March came in like a lion: today I had four poems accepted by two online journals. (How I’m resisting the exclamation point at this moment) (and still). It’s so encouraging to feel that my voice can still resonate with readers. And serves as a reminder to keep carving out some time each day to write–if only 20 minutes–because a couple of those poems have just been hanging out in a file for over ten years! (Yes, exclamation point.) (Excavation point.)
Last month I finally sent a few poems to a journal I have admired for many years. And then took one of the poems to my new writing group, where it became obvious that the poem was just bouncing itself around off its own self-imposed walls of meter and really not digging into the many associated issues that came up during our discussion. So next day I stripped it down to two essential lines and rewrote, reframed, rebuilt the whole thing, opening up the lines, spreading out the stanzas, throwing the meter overboard (thank you, meter, for getting me to the earlier draft; it’s not you; it’s me) and arriving at a two-page poem that felt like it was singing, carrying multiple voices and threads. I haven’t gone back to it since, but I’ve been riding that buzz of satisfaction for a couple of weeks now.
And I think I have a job. For fear of jinxing myself, I’ll say no more for now.
The hummock of pillows on the bed are not his body in the darkened room.