Marine Corps Air Station Cherry Point --
When asked what motivates her to get out of bed every morning, Gunnery Sgt. Laura Stanislaw looked down at her desert camouflage uniform through big, piercing blue eyes. Her slender fingers and well-manicured fingernails play with the pen on her desk. “I’m just happy,” she said with a shrug and a smile. The family readiness officer for Marine Aircraft Group 40 describes her job as, “the most rewarding work I’ve done in the Marine Corps.”
Stanislaw’s work, and every other piece of her day-to-day life, has driven her foray into a new field – publishing a book of poetry. “One Heart, True Words” is slated to be published by the end of May and will feature 18 poems she has written since 2005.
It all started with the poem “Passion,” Stanislaw says. She was dating a man and spontaneously decided to write a poem about the relationship. She then easily transitioned into writing about everything in her life, good or bad.
“I’ve been through a lot in my life. Over the years, I’ve learned to turn every negative into a positive,” Stanislaw said. “I’ve been sad and unhappy before, that’s no place to be. It’s unhealthy.”
Stanislaw’s poetry probes every aspect of her life without preference or prejudice, a feature she described as being important to the therapy provided by the poems.
“She is an ambitious and energetic person,” said Dawn Rae, the family readiness officer for 2nd Marine Aircraft Wing. “She seems to get great satisfaction from helping people.”
Stanislaw said when she was participating in an advanced course in Quantico, a gunnery sergeant stood up and told a story about a friend of his who was killed in a roadside bomb, and as he stood there and told his story, Stanislaw could see the shrapnel wounds from the event on the Marine’s face. That event was the driving inspiration behind the poem “Sacrifice,” one of her favorite poems from her book.
“Life is not as perfect as a bed of roses,” Stanislaw said. “There are ups and downs, positives and negatives. In the end, stick it out and turn into the person you want to be.”
Rae said she is a big fan of Stanislaw’s poetry and finds it absolutely inspiring.
“Through her words, feelings and emotions come alive,” Rae said.