Writers of the Month

Denise K. Spencer and Jim Riggs

Denise K. Spencer

2021 Denise K. Spencer
Denise’s recently discovered passion for writing poetry was built on a career that involved writing in many forms. After retiring as CEO at Community Foundation of the Lowcountry, and starting PhilanTOPICS, a nonprofit consultancy, her writing became more focused on creative pursuits and less on the articles, speeches, and white papers that came before. A poetry collection is in development, and her daughter and granddaughter are eagerly awaiting their autographed copies.



Each day we meet,

and the agreed-upon hour.

At early five-thirty

we share coffee.


A single light breaks

the darkness, as the rest

of the world retreats

from our sacred place.


Self-reproach overpowers.

I do not belong here.

Whatever makes me think

I will not be found out?


But oh! The anticipation

has set me fluttering.

Would the magic

embrace us today?


We often sit quietly,

struggling to find words.

Other times thoughts rush out,

almost too fast to catch.


Relationships take work, they say.

Will the elation prevail today?

A second cup, shared by we three —

my hope, my keyboard, and me.


 NOTE: You can find this piece and many others in Ripples


Jim Riggs

Jim Riggs

Jim loved the joy and satisfaction of his life teaching high school and college mathematics, of years spent capturing the beauty of wild places as a nature photographer, and the excitement of telling stories as fiction and memoir. Pleasing readers with his novel, Freedom Run gave him satisfaction and confidence. He has hopes of publishing his second. For the last nine years, Hilton Head Island has furnished a pleasant respite from Iowa’s worst winter weather. 

Dry Egret


It was not by chance 

the Great Egret 

danced to the dry fringe

beneath the steep ledge.


There she prepared  

for an afternoon of rain,

fishing in the dry corner

beneath the high green bush.

You can find this piece and many others in Ripples

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