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Hypatia-In-The-Woods | Retreat Center for Women in the Arts, Academe & Business


Retreat Center for Women in the Arts, Academe & Business
“Bring on the wine”

“Bring on the wine”

Carolyn Maddux

Carolyn Maddux





It’s almost as if a friend were moving
to the other side of the country
and you said of course you’d stay in touch …


Long-time Hypatia friend and board memberCarolyn Maddux has finished (yesss!) her most recent book project, Care: A Hospital for Mason County.  After sending the manuscript off to the printer her poet’s voice came forward expressing her emotions —


On Finishing a Book 

It’s almost as if a friend were moving
to the other side of the country
and you said of course you’d stay in  touch
but knew the phone calls would dwindle
from every week to every month and then
it would be cards at Christmas
or as if the doctor told you
that you  wouldn’t die of what you have
but you must change your lifestyle,
give up how you’ve eaten, forget the wine,
learn to like vegetables, go walking every day:
How will you fill those hours —
after you  get rid of the piles of rough drafts,
the muddle of notes you wrote,
the photographs and newspaper articles
you need to file,  the housecleaning
you haven’t done for months,
the letters that you owe
including those to friends who moved away
to the other side of the country
and you didn’t send out Christmas cards
last year?  Bring on the wine.

– Carolyn Maddux, 2013


The book is being published by Mason General Hospital & Community of Clinics, scheduled for released in mid-May and will, so far as we know, be available at Sage Books, the Mason County Historical Society and the gift bar at MGH.

From the back cover: The First People of South Puget Sound relied on what they found in nature, and on spirits, for healing. The pioneers who came to the area had folk remedies, hope and compassion; the first doctors, a little more formal training, a few instruments, and a concern for the health and well-being of others. The people at the helms of the logging and lumber companies cared enough to establish a hospital; the people of Mason County, when a new facility was needed, cared enough to form a hospital district and tax themselves to build it. As innovation followed innovation, as restructuring and reorganization came along, what continued was always care for the health and well-being of the community. This is the story of Mason County’s hospital and healthcare, and the men and women who have made it what it is today.

Care: A Hospital for Mason County - Mid-May 2013

Care: A Hospital for Mason County – Mid-May 2013

Job well done, Carolyn, and congrats on completing it!

Hypatia Friends Present Neglected Olympia History

Hypatia Friends Present Neglected Olympia History

The Café intermezzo, Rita Mae Brown at Evergreen as the Vietnam War ended, Lily Tomlin in Olympia for the 1984 Olympics Women’s Marathon Trials, the 1976 Women’s Music Festival in Olympia produced by Tides of Change, The Janes of All Trades, and much more … local history to revel in!


Highlights of Olympia's Lesbian Gay history

Highlights of Olympia’s Lesbian Gay history

Elspeth and I were in Olympia a couple of days ago for the first SAGE Salon, a presentation by Llyn De Danaan and Carol McKinley, two great, long-time friends and supporters of Hypatia-in-the-Woods. (more…)

Musicians are more than welcome at Holly House

Musicians are more than welcome at Holly House

So, have you heard of Radioqualia? Fever Ray? Pussy Riot? These are the artists who have caught my attention lately. Thought I’d share them with you.

Radioqualia describe themselves as “radio artists” – “an art collaboration by New Zealanders, Adam Hyde and Honor Harger, founded in 1998 in Australia … [they] create broadcasts, installations, performances and online artworks. [Give a listen to one example here.] Their principal interest is how broadcasting technologies can be used to create new artistic forms, and how sound art can be used to illuminate abstract ideas” (more on Wikipedia).

The piece I happened upon is “Radio Astronomy,” which was awarded a UNESCO Digital Art Prize in 2004. “Radio Astronomy” is a collaboration between Radioqualia and radio telescopes around the world.  This project, that is both art and science, broadcasts audio from the cosmos.  I found them in the Huffington Post’s TED Talks “Tuning Into the Universe.”   If you want to listen, follow the links through the TED Talks post; the ones on the Radioqualia site seem not to be working, at least this morning.


Looking forward, looking back —  Timberland

Looking forward, looking back — Timberland

As applications for residencies in Holly House for 2013 come in, we begin conversations with these women about sharing their work with our local community. Hypatia is pleased to partner again with the Shelton Timberland Regional Library which hosts readings, workshops, and performances by our residents. We don’t know yet what all the second year of the program might hold — basketry, oil painting, and memoir writing are being planned thus far — but I want to take a moment in this blog to thank again the residents of 2012 who made our first year’s partnership with the library so much fun.  Here’s a recap of the last season; we’ll post news of upcoming events as details are worked out. Hope to see you at the Library!

Photo of Ruby Murray reading from her latest book.

Ruby Murray reading from her work.



