Gardening to celebrate the fruition
By Cinda Thompson, Guest Writer
Editors note: This weeks Writers Garret is pleased to feature a first-person literary autobiography with Cinda Thompson, an Illinois writer from Peoria. A new feature of this column will be real Illinois writers with a connection to this state. Look for it sporadically here at the Writers Garret.
Thompson has received awards for her work and grants from the Lannan Foundation, Writers Live at the Library/Lila Wallace Readers Digest Fund, Writers Digest, the Illinois Arts Council/PAAC and others. A family history rich in coal-mining and agriculture informs her work, as does an interest in the lives of women, the power of family relationships, and the spiritual journey of each individual. A collection of her own work, At The Core, is now available.
If I had to make a statement concerning my work, Id say I believe in keeping it simple. I like it when someone says, I could have written that. Makes me think Ive hit something. Right now, I feel at home living in the Midwest. I was born in southern Illinois (Marion, Bloody Williamson), grandchild to coal miners and politicians. I suppose I feel that, indeed, what plays here plays everywhere. Certain things ring true.
I now live and work in Peoria. I have received degrees from both Southern Illinois University and the University of Arizona. Still at times, a teacher and oral historian, I am now employed as a photo editor in a national textbook publishing company.
The poem Planting was recently included in the PBS special Grow Old Along With Me (Leonardos Children/Maryland Public Broadcasting) featuring Richard Kiley and Julie Harris. The poem was also included in the anthology entitled When I Am An Old Woman, I Shall Wear Purple, by Papier Mache Press, 1987.
Old people work
Side by side
She wears a hat
The old man boasts
No hair at all
And he kneels
And she nods while
To the seed
She ardently covers
Row by row
They rise and bend
Over their garden
Sunflowers will bloom