I am a poet, photographer, musician and writing workshop facilitator. I’ve published two collections of poetry, A Strange Catechism (2013) and A Machine for Remembering (2019. My poems have been set to music by Grammy award-winning Composer Glen Roven, and Cuban composer Ileana Perez Valezquez. I’ve received two commissions for poetry from Wendy Taucher Dance Theater Opera, and one from John Sims’ Afro Dixie Project.
A Strange Catechism was made into a dramatic monologue sortly after its release and performed at The Yard. The poems, and photographs from A Machine for Remembering were part of a larger, experimental theater performance for the 2017 and 2018 Pathways Projects performance season. My work has been exhibited at the Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art. I served as Martha’s Vineyard Poet Laureate from 2017-2019.
My photographic work, though a recent creative outlet, already has taken me all throughout the world. Primarily landscapes, I am drawn to make images of the stories (history) embedded in places and which I feel as energy when I visit a place. I consider myself a photographer of witness and place. My most recent work tracing refugee routes in Italy, and Greece has received several solo exhibits and is used in my theater performances. Excerpts of this work also appear in the art journals HocTok and Cold Mountain Review, as well as in Kris Newby’s book Bitten, on the origins of Lyme Disease.
2019 saw the release of my first studio album, The War for the Valley. Composed on an old family piano, the songs are based the stories I heard while working with refugees from Moria Refugee Camp on Lesvos, Greece and are a response to the European Refugee Crisis.
Beyond writing, photograph and music, I enjoy serving other writers and creatives as a workshop and retreat facilitator. To this end, in founded Noepe Center Martha’s Vineyard Center for Literary Arts in 2017 to provide writers with time and space to create. In 2013, I launched the Italy Writing Retreat in Orvieto, Italy to offer writing inspiration in the writers of all genres and backgrounds. Currently, I am developing Enwritenment™, my personal brand of writing workshops, retreats, and online courses designed to help writers establish a daily devoted writing practice.
You can follow all my work on Instagram @enwritenment and @justenahren, and on Facebook @justenahren.
We are given certain gifts. If we don't use them, we are wasting our divine gift. My work has always been about making sense of life through the creative process. "God, I am not mine," Michelangelo exclaimed in the midst of painting the Sistine Chapel. I am searching for that 'dissolution' in my work. For me Art is not about the product, it is always the process. The work is the prayer.