Making the past relevant to the future


In March 2021, I communicated with poet, writer, and creative influencer, Janet Mason on the occasion of the publication of her 2020 novel, The Unicorn, The Mystery

More to the point...

Back then, I was road tripping to support my wife’s business meetings and brought Janet’s book along to accompany and nourish my mind while Lisa was engaged in her business activities. Intriguingly, I finished The Unicorn, The Mystery probably on the eve of St. Patrick's Day. Afterwards, I thanked Janet for her novel’s creativity, and its imaginative journey encompassing myriad imageries, and subtle but endearing wisdoms that dotted each page of the story. I was grateful for the read and savored every sentence and nuance that she put into this work.  

{Mason’s novel reminded me that on many Saturday mornings, I “hung” at the Cloisters, a space that was so welcoming and comforting. And the tapestries! My hidden treasure.}  

Back then, I thanked Ms. Mason for bringing her gift of creativity to my consciousness. And voiced an intention…that maybe, just maybe Lisa and I would get the chance to venture to Philadelphia, where Janet and her partner lived so all of us to have the opportunity to break bread!!! 

In May 2022, that thought was manifested. 

Prior to visiting Philly to actually meet Janet and Barbara, I re-read (in a broad sense) The Unicorn…. Needless to say, the novel still maintained its raw emotional power and below the surface affects to embolden my spirit. Influential creativity does have the power to stand the test of time and re-invoke the subtle emotional nuances that were there on an initial read. 

I recommend you add this novel to your summer reading list! 

Furthermore, Ms. Mason found out this past week another novel, Loving Artemis will be published in August by Thorned Heart Press. This piece was shopped around for more than seven years and will be another welcome addition to her literary portfolio and the public’s recognition of her literary work. 

And then there was the face to face “manifestation” in May. 

Janet Mason, bill berry, jr., Barbara McPherson, Philedelphia, PA, May 4, 2022

Lisa and I finally met Janet and Barbara McPherson in person and enjoyed an alfresco lunch at a specialty pizza bistro in the cultural heart of Philly very close to the Barnes Foundation Museum. {If you have been to Philly, think Ben Franklin Parkway area.} 

bill berry, jr., Janet Mason, and Lisa Brennan, Philedelphia, PA (May 4, 2022)

For a couple of hours, we enjoyed talking through a wide range of topics; conversation marked by smiles and laughter, as well as poignant story telling of shared and similar life episodes. This meeting was an appropriate closure to a trip to “freedom’s city” and its rich generational and contemporary heritages. 


Thank you Janet Mason and Barbara McPherson. Hopefully, the next get-together will be in the northwest region of New York State marked by the picturesque Finger Lakes. And the publication of yet another Mason novel or non-fiction piece.


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