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The first day

No sleep. My body (or my mind) doesn’t need a rest. It goes on and on. I tried with watching Netflix and it almost worked. But as soon as I closed my eyes, finally falling asleep, my brain was busy again and I was fully awake.

The sun was up, bright outside so I got up. Coffee on the terrace, looking at the water. Beautiful! Everything was nicer at the beginning of a new day.

The beach was so tempting and there was no real reason to resist. I changed and went out through the tiny door and white stairs, crossed the road, got on a narrow pathway that went to another flight of stairs carved into red, volcanic rock down to the beach. And the sea was waiting. Waves crashing on the rocks, sun coming out, still young. I could not smell the salt, but I knew it was there. I took of my shoes and walked barefoot on the the sand and water, timing my pace with waves.

I took photos of the horizon and red and black rocks. I took videos of that power coming in and bursting. I took it in slow-motion to feel the passage of time, wavers rolling in and pulling back. Watching them made me almost sea-sick and I remembered that vacation in Kavala when we kept jumping into the waves, over and over again, playing with danger of being pulled into, down, back to the vast of the sea. We were kids. We didn’t know the split second between being alive and beaming with joy, and being swallowed by a hungry mouth of the Aegean Sea. I lost my footing at some point and I remember that horrifying feeling of primordial fear. When I managed to come up, I stayed closer to the beach, in shallow waters. At the end of the day, when I went to bed, I was still riding the waves up and down, they kept coming at me. For the first time I experienced the sea-sickness, ready to throw up.

Trauma: The Road back

Two writing workshops that can help you build back your self-confidence and give you a positive way of dealing with some of life’s hardest situations. The opportunity to submit your written piece to a potential anthology. 

While the workshops build on each other, they can also be taken individually. $80 for two workshops, $45 for individual workshops.
To register please email Bonnie Nish at: blnish_pandoras@yahoo.ca 
Please pay at:  https://www.pandorascollective.com/donate.html 

April 30th online 10:30- 12:30 pm 
Moon Flower: Blooming in the Dark  

Trauma is anything that happens to us, physically or psychically, that is beyond our capacity to cope given our personal circumstances and development. Trauma devastates individuals and those who support them (Dr. Bonnie Nish, 2020). 

How does one navigate through the complex journey of reconnecting with self after trauma? Is it possible to find meaning for oneself in the wake of trauma and to reengage with life in a productive way? Recovering is different for each individual. Using writing for healing is a powerful tool which allows the writer to access previous experiences, understanding and information. 

Join us in this 90-minute online writing workshop and allow your imagination to help you open spaces, peel back layers and let go of trauma. Writing can help you build back your self-confidence and give you a positive way of dealing with some of life’s hardest situations. We invite you to bring your coffee and join a community, where coming together helps us feel connected and promotes further healing. Write, share and then eat your words. Seeing your words is just as important as sharing them. We will invite you to send us a line from what you write and we will create a unique edible flower with your words on it. You are welcome to eat them (ink is edible as well), display it, or share the words with the world.  

Please note that one of the purposes of this workshop is to generate writing that could possibly be included in a new anthology of personal stories surrounding trauma.  

Saturday, June 6th, 2022 online 10:30- 12:30 
Moon Flower: Back to Wholeness

Uncover some hidden pieces of your story as you pull together a collage of art and words to help you come back from events which may have had you stuck for years. Time to break molds and piece a new creation together. Surprises? Absolutely. Epiphany? Hopefully. Connections? Definitely. No experience necessary.  We will invite you to send us a line from what you write and we will create a unique edible flower with your words on it. You are welcome to eat them (ink is edible as well), display it, or share the words with the world.  

Facilitating workshops with:
Dr. Bonnie Nish is Executive Director of Word Vancouver, Western Canada’s largest free literacy arts festival. Bonnie’s first book of poetry ‘Love and Bones’ was released by Karma Press in 2013. Bonnie has a Masters in Arts Education from Simon Fraser University and a PhD in Language and Literacy Education from the University of British Columbia where she currently teaches. Her next book “Concussion and Mild TBI: Not Just Another Headline” an anthology of concussion related stories, was published by Lash and Associates in 2016. Bonnie is an Expressive Arts Therapist with a Certificate of Advanced Graduate Studies from the Vancouver Expressive Arts Therapy School who has worked extensively with youth and adults in high-risk situations. She has conducted writing and expressive arts workshops for over 20 years across North America. Her latest poetry book, Cantata in Two Voices, co-written with Jude Neal was released by Ekstasis Editions in 2018. Bonnie lives in Vancouver British Columbia, Canada. Find out more about her at https://bonnienish.com 


