About Dale-Marie Bryan

I was born with an extra creativity gene, I think. Most of the time, it has been a blessing but there were times, as a child, I felt restless, like a green caterpillar trapped inside my drab girl cocoon.

My mother must have sensed my need for creative release, keeping me supplied with coloring books, paint-by-numbers, and models of birds to build. For awhile that sufficed and I stayed within the lines, defined the edges, and fitted the pieces together. But then she died and I realized the lines held no protection.

For awhile I used the lines as tethers, balancing on them, letting their limits hold me. They comforted me as I built Barbie houses from boxes and outlined make-believe dwellings with fallen twigs on the playground. Then I began to look beyond them and wonder where they led.

I’ve always been a reader; devouring sentences like that green caterpillar did leaves. At five, I filled my lap with books and let the pictures tell me stories. But I knew the lines below had meaning too and I cried because I couldn’t read them. I remember my excitement when the letters finally made sense and the words lined up into rich and wonderful sentences!

One of my first “good reads” was Harold and the Purple Crayon. I loved the way Harold’s purple lines led him everywhere – to the forest, the desert, and even to the moon. Later, my pencil became my purple crayon and I’ve been following the lines it’s made ever since.

Who Am I?

I am

a wife,

a mother,

and a grandma,

an artist,

a dancer,

and a gardener,

a talker,

a teacher,

and a laugher.

I’ve driven a tractor and helped plant fields of waving wheat.

I’ve been chased by a cow and jumped over a rattlesnake.

I’ve fed baby calves and let them suck on my fingers.

I’ve had mice run up my leg and fall on my head.

I’ve tasted sun-warmed blackberries fresh off the vine.

I’ve bathed in a river so clear I could see my toes.

I’ve been inches from death three times.

I’ve lived over thirty million minutes

and still (thankfully) counting!