Hi! I’m Phyllis Cole-Dai, author, poet, musical dabbler, and host of this online community. I’m so glad you’ve stepped aboard The Raft! Ready to head downstream?

On The Raft, we’re all about trying to live from our “true spot,” buoyed by the arts and spiritual practice. Many of us are also into making stuff, whether casually or professionally.

What’s our “true spot”? Imagine it as an inner place of deep integrity, confidence, compassion, and joy.

Get just what you want from The Raft community.

Don’t miss out! We have oodles of resources and opportunities, and The Raft is always evolving.

Read on to learn about . . .


When you join The Raft you’re automatically subscribed to every newsletter (or “section”) that I publish except Rafter Digest:

After you’ve sampled everything, you can adjust your settings to receive just the mailings you’re interested in.

Change your settings

Feeling “inbox overwhelm”? I recommend subscribing only to the Rafter Digest.

Rafter Groups

Watch for the video replays of these groups in either “Events & News” or “Rafter Digest.”

  • Poetry Pick-Me-Up (Zoom, Thursdays, 12-1PM Central). Host: Phyllis Cole-Dai. A casual poetry-sharing and discussion group. Bring a poem written by someone other than yourself to read to the group. Or, just come to listen to the poems offered by other Rafters and to participate in informal but wholehearted conversation about them. Hop on the Zoom at this link.

  • Creatives’ Coffee (Zoom, every other Wednesday, 4-5:00PM Central). Host: Phyllis Cole-Dai. Casual conversation among Rafters who view life as a creative practice. Many of us also like to “make stuff,” whether for fun or as a profession. Need companionship and support? Creative inspiration? Cross-fertilization of ideas? You’ll find oodles of all this and more. Hop on the Zoom at this link.

The gatherings of these next two groups are not recorded. Contact their hosts to learn how to join:

  • Poets on the Raft (Zoom, every other Wednesday opposite Creatives’ Coffee, 7PM Central). Hosts: Annette Grunseth, Gloria Heffernan. Currently limited to twelve participants, with waiting list. Email Annette Grunseth or use the button, and she’ll be glad to help you. (Watch your spam in case her reply gets routed there.)

    Email Annette

  • Rafters Writing Fiction (Zoom, every other Tuesday, 1PM Central). Host: Ferwa Jaffery. email Ferwa. Email Ferwa or use the button and she’ll be glad to help you. (Watch your spam in case her reply gets routed there.)

Email Ferwa

The Dig

With monthly “digs,” I encourage you to write from your true spot. I’ll email you a writing prompt, usually on the last Sunday of the month. You may respond to it in whatever written form tickles your fancy. You can join or opt out of this mailing list at any time by updating your subscription preferences.

Deep Dives

With month-long “deep dives,” I invite you to immerse yourself in particular “life themes,” using poetry reading, contemplation, journaling, creative work, and/or other practices. You can join or opt out of this mailing list at any time by updating your subscription preferences.

Rafter Discount

Woohoo! As a member of The Raft, you get a “forever” 15% discount in my website store. Just enter the code “rafter15” at checkout.

Whew, that’s a lot! Still with me?

One last thing . . .

I offer The Raft as a gift. However, if you can help support this community with a voluntary contribution, I’d be grateful. Consider your contribution a tangible expression of the value you find here.

You’ll get a few modest perks in return:

  • a personal email expressing my gratitude

  • a virtual patrons’ bash with me, once a year

  • most of all, the delight of knowing that you’re helping to keep The Raft fully accessible to absolutely everybody. (Yes, just like public broadcasting!)

Become a supporting subscriber of The Raft at one of these levels:

  • $5 per month

  • $50 per year (less than a dollar per week).

  • Raft Keeper: $150 per year

All contributions are collected via Substack, which receives a share of the proceeds. This enables the Substack platform to flourish as an alternative to other less user-friendly and less ethical social media platforms.

Grateful, grateful.

Again, I’m so glad you’re here. Always feel free to drop me a line.

Subscribe to The Raft

Riding the river of life, buoyed by the arts and spiritual practice. Climb aboard with author and curator Phyllis Cole-Dai!


I began pecking away on an old manual typewriter in childhood and never stopped. An author in multiple genres, I live with my scientist-husband and two cats in a 130-year-old house in Brookings, SD.