It’s been a while since I posted, which is unfortunate because a lot of cool stuff happened: The Spring 2015 issue of North American Review came out with my poem “Invocation,” the Jack Straw reading series happened in May, the Jack Straw anthology was published, I read twice at Northwest Folklife (once for a Poetry on Buses event and again with some of my Jack Straw cohort), and I had my week on the Poetry on Buses website.
My husband and I have also been house-hunting, which (as many people have observed) is like a second job. Apart from eating up my time, it has been eating up my attention and my will, and more to the point, it has fostered in my mind a belief that I am not allowed to spend time and mental energy on poetry while we’re in this period of pressure and uncertainty.
Few beliefs could be more wrongheaded, I know. When I’m not making and reading poems, I’m only a partial person, and nothing else in my life can really be right.
For encouragement, I went back and read a Facebook comment from one of my fellow Jack Straw writers, Martha Kreiner, an exceptionally wise and openhearted poet. She was responding to my query about how things were going one week this spring while we were all trying to get our work ready for the anthology:
How it’s going: struggling to keep creativity sparking while also supporting my family during the health transitions of my dad, working, and vacationing (as an antidote) in Disneyland. What fantastic practice. I always think of you writers who are also parents—hats off. You do it every day. Some of us are newer to the extreme balancing act. But it’s all happening. I’m writing some words, attending a building inspection, rearranging some words, waiting in line at the Haunted Mansion, crossing some words out, measuring the storage unit at my parents’ new condo, reordering lines, vacuuming out the car, and figuring out what I’m trying to say. I guess that’s how we all roll all the time. We are kind of amazing.
Yes, Martha, we are, when we allow ourselves to be. Thanks—I needed that reminder.