Monday, October 18, 2021

After a lush and beautiful afternoon, the temperature has plunged to 45 degrees this morning, which feels cold, but in fact is not as cold as we usually are at this time of year. There's still no sign of frost. How strange to be harvesting peppers from the garden in mid-October.

Yesterday's poet party--down on the New Hampshire border, with the rivers embracing the autumn brilliance--was a chit-chattery pleasure. I am surprised, always, whenever I feel at ease in these kinds of groups. I expect myself to be shy and accidentally standoffish and desperately uncomfortable, but I spent yesterday talking easily with whomever happened to be at my elbow. Maybe I am finally not 15 anymore.

By the time I got home, Tom had started dinner, so I spent the evening lolling on the couch, enjoying a rare reprieve from the meal chore. As a result, I am beginning my Monday with the feeling of having had a little vacation, which is good, because this week will not be anything like a vacation. I've got a ton of editing on my desk, plus prep for Friday's Monson class, plus contest manuscripts to read, plus something else I'm probably forgetting . . . a slog week, and I'm glad to be entering it with a rest day and a good night's sleep behind me.

I have some books I want to talk to you about--Alice Oswald's collection Falling Awake, M. E. Braddon's Victorian bigamy novel Aurora Floyd--but I haven't quite organized my thoughts about them. I suspect that's because the Iliad is dominating my reading brain right now. Rereading it is such a massive, terrifying, tedious endeavor. Even though it's not the only thing I'm reading for "pleasure," it seems to take up all of my word space.

No comments: