Adventures of an Arctic Chihuahua

Living Small at the Far Edge

Poetry & Poetry Therapy: Mentors, Friends, Monks and Other Angels

Poetry Therapy, Poetry


Moon – September 20, 2008, Kotzebue, Alaska

As you view the moon in this photograph, try to enlarge or “zoom” it, click on it twice, view it magnified. With each enlargement, you will see greater surface detail.  Such are humans.  Look closely at us. The more we know of and respect one another, the more breathtaking our detail becomes. Our surfaces are perfect and imperfect, brushed by the sun.

In the field of poetry therapy and among therapists who work using creative modalities, there is continual discourse as to the relationship between difficult times and artistic expression.  Which are the ebbs, which the flows? Are difficult times requirements of or barriers to art?  Does it matter?

From time-to-time we each, like the moon, dance with the stars or the brilliant auroras.  We may sit and flash our mercurial traits or meditate quietly in the morning sky.  We may endure experiences that leave memory and lasting impact, the craters of our surfaces if you will.  There are days we may appear to fade into dust.

Some may perceive us through their primitive notions as having ended forever when we are actually merely resting beyond the horizon.  Unseen, we ready ourselves to rise full again in greater brilliance. We wax and wane. We each breathe to the rhythm of the tides. We are every one, a single, joined, whole and cratered orb in continual change.

It is through the act of sharing these symbols, rhythms, explorations and stories, that we enhance healing, growth, well-being and community.  In poetic vision for example, we might begin to understand our craters as “pools of sky”, or the eclipse as a temporary shadow wearing a sun ruff.  Poems wrought during times of transition reflect not only where one has been, but also where one is in the “here and now” and ultimately where one is going. Each poem, or single line, is a movement caught and released, perhaps the light for someone else’s way.

The following pages are mercurial flashes, working-throughs, shadows and harvest moons from some of the human beings luminaries I am fortunate to have encountered along my journey.  I call them mentors, friends, monks, and angels. It matters not what they are called. They are complete and perfect as is. Each line they write is a blessing, an exploration into the human and universal heart.


If your would like to know more about Poetry Therapy, check out the National Association for Poetry Therapy at


Jennifer and Gidget (the small but large hearted), Arctic Chihuahua

Adventures of an Arctic Chihuahua : Living Small at the Far Edge by Jennifer J. Swanberg is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommerciall-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License. All poetry and prose posted herein remain solely the intellectual property of the authors credited.

More About Jennifer:

Licensed Professional Counselor, Alaska
Licensed Clinical Professional Counselor, Idaho
Approved Counselor Supervisor, Alaska and Idaho
National Certified Counselor
Master Addiction Counselor



  Deana Seaman wrote @

You have described beautifully the healing effect of poetry! I have been writing poetry for a few years now and truly believe it has helped heal many wounds. Without it I would not be who I am today. A person who can find love and peace and goodness in this broken world. Thank you for the work you do and I wish you much success!

  Jennifer wrote @

Why thank you for saying so. Would you consider allowing me to post some of your poetry? : D

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