view of forest through hole in leaf

Thanks to Suzanne Frank, a guest of GilChrist Retreat Center, who wrote to us, "I wanted to share this recent publication of my travel writing that appears in The peace and tranquility of your center contributed greatly to this and a manuscript I’m completing." Find more information about the celebration of the 25th anniversary of GilChrist here.

Read on for one of Suzanne's poems, and click here to enjoy the rest of her writing.

In Kota Kinabalu

It is raining on the red hens, crates
of puppies, stacks of salted flat-eyed

fish. It spatters boiling pots of fat,
drowns scratchy boom-box music,

the slap of sandals on cement when
the old vendor hooks my elbow,

pulls me to a tarp mounded with spiny
rambutan and does her trick with a twist

of a bony wrist, parts the rind, reveals
the oval fruit, white like boiled egg

in a painted cup, passes it without
looking up, sure I will buy from her

now that I have seen the magic, now
that the roundness fills my mouth,

now that her yellow nails pick through
rupiah in my palm. I am alone in this

market, lost in this counting of coins,
the rambutan, rain that falls between us.


GilChrist retreat center logo with white pine sprig

GilChrist is the public retreat center of the Fetzer Institute. We support the Institute’s mission of helping build the spiritual foundation for a loving world by preserving a contemplative environment for healing self, society, and the natural world. We warmly welcome both groups and individuals and people of all faiths and affiliations.