A Great Nephew and a Great Aunt Guests: B.J. Lee and Her Husband Malcolm Deeley

poetry friday buttonThanks to Violet at Violet Nesdoly | Poems for hosting the Poetry Friday Roundup today. If you’d like to know more about Poetry Friday, click HERE for an explanation by Renee LaTulippe.

Ants may rule the hill, but they don’t rule here! Art by Landon
Ants may rule the hill, but they don’t rule here! Art by Landon

Hello Friends! Just In case you haven’t visited before, let me tell you a little about A Great Nephew and A Great Aunt. My great nephew, Landon (now an eighth-grader) and I (his great aunt) collaborate. I write a poem which he illustrates. We started this collaboration in the fall of 2014 and had so much fun with it that we decided to invite others along. Landon and I will continue to have a new episode on one Friday of each month. The other Fridays are filling up quickly with guests sharing poetry and art in beautiful collaborations. I have created a page on my website to view all the episodes of A Great Nephew and a Great Aunt. Click HERE to visit the page and enjoy past episodes.

Today it’s my pleasure to share a creative collaboration from . . .

B.J. Lee and Her Husband Malcolm Deeley

From B.J.: This is a painting my husband did many years ago when we first moved to Florida. Recently I was perusing the paintings on his website and this one prompted a poem.

Malcolm’s Painting

Art by Malcolm

B.J.’s Poem

I love that Malcolm’s painting inspired B.J.’s poem and that we get to enjoy her vision of his work in her beautiful words.

The Collaborators

Many thanks to B.J. and Malcolm for sharing their talents with us today.

Meet B.J.: B.J. Lee’s debut picture book is forthcoming with Pelican Publishing (contract pending). She is an award-winning poet with over 90 poems published/forthcoming in anthologies and magazines. Her anthology credits include National Geographic Book of Nature Poetry, National Geographic’s United States of Poetry (both edited by J. Patrick Lewis; 2015, 2018, respectively), One Minute Till Bedtime (Little, Brown; ed. Kenn Nesbitt) and 15 others. Her magazine credits include SpiderHighlights, The Journal of Children’s Literature and The School Magazine (Australia). She’s had poems nominated six times for the Rhysling Award. B.J. earned a M.S. in Library Science from Simmons College and a B.A. in English. She lives in Florida with her poet husband, Malcolm Deeley, and toy poodle, Bijoux. She’s currently hard at work on a verse novel.



50 thoughts on “A Great Nephew and a Great Aunt Guests: B.J. Lee and Her Husband Malcolm Deeley

  1. A gorgeous painting must elicit a poem to equal it, BJ and Malcolm. I love the idea of those “trailing clouds” that you found in the painting, BJ. Thanks, Penny, for another beautiful pairing.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. I’ve been following BJ’s poetry for years. I’m excited she will be having a picture book published. Love this combination of vivid colors and weather words. Great partnership, those two. I hope they do collaborate more often.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Margaret! Thank you for *following* my poetry! It would be nice to get a collection published. Some day! Fingers crossed. Thanks for your kind words! ❤ Maybe Mal and I should do a book together and self-pub. It's an idea!

      Liked by 2 people

  3. Gasp! What a beautiful pairing of image and words….and well, people. I’m impressed with the story your poem tells…but it’s all right there in the painting too. I just love it. You are quite an inspiration to me wherEVER I find your words. Thank you both for sharing this week.

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  4. Very nice! I like how Malcolm’s painting takes on that snow-shedding parasol shape when viewed from a distance. “… dangled recklessly” gives the Storm Queen such a dangerous, yet stylish personality.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thanks for your comment, Violet. It’s interesting to read in B.J.’s words her vision of the art. Until I read her poem, I didn’t see the Storm Queen…but now it’s so evident and I love how cool that is!


    2. Thank you, Violet! and thanks for hosting Poetry Friday this week! I loved the idea of this, sort of, imperious Queen floating through the skies, tossing snow recklessly about (although this is my own interpretation of Mal’s painting 🙂 )


    1. Hi Patricia!

      A husband and wife teaming up is the best thing ever, expecially when it comes to the arts. I am very lucky to have found this man. I had to wait until I was 41 years old for him, but it was worth the wait.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Michelle! Yup, this is what I saw in the painting, even though, when I showed it to Mal, he said that wasn’t what he had intended at all when painting it. But he loves the poem and was glad I got “something” out of it. WIth abstract art, people will see different things.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Thank you, Penny, for hosting us today. Mal’s painting looks wonderful, as always! It was a joy to collaborate with him. Methinks I’ll be doing more. Thank you very much! ❤

    Liked by 1 person

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