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Heal Me Open

Rise through darkness;
Sun glittering amid her trees.
Awake. Alive.
Revisiting the feeling of being.


been looking for a means to draw using my eye tracker; just couldn’t figure it out until yesterday. I realized I could set the “mouse” settings. I set one to “hold down” and lines became possible.

Now, I am practicing making lines. It is not as easy as one might think. Concentration and realizing how much your eyes move and you don’t realize it.

Keep exploring! and paint much love always,
Connie Karleta Sales
a.k.a. This Crooked Little Flower

lines of possibility

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April/May What’s Up!

Dear Friends, Its Here! Ready for Pre-Order
We are together in the otherness of each other

So excited to be able to share such talented and awesome creatives! Thursday, May 9th, pre-orders will ship out, PDF downloads will email!

Also, I will be giving away one print edition and 10 PDF versions. I will combine all the names of followers from Instagram, Facebook, Medium, and WordPress, and draw at random. That’s 11 total, for each year I have remained cancer-free!

It is time to Celebrate Life!

Its that time – TRAC Studio Tour
Friday, May 31 – Sunday, June 2
10am – 5pm each day
w/ artist reception at the TRAC Gallery,
Spruce Pine on Oak St. Friday, May 31, 5:30-7:30pm

Please join us, Crooked Little Flower and Burnt Mountain Pottery, we are #98 on the Tour Map, located at 39 Castanea, Bakersville NC.

from HWY 19, take 80 N (approx. 3 miles) turn right on Rebels Creek (at the Rebels Creek Baptist Church) approx. 1.2 miles you will see our studios on the left; a long, single story, rectangular building with dark charred siding. You will also see the studio signage on the end of the building as you drive up. We look forward to meeting you!

Come, enjoy, tag us on social, keep the conversation going

Refreshments will be served; art and poetry to enjoy and purchase.

paint much love, always,
Connie Karleta Sales
a.k.a. This Crooked Little Flower

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she loves her

art met soul.
swan-gazed they embraced,

each their stillness of
frenzy; blushed with their curiosity.

Twins, Art met Soul, #shelovesher, work in progress, digital drawing, part of Standing Human

my art met my soul when I was just a little girl. I didn’t know it. Its probably a good thing. She was a quiet constant in my life; art and soul. When I met the both them, I was in college and home where I had always been; submerged in the Creative.

it was 1994, within my installation of Bearing the Burdens of the Father; personal reflections with the Stations of the Cross, where I came to know her and accept that she was me, and this me loved the connections with we.

she did not really belong to me; I always knew that. I was her hands and her feet. She taught me and told me what she needed; entrusted me to care for her needs, to meet her voice with mine.

not just my art and my soul, but your art and your soul too

here we are today, standing human, together. she loves her which means she loves you. Have you met her? If so, how are you; how is she? If not, what stops you from holding her hand? May you know her, may you be satiated.

paint much love, always,
Connie Karleta Sales
a.k.a. This Crooked Little flower

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Young Ones: You Have A Voice. Use It.

From my dear friend and immensely talented author, and founder/publisher of A Cornered Gurl: A call for submissions for the Young writers and artists. Tre is a champion of mentoring and supporting our young creatives:

I am posting this here as well just in case there are some young, active users on Medium who may not receive letters from A Cornered Gurl or may not know how to begin their writing journey with a publication. WordPress, you are family–I know how you are about our young ones, how we have to raise them up, give them their space, and allow them a chance to step foot into this world the way that they need to by sounding off… Here is just one opportunity. There will be more.

Young Minds of Medium

A Challenge: Let Me Hear You Roar!

This is a call for submissions. Young Minds of Medium — this is your challenge. I am looking for work from the young Writers here on Medium, ages 15–25. Submissions will be reviewed and posted on Mondays and Fridays during the month of April. This is your time to shine. I want to hear from you. I want to feel, connect with, and help you bring to light what you have held inside for so long — what you want to write about but may not know how to.

Your theme: “Let Me Hear You Roar!”

What am I asking?

Give me the anger that’s swelling deep inside you, channel it and let’s get creative with it. You think you can’t put what you’re feeling into words, try me — let’s make it happen together.

I am looking for:

Fiction (no more than 850 words)
Non-fiction (no more than 850 words)
And, your heart. 

•You will need to be a current user on Medium for this challenge. Request to be added as a Writer by emailing me at with “Please Add Me” as the subject line. For the young ones, ages 15–25 already contributing to ACG, please submit your work in draft-form directly to A Cornered Gurl for review, scheduling, and/or publishing. You can submit twice per week, your works will be published on Monday and Friday of that week. Please have a suitable image for your work with notable credit to its source/artist (please include the link). You can find a host of great images via Unsplash, Pixabay, and Pexels. If you are the source for your image, please caption that.

Please subtitle your entries “Young Minds of Medium Anger Call” and tag your pieces with the following “Growth” & “Anger.” The other three tags, you can choose at your own discretion. CHALLENGE SUBMISSIONS BEGINS NOW!

