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Janet Adkins, 1928-2019
A life filled with art
April 30, 2019

J
anet Brown Adkins, award-winning painter and nationally published poet, passed away on April 21st. Janet was one of the founding members of Circle 10 Art Gallery in Oriental, NC. She was a native of Austin TX and lived in France and Scotland before settling in North Carolina after her marriage.

Janet Adkins (Ben Casey photo)

Janet was a graduate of Smith College (BA) with an MA in French Language and Literature from UNC-Chapel Hill. Her undergraduate studies included a year at the Sorbonne, Paris. Janet Adkins’ love for art and creative writing spanned a lifetime. She worked as a freelance artist and writer and, for over two decades, taught French and Art on the High School and College levels.

Her love for Pamlico County and coastal living is depicted in her many paintings and her poetry. She loved fishing and spending summer days at the Outer Banks. A few of Janet’s paintings:

Janet’s awards for her drawing and paintings were numerous; she had a stack of ribbons that always graced the studio room where she worked. Her award winning poems appeared in magazines and several anthologies, including WALTZING ON WATER. Her published chapbooks were: THE NEW SPRITSAIL, SPRITSAIL and SARABELLE.

Janet was a charter member of St. Thomas Episcopal Church in Oriental. She is survived by her husband, Bobby D. Adkins of Minnesott Beach; son, Mark O. Adkins of Minnesott Beach; daughter, Amy A. Amerson, son-in-law, Randall J. Amerson, and her only grandchild and best fishing buddy, Adam R. Amerson, all of Trent Woods, NC.

Janet at Art On The Harbor in 2009

The Memorial service is Friday, May 10 1p at St. Thomas Episcopal Church. The honorable Father Jeremiah Day will preside. A brief visitation with the family will follow. Burial will be in the columbarium at St. Thomas. Cremation will be handled by Bryant Funeral Home in Alliance.


From Evie Chang Henderson:

Art was the life of Janet Adkins.
Painting and Poetry.
When she was not fishing.
Dedicated to her Church.
Dedicated to her family.
She loved Pamlico County.
The wind.
The saltiness of the air.
The boats that she endlessly painted.
There was a wit about her.
A quiet wise woman.
Pamlico has lost a daughter.
She will be greatly missed.


Janet’s poem IN THE MORNING LAND
© Janet Adkins

there was a closeness:

sun wove feathers
in the hair of young islands
and strong rain laced marsh to sky.

Over shell and sand
rivers darkened with fish,
on wind-hollowed bluff
cypress and cedar flickered
with wings, muscadine
made fawn thicket, low branches
scratched backs, rubbed velvet.

Thorn tree, wild persimmon,
palmetto, sweet bay and willow
wore magic necklaces
to capture sun, repeat the rain.

Children of the Spirit feasted
in the morning land,
called her their mother,
filled their hands with her gifts
and asked nothing more.

Before the rain dried,
before noon burned the grass––
a nation walked in
and walked out
without footprint.

Posted Tuesday April 30, 2019 by Keith N. Smith


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