“Sue’s poetry groups allowed and encouraged me, for the first time, to become an authentic person. That authenticity has continued to empower and strengthen me.”
B. Wetzel, Saratoga Springs, NY
Susan’s poetry sessions are like soaking in warm pool of words filled with rare minerals. You arrive perhaps empty, perhaps wounded by life. Susan offers you a soft poem to sit in for a while. You are replenished and you want to come back again and again.
Therese Broderick Albany, NY
"I’ve had the pleasure of knowing Susan for several years. Susan knows how to connect with and express essence. She has a natural, easy style that helps her clients get to the heart of the matter."
Lin Murphy, MSW, Saratoga Springs, NY
"With quiet encouragement and guidance from Susan, we each found form for putting our thoughts into words on paper. Other participants in the workshop expressed delight and renewed confidence in their ability to be expressive with words. Susan is a wonderful presence to be guided by in realizing poetry exists within us all."
Trent Millet, Lake Willoughby, VT and Saratoga Springs, NY
Susan is able to listen, respond creatively, and help students and clients realize their goals. She is clearly able to represent others' views and offer creative solutions to issues and concrete steps in moving forward. She is a team player who can understand and honor multiple viewpoints and work toward inclusive solutions.
Dr. Susan Oaks, Empire State College, State University of NY
Susan's careful poetry selection took me to a deeper awareness of myself. Nature themes of Autumn and word associations connected me with a thread to my soul that was very subtle and healing. It was a great experience for me personally as well as for sharing within the group.
A.H.G., Saratoga Springs, NY
Susan Jefts’ workshops use pre-chosen poems, to explore themes such as life transitions, illness, healing, and our connections to nature and spirit. She offers them in Vermont, New York State and elsewhere as small groups, and is also offers larger group experiences to retreat centers, colleges, schools, hospitals, retirement homes, and other organizations.
Susan poetry and essays focus on our connections to nature, sense of place, and on finding our own place in the world. She has presented at various conferences and colleges on topics of writing, personal sustainability, sense of purpose, and life direction. Her poetry and essays can be found in various literary journals including Blue Line, Parnassus, Bluestone, Big City Lit, The Literary Gazette, ByLine, Metroland Magazine, The Healing Muse, All About Mentoring, the award winning anthology, A Slant of Light, Birchsong II, the Best of Burlington Writers Anthology 2017, and Birchsong, an anthology of Vermont writers, in addition to various online publications.
She is currently working on her first full length book of poetry, and also venturing into a bit of songwriting and music making. Her work can be found online and in various print journals.
* * * * * * * *
Hi - I am Susan, the person behind Many Rivers Life Guidance. I have worked in higher education and in the greater community for over twenty years as a counselor, writing instructor, and Myers-Briggs Practitioner. The work I most love, in addition to writing, is encouraging and guiding people in creating meaningful, fulfilling life paths, whether their work is at the center, or something else.
I received by Bachelors degree from Saint Michael's College in Vermont, and my Masters in Counseling and Education from The College of Saint Rose in Albany, NY. In 1999 I became certified by the Association for Psychological Type as a Qualified Practitioner of the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI) and also completed an additional course for MBTI and Career Counseling.
In 2001, I began a program of studies at the Wordsworth Institute near Washington D.C. where I learned to use poetry and literature with people in therapeutic settings, schools, community centers, holistic health centers, and other settings. Poetry and other literature can be very evocative and powerful tools for guiding people more deeply into their life experience. This is especially true during times of change and transition, whether one is in school and just starting out, in midlife, or well past retirement.
I look forward to the opportunity to work with you on your journey.
* * * * * *
Blue Hour in the City
She says – measure the light
that is left, that falls
in out of nowhere she
yet to discover the place
just beyond the building spires
that make a point, like sharpened
graphite on the sky, as
it becomes night but really
it’s just the far part
of the blue hour –
the sacred time just
before morning, just
that no one can hold onto,
and few know how to enter.
By Susan Jefts, Previously published in Best of Burlington, 2017