Tuesday, February 24, 2009

I couldn't take the pressure.

I broke up with Facebook.

All those gift eggs! All those invitations to imaginary events! People flinging food and shite gifts from the AWP I didn't want to attend anyway! All those people from high school wanting to catch up! Plus, the uncomfortable intersection of people from my private and professional life: do I really want former students to have access to the pictures OTHER PEOPLE POST OF ME from who knows what embarrassing past moment of indiscretion?

You may call me a Luddite. Honey, in the period where I live, there wouldn't be Luddites for two centuries.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Two things poetic

1) Finished a poem today. First time since.....May 08, I think. Long process, that one. But it feels tight, so rock on. A friend of mine, a poet, once said that in writing poems I "whittled jolly ranchers." That's about right: slippery and unyielding little suckers they are in progress, but they seem to sit solid after they're done.

2) Have I mentioned how much I am amused--and not in the good way but in the condescending and dismissive way--by the dramatic, eyerolling, stalking-around-the-front-of-the-room, tossing-finished-pages-with-a-flourish-onto-the-floor, white-guy-rap, and to my mind fundamentally insecure brand of poetry reading? No? Well I won't here.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Good news/ bad news. (Together = just "news"?)

Just discovered today that the publication date of my Old Poem in Translation has been pushed back to 2010, a year later than I'd expected. Not that big a deal, I guess...not as if I'm expecting to buy a Ferrari once the royalties start rolling in. But the anticlimax of publication gets a little more anticlimactic.

The reason?: Major American Painter, upon reading the text, agreed to paint the cover. I wonder if he'll give me the original after the book is published. You know, as a little token of our shared affection for Old Poem. Hey, I'd be HAPPY to give him a copy of the book in exchange: it's only fair...

So! The 2010 publication date is for the paperback, I'm told. The hardcover will be released in April!

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Practically a fish.

So I went for a routine doctor visit today, and at the outset of the appointment, the nurse took my blood pressure, as nurses will. After the cuff had exhaled, she stood for a few concerned moments, and then said, "Do you feel lightheaded when you stand up?"

See, I have really low blood pressure. Like usually around 65 over 45. There's no danger in it, except that I tend to pass out during procedures in which my body-core thinks it's under attack, like pap smears and mammograms and the occasional blood-draw. Embarrassing, completely, but harmless.

But it occurred to me today: I'm such a stress-bucket, such a high-strung and tightly-wound multi-tasker and any number of other hyphenates...but goodness gracious, where would my blood pressure be if I weren't? I have come to the liberating conclusion that MY STRESS KEEPS ME OUT OF A COMA. If it weren't for my constant and frantic jitters, I probably wouldn't be able to wake up in the morning.

Perhaps the better title for this post: Academia saved my life.