Ritual can renew your spirit.

When it is thoughtfully crafted, ritual can feel like poetry in motion.

Think: Self-Care Rituals, Celebratory Rituals, Rituals of Remembrance, Healing Rituals.


Ritual does for behavior

what poetry does for words.

~Rabbi and Author Dennis S. Ross, OnBeing with Krista Trippett





Since 2015, we’ve been meeting

in the woods of northern Illinois

to connect with the earth

and with one another.




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Poetry & Ritual

helps us restructure the ordinary as sacred.

During this sacred time, we create breathing space, sacred truth space. We create poems and songs and stories that help us heal. We move and are moved. We observe and honor the sacred in the ordinary.


 The format:

Combining basic elements of expressive writing, intention-setting, and mindfulness exercises, the Poetry & Ritual retreat is appropriate for all skill levels, writers and non-writers alike.

No Experience Necessary. All supplies will be provided. Lunch will be served.


Date – TBA
Time – 9:00 am to 3:00 pm
Location – TBA
Cost – $285/person

 To find out when registration opens up, subscribe for updates below. Registration and payment links will appear here. 





Writing Poetry:

You will learn how to create poetry from your ordinary language. Whether you’ve never written a poem in your life or you’ve written for many years, the methods we discuss in the workshop will help you gain a new appreciation for how poetry is created and experienced.

You will learn how to create poems that sound like a heartfelt conversation with a friend. You will gain the confidence to create your own poems and together we’ll create collaborative poems. We will also practice listening to poetry from fellow participants and from published texts.

You will develop your own rhythm for poetry and learn to create new poems from your ordinary words.

Creating Ritual:

You will learn how to create simple rituals that can be practiced in your day-to-day life. Together we will discuss symbolism and the power of words and actions. We will consider how ritual affects our thoughts and women holding handsbehaviors. From elaborate festivities to the most basic mindful moments, we will explore rituals from various traditions to understand their meanings and impact in our lives.

You will learn how to create and honor your own rituals to incorporate more mindfulness, care, and awareness in your daily life.



TBD – Region: Fox River Valley of Northern Illinois


In previous years we’ve gathered at outdoor pavilions tucked away in a serene clearing in the center of a small horseshoe lake. While this piece of nature supported our contemplative work at the time, we have now moved deeper into the woods for more privacy and more space.

With the new and longer retreat format, we now combine indoor and outdoor activities for comfort while staying as close to nature as possible. 

Find out when details are posted by subscribing for updates below.

My Story

To say that I facilitate creative expression is more accurate than to say I teach writing. Sure, I can share instructions on how to write a poem or an essay. But I believe you already have the words to say what you need to say. Far beyond just grammar and style, I encourage conversation.

I help people connect to their own voice, their own unique ways of telling. I listen deeply and witness people’s storytelling experience. I share the journey with them. I’m a facilitator and advocate creating the space for our stories to be shared.

My approach to expressive writing workshops comes from nearly a decade of experience working with military veterans in the arts and more than two decades of writing workshop participation across genres. I have a BA in Communication, Media and Theatre and have worked with professional writing and theater communities throughout Chicago. I’ve formally studied with poets, non-fiction writers, journalists, actors, and journal therapy practitioners. I am not a therapist and my workshops are not intended as therapy or professional mental health support. However, I do believe in our innate ability to heal and through the power of our stories.

I emphasize confidentiality, compassion, and respect (for self and others) in all of the workshops I facilitate. In a collaborative environment, I encourage group members to identify guidelines that would help them feel supported in our workshops. I also ask that all group members be mindful of their own self-care needs during and after our work together.

I’ve used poetry, performance, and visual art as ways to share some difficult stories in my own life. Sharing my stories has helped me heal. Honoring my stories in those ways has given me peace. To learn more about me and my writing background, visit my About page.

I look forward to writing and sharing with you.


Feel free to contact me if you have any questions about this workshop.

Sign up for updates on the next Poetry & Ritual Retreat