
refreshed grass, tiny bluets
waving in the breeze
whispering with the wind
No, no we’re still here
Some memory of us
lives on, leans on in
this forgotten field.

Posted in Uncategorized | 1 Comment