NEW GLASGOW — A resident of Glen Haven for three years has had two exciting accomplishments recently that have residents, staff and members of the community alike beaming with pride for her.
Nancy Marshall recently self-published her book of poetry entitled, Nancy’s Poetry & Songbook, and has also just been informed that one of her poems will be published by Polar Expressions Publishing in its publication Patterns. Marshall’s poem, Garden Party, has made it through the first round of the company’s poetry contest. Polar Expressions is a small Canadian publisher dedicated to creating books showcasing poems and short stories written by Canadians of varying ages, backgrounds and occupations. The poem was publicly introduced and read by Marshall at the 49th annual Glen Haven Festival of the Tartans Garden Party this past summer.
Marshall says with a smile that she has found her niche and it is to write poetry and song lyrics. The works featured in her poetry book were created in collaboration with Kelsey MacDonald, a former music therapist at Glen Haven who is now a music therapist at the Aberdeen Hospital. Marshall says she is grateful for MacDonald’s support and that she views her book of poetry also as a treasured memento of her time collaborating with MacDonald at Glen Haven.
Glen Haven Manor CEO Lisa M. Smith says, “We are very proud of Nancy’s creative talents and excited that she is able to share them with a wider audience. It warmed my heart to read Nancy’s poem Hand in Hand about the strong connections between residents and residents’ families and our staff as well as resident to resident and to see it included in her book.”
Marshall worked on the book for two years and is relieved that the project has been completed. She has dedicated her book to her two sisters posthumously and says her passion for writing brings her great joy.
She is now enjoying the opportunity to work on more songs and poems with Heather Cameron Leeder, Glen Haven’s current music therapist.
Marshall advises that “creativity keeps your mind sharp” and she hopes her creative writings help motivate others to “listen to more poetry and to appreciate family, friends and the life we have.”
Marshall was born and raised in Pictou County. In 1999, she started a writing business and published her work through a self-employment organization called Entrepreneurs with Disabilities Network. She has self-published her work a step at a time between the ages of 20 and 30 years.
The author has won two awards in self-employment — first an honourable mention and then an Entrepreneur of the Year Award, both of which were recognized by the Province of Nova Scotia. She also designed greeting cards as an entrepreneurial business.
In 2017, she began writing lyrics while she continued writing poetry. Marshall has a passion for writing and it brings her great joy. She says that her family gives give her inspiration for all of her writings and that she likes to write about her family, friends, community and faith.
“My mom is my best book seller,” she beams.
“I also want Glen Haven to have a copy of my new poetry books to share with other residents and staff and I have given three books to the New Glasgow Library.”