Official Website of Author / Illustrator
journeys to the interior
poetry * illustration * creative guidance
My Life's Work... & Joy!
For over 30 years I have offered poetry and creativity workshops in a variety of venues, currently including the College of Marin and as a Marin County Poet in the Schools, for which I was awarded a 2005 Radio Disney Super Teacher Award.
As Poet Laureate of Marin County (2015-17), I produced over 50 performances & projects which mingled art forms: poetry & dance, painting, music, film... even magic!
My teaching and writing are infused with the meditation I practiced over 4 years in India, though I also credit excursions into other art forms: counseling psychologist, vegetarian cook, mother of 2, meditation instructor at Cornell University, book and cover illustrator, and amateur singer-songwriter. (also, an MFA from Syracuse University, 2013)
My life has been a quest for the lost continent of awe. With pen and brush as my oars, writing and painting take me there…
I hope my poems and illustrations might take you there too.
Feel of the Cloth
The emperor wanted to believe
the itinerant tailors—that the robe they’d
made for him had been woven of light.
Which, of course, it was.
Of sunlight and air.
His heartbeat quickened as they
pointed out the iridescent beads of dew
and delicate taffeta of fog.
The pale blue moonglow trim.
The emperor wanted to hear
the whisper of wingbeats as he
fingered the cloth, to smell
the sweet decay of the forest floor.
And so he did. As he dove head-first
into that glorious garment he heard
and smelled uncountable things.
It was like nothing, he said
when he regained his wits, like nothing
he’d ever put on. Like wearing a cloud.
Or a breeze. It’s not of this world,
he said to the tailors, who nodded
and smiled… Which, come to think of it,
was their only lie. For this world
was precisely what they used for their warp,
our commonest threads their woof.
~ Prartho Sereno, from Indian Rope Trick
prartho's award-winning poetry books
(click on info button to purchase)
Call from Paris
2007 Word Works Washington Prize
2015 Blue Lynx Prize
Causing a Stir:
The Secret Lives & Loves of Kitchen Utensils
Indian Rope Trick
2018 Blue Light Book Award
Praise for Indian Rope Trick
The magnificent poems of Prartho Sereno reground us in our bodies, in the glistening syllables and scenes surrounding us. They retune us to a tender, more palpably luminous world we would prefer to inhabit.
Naomi Shihab Nye
Chancellor, American Academy