Resolution: Read More

Oh, hi there!  I’ve neglected this blog for a while.  A move to DC and back for my husband’s job, new responsibilities at work, and my mother’s illness and death last year mean that poetry has been a lower priority post-MFA than I had hoped and planned.  I didn’t have the heart for it for a very long time.

But now it feels like the fog of grief is lifting a little, and so I’m using the (completely arbitrary) energy of a new year to get my creative life back on track.  I’m making resolutions, and I’ll be documenting them here to keep myself accountable.

Resolution #1 is to read more.  As Billy Collins has noted,  “poetry fills me / with the urge to write poetry, / to sit in the dark and wait for a little flame / to appear at the tip of my pencil.”  Reading feeds my writing.  I know this. Still, the time crunch of my job and home responsibilities can make me feel like I have to choose between reading and writing.  And sleeping.  It’s a false and self-defeating dichotomy.  Especially with poetry, I can read a little every day and get through a lot over time.  And when I do read, seeing what other poets can do amazes me and makes me feel new possibilities for my own poems open up.  It makes me feel less alone.

My reading goal for 2017 is 50 poetry-related books.  That includes collections, chapbooks, anthologies, craft books, and memoirs.  It does not include magazines (even poetry magazines), novels, murder mysteries or time-travel books.  That comes out to about one book a week, with vacation devoted to mysteries and sci-fi, and I think it’s both ambitious and achievable.  I’ll be tracking my reading here and on Goodreads.

More resolutions to come.  Happy new year to you!

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