CALL FOR CONTRIBUTIONS TO A TRANSMEDIAL PROJECT: Trauma, the road back:

Your stories in augmented reality:Trauma is anything that happens to us, physically or psychically, that is beyond our capacity to cope given our personal circumstances and development. Trauma devastates individuals and those who support them. Dr. Bonnie Nish (2020)As our journey though trauma and challenging times continues to unfold, we discover that it is full of surprises, grief, loss, joy and wonder as well. It is full of grace and resiliency. “. It is through grace, the ability to hold my head high and move with elegance no matter what, that I find I am able to bear the magnitude of these changes (Nish, 2020).”We are collecting short narratives or poems depicting personal experiences of trauma and resiliency. These are important stories. How has the journey impacted your life and the lives of those close to you? We will be looking for a publisher with the aim of having the book published sometime in 2023/2024. Every story/poem may be accompanied by a short video turned into augmented reality experience. So, we will be asking for a 1-3 min recording. Please note that sending in your piece of writing is not a guarantee it will be included in the anthology. Only those selected for the collection will be contacted with more details about the video recording requirements.Please tell your story-in no more than 500 words.​Please send to blnish_pandoras@yahoo.ca– by July 25th 2022. – please put “Trauma, the road back” in the subject line.

Events, Readings, Workshops, Exhibitions and Installations 2022

September 2023

Exhibition in Outlet Gallery, Port Coquitlam

Thursday, October 26: Opening Reception from 6:00-8:00pm – details TBA

September 2022

Featured in Spotlight on the arts,

Arts Council of Surrey Magazine https://issuu.com/acsspotlight/docs/spot_0922_web

July 2022

CALL FOR CONTRIBUTIONS TO A TRANSMEDIAL PROJECT: Trauma, the road back: Your stories in augmented reality

Collaboration with Dr. Bonnie Nish: We are collecting short narratives or poems depicting personal experiences of trauma and resiliency. These are important stories. How has the journey impacted your life and the lives of those close to you? We will be looking for a publisher with the aim of having the book published sometime in 2023/2024. Every story/poem may be accompanied by a short video turned into augmented reality experience.

Please note that sending in your piece of writing is not a guarantee it will be included in the anthology. Only those selected for the collection will be contacted with more details about the video recording requirements. Please tell your story-in no more than 500 words.​ Please send to blnish_pandoras@yahoo.ca– by July 25th 2022. – please put “Trauma, the road back” in the subject line.

June 23, 2022, online 4-6pm (7-9pm EST)

Dragonfly Poetry reading

Reading at Annual Dragonfly Poetry Reading and Gallery Walk, a celebration of the publishing of the 2022 Dragonfly Arts Magazine. This free VIRTUAL event will feature local visual artists and poets’ work, offering reflections on life, love, trauma, justice, renewal, and hope. The evening provides a dynamic opportunity to experience the power of words and the vital role that the arts provide in promoting healing, awareness, and change. Registration.

June 6, 2022, online 10:30- 12:30 pm

Writing workshop, Trauma: The road back
Moon Flower: Back to Wholeness 

90-minute online writing workshop. Each participant will get a unique edible flower with his/her words on it. The opportunity to submit a written piece to a potential anthology. Read all the details at Trauma: The Road Back

April 30, 2022, online 10:30- 12:30 pm 

Writing Workshop, Trauma: The road back
Moon Flower: Blooming in the Dark

90-minute online writing workshop. Each participant will get a unique edible flower with his/her words on it. The opportunity to submit a written piece to a potential anthology. Read all the details at Trauma: The Road Back

January 2022

Cinematheque Film making Showcase


January 12-23
Using smartphones and free video editing software, each participant created their own original short film exploring questions and themes raised by the artworks at The Lind Prize 2021 exhibition.

The short films played continuously during the Gallery’s operating hours.

Participating artists included: Miki Aurora, Kaila Bhullar, Natasha Boskic, Sara Brinkac, Olga Campbell, Alexander Chang, Aurore Dupont-Sagorin, Noah Horn, Frances Hui, Alger Liang, Andy Liu, Sam Mason, Shannon Ruth Dionne Miller, Lyndsey Paramo, Jeremiah Reyes, Michellene Sigurdson, Carla Tooley, and Mimi Xia.

