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Ren Powell - Mad Orphan Lit.

Handbound Books by Ren Powell

Photo: Ren Powell

I promised myself a publication date of April 1, 2021. And I managed to pull it off … after what seems like so many years of just thinking about it.

This is the first and only time I will duplicate much of the content of my monthly newsletter in my blog posts. But since I have a whopping dozen on my list so far… I’m spreading the news thick as peanut butter today because I am proud, excited, and a little bit desperate to sell a few books despite my lack of marketing skills:


Breaking down unnecessary boundaries as we age

I don’t walk in a week what I would run on a single morning before 7 am a year ago. I don’t recognize myself. Yoga is difficult and, although I still have my balance, I have lost flexibility. But I am healthy, and maybe it is okay not to recognize myself on occasion. Maybe that’s a sign of clarity and plasticity. Things change and I can choose what I want to take up again, and what I can walk away from.

Run toward again.

We’re back to digital school for a few days…

On Anger and Equilibrium

It’s evening, and I have stumbled so far out of the groove, I seem to be floating through the day. And once again there are things I cannot write here. Things that push most other thoughts into the deep pockets of my mind. I managed to make dinner. To write an email. But honestly, I cannot account for the day.

Things will fall back to earth again, settle somehow. And we will go on. At least I am sure of that now. The chaos — the order — as though a god is shaking dice in…

On figuring things out while the years go

During my 54th year, I think I figured a few things out. Not everything mind you. Lord, what would I do with myself were that to happen? How dull slow mornings would be.

We crash and burn, and rise again shinier. I’m feeling shiny. At least from a certain angle. I am putting both feet on the ground and letting my full weight fall on them. Eggshells be damned. …

On Mortality, Empathy and Cooperation

Photo: Ren Powell

Still thinking about Earth Day.

I read an interesting blog post — and an interesting comment there about how humans cooperating with one another is the key to the success of our species.

I’ve been thinking. What is the measure of success here? That we’ve overpopulated the earth? Overwhelmed other species? Poisoned our own homes? Occasionally wiped out huge swathes of our fellow humans in the name of “good”?

And what is the time frame here? Will we be as successful as the horseshoe crab? The jellyfish? It longevity a criteria? Is it to literally…

Reconsidering a Religious Upbringing

Photo: Ren Powell

The house is (mostly) clean now. I’ve moved acrylic paints and sewing frames upstairs to the new studio/”cabin” — as E. calls it. He’s nestled in now on my old purple couch watching war movies. It is odd to have the house to ourselves again. It’s not that we needed the space, but it does make it easier for us to be more conscious about how we use our time. No more television in the bedroom. Sleep hygiene is a thing. A thing I am not very good at observing.

It’s evening again — upside-down day…

Ren Powell - Mad Orphan Lit.

Ren is a traditionally published poet who also makes hand-bound mixed media collections and broadsides. ✎ Ren’s website is

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