TORRINGTON — During times of hardship, people have always turned to creative expression as an outlet for their emotions, thoughts and experiences. Patricia Martin is no exception. An avid poet, several pieces she penned since the onset of the pandemic have been selected for publication in three different anthologies.

“All poetry has a universality to it,” Martin mused. “We all can find life themes and emotions that we relate to when we read a piece of poetry, even if that poem was authored by a different person in a different time.”

This self-described “writer with many hats” and Darien native moved to Torrington from Woodstock, N.Y. about four years ago. She is the creator and host of the popular monthly poetry event, SpeakEasy, which showcases poetry, essays, memoirs, storytelling, monologues, and other spoken word pieces by local writers on the first Sunday of every month at the Noelke Gallery in downtown Torrington. In addition to writing, she also works in marketing and communications.

Martin’s poem, “Secrets Weigh” about the dark secrets that people, and women in particular, often keep buried deep within their soul, was selected for inclusion in “Goddess: Raising Consciousness Through Spoken Word.”

“This anthology is all about women’s voices for healing,” Martin explained. The book is a publication of the National Beat Poetry Foundation in association with Local Gems Press, a Long Island-based publisher that believes that writing can be used to make a positive impact in people’s lives.

Another of Martin poems, “The Farmers’ Market Life,” is set to be published in “Trees in a Garden of Ashes: Poetry of Resilience.” This piece reflects on the simple pleasure of buying freshly cut flowers at a farmers’ market during the summer, demonstrating that life goes on despite the current pandemic.

She also has two poems in a book of collaborative poems created by poet and publisher James P. Wagner, titled “A Pathway to Dreams.”

Martin credits Wagner with helping to keep her inspired to create throughout the challenges of recent months. The pair would play what they called a “poetic tennis match” in which one person would provide the first stanza of a poem, and the other would respond with a second stanza. Martin and Wagner would continue back and forth for several stanzas until a prom was complete before starting all over again.

“We began doing this daily on April 6, and as of July 14 we hit our 100th straight day,” Martin said. “Some of the poems we created were somber, some fun and some introspective. We covered a wide range of topics, too, including the robot at Stop & Shop,” she chuckled.

“I think people are often intimidated by poetry,” Martin said. “People think, ‘Oh, I’m not a writer.’ You don’t have to be anointed as a poet. Just get out there and write!” she continued. “It helps people feel like they are not the only ones that feel as they do. Everybody has a voice, and everybody has something to share,” Martin encouraged.

“During these days of upheaval and uncertainty, art seems more important than ever to create, and to share,” said Martin. “I am honored that my poetry was selected for inclusion in these three anthologies, along with poems by other talented writers.”

For more information on Martin, visit www.patriciamartin.com.

For information on the National Beat Poetry Foundation visit www.nationalbeatpoetryfoundation.org/

For more information on Local Gems, visit www.localgemspoetrypress.com/

Connecticut Media Group