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Casa Libre has a new phone number: 520.333.7036

Hearts both busted and full

I keep waiting for someone to tell me this is no big deal. I want to die like Isabella just died. Maybe I could be a good parent. I made a mixed CD for her departure. My mom was always a little bit skeptical when someone said they couldn’t do something just because they were sick. We trusted each other. Isabella had her own friends.

It’s a story I want to tell over and over again. How she found me – seemingly sought me out in the Red Food Store parking lot where there were at least 50 other cars – and how I said yes to her, having been to that exact parking lot already earlier in the day for drinks and snacks – with my first girlfriend on our way to a party – and now back again and too stoned to be fighting – no one had brought anything for the grill.

Life changes in the instant. The ordinary instant.
– Joan Didion

16 years is a long time to share with anyone or anything. She had seven puppies on my living room floor just two weeks after the parking lot. Her nickname was Isa-bitch-a. Or Cloud Baby. Or That Thing from the Never Ending Story. If you’ve been to Casa in the last 6 years, you’ve met her. We road tripped across the country – just the two of us – at least five times. Mostly, I called her White Dog. We thru-hiked the Appalachian Trail in 2001 and hiked probably hundreds of miles on A Mountain since then.

When Facebook sucks it’s not because people suck. Humbling, these acts of collective holding. My left hand touching her neck and shoulder. As she died, K and J were watching. My forehead pressing against her forehead. J and S's hands on my legs. She gave me access to my very own heart. And now other people are. So many other people. A community. Thank you for showing up. If that isn’t god, I don’t know what is. Breathing into each other’s breath.

~ TC Tolbert, Assistant Director

PS. Please mark your calendars for our fall events. And we hope you'll take special note of our Manifest Your Dream contest winner, Jill Lorenzini's Heatwave. See below for details of all the exciting events!

Read an archive of past newsletters here

What's the Word?


Make a secure online donation to Casa Libre through Network for Good
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9/20 HeatWave Hands-On SunDone Workshop
more info...

10/18 Poetry as a Transformative Path:
a poetry workshop w/ Lisa M. Cole
more info...

10/29 Experiments in Form: Received Poetic Forms Turned Inside Out
a poetry workshop w/
Jarrett Eakins

more info...

11/11 & 11/18 Alternative Forms for Essay and Memoir
a writing workshop w/ Erin Zwiener & Will Slattery
more info...


9/10 Edge Reading Series w/Julie Hampton, Tyler Meier, & Joseph P. Wood
more info...

9/17 Trickhouse Live: An Integrative Arts and Performance Series
w/Richard Siken, Bill Wetzel, & Ken White

more info...

9/19 WIP Reading Series
more info...

9/26 Stjukshon: An Indigenous Reading Series w/Adrian L. Jawort, Cinnamon Spear, Luella N. Brien, & Pumpkin Vyne Singers
more info...

9/30 Where We're Going We Don't Need Roads
w/Sybil Lamb, Casey Plett, and local authors
more info...

10/3 WIP Reading Series
more info...

10/4 Heatwave: curated by Jill Lorenzini (a Manifest Your Dream Contest winning event)
more info...

10/5 Lamplight Reading Series
more info...

10/12 Rumi Reading & Lecture w/Mahmoud Vahedian Ghaffari
more info...

10/14 Trickhouse Live: An Integrative Arts and Performance Series
w/Justin Bigos, Erin Stalcup, Bojan Louis, & Sara Sams
more info...

10/17 WIP Reading Series
more info...

10/22 Edge Reading Series: w/Jia Oak Baker, Roberto Bedoya, & John Myers
more info...


Trickhouse Live: An Integrative Arts and Performance Series
more info...


Casa Needs Your Support
Make a secure online donation to Casa Libre. Please visit Network for Good:

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