On Friday, we had an all morning all-school meeting. It turned out to be like many an all-school meeting. I thought there might be some big revelation, but there was nothing revealed that was as earth-shattering as I was expecting. For that, my spouse and I offered a prayer of thanks as part of our evening grace before dinner.
It was an interesting morning, and I was intrigued by how many of us turned to art throughout the meeting. One friend snapped many a picture, but I was struck this shot of a chandelier:
One friend posted this sketch by another friend, the artist Gary Tepper:
And part of our communication building exercise involved art. We talked about our communication styles and drew a logo of our predominant style. I was part of the friendly and unassuming communication group, and here was one of our logos, drawn mostly by artist-librarian Pam Reagan:
As for me? I came away with the idea of a little book. Our interim president read us a story of how geese pull together as a group and how they take care of each other. Our past president, too, brought us stories of animals as metaphors for how we should be behaving at work: penguins were his favorite.
I said to a friend, "If I'm ever president of an organization, I'm not using animal metaphors. Nothing but gemstones for me!"
And then, I thought, I could write such a book in a long week-end. I bet someone out there is producing these kinds of books. Why not me?
It reminds me of twenty years ago when I finally read Who Moved My Cheese? I thought, really? Someone got paid money to write this? And then, I thought, I could write this.
Don't get me wrong--I'm a poet, so I fully appreciate the idea that an extended metaphor can teach us a lesson in a way that nothing else can. But I'm also an English teacher, so I'm wondering if we could reach for more dazzling metaphors. I heard the word "goose," and I knew exactly what to expect. Nothing turned my world upside down and showed me a new way to think about the issue.
I want to write the inspirational stories that will make people in organizations say, "Wow! I never thought about it this way. Let's try living like __________ ."
This idea may go into my folder of great ideas, never to be seen again. Or perhaps I'll return to it, after it has some time to percolate.
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