Art & Letters

You are currently browsing articles tagged Art & Letters.

Marilyn and Jules had met about eight years ago at a rooftop margarita tasting. Their mutual friend Jill had originally arranged the tasting in hopes of setting Julies up with her new co-worker, Nina. Nina had been emboldened at the prospect of a new romance and a brand new box of hair dye she’d bought on impulse earlier that day. She applied her “Golden Gaia” while flipping through a magazine, dozing off for not the recommended thirty-five minutes, but forty five. Unfortunately for Nina, Jules had little interest in women who found hair-dye to be a practical expense and, upon being introduced to her, looked no further than her brutally white-blond strands before deeming her entirely un-dateable.

Disappointed early in the night, Jules took to the tasting table. As she re-salted her third rim she bumped hands with Marilyn who, set against the balmy sunset, a few gray hairs proudly crowning her head, cheeks glowing pink (Marilyn was salting her fourth), struck her as a figurehead of raw and unbridled feminine beauty.

Marilyn and Jules spent the night inseparable. Jules, who was a chatty drunk, did most of the talking, gesturing passionately about those who do yoga just because it’s trendy (Nina) versus those who truly connect with the spiritual practice (Jules). Marilyn listened little but found her gesturing intoxicating, often becoming distracted by the striking appearance of Joann’s sun-bleached hair, eyebrows and eyelashes against her golden colored skin. This especially attracted Marylin as it kept reminding her to think about really, seriously, finally trying out that box of blond hair dye nearing its expiration date in the back of her medicine cabinet. (This box, in addition to Marylin’s newly purchased yogaerobics DVDs, were swiftly discarded after that night of Jules’ many fervent rants about women today).

Seven months after Jules met Marilyn at the rooftop tasting, she slipped a copy of her key underneath Marilyn’s slice of toast one morning, asking her to move into her one bedroom.

Not quite two years after that, Marilyn and Jules were married in a tasteful yet practical commitment ceremony, (no white involved), before twenty of their closest friends and family.

Life was beyond ideal for the two and almost daily people would remark at how lucky they were to have found each other. For, not only were Marilyn and Jules an unbelievable match…

…Marilyn and Jules were also mummies.

Art & Letters is a collaboration:

It’s a switcheroo!

Story by Maren Jensen

Drawing by Colleen Sohn


Tags: ,


Zing and fling

Muffle and kerfuffle

words that rhyme.

The repetition

dulling bright intellects

in leaden precious pockets.

This redundancy

this mindless work

a steady stream of liquid pink on crisp paper

scallop after scallop

sharp scissors

and glue:


flaxen sunlight on pale winter skin

before an eager tearing of envelopes

a melting of veins


spirits rising over hill and dale

and vast landscapes,

miles and feet between.

Strangers, friends, and lovers uniting

in a gleeful tangle

of mirth

made by one

but for us all.

Art & Letters is a collaboration:

Art by Maren Jensen

Interpreted by Colleen Sohn

Tags: ,

The Fine Print

You stop in your tracks,

Thinking you know me.

I do not have another half.

No soul mirrors mine.

I have scratched and clawed and bitten for this tenuous grasp.

I cannot let it go.

Your confidence.

Your smile.

The way laughter spills easily from your mouth.

How did you arrive at that place?

No border

Nor barrier

Pulpy heart beating for all to see.

If I remove this thin veil,

My nakedness will show

And perhaps that I am a fool

And lived my days


For the me I’ve only just discovered in you.


Art & Letters is a collaboration:

Water color by Maren Jensen

Interpreted by Colleen Sohn


Tags: , ,


The Worry Jar

 Fretting, on the verge of worry, she walks slowly to the library, really a glorified office, but possessing more books than anything, she feels justified in the label. There, on the highest shelf, it waits. The Worry Jar. A beautiful apothecary glass, it holds, quite literally, a lifetime of worries, or at least the significant, remembered ones, worthy of writing in her finest hand on a slip of paper.

The whole endeavor was her mother’s idea, a method to quell the anxious heart of an overly nervous child. “We’ll write whatever is worrying you down, put it in the jar, and that will be the end of it, okay?” Though it didn’t exactly work as promised, the hope it offered soothed her like a balm, which, like so much in life, was enough. As a result, the jar had never once been emptied, and moved, along with its owner, contents lovingly swaddled in a towel and carefully packed in a box, nearly a dozen times, even crossing several international borders.

They were positively crammed in, and she remembers now, after writing her last worry (what was it?) and masterfully packing it into the jar, that there was not a millimeter more space. What to do? She carefully takes the jar from its high perch, holds it before her eyes and peers in, wondering what harm there could be in letting just one go. A simple one, from the bottom, and childhood? Yes, she thinks, she could definitely step on a crack and not break her mother’s back. How silly she had been!

She carefully sets the jar down and begins to unscrew the lid. As she does, something unexpected happens, for it begins to vibrate, gently, at first, but then with something nearer to violence. She tightens her grip and brings the jar back to eye level, realizing the worries are moving, spinning, gyrating, like bees? Yes, bees!

Though she doesn’t understand the alchemy, she most certainly understands the desire for freedom, so she hurriedly sets the jar on the desk and turns the lid. She closes her eyes, and the bees swarm, humming and fanning her like a queen before disappearing into the ether.

In the quiet of their absence, she opens her eyes, heart aflutter, and glances about the room. Had it really happened? The jar lay on its side, empty, save a glossy slick of honey and a single slip of paper, written in her mother’s hand, that reads: Don’t worry, sweetheart. I love you.

Art & Letters is a collaboration:

Story written by Colleen Sohn

Artistically interpreted by Maren Jensen



The Borderland

Two halves of every whole, an old idea born every day.

What of that space between?

That lacuna, that absence, that hollow?

In perception, in time, in being?

Two souls, ideas, enemies

Hurtling, spinning, in the infinite space

Between what is and what will be.

Of anticipation, of life, of ultimate pleasure, and pain.

Before change, death, rebirth.

The space between notes, letters, lovers, breath.

I want to go there.

Dwell in the miracle.

Before creation,

Before all is discovered, known, and destroyed.

The place of the gods,

Not mine.

Art & Letters is a collaboration:

The gods Dionysus, Eros, & Thanatos drawn by Maren Jensen

Interpreted by Colleen Sohn

Tags: , ,

« Older entries