Sunday, December 1, 2019

A Notice from Real Toads

Dearest Friends, Toads, Fellow Poets and all who have made it part of their blogging experience to drop in to visit us at The Imaginary Garden over the last decade,
It is my sad duty to inform you all that this blogsite will no longer be offering weekly challenges as of
January 1, 2020.

Original artist unknown
Public Domain

It is a cliche to say, 'All good things must come to an end' but I firmly believe that the concept of this communal poetry blog was a very good thing, and all the member 'Toads' have been instrumental in influencing the world of online blogging and, specifically, the writing of poetry since July 2011. That is a huge contribution! Unfortunately, the time has come for us to end our collaborative efforts, but not our creative writing, nor blogging in our personal capacities. We will all continue to support the other sites which offer most important and needful hubs for lovers of poetry to get together and support one another. Poetry is for life, and so is friendship.

Throughout our final month of December, we will be hosting our Monday and Friday prompts and challenges, and we will be going out on a high and celebratory note with our final Play It Again! prompt. Thereafter, The Imaginary Garden will become an archive of the creative genius of all its members, past and present. Thus all posts will be available and may be used for referencing. It is my greatest hope that this library of poetic prompts will continue to inspire writers long into the future.
Please do join us in celebrating this wonderful space and the awesome community of poets who have come such a long way together.

With much love and best regards from
The Head Toad


Magaly Guerrero said...

Kerry, as I've expressed before, I am very happy that the Imaginary Garden won't go away completely. Having this wonderful prompt well to drink from is great for the must. Still, the Garden will be missed.

Thank you so much for always working so hard, so that this community could be.

I plan to say goodbye to the active Garden by writing for every December prompt. I might post some on Instagram, but... I will contribute to them all.

Sanaa Rizvi said...

@Kerry; I remember the first time when I entered the Garden in 2015 and being overjoyed by the opportunity to write and share Poetry. I have learned so much here. It's unbelievable that time has flown so fast.

I will dearly miss it. But yes I too am glad that it will become an archive of the creative genius of all its members, past and present.

I am not one for saying goodbyes.. so instead I will say it has been a pleasure contributing here. Let's make it a December to remember!❤️

And thank YOU, Kerry for embracing me as a part of the community. I am what I am today because of you! ❤️ Love and hugs.

brudberg said...

Toads has been part of my life for such a long time now... I wasn't part when it started and it took me a while before I dared to enter the pond.

It will be sad to see it going, but I hope that many of its members will still continue to write, and the prompts are still there for all to read and use...

Sherry Blue Sky said...

Thank you, Kerry, for all the years of hard work behind the scenes, keeping this pond afloat. I, too, am glad it will remain as an archive of inspiration. It has been a privilege to write among the talented Toads in this garden. It grew me as a poet and a person, and I will always be grateful to have had these glorious years. We will still see each other in the 'sphere!

Marian said...

Gulp. I love you. All of you!

Rosemary Nissen-Wade said...

I've been dropping in since May 2006 – and wrote to the prompts 349 times (I just checked). 349 so far, that is; will hope to do a few more this December. So sad to see it come to a halt – and so very glad this wonderful resource will stay online. I certainly plan to use it for inspiration in the future. It's one of my favourite playgrounds. I enjoy smallish groups – and this one has always been of such high quality! I've done things poetically, thanks to Toads, that I would not have contemplated otherwise.

And yes, I have come to regard the poets I encountered here as friends. (And in many cases have made that official on facebook and/or Instagram.) It's nice, too, that there's a lot of crossover with Poets United.

All the very best to you all, and I hope and expect to still run into you around the traps!

Old Egg said...

I shall be very sorry to lose 'Toads' as I really enjoyed the interesting and testing prompts. I particularly liked the last prompt "The uncertainty of the poet". Although I only managed to contribute 161 pieces of work to the blogsite I always felt at home (despite breaking the rules now and then!). Hopefully we will all be reading each others work elsewhere.

Jim said...

I too am sorry to think that this trip of fun, joy, and toil will be over. Several years ago I suffered another loss when "One Single Impression" closed. A group of them are now Facebook friends, some are writing here. At my ripe age I am a Novice in poetry writing. Kerry and others as models have helped me considerably. Thank you all.

Jim said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Jim said...

Also, I myself have another thing going right now and likely will make no or very few posts in December.
TODAY I START MY SABATICAL TO END ON JANUARY 12, 2020 (love the ring of those numerals, my hope is to live that long). 
Also, I may sneak out a ditty or few when my Warden isn't looking. After that I hope to be seeing you all at another venue. 
Bye Bye, wish me a BON VOYAGE, 

Kerry O'Connor said...

My heartfelt gratitude goes to all who have taken the time to read and comment on this post.
@Magaly ~ I am very happy to know that you will continue to utilize the archives of Real Toads for your inspiration.
@Sanaa ~ We have come a long way together and grown as poets on this journey.
@Bjorn ~ I can't imagine you hesitating to dip your toe in the waters here. You have been a most influential poet and mentor.
@Sherry ~ You and I go back to before the beginning, friend. Without you I would never have found my place in the blogosphere.
@Marian ~ None of this would have been sustainable without you. Love.
@Rosemary~ That is a remarkable number of poems! I am so happy you felt inspired to write them.
@Old Egg ~ Many thanks for your contribution over the years.
@Jim ~ The Imaginary Garden would not have been the same without you!

