Arriving at Each Other’s Doors

A poetry thoughtshop on Compassion


Bring your open heart, your closed heart, your hope and your pen to this virtual playground, where poems will serve as invitations to change the way we meet the day and each other (whether we choose to pick up that pen or not). As our lives rush by, how do we choose to be more open to love? How do we choose to build bridges—or not? And how might poetry help us celebrate and explore our shared humanity?

In this 40-minute poetry thoughtshop, poet Rosemerry Wahtola Trommer shares poems about compassion, connection and how it is we come together. She also offers a host of writing prompts to help you write your own poems that explore how you choose to meet the world. This event is hosted by SHYFT at Mile High whose mission is to provide all people, regardless of ability to pay, with classes and programs proven to reduce stress, move through trauma, and create connection.

Below are links and attributions for the poems shared in this program:

Nothing Wants to Suffer

—Danusha Laméris, first published on The Sunday Poem (Gwarlingo, 2021)


Instructions for Pie

—Donna Hilbert, from Threnody (Moon Tide Press, 2022)



—Naomi Shihab Nye, from Red Suitcase (BOA Editions, Ltd., 1994)


Because Even the Word Obstacle Is an Obstacle

—Alison Luterman, from Desire Zoo (Tia Chucha, 2014)


@ the Crossroads—A Sudden American Poem

—Juan Filipe Herrera, first published in Poem-a-Day (Academy of American Poets, July 10, 2016)


Watching My Friend Pretend Her Heart Isn’t Breaking

—Rosemerry Wahtola Trommer, first appeared in Braided Way (November 7, 2019)


The Word That Is a Prayer

—Ellery Akers, from The Place That Inhabits Us (Sixteen Rivers Press, 2010)



—James Crews, originally published in Poem-a-Day (Academy of American Poets, November 17, 2021)


Hold Out Your Hand

—Julia Fehrenbacher, from Staying in Love (CCB Publishing, 2021)



—Sharon Corcoran, from The Two Worlds (Middle Creek Publishing, 2021)


As You Have Done for Me

—Rosemerry Wahtola Trommer, first appeared in