Saturday, May 12, 2012

The Sunday Challenge ~ Featuring Peggy Goetz

It is my pleasure to introduce Peggy Goetz, a writer-photographer who shares her words and pictures on her blog, On a Day Like Today.  Peggy and her husband of 43 years live in an ordinary suburban neighborhood in Irvine, California. Their two grown children and one grandchild live in the central coast and northern parts of the state. Peggy loved her career as a newspaper writer in Orange County, south of Los Angeles, California, and got to write every kind of story, but mostly feature stories, and she sometimes took photos for her stories. A dabbler with many interests, Peggy enjoys writing, travel, oil painting, gardening and reading a wide range of books.

Portrait of the Artist
Peggy spent two months in 2006, volunteering for the Africa Project, at Nkandla, KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa, which sought to give support to children orphaned by AIDS.  Read more about her experiences there on her blog, Africa Unfinished.  She shares with us a poem she wrote recently, inspired by the photograph of three children taken at the Children's Centre at Nkandla.

© Peggy Goetz

Girl in the Orphanage
                                  by Peggy Goetz

She poses as asked
over plate of food,
her dark skin smooth
innocent, lips and
cheeks full, not gaunt
from hunger, no
shadow of illness.

But her eyes dark
like blackest coffee
piece the guest with
distrust. Will you really
help me, is there really
a future when so many
of our parents have died
that families can't care
for kids like us.

I'm 10. When my mother
died my father was already
gone. I had to cook for my
little sister and brother,
find food, get water,
hide them at night
from drunken men and
hungry animals.

Now I'm here at the orphanage
and I can go to school,
but I don't trust the future.


Since it is Mother's Day, we have put together a selection of pictures of remarkable women, whom Peggy has photographed on her travels, in the hope they will inspire you to write about the strength of women and/or the theme of motherhood.

© Peggy Goetz: Chinese Dancer

I have long loved taking photos of faces and of beautiful and interesting places. My family is usually embarrassed that I take too many photos when we go places. Taking photos gives me a more focused way of looking at the world as I go through my days and see different scenes and places. This way of viewing the world also gives me inspiration for poetry.

© Peggy Goetz: Village Midwife, Mountains of Honduras

One thing newspaper writing taught me was that one can write about almost any topic and almost everyone has a story. I apply this to poetry as well and enjoy writing to prompts of all kinds and seeing where they take me.

© Peggy Goetz: a young woman from Nkandla South Africa

I started writing poetry about 15 years ago when I joined an online writing group. After discovering the joy of form-free poetry, I dove in and have been swimming happily ever since. Joined the world of cyber poetry a few years ago at the urging of writing friends and am still growing and discovering in this area.

© Peggy Goetz: Three Women and Baby, Yi Village ,China

Peggy has generously offered these beautiful photos for our poetic inspiration.  If you add an image to your post, please acknowledge the name of the artist.

© Peggy Goetz: Three Mayan Women, Guatemala

The Sunday Challenge is posted on Saturday at noon CST to allow extra time for the creative process, so please do not link up old work which kind of fits the image. Members will only respond to poetry written specifically for this prompt: this is in the spirit of our Real Toads project to create opportunities for poets to be newly inspired. Management reserves the right to remove unrelated links.


Mary said...

Mine's up! Beautiful photos, Peggy. You have a gift for capturing faces of people.

Marian said...

i want to know if peggy and kerry know each other in real life??!

Kerry O'Connor said...

No we don't but Nkandla is within 200 kilometres of where I live, though I have never been there.

Sherry Blue Sky said...

SO HAPPY to see Peggy's work featured here - I would so love to have traveled to the places you have seen, Peggy......your photos take me there. GREAT prompt this week. Yippee. Diving in!

Sherry Blue Sky said...

Perfect for Mother's Day, as it turns out.....

Shawna said...

My favorite is the shot of the midwife; I also love the one just below.

Judy Roney said...

What an amazing poet and photographer Peggy Goetz is. She is an inspiration! I love this article and the photos she has shared here. What a talented woman and wonderful friend.

Hannah said...

I liked the midwife, too!! What amazing pictures and such a nice treat to get to see Peggy's work and blogs! Happy Mother's Day to all of the mothers! :)

Kateri said...

I am awed by the beauty of these women.

Mary B. Mansfield said...

Beautiful photos! I'm just astounded at the caliber of photos we see on these weekend challenges. I'm lucky if there is anything recognizable in my own pics! Thanks so much to all who share their talents with us!

Grace said...

I combined this with Mag prompt but the chinese lady picture spoke to me ~

Thanks so much Peggy for sharing your pictures ~

Mystic_Mom said...

Peggy, I was inspired by your words and images and although I did not include images with my poetry today, it is inspired by your great photos. Keep taking them you have a real gift.

Anonymous said...

Wonderful wonderful photos. I am posting an older poem today in honor of motherhood. I am a bit taken up with my own mother nearly 90 and just arrived this weekend for a month, after my all day flight back and forth to get it to be able to come up with something new! Also thinking today about the mothers taken too soon - dear friends lost. k.

Ella said...

Stunning photos! It is hard to pick just one~
I hope everyone had a Happy Mother's Day~

Liz Rice-Sosne said...

This was such a pleasure. The richness of your photos and words are like a balm or a salve to the heart. Thank you so much! Happy mother's day to all.

shawnacy said...

Gorgeous photos. They tell stories that i want to know.
Peggy, we live extremely close... i wonder if you'd be interested in getting together?

Helen said...

This is an incredible treat ~ getting to know Peggy better! What a talented lady.

Unknown said...

Such amazing images, Peggy. This was a treat for me!