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Daily Inspiration: Meet Astraea Chaumette

Today we’d like to introduce you to Astraea Chaumette.

Hi Astraea, thanks for joining us today. We’d love for you to start by introducing yourself.
Yes! I would love to! I recently got back into writing after taking quite a hiatus. I was in a fifteen-year-long marriage that was very difficult. I hadn’t realized how much of a toll that relationship had taken on my creativity and really my whole being until I had a moment to live outside those confines. It was like a bird was released out of a cage and I remembered how much I loved expressing myself through the written word.

I grew up in Colorado and had written a poem when I was ten that was included in a book put together by a Denver bookstore. It was such an important and happy memory in my life. I started writing a lot of poetry after my divorce that helped me process a wide variety of emotions.

I love being able to spill every feeling I have across the page and turn it into something that I can share with someone else. To be able to transmute something difficult into a beautiful expression of art feels magical, and meaningful. I can go back and read what I have written and remember exactly how I felt in that moment and feel profound gratitude in the entire artistic process.

Love, sadness, anger, and disappointment… Euphoria. These are all important emotions that we all go through. I think a lot of us have been imprisoned either by other people, or sometimes even ourselves, to a small cell of superficial pleasantness. “Walk it off” “Get over it” “Other people have it worse” a lot of times we feel like we can’t express varying emotions, and poetry is a great way for us all to connect and support one another.

I love being a part of such a vibrant and artistic community where I feel like we can live a colorful and rich existence full of the full spectrum of emotion. It’s truly magical. Like seeing color again after everything was grayscale. There is so much collaboration happening in the local art community as a whole and it’s been an amazing thing to be a part of.

We all face challenges, but looking back would you describe it as a relatively smooth road?
I feel like everyone has been incredibly wonderful to collaborate with and work alongside. I have submitted my work to several places that chose not to use it but don’t really feel like it’s a struggle. It’s nice to get feedback and use it to keep moving forward.

Appreciate you sharing that. What else should we know about what you do?
I am a weaver of words. I use experiences from my life, as well as sensory information to tell stories. I love reading my work life when possible, and most recently started hosting collaborative events where people can feel encouraged to try writing for themselves.

I feel like my enthusiasm and desire to get everyone connected with expression and community is what sets me apart.

We’re always looking for the lessons that can be learned in any situation, including tragic ones like the Covid-19 crisis. Are there any lessons you’ve learned that you can share?
I really started doing most of my writing after the crisis, but it really did illuminate the fact that people want to build connections and do things together. It’s wonderful to see creativity and art bringing so many people together.

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