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Much love, and Namaste...

Columbia River Gorge
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celebrate@exultroad.com

Exult Road is here to uplift and celebrate life, and you. 

Publishing, Writing, Consulting

Jill L. Cooper

Jill L. Cooper is a poet and writer. Her writing has appeared in print literary journals, The Raven ChroniclesThe Floating Bridge ReviewShark Reef Literary Magazine, as well as online magazines, Rewire MeThe Rebelle Society, HIV Here & Now, and others. Cooper’s poetry has been anthologized in Silent Applause of Butterflies (Columbia Center for the Arts, 2014), Pontoon (Floating Bridge, 2015), Delirious—A Tribute to Prince (Night Ballet Press, 2016), and in I Only Wanted to See You Laughing (Yellow Chair Review, 2016), and others. She was the creator and editor of The Yes Book (Exult Road, 2014). Cooper has served as the Executive Director of a Buddhist publishing house, and as a consultant to publishers, and as an author coach. She is currently working on a book-length collection of prose poetry, and on a collection of lyrical essays. Cooper lives in the beautiful Palouse region of Washington state. In all her work, she intends to affirm and celebrate existence. To contact her, write to jillcooper11 at gmail dot com. 

Strange Feather

Jill Cooper

This morning, my husband came inside from feeding the chickens and said, "Close your eyes. I have a gift for you." And then, "Okay, open them," and when I did he was holding the tiny feather in this picture in the palm of his hand.

The heart that embellishes the small white angelic feather is not drawn on with a Sharpie pen! It is the natural marking on a real feather from the breast of a Northwest Flicker—a perfect heart.

heart feather on red background.jpg
Strange Feather


All
the craziness,
All the empty plots,
All the ghosts and fears,


All the grudges and sorrows have
Now
Passed.

I must have inhaled
A strange
Feather

That finally

Fell

Out.
— Hafiz

And it was the perfect day for celebrating with a gift from the universe as delightful as a be-hearted feather, because this past week my dream and project of the last year, "The Yes Book" is in its last rounds of editing; and a poignant, beautiful,  cover concept emerges. 

It's so close to fruition. I remember how the idea for The Yes Book did not even come as a "plan," but more of a clearly guided impulse to move forward on the spark of a question: What if we invited writers to share their stories and poems about Yes?

Momentum gained energy as the positive responses to the project poured in. Moving forward one baby step at a time, I recount now how many angels and helpers came forward to offer collaboration, ideas, support, celebrations, and assistance every single time I needed it.

I am so grateful today.

Also, something I didn't quite expect is that even as I was clearly encouraging saying Yes more often because I witnessed how powerfully the concept operated in my own life, I still didn't even know the half of it yet!

I lived the past year steeped in Yes and —though I had a tiny glimmer of expectation that it would be good— it has been better than my wildest dreams! Yes is glory-making stuff, I tell you. It's acceptance, relief, embracing, appreciating, and creating in one little word, in one little gesture, a nod, a step, a prostration to all that is good, a sigh of relief, or joy.

Now, I start each day with Thank you, and Yes. And Divinely Good things come as a result.

In the course of "My Year of Yes" so many great things have happened I have filled journal after journal writing page after page of appreciations about Yes, and about changes in my life resulting from my focused attention to it - from earthy celebrations and easily manifested house remodel projects to being asked to do poetry readings and watching those around me light up with love; from launching a publishing company and building many new skills, to experiencing more peace and bounty in every area of my life; from witnessing the opening of a Divine creative geyser I always knew was there but struggled to find the spigot, to falling ever more deeply in love with all life. I think this can be true for anyone if it can happen for me. 

I belong to a forum where users can post daily appreciations they call “raves.” Members post their celebrations about everything from running water and health to food and wealth. All Yeses! I am thankful to these ravers for the constellation of daily raves that boost and cultivate success, love, and an abiding sense of peace.

I read the post most every day during My Year of Yes. I liked all of them and tended to flood the writers with blessings from my heart. Each rave of appreciation, for me, was like watching a new star being born, a new world in each celebration vibrating out into the universe.

I want to invite you to celebrate your own Yes too! Start your own appreciation groups! Try a Year of Yes. Say Yes and find reasons to praise and life will say Yes to you and multiply your reasons to praise. You may too, precious beings, feel as if a strange feather "finally fell out."

We at Exult are accepting more writing submissions about Yes for the ExultRoad.com website weekly "Featured Artist" pages. So, please send your 500 or fewer word “raves,” stories, or poems about yes along with a 50 word author bio to publisher [at] exultroad [dot] com. We’ll respond in a few weeks if your writing is selected.

 

With so much love,

 

Jill