3 Things People Are Saying

I’m sitting here this morning, sipping the espresso that Glen just made me with our brand new espresso press, wondering what to share with you today.

I’m wondering if I should share the silly story about the time I auditioned to be in a ballet project with Jacques d’Amboise when I was 12 years old.

He came right up to me in a room that was packed with kids, and said: “Are you in 4th?” (He meant 4th position, as in the ballet position — I thought he meant 4th, as in the grade).

I said, “No, I’m in 6th.” (There is no 6th position in ballet — I was referring to the grade).

He looked at me with disgust and said “Well aren’t you a brat?”

He turned his back and walked away while shooing me out of the room.

That was the end of my ballet career with Jacques d’Amboise (I was so upset I tore the satin off my point shoes)!

But I think I’m not going to talk about that, except to say:

While looking up Jacques d’Amboise on Wikipedia just now to make sure I was spelling his name correctly, I found out his name was not Jacques d’Amboise.

It was Joseph Ahearn!

And he was born in Dedham, Massachusettes, not France! 

Did you think he was born in France?  I thought he was born in France….sheesh.


I’m going to stay quiet today, and let my students speak:

This, from Linda Stonerock  who wrote to me after last week’s newsletter went out about being 10:

“It’s so funny to me, your take on 10. 10 was a pivotal age for me, and it was when i began to know MY OWN mind, distinct from what my parents, teachers, the Bible, or any other outside entity told me about reality. I actually made a conscious decision to take what i felt was true more seriously than what anyone else said….and i also decided that i would not necessarily share my POV with someone, especially adults, who might try to make me wrong. This truth was precious and to be explored, validated, questioned or discarded by me and me alone.

i felt 10 was the sweetest year in my life. A watershed. It’s still up there in the top 5 best years, even at 63!!

xo Linda”

This, from Helen Turner, in conversation, after class recently:

“I can find someone else’s breath in the group when I cannot locate my own.”

This, from a writing exercise we did in class this past Sunday:

Could not do the warm up

It was a warm up for other people and their bodies

Not for me.


Where is my body, the body I used to have?

Did I forget it at home?

Whose body is this?

The one that takes 15 minutes to walk across a parking lot

The one that has blood drawn again and again

The one that can't stand up


On two feet

Or walk across the floor

That limps and lurches

The one that seizes danger


A cough

A sneeze

A shift in the pavement

A pain

A spot

Anything could be dangerous.

Whose body is this?


This is mine

(No. It can't be.)



It is.

My mother had a way of judging people.

She would say that woman wouldn't have lasted a day in Auschwitz.

What would she say of this body of mine?

— Paulette Fire, Sunday, March 13th, 2016

And there is nothing left to say.

With Warmth,



Joanna and The Agitators

sweetly agitating/persistently upending