Mary Jo Balistreri

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Creating the Layers of an Intricate Painting

Contributing Artist Annika Connor uncovers the process of how her painting Augustus was created, from outline to filling in negative space to adding color. »

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Ode to the Piano, a Poem

Mary Jo Balistreri, who has a hearing loss, writes of the piano as an honest friend and lifelong teacher in this uplifting poem dedicated to Nancy Williams. »

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Prelude in E Minor, a Poem

During a performance of the Chopin Prelude in E Minor, the feeling of fear brought poet Mary Jo Balistreri’s memory back to a childhood drowning incident. »

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A Contemporary Romantic

Watercolor artist Annika Connor, whose work has enhanced essays and poems on this site, explains why she considers herself a Contemporary Romantic painter. »

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Fantasy Impromptu, a Poem

In her poem Fantasy Impromptu, Mary Jo Balistreri writes of playing Chopin on the piano as temporary relief from the pain of loneliness, envy, and longing. »

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The Minute Waltz, a Poem

Hearing Chopin's Minute Waltz on the piano was the poet Mary Jo Balistreri's first experience, at 9 years old, of music as more than just pleasant sounds. »