More photos...

https://thepolygon.ca/exhibition/cinematheque-filmmaking-showcase/

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Events, Readings, Workshops, Exhibitions and Installations 2021

November 2021

TEC Expo 2021

Augmented Reality demonstration, UBC

May 2021

NEWLYN PZ International Short Film Festival 2021

On the Margin of History” – in the category Documentary film

Pocket Lint

A new little literary magazine of short form poems, Pocket Lint and a short poem, Love

April 2021

Telephone project

TELEPHONE is just like the kids’ game. A message is whispered from one person to another and changes as it is passed.
We whisper a message from art form to art form.”

A response to Kellie Schofield’s painting

Hold the world

February 2021

REEL Poetry Film Festival

February 24, 2021: On the Margin of History – poetry film, presented by Mary McDonald, a multimedia artist at the REEL Poetry Film Festival, Texas, Houston

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Y as in Yugoslavia

For letter Y, we reached out to the countries that do not exist any more.

Tenen – a restaurant where Yugoslavia still exists

Date: July 2020

Address: 7569 Royal Oak Ave, Burnaby, BC

Website: http://www.tenenrestaurant.com/

Starter:
Traditional meze for two: Smoked pork loin, kulen, pork neck, katchkaval cheese, ushtipci, kaymak, urnebes
Served with rice and/or soup.

Main:
Karadjordjeva schnitzel: Pork loin schnitzel stuffed with kaymak cheese, breaded and fried, served with hashbrowns and coleslaw

Drink:
Vranac (red wine)

You

Yanked and yerked out of Yugoslavia.

Yearning for yummy yesterday,
for yellow yolky yarn of yeasty youth.
These years of yawning, yelling and yelping
like a yeoman to you,
like a yak with a yoke on its neck.

Yielding to yonder Y-chromosome
to be yin and yang,
Yes to Yesenin and the young years.

Yammering: you, you, you,
You, you, you, you, you
You, you, you, you, you
You, you, you, you, you
You, you, you, you, you…

Yet, all yesterday.

Events, Readings, Workshops, Exhibitions and Installations 2020

September 2020

Word Vancouver

September 24, 2020 – 9:30-10:30, Surviving War – Zoom virtual event
Host: In conversation with Leila Juma (Maison Rouge: Memories of a Childhood in War, Tradewind Books) Heige S. Boehm (Secrets in the Shadows, Ronsdale Press) and Michelle Barker (My Long List of Impossible Things, Annick Press).

August 2020

Telephone project

An international arts game: art response to an art, in my case a poetic response to a painting. The total number of contributors is artists from 493 cities in 73 countries. The whole project published on April 10, 2021. Facebook group available to join.

April 2020

Poetic Pairing with Fran Bourassa at Britannia Library

April 28, 2020 – 6:30-8:30, Gallery Room 1661 Napier Street, Vancouver, BC. Organized by Pandora’s Collective – postponed
Free

Poetry and Art

April 23, 2020 – Private reading
Free

Edible poetry flowers workshop

April 11, 2020 – 3:30-4:30 – postponed

February 2020

Featured poet at Twisted Poets

February 27, 2020 – 7:00 pm, Multimodal poetry reading. Hood 29, 4470 Main St, Vancouver

Showcasing AR at Twisted Poets
Demonstrating AR at Twisted Poets

Featured poet at Poetic Justice

February 23, 2020 – 3:00-5:00 pm, at the Heritage Grill, 447 Columbia Street, New Westminster

Reading at Poetic Justice

Taste of Love: Edible Poetry

Reding at Koko Monk

Reading at Koko Monk

February 7, 2020 at 7:00pm at at Koko Monk, 2883 West Broadway
Free
Edible flowers available at Koko Monk throughout the Hot Chocolate Festival, from January 22-February 14, 2020
edible flower

Featured Poets: Sita Carboni, Rob Taylor, Eva Waldauf, Robin Susanto, Amanda Wardrop, Leanne Boschman, Paul Stacey, Mary Duffy, Bonnie Nish, Kyle Hawke, and Natasha Boskic.

January 2020

Still/ed Here: A Story of Displacement – at CinePoetry Film Festival

January 24-26, 2020 Uprooted at Reel Cinepoetry Festival Houston – presented by Mary McDonald

BOOKS AND BISCOTTI: An evening with Michael Mirolla and Bonnie Nish

January 21, 2020 – 7:00pm. The Museum Hall.  Italian Cultural Centre, 3075 Slocan Street, Vancouver
Free

Italian Cultural Centre

Reading with Michael Mirolla, Anna Foschi and Bonnie Nish at the Italian Cultural Centre (Photo taken by D.Z.)

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