The “SHARED VISIONS 2” music, spoken word and arts recognition premiered in April of 2019 at Bethany Lutheran Church in Denver, CO and St. John’s Episcopal Church in Boulder, CO.  This blog presents the Synapse Tapestry segment of the program with artwork by John Bonath, words by Rosemerry Trommer, musical composition by Paul Fowler, performed by Ars Nova Singers.


We are perhaps like neurons
that never touch—
but that doesn’t stop
the chemical buzz,
the lightning charge
the electric thrill
that leaps the gap—
and in that span
all meaning is made,
long red ropes of memory
twisting and knotting,
braiding, unbraiding,
and nothing
is ever the same.

– Rosemerrry Wahtola Trommer

“Shared Visions 2” began with visual artists submitting artwork and poets submitting poetry.  A group of finalists was established.  Selected poets responded to the selected visual art and an anthology was created of the art and poetry.  Then, four composers were commissioned to each select one work and in response write a new choral piece. The project culminated with the Ars Nova Singers premiering the four new choral works with the poets, visual artists, and composers.

One of the four “teams” consisted of visual artwork by John Bonath, poetry by Rosemerry Wahtola Trommer and choral composition by Paul Fowler.

John Bonath, visual artist

Artist Statement
As an artist, I do not simply try to please the eye but to activate the imagination to ponder, wonder, emote, relate and somehow cause a personal interpretation to take place.  “Synapse Tapestry” is a psychological study in red.  The rose-madder root used to dye this hand-spun yarn from Iran is a very blood-like color from antiquity that is used in rug-making.  The identification of the yarn is but a place to grab onto and jump off from.  My imagination takes me to a place inside the body, or underwater, where synapse-like energy is transmitted through the organism.  It is a visual journey into my own subconscious psyche touching on the nature of physical mortality.  A place that others are invited to journey into and have their own interpretive experience.  

Rosemerry Wahtola Trommer, poet

Rosemerry Wahtola Trommer

Rosemerry (aka Wordwoman) is a poet extraordinaire living in Placeville, CO (a small town on the Western Slope of the Rockies).  She’s very excited to have just found out she will be performing in the National Storytelling Festival in Jonesboro, NC later this year.

Her fabulous new book of poetry, Naked for Tea, was a finalist for the Able Muse Book Award and is now available! For more on her books and such visit her website at:

Rosemerry also does a weekly podcast on “creativity” that she co-hosts with scientist Christie Aschwanden:

Here is a link to her daily poems:

I very highly recommend her great Tedx talk on The Art of Changing Metaphors… very inspiring and entertaining.  Check it out at:>

Paul Fowler, composer

Paul Fowler

Paul is a brilliant and fun musician and composer.  A number of his contemporary choral compositions have been debuted by the Ars Nova Singers.

The Philadelphia Inquirer – Sourcing materials parsed from the world’s spiritual traditions and natural beauty, Paul Fowler’s music will “work on you from the inside out”.

The Washington Post – Fowler draws from his experience as a vocalist, improvising pianist and electronic musician to integrate old and new into “emotionally intense” works.

The New York Times – Paul Fowler’s works are “radiant, ghostly and shimmering”.

You can listen to a playlist of Paul’s music at:

Ars Nova Singers

Specializing in a cappella music of the Renaissance and the 20th and 21st centuries, Ars Nova Singers of Boulder, Colorado  celebrates its 33rd concert season in 2018-2019. The professional-core ensemble conducted by founding Artistic Director Thomas Edward Morgan is composed of selectively auditioned choral musicians from the Denver/Boulder metropolitan region. In its history, Ars Nova has presented over 400 performances of more than 100 different concert programs.

Thomas Morgan, Artistic Director and Conductor of the Ars Nova Singers, has been acknowledged as a leading interpreter of new music in Colorado.  Under his leadership the choir has become one of the premier ensembles in the region.

To listen to a sampling of Ars Nova music (and some of Paul Fowler’s choral compositions) here is a link.

"Synapse Tapestry Triptych" (studies with hand-spun yarn from Northwestern Iran) by John Bonath archival pigment ink on canvas, hand-worked with oils and acrylic veneers, three panels, 52"H x 126"W
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    • Kelly Brenner
      November 8, 2019

      This is a really cool collaboration!

    • Rosemerry Trommer
      December 21, 2019

      I love the way you’ve brought the project together in one space–you ARE a tapestry weaver, synapse maker, amazement of a man!

    • Tom Morgan
      December 21, 2019

      Love this, John…thanks for capturing it all!

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