It wearies, at times, the way writing goes on forever.   It mimics other things that promise a "forever" (unwanted) like the virus that will one day be memory but currently has set up occupation in our lives (if not our bodies). A project that unfolds and teases with conclusion only to unfold some more.  (Don't hex this day!: talking to a friend who's anxious & frightened about whatever's to come, you calmed her with a focus on This Moment -- perhaps a little too calmly calmed her ["Are you medicated?" No, I told her, "I am meditated"... And it's true, this is a day freshened by less than 1/8 inch of rain, colors are pointed, the air feels good to breathe and autumn continues to unfurl its carpet... I came up to this room to open to the book; it's been weeks; I feel its welcome (as opposed to feeling its: burden) So this is all you're going to get, today, dear Reader (except for any photos I may upload).


How quiet I've been. Just working on the project -- which has a new working title, Thank You for Being (etc). The mind wants to be quiet, as well, at least around the edges of writing -- which, frankly, is... most of the time. As Michael Gottlieb notes in his essential little book, What We Do: Essays for Poets (quoting Max Beerbohm): "the only problem with being a poet is figuring out what to do with the other twenty-three hours of the day." In these "other" hours, it is better for the mind to be absorbed in the rest of whatever is going on:  emptying dishwasher, checking chickens, hugging partner, gratifying cats. Vacuuming (a terrifying word, if you really think about it). Staring out second-floor window onto the bright grass, leaves of the dogwood below starting to turn, angle of the light already sharpened in that autumnal way that brings such delight (even if it it signals -- especially on this date -- a turn toward the dark. For a while... ). But the mind,
  Her past seemed to be rising above her present. And for some reason she wanted to talk about her past; to tell them something about herself that she had never told anybody -- something hidden.  This describes a moment within Rose Pargiter, a character in Virgina Woolf's novel, The Years .  But this mental gesture also belongs to me, as so many bits and pieces of narrative and internal monologue in this novel refract and resemble moments of experience, thought patterns in my own mind. She paused, gazing at the flowers in the middle of the table without seeing them. There was a blue knot in the yellow glaze she noticed. The above moment belongs solely to Rose.  And soon, after an interaction with a much younger woman, Rose finds herself in frustration: What is the use, she thought, of trying to tell people about one's past?  And that is something I can mouth, word-for-word, because there seems to be a uselessness to a project like mine, which I am nonetheless sunk in, bound to,
  From the Archives....40 years ago. Never "completed"
 Part of the Archive. Except -- self   is archive... 

While writing I need to write....

I promised myself I would not write about the virus, masks, quarantine, any of the daily conflagrations (however quiet they may be--  --especially from my writing studio on the second floor of a big house at the top of a small hill on a quiet street in a quiet neighborhood, where daily we forget to wear masks when we leave for a walk, because we don't run into people right away.) I promised myself, because I did not feel like privileging my experience, which has been a lot more benign than that of friends living in packed cities.  And because everyone else is writing about it, and I always have to be "different" -- right? But I'm breaking that promise because even though I do not live alone (and I cherish my partner), I have been feeling too alone of late, and it's strictly, I think, because of the New Normal. I am still "new" in Bloomington, and how do I meet people?  And now the pall on daily life, has thickened, because the current quiet belies the pr