The “Awakening Genius” writing retreat this past week at the Mandala Center in northern New Mexico was outstanding. So much good work and inspiration, deep breakthroughs, laughs, and revelations. Among the revelations was Beverly Manley, left, a poet from Truth or Consequences, N.M., who blew us all away with her spirit (and her verse). Mandala is located in the center of a super-volcano and the harsh, beautiful landscape tears the senses open and make way for spiritual growth. This was my second year there and I plan to have a Seekers Forum retreat at Mandala in 2014. Our hosts, Karen and Monica, were superb. “What makes the engine go?” Stanley Kunitz asked in a poem written on his 80th birthday. “Desire, desire, desire.” Our exploration of desire and the creative life in “Awakening Genius” left me with a lot to think about. Thanks to all of you who came.