I have missed blogging for a few weeks. I have been tossing spheres in the air, sandwhiching commitments between committments strewn with distractions. But I am happy to say that I am overwhelmed with all things poetry. My review of Lynn Melnick’s “Landscape with Sex and Violence” is up at The Rumpus. I have an essay onboard for the series Writing About the Living at the Town Crier, curated by Lauren Davis; a blurb to write; seven books that I’ve agreed to review over the next few months; and preparation for attending AWP for Headmistress Press, which is suddently right around the corner. I am tossing submissions and devouring rejections. I have a manuscript floating belly up in the roiling sea of poetry.
On the home front, the Olympic peninsula did entertain a magnificent snow show over the past couple of weeks, which was more than a distraction, and my heat and my washing machine are on the blink, piles of laundry are everywhere and I finally got some wood for the wood stove. I’ve scheduled a mammogram. I have announced a retirement date, which is now less than a year away. When I retire, I want to become a poet.
I dream of bees when I drip honey
onto challah and apple slices. Season of harvest
moon, new school year. Time of reckoning:
Has enough grain has been stored for winter?
Later is a moment poised like a diver
over a pitch-black abyss. I wonder how we bear
all this repetition. A perennial forecast of repeats:
jack–o-lanterns, latkes, dyed eggs, mammograms.
I bake honey cake for Rosh Hashanah.
When darkness saturates winter I think about suicide.
I always do, and I know that I always do, and so I know
it will slowly ebb and I will outwit it. Again.
I fast on Yom Kippur, but forget to pray.
Drunk, I confess sins I did not commit.
I place a stethoscope on every heart,
grant clemency to every penitent.
I will retire in seedtime. At Pesach.
Will I be like one of those men who retire
and find themselves at a loss for meaning?
Who fail quickly, die shortly?
I’m searching for the layer of sticky sweetness
that is so hard to find. Not this honeycomb
ensconced in a wrecking ball, these seismic shifts,
this loss of habitat. The disappearance of bees.