De Jackson said...

This site was SUCH an important part of my first "branching out" as a poet. I can't thank you, Kerry, and ALL who have contributed over the years, enough for your amazing prompts, incredible encouragement, and brilliant, inspiring poetry. This past year has been a busy one, and I haven't been around as much as I would have liked to, but know that you've always been a "bookmark" on my homepage, and a flagship in my heart.

So much love, and "toad"ally hoping to dabble a bit this month,

Lori said...

While I haven't been here long, I have truly enjoyed the prompts and will miss them. Thank you for letting me swim in the pond.

tonispencer said...

It grieves me to think Toads will be putting out a No Fishing on the pond sign but so glad it will still be around to draw from. The time spent will always be remembered. All Good Things Must Come to an End. I wish all of you well and peace to you all. I truly enjoyed the quality of poems posted here. I have yet to see a site with better contributors. Take care of yourself. Thank you for letting me swim in the pond with the other Toads.

Kim M. Russell said...

My lip is quivering as I type this on my Kindle. I still can't believe the Garden is going to close its gates. I love you all.

Fireblossom said...

Having been here for all but the very beginning and the very end, I'm glad I got to be part of it for so long. Many many of my poems would never have been written if not for Toads.

Thanks, Kerry, for presiding over this watery land for all this time. Your efforts are much appreciated.

Shay said...

Both you and the Garden will be sorely missed. It has been a wonderful, insightful blog. I will miss the prompts,
and hope to see you all 'round the web.

colleen said...

I'm sorry I came late and missed a lot. I'm not big on prompts but I loved sharing my poems, reading the work of other poets and reading their insightful comments. This community has really given me incentive to write in the last couple of years and I will miss it. I just hope another such poetry community site crops up. Thank you to everyone who shared here!

Kerry O'Connor said...

Thank you friends! Your words mean a lot to me.

@ De ~ It has always been one of my disappointments that I could not convince you to be a toad, but I appreciate your contribution to dVerse and other sites. You were a big influence on my early writing, hard to match your way with words.

@Lori ~ Many thanks. Better late than never ;)

@toni ~ It has been a wonderful journey, but a tiring one with many responsibilities behind the scenes of weekly prompts. I really enjoyed my part in this site and regret not a single hour spent here.

@Kim ~ Tears are good, it shows the authenticity of feeling and the sincerity of your words. Thank you!

@Shay ~ Dear friend, you are forever and always a toad.. and such an integral part of this site that it was never the same without you. But I believe you left at the right time. The rest of us held on a bit longer, but now the time has come. Thanks for everything.

@Sarah ~ Your purple pen was always welcome here. Thank you for your contributions over the years.

@Colleen ~ I have always appreciated your support.

Margaret said...

I learned so much swimming in this pond! My family was shocked when I told them IGWRT's is ending, It is a part of me. I am so glad that we will still be reading and visiting each other through other venues. I thank each and every one of you for being my friend here and for Kerry, our Queen Toad, for presiding over us so magnificently.

Debi Swim said...

How can I even begin to thank Imaginary Garden and all the toads? I am so glad to have found you and have been privileged to post to such wonderful, thoughtful prompts. I have learned so much, been so encouraged, so touched, so enlightened of the bigger concerns than just my little portion of the globe. Thank you, Kerry. Thank you Toads. And thanks to all the friends I've made along the way. I won't ever forget you and I will be coming back to read and try out prompts I missed. Love to you all.

Kerry O'Connor said...

My family was a bit shocked too, Margaret. They have understood all too well what it has meant to me over the years.

And Debi, you are most welcome. I am so gratified to know that toads has meant so much to you. I am glad you found us too!

hedgewitch said...

Few people can look back on creating something as organic, creative and potent as this site, Kerry. I have always held you in the highest respect for what you have achieved here at the pond. Even though I have been absent so long, I still treasure the memories of so much that went on here, from challenges to friendships, to all the poems I would never have written without its existence,and all the many new forms I would never have known about without your research and presentations. Thank you for all the hard work, blood sweat and tears of the muse that you put into this site. It has been one of a kind.

Herotomost said...

Sad, happy to have had a place and for so many friends around the world. Thanks SA for a wonderful space and for putting up with me. To you, but sure I will see you around!!! Happy Holidays!

grapeling said...

Few can say they've changed the world (or even a small part of it) for the better - but you can, Kerry.

The Pond has been remarkable, and participating changed my life in profound ways.

My thanks and appreciation for all you've done. Thank you.


Ellecee said...

I, too, am so sorry the Pond is closing. For many years all of you have been an inspiration to me. You are responsible for my “coming out”
on the internet. . I wish you all the best, Kerry, with any future projects. You and all of your toads will be greatly missed.😢