We sat on the long porch at the Adult Home where Mary Kellogg now lives.
Jon and I were bringing Mary copies of her new book. She looked through it and I showed her the last page. It’s a copy of the typewritten letter Mary sent to Jon in 2006 when she asked if she and her friends could come and visit the farm.
Jon was not one to have visitors to Bedlam Farm back then, but for some reason, he accepted Mary’s request. After that visit, Mary told Jon about her poems, which she had been writing since she was 12 and had never shown anyone.
Soon, Jon and I were publishing Mary’s first book of poems, My Place on Earth.
Mary always has a smile for us when we visit her. She’s doesn’t complain, but she’s also honest about missing her home. She enjoys the food and not having to clean where she lives now, but she misses her solitude.
It’s hard for me to imagine that Mary will never sit in her dining room again, looking out the big picture window at her beloved mountains, watching the weather change, the birds at the feeder, the deer and turkeys. Observing the world around her as a poet does.
It was so much her place.
It’s difficult for Mary to write now, although she told us she started a new poem. “There’s no space”, she said and I’m not sure if she means physical space or head space.
Mary was as happy to see her new book, as we were to give it to her. I gave her some copies and told her to let me know when she needs more, that we can order as many as we want. I have no doubt she’ll sell them, she always does.
I didn’t think Mary would make it to the Open House the year. We already made plans for Jon to read some of her new poems. I wasn’t going to mention it to her again, because she often doesn’t feel well and is having some memory issues, but this time, Mary asked me about it.
I wrote down the dates and time of the Open House so she could give it to her daughter, who will bring her.
Mary wants to be there. Even if she isn’t up to reading her poems, she loves to meet and talk to all the people who like her work. I know she’d be happy to sign copies of her new book too.
I’m not sure which day Mary will be at the Open House, but the Poetry Reading will be both Saturday and Sunday, October 6th and 7th at around 2pm. Carol Gulley, Amy Herring and Jackie Thorne will also be reading their poetry and Amy and Jackie will be selling their books.
Yesterday I dropped off a bunch of Mary’s new book, for Connie at Battenkill Books. So you can buy them there too. It’s $10 plus shipping.
You can order This Time Of Life, by Mary Kellogg by calling (518) 677-2515 or online at
Humming Bird At My Feeder By Mary Kellogg
Big fellow with a fancy shine
waits to clear his destination
swings to chase away intruders
flipping back and forth
his command of the whole area
“it is mine he shows
it is mine
4 thoughts on “This Time Of Life, Mary Kellogg’s New Book For Sale At Battenkill Books”
I can see why Jon answered that letter.
Gracious. Beautiful. Simple.
I love her last line in the poem.
“it is mine he shows
it is mine
Your post, Maria, I hope brings to heart how important it is to live life to the fullest exhausting every bit we can.
You are a good friend.
I think you’re doing that too Janet, living your life to the fullest. I love that you “got” Mary’s letter.
I remember reading about it after it happened…..and how sweet it was and encouraging that age didn’t seem to hamper the interests of those ladies. Inspiring….as she continues to be to this day….
Wow Pat, you’ve been part of Bedlam Farm for along time. I think it’s sweet that you remember it.