The start date for publishing the YMOM pieces is Monday, April 1, 2019, and the end date is Monday, April 28, 2019. Other contributors to ACG, please do not fret. You can submit as you normally would to A Cornered Gurl and your work will be published as well, however, a total of three pieces will be published on Mondays and Fridays for all other Writers, leaving the floor wide open for our young ones. I hope you can understand and accept this.

Please remember that A Cornered Gurl is a read-for-all community and there will be no metered paywall or locked pieces published here. Thank you.

Young Minds of Medium, LET ME HEAR YOU ROAR!

ACG Submission Guidelines:

Originally published via A Cornered Gurl on Medium.

*Reposted with permission.

paint much love always,
Connie Karleta Sales
a.k.a. This Crooked Little Flower

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Standing Human

weary joint-knot
fade pale your wounds
into the horizons of the sun;
setting our hearts to rest.


Standing Human, digital sketch, 10 x 14 inch (25.4 x 35.56 cm)

In the past week, I have been witness to people being treated less than. Also, being lifted up by still others.

I don’t understand why we can hurt each other as we do. I don’t know what drives us to knock down, stifle motivation and passion. There is nothing wrong with honest reality. That is different than purposely separating and demeaning.

Ego drives us to act better than we are, or to put someone down to make ourselves feel better.

I love watching that darkness trying to suffocate life, and see the love actions of others making sure light wins.

Much of my reflections lately come back to mental health, in particular how we treat people with mental illness. By random chance, an article about a possible development in Dallas came through my news feed google graces me with on my phone.

It caught my attention, because the possible development involved Timberlawn Psychiatric Hospital; to be turned into some sort of homes/gated community? Caught my attention. In the mid 1990’s I was there. Some pretty horrific experience.

This led to an article last year announcing its closing. The state was going to close them if they didn’t close themselves. A rabbit hole of articles and I realize it wasn’t just me. My experience was minimal compared to the horrors some experienced.

My rabbit hole keeps expanding. My questions grow. My desire to speak more urgent.

Profits and less than(ness).

Other than to say, my desire to finish and produce the play I have been working on is reinvigorated. I am placing the words of my molesters and abusers next to words of medical staff. Then placing the words of dear friends, mentors next to the words of yet more medical staff.

Whatever you call it, two words may describe; 1) unacceptable and 2) love. May the play example both for the sake of awareness, education, connection.

May you be empowered to speak up for yourself even when all seems hopeless. May you find a path, your path.

You are beautiful. You are enough.

paint much love, always,
Connie Karleta Sales
a.k.a. This Crooked Little Flower

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Into the see

Shakes of the frost from
Long ago griefs
Chill-boned she bares
Warmed by her embers
She glows sweet night.


Into the See, digital drawing, 6 x 6 in (15.24 x 15.24 cm)

Fire of life; it burns within the soul, and you, my lovelies, show me hope. Challenging my doubts and insecurities and loving me into light.

This one, she is a fiery one; baring her passion, and teaching me how to sing such life songs.

Oh, Creative, you are my everything, and I am so thankful you have been with me all my life and beyond.

paint much love, always,
Connie Karleta Sales
a.k.a. This Crooked Little Flower

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and don’t forget share. My work is meant to be shared. Thank you so much! CKS

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Slender Wisp

Billowy slenders wisp toward the sun;
fingerlings of sky, teach me;

of my frosted thoughts
notions of vision-dreamer unattained;

frustration’s mark,
cold and dark
am I.

Winter slenders,
depth filled strength
flexing in whisper’s breath;
tickling the sun,
filtering through frozen mist;
living, you are.

Teach me,
in the marrow of your alive,
resting in your stillness
my exhaustions caressed;
revived into the gasping
waters; soaking me whole.


Slender Wisp, digital drawing, 10 x 8 in (22.86 x 17.78cm)

This week I expended a lot of mental and emotional energies. I did call to ensure the right bags were shipped, and no, they were not. In fact, I was told there was no record of my call. I was questioned whether I really spoke to a supervisor.

She repeats that there is not proper documentation, and without a doctor’s prescription, they will not send the bags. I volley back asking where did it go? The company you bought out had it, your company assured Blue Ridge all the information transfers. What happened?

I can’t speak to that ma’am
You need a doctors orders for the flush bags.

I state clearly my intention to have Blue Ridge, (which Lin Care now owns) brings bags, and will not be charged. This is not my fault as you are implying. Without the right supplies, I am at risk to be hospitalized, and I will not risk my life. Without proper nutrition and hydration, I will become at the least weak and ill, and at worst, I will die. I have been using the bags with flush for a year now.

At this point, I am tired. my voice is getting weaker, and she is having some trouble understanding me. After all is said and done, my husband called the doctor. Over the course of a couple of days the prescription was faxed multiple times. Lin Care stated to my doctor’s office it can take up to 48 hours to receive the fax. I will call again, giving them their stated time, to ensure it was received. When I am better rested I will write a formal complaint. I am filing not just with the company, also the BBB, and my states Attorney General. We will call everyday until it is resolved if we have too.

