I spent Thursday night in Vermont with some of my favorite people in the world. We talked urgently about art and memory and being alive, and I woke up to the sight of tomatoes ripening in a tiny backyard garden. I drove home through downpours. I ate stir fry with a chattery large son and a cheerful regular-sized husband. I sat under a couch blanket and watched Olympic sports. I fell asleep with the cat. I woke and slept and woke and slept to the sound of hard rain.
Now here I am again, with my black coffee and my solitude, listening to the clock tick and rainwater drip off the roof. Through the wet window I watch finches complaining about the empty feeder. Upstairs, and behind doors, the beds are weighted with sleeping men.
I read new work in Vermont, some of the John Doe poems I've been slowly, slowly producing during these past fraught months, and Baron told me they felt strong and startling. And then, when I came home, I learned that one had been accepted for publication. So that is a small something, and Baron's encouragement is a large one. He has never shied away from telling me he doesn't like what I'm doing, when that's the truth.
So I guess I will continue to scratch away at these uncomfortable little poems. I have been such an awkward poet during the past few months: working in jerks and lurches and blots, like a quill pen on bad paper. But if that's the rhythm, then I need to make the most of it.