Ruby Hansen Murray initiated the Timberland series (and yes, it was 2011, but December, so almost 2012) with an afternoon discussion of researching and telling family stories and reading from The Heart Stays People, the story of an Osage Indian girl who is captured and must find her way home in 1820’s Arkansas.  Since her reading the book received First Place in the Historical Novel category of the 2012 OWFI Annual Writing Content.  Congratulations and thank you for sharing, Ruby! Do I remember your saying you’ve finished it?


As Days Get Longer …

As Days Get Longer …

Maggie Chula (margaretchula.com) who has been a Holly House resident twice, is well known for her haiku, but not exclusively.  Here is an evocative poem she wrote after walking the labyrinth one warm day last summer.

Maggie Chula

Maggie Chula reading at the Timberland Regional Library in Shelton



June. The air smells of rotting logs, wet and fecund
like beginnings and endings, with nothing between.

Buttercups have taken hold on the loamy path,
narrowing the trail of the labyrinth with their runners.

It’s hard to pull up buttercups, their cheerful innocence
and shiny petals that smell of sunshine.


Looking toward next year’s alum gathering …

Looking toward next year’s alum gathering …

As I drove the last of the Hypatia resident alums to leave this week’s gathering back to Olympia to catch the Amtrak for Seattle, we chatted about this year’s gathering and looked toward next. The sheltering cedars at Holly House had made even the almost-record high temperatures bearable. Lenore read Thursday evening at the Shelton Timberland Library from her screenplay American Ubuntu. We got just a taste of it — just enough that all of us are looking forward to seeing the entire story play out in movie form. Then Saturday was lunch with all the alums, and afterward they shared bits of their work: Ann’s poems, some of the backstory from Lenore’s screenplay, and stories related to the book Ruby is at the editing stage of — the book she worked on and read from while a resident herself. The gathering thus over, we look forward to having these and other alums return next August.

First Hypatia poetry broadside takes shape!

First Hypatia poetry broadside takes shape!

Hypatia-in-the-Woods Press

Fine tuning the Vandercook

Pat’s post about Hypatia’s 2nd broadside reminded me that I’d written about the first back in March, back before the new web was live. This is old news by now — we’ve sent out many of the first printing as membership premiums and, as Pat wrote, are well started on the second, but the beginning, the first turn of the press, was so much fun, I just have to share this.

March 11, 2012: The press clacked and sighed as Pat turned the handle, then was quiet while I picked each newly printed broadside from the cylinder. Crisp letters on fine, muted papers. Four of us were printing broadsides, the poem “Swallowing the World” by local poet Don Freas. Probably a hundred repetitions for the seventy-four good copies printed. The others were proofs: determining placement on the page, realigning the plate after we cleaned the bed, checking the inking.

The Next Poetry Broadside is Underway

The Next Poetry Broadside is Underway

       Several volunteers at Hypatia-in-the-Woods, myself included, are now involved in the production of the second poetry broadside. For this edition of the membership premium series, we decided to incorporate the effect known as suminagashi – treating the paper with this technique before printing Laurelyn Whitt’s poem “Well Without End.” on the prepared sheets. We were looking for a unique effect that would complement the language of the poem. Suminagashi takes on the appearance of flowing water.
Two pages of waka poems by Ōshikōchi Mitsune (859?-925?).

Two pages of waka poems by Ōshikōchi Mitsune (859?-925?). 20cm height, 32cm wide. Silver, Gold, Color, and ink on suminagashi paper. From a copy of the Sanjurokunin Kashu or “Thirty-Six Immortal Poets” kept in the Hongan-ji Temple, Kyoto. This multi-volume manuscript, which contains the oldest examples of marbled paper known today, was presented to the Emperor Shirakawa on his sixtieth birthday in 1118 C.E.

   “墨流し suminagashi, which means ‘floating ink’ in Japanese is the oldest method of decorative paper made with floating colors that is known today. Author Einen Miura states that the oldest reference to suminagashi papers are in the waka poems of Shigeharu, (825-880 CE), a son of the famed Heian era poet Narihira. Various claims have been made regarding the origins of suminagashi. Some think that it may have originally come from China. Others have proposed that it may have derived from an early form of ink divination. Another theory is that the process may have derived from a form of popular entertainment at the time, in which a freshly painted sumi painting was immersed into water, and the ink slowly dispersed from the paper and rose to the surface, forming curious designs. (more…)

Book Arts In Progress

Book Arts In Progress

ARTIST’S REPORT:  Pat Chupa, book artist (P. Chupa WordArts)

Preparing for an annual book arts show is always a mixture of excitement, stress, and gratifiying pleasure. If  one is trying to do the artistic work around the edges of a full-time ‘regular job’ – it becomes disproportionately fraught with the challenge of producing enough work that will be good enough to choose from – and also available for the time it must be displayed. Last year, I had pieces that I had done in earlier years, that were suitable and included in the First Annual Puget Sound Book Artists’ Exhibit. This year, I was a bit more anxious, as most of the pieces I created this year were larger commissioned pieces, that were shipped off to their owners, and therefore not available for the show. (more…)