an open letter to President Donald Trump

An Open Letter to President Donald Trump:
This nation was already great before you arrived.

It is great because of it’s democracy; it’s laws against prejudice, hate crimes and speech; because it is peopled by individuals of all races and creeds, immigrants from foreign lands, dreamers coming to America to live life in a nation that claims to live under God; because of its acceptance, tolerance, and aid to the “huddled masses.” We are great because in times when others might attack our shores or when there are those among us who lose their bearings and aim their rage and individual prejudices at their own neighbors, we unite.

I stand united with a multitude of others who believe that your decisions to give some of the highest offices in our land to men who publicly express hatred and disdain for people of color, for the rights of women, for our many religious differences, and for other unalienable rights guaranteed to us by our constitution is unconscionable, completely unacceptable, and frankly, Sir, UN-American.

Please, right this wrong. Make us proud. Do the right thing. Do the Godly thing. Do the American thing. Remove these hateful men from the leaderships to which you’ve appointed them and replace them with reasonable, careful, gentlemen or gentlewomen without overt prejudice.

Further, as our leader, you must speak and act, speak AND ACT swiftly to completely abolish and ban hate oriented organizations such as the KKK, those professing to be Nazis and other white supremacists, as they are perpeptrating terrorism in the name of “freedom of speech” and “the right to peaceful assembly.”

Act now. Be swift. Be bold. 

New Work: how many walls?

how many walls does it take to build a nation 5.5X9.5 in mm on paper 2017

“how many walls does it take to build a nation?”  9.5X5.5″ mm on paper, 2017.  (c) d. ellis phelps

I think my days of sitting by, being contemplative are somehow over.

Even when I think I have let it all go:  the “white supremacy platforms,” the bigotry, the hate speech, the violence, the attacks on environmental protections, the inane ideas that are not solutions…the insanity appears in my art, in wordy comments on click-here-and-we’ll-make-it-better sites, in my dreams.

This piece, created in late 2016 (remember what was happening then?) is one example of Leo erupting.  It speaks to the proposed physical barrier between Texas and Mexico and to the myriad barriers that, allowed to persist, will ruin us.

d. ellis phelps is the author of Making Room for George, a novel (Moon Shadow Sanctuary, 2016) and of this blog.  Thanks for reading!

Trailer for [Robert Okaji’s] Chapbook — O at the Edges

Please support this enigmatic, funny, tender poet from Austin. He has read for our San Antonio Poets for Peace and will come again after this chapbook is out in Oct.

Buy now so that his print run will be huge. I promise. You’ll love it.

Words and Feathers

Just going to put this here. All you discerning readers know what to do.

The trailer for my chapbook, From Every Moment a Second, is available for viewing on YouTube. Many thanks to Ken Gierke for assembling these scattered lines and images into a greater whole. Please note: prepublication sales determine the print run, which means this stage is crucial in terms of how many copies will be printed […]

via Trailer for My Chapbook — O at the Edges

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poem in pictures: river. tree. lizard. knee

look deep into nature and then you will understand everything better

Albert Einstein

guadalupe state park, hill country, texas






cypress trees with knees








d. ellis phelps is the author of Making Room for George, Moon Shadow Sanctuary Press, 2016:  a tender love story about family and one woman’s journey toward her true self.  Free for kindle unlimited users.  Softcover available for Prime shipping.

Chihuly Beauty

“Persian Ceiling Chihuly Garden and Glass” Seattle, 2012, 35×14.5′

Can you tell my work is strongly influenced by that of Dale Chihuly?

I have been priviledged to view his work three tomes in person. Each time, I was stunned by it’s beauty and magnitude. 

If you have the chance to see his work, do so. You will be forever changed!

Oh! My foot!

Feet 2 days old don toye via flickr

image:  (unaltered) courtesy of Don Toye via Flickr Creative Commons. Some rights reserved.

Feet are like good mothers:  always there; getting us where we need to go; rarely complaining.  And if you are like me, you hardly give them a second thought.  Until they hurt.  Even then, you might only give them a little rub, a short soak or put them up for a while and expect that they will be ready to carry on soon enough.

But what if these very same feet were intelligent communicators, maps if you will, of what might be happening throughout your body, indicators of inflammation, dysfunction, or disease.  Would you pay more attention to them then?

According to practitioners of reflexology, this is exactly the case.

Each part and function of the body is represented by a corresponding reflex point on the body’s extremities, most particularly the feet, which contain clusters of ultra-sensitive nerve endings (Gillanders, 2007).

Seven thousand nerve endings to be exact.

When a trained reflexologist stimulates these points, also found in the hands and the ears, it creates an electrochemical impluse that can release tension, soothe inflammation, and help the body remedy brewing malfunctions in tissues, cells, and organs through the nerve pathways.

woman holding feet simpleinsomnia via cc

image:  courtesy of simpleinsomnia via Flickr Creative Commons. Some rights reserved.

Reflexology can be a stand alone treatment or it can be combined with therapeutic massage quite successfully.  If you are having a stand alone reflexology session, you do not have to disrobe, but can remain comfortably reclined, only having to remove your shoes.  A therapist doing reflexology will usually also add lower leg massage to the session, so if this is your choice, wear leggings or shorts that can be pulled up over the knee.  I personally prefer to work both hands and both feet plus the lower legs during an hour long (an hour and a half is better) stand alone session, including aromatherapy and Healing Touch to round out the session.

Therapists can also do targeted treatments designed specifically to help heal an injury or malfunction such as plantar fasciitis, for example.

foot reflexology sign via cc

The theory and practice of reflexology is based on the notion that there are ten (five on each foot) longitudinal lines of energy running from toe to brain throughout the entire length of the body.  It is assumed that when there is an imbalance in one area of a zone, all other organs, tissues and cells in that zone can also be affected.

A sensitivity in any one  spot of the foot creates an imbalance throughout the entire length of that zone.  For example, a sensitivity in the right kidney could be the cause of an eye condition because the kidney and the eye are in the same zone (Gillanders, 2007).

The multitude of reflexology points on the feet are as small as the head of a pin and overlapping.  A quick  internet search of “foot reflexology maps” will reveal a plethora of maps, each somewhat different from the next.  So, you and your therapist will notice sensitivities and discuss what makes sense for you, given your history and understanding of any other symptoms that may be currently presenting.

photocapy foot sign cc

image:  courtesy of photocapy via Flickr Creative Commons. Some rights reserved.

If you haven’t tried this ancient, effective complimentary medicine therapy, please do!  Most who do are very relaxed and pleased to join the “Foot Joy Club,” returning their aching feet for more foot love time after happy time.


Gillanders, Ann (2007).  The Complete Reflexology Tutor, Octopus Publishing Group, p. 11   and p. 28.




My birthday poem by Robert Okaji!

My poem “It was 10 A.M. When the Angel Said You Have to Go Now” is among today’s offerings of the Tupelo Press 30/30 Project (9 poets have agreed to write 30 poems apiece in 30 days, to raise funds for Tupelo Press, a non-profit literary publisher). I am grateful to D. Ellis Phelps, alum of the 30/30 […]


via Day Twenty-six, Tupelo Press 30/30 Project, August 2016 — O at the Edges

So, I’m a bit tardy at sharing this fun yet poignant piece written for me by Robert Okaji on the occasion of my blankety-blank-eth birthday.  I love it!  The poem brought me both laughter and tears.  Thank you, Robert!