Spotlight Saturday: Matt Salis

Over the past couple of years, I’ve heard Johnny O. speak about Matt Sallis often during our Thursday morning Volunteer-Biographer interviews. One day I asked John if he would introduce me to Matt so that I could interview him for our Spotlight Saturday feature. To my delight, John did, and Matt agreed.

Thank you, John, for the introduction. And thank you Matt for the gift of your time, and for all you and your wife do to facilitate healing through writing and connection.

NF:        Thanks so much for your time today, Matt.  I originally published a story about SAME Café last month where you teach a workshop.  Our first poet for, John Olander told me a little about the spoken-word open mic fundraiser your group did one night.   How did that night go for you?

MS:       The spoken word deal, yes! Both times John was the clutch guy.

NF:        How did you start facilitating writing groups for SAME Café?

MS:       The story of how I started running writing groups is a cool one. It wasn’t my intention to start a group.  I had friends running a neighborhood magazine, Urban Life Wash Park, a hard copy magazine with a circulation of about 5,000 homes.  I wrote an article for it once a month highlighting something interesting about serving the community. 

One month I had the assignment to go and investigate a partnership between the Denver Public Library and Lighthouse Writers, a local organization. As you may know, Lighthouse is a literary hub for the homeless community in Denver. And that’s the case in many cities. They do a wide variety of classes. Writers give speeches there.  The partnership with the library had to do with Hard Times Writing Workshops. The reason the library was involved is that it was also a hub.

Image by Brigitte Werner from Pixabay 
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Spotlight Saturday: ShowerUp II

Paul Schmitz, ShowerUp, Nashville

The first time I got to interview Paul, it was in June 2017, only a few months he and his family started ShowerUp in Nashville which was October 2016.  It’s been six years and now ShowerUp has mobile units in six cities as well as a disaster-response team.

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Gems 4.96

I hope you’re having a beautiful Friday. ♡
Here’s another light-filled ¤ Gem ¤

Read by Thich Nath Hanh, chanted by brother Phap Niem. The creators of this audio track were Gary Malkin, the composer/arranger, producer, and collaborator Michael Stillwater. The work came from a CD/book called Graceful Passages: A Companion for Living and Dying, and it could be purchased by going to The creator of this video is R Smittenaar. This video can be downloaded at: Visuals taken from: HOME, Earth and Baraka

Please forgive the lateness of this Gem.  The time/stamina I had today went to something that is deeply touching my heart:   Updates from Texas.  The chant came from a friend on KindSpring who is grieving the loss of a sister. I needed a way to let go of the anxiety that was building since I began writing this morning.  It really helped. It’s a beautiful chant.

Some news…


Next Monday we’ll feature our homeless artists, JohnnyO and Cord X’s beautiful creations in a Gallery Slide Show.  We’ll be taking the rest of July off except for any Spotlight Saturday interviews we might be able to line up.


August and ongoing, our theme will always be about the homeless and the struggle of homelessness.   We’ll use quotes, share news and feature those serving the homeless (more Spotlight Saturdays).

The exception to that is:


The 2nd Annual KindSpring Eowyn Challenge

Beginning on Hobbit Day (September 22nd) we’ll begin a new KindSpring Eowyn Challenge:  Walking through Earth and Middle EarthAll are welcome! All photos used will be original artwork, photos or those gifted for the limited use of the challenge.  I’ll supply the link to the challenge once it’s set up and ready.  I’ll also be continuing The Journal of Samwise Gamgee.  Since we didn’t finish that here due  to some technical problems in 2015, we’ll do the same walk as the first one:  Bag End to Rivendell with Frodo and Company.

Spotlight Saturday: Sheltering Grace

I hope you’re having a beautiful day. ♡
Today we are happy and excited to bring you a brand new story for:

¤ Spotlight Saturday ¤

"Courage is not the absence of fear.  It is the conquest of it."  William Danforth

Sheltering Grace Header Spotlight Saturday u1k

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Spotlight Saturday: Wild Dream Walks

I hope you’re having a beautiful day. ♡
Today we are happy and excited to bring you a brand new story for:

¤ Spotlight Saturday ¤

“Sing your song. Dance your dance. Tell your tale“. –Frank McCourt

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Spotlight Saturday 1.0 | under1000skies

I hope you’re having a beautiful day. ♡
Today we are happy and excited to tell you about the start of something new:

¤ Spotlight Saturday ¤

"Hope is the thing with feathers That perches in the soul, And sings the tune without the words, And never stops at all." Emily Dickinson


The spotlight today is on ShowerUp Nashville, a beautiful service started by Paul Anthony Schmitz.   I  got a chance to talk to Paul this morning and his excitement and love just pours through his words.   I’ve been following his feed on Instagram for a few months, and I have been so inspired by all the great work ShowerUp is doing!

ShowerUp Collage

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