The Poetics of Difference, Emergence, and Relationality
I remember myself at 19, unsure, without much direction, and struggling to arrive on time to the Composition II class I was taking at Tulsa Junior College. A miracle happened in that class, and through the compassion and clarity of sight and voice, my teacher, Mrs. Paula Sullivan, helped me come to see I could write, and more than that, she helped me begin to see myself. Because of her, I was no longer completely invisible to myself. There is a precise piece of thread tying this book to her voice in my life some 30 year ago, and for that I am immeasurably grateful.
Our living journeys are not solitary, but always-already interconnected, and in this way, I have been blessed by the voices and lives of many women—symbolic and actual mothers, sisters, daughters and fellow-pilgrims who have journeyed with me and encouraged my becoming and my work. For these women of strength, I am also exceedingly grateful: Dr. Carolyn Griffin, Genyce Griffin Goodchild, Catherine Rutledge, Elizabeth Griffin, Suzanna Smith, Bella Smith, EmmaJoy Smith, Deborah Erpelding, Julie Wright, Dr. Naomi Najita Poindexter, Dr. Cathy Bankston, Dr. Ellen McCoy, Dr. Allyson Watson, and Dr. Hongyu Wang. And similarly, I am exceedingly grateful for the faithful care, support, encouragement of my son, Levi Smith, ←xi | x→and the steady friendship of Eric Doss, Jesse Stallings, Daniel Sharples, and Dan Hahn, all men of compassion, resourcefulness, creativity, and kindness.
This book is also indebted to the scholarship...
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