Monday, May 22, 2006

Blessings of the South

I must tell you, there's something special about where I live--Mount Pleasant, SC. It's just over the bridge from Charleston, that mecca of history and architectural beauty like no other city I've ever seen. There's a creative pulse here with the Spoleto and Sweetgrass festivals just around the corner, basket ladies weaving, artists painting wildly to get ready, writers meeting at the local bookstore, sharing their innermost thoughts.

Here in South Carolina, we are fortunate to have a Poet Laureate like Marjory Wentworth who is writing a column in the Post & Courier, keeping poetry in front of us--giving it the importance it should have in our lives. There are authors all around us like Pat Conroy, Mary Alice Monroe, Anne Rivers Siddons, Richard Cote, Dorothea Benton Frank, Beth Webb Hart--just to name a few! I can walk into my local bookstore and meet people who work there and love books with a passion and want to help me find exactly the right one. I am surrounded by people who have found that thing--that one thing that they love, that they were put here on the earth to do. And they're doing it here in my town.

There is a love for everything creative here. There's a well of inspiration overflowing from our ocean and marsh grass and colorful, Southern people. As a writer, I am blessed to be in the company of the bowing oak trees and patrons of the arts who feed an ever-expanding culture of learning--and enjoying life to it's fullest. This place fills me and fuels me--because God, the true Creator, is here in my town. I can see Him and feel Him everywhere.

(photo by Michael Conner)