Poetry Friday is here!

“What is Poetry Friday?” you ask … please visit Renee LaTulippe for her thoughtful explanation. Connect using Mr. Linky at the bottom of this post.

One wonderful aspect of Poetry Friday is that you can write about virtually anything. Yet sometimes, finding inspiration can be a challenge, at least for me.

Image source: Canva

A few weeks ago, I attended the last CT Forum of the season. The topic was “Chefs.” The panelists included: Priya Krishna (NY Times Columnist and Cookbook Author), Marcus Samuelsson (Renowned Chef, Restauranteur, TV Personality), and Gail Simmons (Top Chef Judge, Culinary Expert, Cookbook Author).  Sam Sifton (NY Times Editor and Writer, Cookbook Author) moderated the discussion.

Image source: The Connecticut Forum - The Connecticut Forum (ctforum.org)

To me, the most interesting part of the discussion centered around inspiration. An audience member asked the panelists where they find inspiration for their culinary creativity. Marcus Samuelsson answered that he collects colors and stories. “The clubs, the artistry, and the weirdness” of his Chelsea neighborhood in NY City inspire him. The moment that he finds a food “cravable” (when the first bite is so delicious that he wants to eat more) inspires him to experiment with that flavor profile.

Other panelists talked about the world as inspiration.  Being out in the world, traveling, visiting new places, talking to a stranger at a wedding, and experiencing life were all sources of inspiration for their cooking. The panelists agreed that venturing out of their homes and diving into a new environment invigorated their creativity.

This sentiment rang true to me. Some poets find inspiration in the seemingly ordinary, perhaps Valerie Worth would be a worthy (tee hee) example. That works for me on occasion but venturing out in the world feels necessary. Pairing new experiences with my life-history library sometimes inspires a fresh idea.

I also left the forum thinking that great artwork, whether it be writing, painting, dance, theater, sculpting, music, or cooking, is at its core – storytelling. And storytelling is about human connection and understanding.

And that thought brought a wave of gratitude for the community of storytellers who are Poetry Friday.  Thank you for bravely sharing your stories, your cultures, your observations, and your feelings and reaching out for human connection.


Please connect here!

If you have time to comment, I would love to hear about a source of your inspiration!


  • Wow, love that you attended that chefs forum! Fascinating to hear about their sources of inspiration. I agree with you -- at its core, all art is storytelling. I am inspired by visual art, music, and food, of course -- everyone has to eat, food connects us all, helps creates memories, teaches us about other cultures. Thanks for hosting this week, Tracey. I always enjoy your blog posts! :) 
    • Jama, I love seeing what you bake up on your blog! It always looks so tasty and ties in masterfully with your theme of the week!
  • Tracey, this is gold! I have long connected my food world to my writing world. There are so many parallels to be found, particularly the common ground of storytelling.  I find myself identifying strongly with the notion of world as inspiration as mentioned by presenters. Noticing small seemingly insignificant detail also resonates strongly. What a stimulating experience this must have been. I find myself most envious. Thank you sharing these important messages.
    • Alan, agreed! Food is definitely common ground, and great insights come from noticing seemingly insignificant details. Great observations.
  • Hello, Tracey, thank you for hosting today! These are such lovely thoughts about the common thread between all the arts is  storytelling, and that about "human connection and understanding." Beautiful! 
  • I love cooking (I've even worked in the food industry), so I can truly appreciate this post! Thanks for sharing, and for hosting this week!
  • Thank you for hosting and for a very inspiring post, Tracey. I love thinking about cooking as storytelling. Inspiration is sometimes a challenge for me. When that happens, I often turn to others' poetry for a word or thought that might spark an idea. That, and taking Mary Oliver's advice to pay attention to the world.
  • Love your observation about art and storytelling and it's connection with humans–it's an ever evolving and intriguing web! Thanks for sharing the tastey and inspirational thoughts from the forum you attended, and for hosting!
  • Tracey, you are such a great candidate for 'The Artist's Way' by Julia Cameron. She really captures the practice of finding inspiration and being a creative person. I read through the book with several Poetry Friday friends during the pandemic. It's wonderful! I highly recommend it. But, your post today inspires me! Oh, those photos! And, finding food inspirations? Yes, please!
    • Thank you, Linda! I read The Artist's Way last year, based upon a recommendation from Irene Latham and Charles Waters! I am still doing morning pages. You are right, a refresher might be helpful!
  • I love hearing about where people find their inspiration. I especially think that "cravable" bit could be a metaphor for writing too! I get my inspiration from being in nature. The past 2 weeks have been so busy that I haven't been outside as much as I'd like. My book fair ends today, so I'm really, really hoping to refill the well this weekend with some outside time. Thank you for hosting!!! 
  • HiTracey & Thanks for hosting. I hope it's a delicious weekend in words & food. I devoured the chefs' thoughts. The closest elbow-to-elbow time I've enjoyed with a chef, was when I worked in a sailing camp's kitchen. You are inspiring me to write a food poem - appreciations.
  • You've inspired me to think about inspiration. I think the habit of sitting down each day with a notebook page staring at you can either stall or start. I find inspiration from fellow poets here on Poetry Friday each week. I listen to Poetry Unbound and almost always find the poems inspiring. I subscribe to too many blogs and Poems of the Day. Sometimes they pile up in my inbox, and I just have to delete them. But when I take the time to read, I usually find something to draw from. Thanks for hosting. 

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