The most interesting and surprising work can arise when a writer responds to a prompt. When we read Michelle Suzanne Myers’ short piece, “Pence,” we were amazed by how many reactions we had in just a few paragraphs. Regardless of your politics, sometimes the juxtaposition of empathy and revulsion, curiosity and disgust, can make for the most thought-provoking work. We look forward to performing Michelle’s hilarious piece tomorrow at Play On Words: New Horizons.
Born in San Jose, whilst it was still the Valley of the Heart’s Delight, and once more a current proud resident, Michelle supports her meandering writing journey as a bilingual psychotherapist in private practice. She holds degrees from the University of San Francisco and Santa Clara University. After graduating with a sociology degree from USF, Michelle headed to Dallas, Texas to do legal aide work with refugees as a Jesuit Volunteer. She then escaped the U.S. to Sao Paulo, Brazil for four years where volunteering in support of women and girls. Michelle was fortunate enough to learn about social justice, human rights, and mysticism in her early spiritual formation, and she still has hope for the loving transformation of this world. Like her paternal grandfather, she loves birds and walking the hills. Unlike her grandfather, she loves salsa and Afro-Brazilian music, movement, and dance. Michelle credits the wise, wild women of her Friday morning writing group with giving her the courage to reveal her writing to the public.
Her piece “Communion on the Road” will be published in summer 2018 in Sanctuary, an anthology published by Darkhouse Books of Niles, California.
Michelle shared some of her thoughts with us in advance of tomorrow’s show.
What inspired you to participate in Play On Words?
My wonderful writing professor, poet Lita Kurth encouraged me to submit this piece. Also, I felt compelled to submit it as I believe we all must promote the idea that love indeed overcomes hatred.
Which writers or performers inspire you?
Barbara Kingsolver, Mary Oliver, theologian Dr. Kristin Heyer, Ph.D, and sociologist Dr. Laura Nichols, Ph.D, Eduardo Galeano, Joyce Rupp, Rainer Maria Rilke, Natalie Goldberg, Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, Teresa of Avila, Rumi, Hafiz, and Anne Lamott.
Name a book or performance that fundamentally affected you.
Women in Praise of the Sacred: 43 Centuries of Spiritual Poetry by Women, edited by Jane Hirshfield.
Want to see us perform “Pence” live? Join us tomorrow at Cafe Stritch!