#242–Besides books, I now have cards . . .

This is very exciting for me. I now have a line of three cards, all concerning the Coronavirus situation. I call it The Corona Series. They will be for sale at Backstreet Gallery in Florence when it reopens in mid-June and also on their new online store. And they will be available from me as of next week.

The cards that I have created, each have a poem or poems on them as well as a photo. I do not consider myself a poet, but I have written some poetry and had one published in two different publications. Another one I shared at a writer’s salon, during open mic. The ones on the cards are brand new and in the form of Haiku.

I love picturing the ostrich with a face mask or trying to put on Nitrile gloves.

It began when I heard a challenge on NPR radio to use Haiku to write about the Coronavirus situation. A poem immediately began to form in my mind. Before I knew it, I was at the computer and typing away. Then another one began to form. After some tweaking, I had two that I liked. A few days later, I awoke in the middle of the night with another one forming. So I got up; and before long, I had two more. A few days later, I came up with another one. This one was more serious and had three stanzas.

Haiku is very structured—five syllables, seven syllables, five syllables. When I taught first grade, we worked hard on listening for the syllables in words. One of the ways was through reading Haiku poems that we had created as a class. We would clap for each syllable. It made poetry fun; they loved it.

I’ve always enjoyed Haiku and some are truly profound. Mine are not, but they were fun to write and enjoyable to read. And this Corona Series is very timely.

After writing them, I shared with a few folks who thought they were quite good. So I decided to make cards of them. I asked one of the members of Backstreet Gallery, where many of the artists sell cards, how to go about it. I was so anxious to get them going, that I didn’t wait for her response.

Staying home means comfy clothes and hair that is getting too long with salons closed. But still comb it for ZOOM!

Last weekend, I spent one morning trying to print on just the right place on a piece of copy paper to print my poem. Then I tried to find a piece of clip art to put next to it, while using a Microsoft Word program. It took a couple of hours to get it the way I wanted. Then I wanted background color but couldn’t find any way to do it. Before I knew it, I hit the wrong key and the clip art disappeared. I gave up on creating my own cards from scratch.

Then I went online. One program on creating cards, had a bunch of templates to make specific cards. Not what I needed. Then I found Zazzle. I had used it once before to create a mug. At that time, I created one mug and ordered three. One for each of the three editors at Oregon Coast and Northwest Travel magazines. That was when I still worked there. We called ourselves “The Team Supreme” and that’s what I put on the mugs along with our names. We loved them.

So I found Zazzle’s section on cards. I chose the size that I wanted and selected horizontal or vertical. Then I was able to make a box for my poem or poems, another box for a photo, and then added a background. The first card took a while, since I was in learning mode. The second and third were much faster, much easier. I put everything on the front and left the inside blank. So these cards could be used for any purpose. They will come with envelopes. I ordered just short of 100 of each.

This poem turned out more serious and three times as long.

Then I did an online search for clear sleeves, since that is how most of the cards at Backstreet Gallery are sold. The second place I searched had what I wanted. So I ordered a size to fit the cards with a resealable flap.  

I really like the way they turned out. I enjoyed the creative process of both composing the poems and creating the cards. Letting those creative juices flow is very intoxicating. And doing something you’ve never done before while stretching your limits makes you feel really good. Like I said at the start of this post, this is very exciting for me!  

Maybe you, too, could write some Haiku!

Note: To order cards, just go to the menu bar and click on CARDS.  

About crossingsauthor

Judy Fleagle spent 22 years teaching 1st and 2nd grades and 21 years as editor/staff writer with Oregon Coast and Northwest Travel magazines.Since 2009, she has written five books: "Crossings: McCullough's Coastal Bridges," "The Crossings Guide to Oregon's Coastal Spans," "Around Florence," "Devil Cat and Other Colorful Animals I Have Known," and "The Oregon Coast Guide to the UNEXPECTED!!!."
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