Constructed, mostly

I’m trying out this new theme, with a few updates (for example, adding my new poetry collection to the Books & Anthologies page).

For now, I’ve removed the email subscription widget because I’d heard that it didn’t work and I’m not sure it’s compliant with GDPR.

If you want the email subscription, let me know. (I like to subscribe to things, but I don’t know whether anyone else does.) And if you have an email subscription widget to recommend, let me know!

Possibly, more changes will be in the works. It’s going to be iterative.

—Joannie

Big Poetry Giveaway 2018!

poetry giveaway image of books

Update! The names have been drawn and the books, finally, have been sent. My thanks to everyone who participated, and I hope everyone had a wonderful Poetry month and that you’re still writing!

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Yes, it’s National Poetry Month!

And yes, there’s another Big Poetry Giveaway! Many thanks to Andrea Blythe for hosting the giveaway this year.

It’s easy: Add your name by commenting on this post, and you’ll be entered to win one of two poetry books:

The Book of Endings, National Book Award finalist, by Leslie Harrison

The Scene You See, hot off the presses, by me

In the meantime–write, revise, celebrate!

Happy New Year!

flower in snowI love that the snow changes the way I see things. This morning didn’t bring drifts, but just enough shift in perspective, just enough of a clean slate, which feels right on the first day of the year. And while the garden has greatly changed, I have this one bloom, and the rosemary, and in the background the fava beans and rye my daughter planted. I love to make jokes about coming through the rye and the catcher in the rye.

Wishing you joy in the small things and strength for the big things throughout the year.

Here’s to 2017!

“Hope” is the thing with feathers

When despair lurks in the corners and weighs heavy in the air, I repeat Emily Dickinson’s opening line over and over. Just that line. On mornings like this morning.

I’ve talked about getting it inked onto my arm. I might have to do just that, keep it close to me always.

I don’t know what the next steps are–where to go or how I’ll get there, how we’ll get there. All I have is hope trying to hatch.

A reading, what I’ve been up to, and what’s next

Let’s start with what’s next: The election. High anxiety for everyone, or almost everyone, on all sides. How do we get through Tuesday? The days after Tuesday? How do we heal?

This morning, my husband turned on the TV news, which ran a story about a woman who is making yard signs and tote bags that say, “Make America Kind Again.”

Yes.

And in between election anxiety, I’ve also been doing the Whole 30. Yeah, you could call it a fad diet, but it’s supposed to be a physical and mental reset. Some things are resetting, and others not so much. And I’ve been cheating in that about two weeks in, I did get on the scale, and have done since then, and do not feel bad about it. In many ways, it isn’t that much different from the way I’d been trying to eat–except for no dairy and no alcohol (no wine, no gin martini). I’m on day 25, having made it through several parties and events and two election debates. In other ways, it’s helpful to check in when I feel like I want a treat and ask whether I really want that or want something else. Usually, the answer is both. On the other hand, I don’t think the authors of the program are my people. For example, they say that at one point I might start dreaming of junk food. Did not happen. They say that on day 21 I will be probably be sick of my food choices. No, I’m not sick of my food choices. I’m sick of cooking and shopping and cooking and shopping. I want the pizza not because I crave junk food, but because they will deliver it to my door. So much for my pioneer fantasies. My husband has been really helpful about making things that don’t include the vast number of forbidden things (obvious things, like sugar, and not so obvious, like soy, which means any commercial mayonnaise). Five more days. We’ll see.

I’ve also been writing (really excited about a poem that includes both Star Trek and the Wizard of Oz, and another poem about topological phase change) and writing and reading as part of the Ekphrastic Assimilations project. US poets wrote after Chinese artists’ works, and the Chinese artist–who are also poets–wrote after the works by US artists. The  Ekphrastic Assimilations website is still up, and you can view the art and post your own ekphrastic poem there. I’ve been working on a second one.

Finally, what’s next: I’ll be reading this Friday, November 11, at the Good Shepherd Center. I’m excited to hear poems by Amy Schrader, Douglas Schuder, Griffeth Williams, Raul Sanchez, and Victoria Ford. I’m also excited to return to room 202, where I took a fantastic Hugo House class with John Marshall, and where, walking to the car after a reading, an owl flew over my head. If you’re in the neighborhood, stop by at 7:00. If you aren’t in the neighborhood, they have parking!