In word and image is how I reset. I empty my soul until I feel the warmth of love and safety once again. I called out for help, and the winter-slender trees passing through the sunlight answered.

Stress is a trigger for disease. It exacerbates exhaustion and fatigue. Couple it with the cold/infection I have been battling for over a month now, and I am spent. I am mentally and physically tired. I am okay though.

I have support. I have practice and skills within my own self too. My quality of life is profound. Yes, I can get lost in moments of sheer “cabin-feverness”. The I want out, now! Not another moment! I am done!

This is normal. Who doesn’t. I get to look around at my loved ones. I get to pause, and see beauty. Seeing the human on the other end of the phone line; she is following her job. She has bills to pay; she is beautiful. The situation is not beautiful; she did not invent it; she is in the middle of it just like me.

My family and friends are in the middle of it, just like me. We all have are experiences that exhaust us. Life never promises easy. What I know is life is no less beautiful, and I get to decide how I see. I get to experience and acknowledge a situation for what it is. unacceptably ugly.

I also get to decided how I respond. And that is a most wonderous choice no one can take away. I choose both honesty and happyness.

paint much love always,
Connie Karleta Sales
a.k.a. This Crooked Little Flower

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and, please don’t forget share. My work is meant to be shared. Thank you so much! CKS

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Breathing Through Fear

Fear of my Hunger
of helplessness soaking your deafness.
not your fault; not mine; so whose?

left there I am nowhere.

The leaves are rustling,
twinkling soft winks through my window;
it is a smile pausing
a Moment of none.


Breathing through Fear, digital drawing, 10 x 8in (22.86 x 17.78cm)

I rely on my feeding tube for nutrition and sustenance. My stomach does not empty fast enough for bolus feeds, and swallowing ability is limited. Nutritionally balanced formula and water are slowly dripped via a feeding pump 24/7.

My formula and supplies are delivered monthly. At the end of December the company delivered a weeks worth of formula and supplies, and stated the rest will be shipped. It was then they informed us they were bought out by another company. New company drop ships everything.

That was on a Friday. Come Wednesday, no formula and no supplies. I call to make sure everything will arrive by Friday. This is when my local company and I learned that, no, my account was not set up; my information as a patient was not transferred over in the buy out.

My local company and I get on the phone with this new company. I am told they are waiting on my chart, and there is noone to contact to expedite. I must wait.

So, my formula and supplies are not going to arrive by Friday.
“I understand it must be frustrating, ma’am.”

Um, I rely on this for my nutrition and sustenance. Running out is detrimental. Frustrating does not describe how I feel. Eventually resolution did happen. I spent until yesterday without. I dealt with not having enough.

It does not end there. They sent the wrong bags. I call. I am told they will correct this but will not be able to ship the right bags until next month. NO. This is not possible. I have a few extra but you must fix this and send them. I shut down the initial attempt to blame everyone but their company with the firm broken record technique. The correct bags are being sent. I will call today to ensure it is done.

I was Hungry, Angry, Lonely, and Tired as the adage goes. And I did what the adage says to do – HALT.

My personality is such, today, I speak up. I am a squeaky wheel. My family squeaks on my behalf. I can remember when this was not the case. I remember myself, when I was terrified and quiet to my own detriment.

Any small opposition, I shut down; sometimes hiding in my closet; doubting my own reality; finding new ways to call myself stupid.

Making it okay to be hungry; I don’t deserve to meet my needs. Selfish to ask and feeling guilty over feeling scared; when frustration does not describe the situation.

These feelings of panic and anxiety are familiar. I feel small and humiliated; making hurt normal and making a wrong; right. A mix of inexcusable behavior, livable.

My natural inclination is to write, to doodle, to draw until it leaves; until I feel safe again; until I am able to look up and say, okay, its gonna be okay Connie.

The only difference today is having a few more techniques in materials and facility. I have a greater sense of self. Response versus desperation.

This week, I chose to breath into the fear. With this, I smile into the hunger. I sit with anger. and we dance, and the dance is genuine, life lives full, and I stay in view. Occupying the space I do. My needs; met.

paint much love, always,
Connie Karleta Sales
a.k.a. This Crooked Little Flower

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Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

and, please don’t forget share. My work is meant to be shared. Thank you so much! CKS

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My Beautiful Mountain

are monumental
within my soul.


Somewhere in Idaho
Mountain Study
Inner Joy

Once again, lost in Idaho.  We always love to take the back roads.  There is a certain magic and safety in the wilderness.  It feels as if the mountains and the pine trees are there to protect you.

Here the mountain rises up and asks me to do the same.  She recharges my insecurities. I do my part to protect her.  Do my best to leave no trace, so that generations to come will be able to experience the mountain just as I do in all her beauty.

The ink dances with the sanded paper.

paint much love, always,
Connie Karleta Sales
a.k.a. This Crooked Little Flower