Two Poems for Tupelo and some thoughts on Glen Workshop

So I got a little behind yesterday.  Two new poems for the 30/30 Project, Fire Season and The Invention of Color: Ultramarine are now posted, though I feel like my poems are getting shorter and shorter in response to the demands of daily writing!   Here at The Glen Workshop we had a day off on Thursday and after a full week of writing and reading poems, I needed to take a day to get out of my head a little bit.  Instead of writing, I took a trip to the fabulous Ojo Caliente Mineral Spa in northern New Mexico, about an hour from where I’m staying here in Santa Fe.  Then yesterday was a really full day of activities, with a reading by the poet Karen An-Wei Lee and a performance by actor Susan Issacs, not to mention reading some of my own work at open mic night.  Trying to fit writing time into this retreat has proven to be a little more difficult than I anticipated!

This morning was my last poetry workshop session with Scott Cairns and the remarkable writers in my class. We really labored over each others’ work this week. I came away convinced that it is time to go reopen my college literature anthologies and start a running tab of contemporary poets who I need to familiarize myself with.   It’s daunting, but I did take away from the class the idea that I need to be more consciously ambitious in my writing, that is, work toward understanding and incorporating more of the rich literary tradition of English. In short, to take my work and my writing tools seriously.  Not a bad thing to take away.

In other news, it looks like I’m going to need to plead a little harder for contributions to Tupelo’s fundraiser, which is the impetus for my 30-day poetry marathon. As of Friday, there had been NO donations in my name.  If you’ve been reading along this far, please consider giving a little – $5 or $10 – on my behalf, here is the link to their online donation system. Thanks!

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