Monday, January 3, 2011

Collateral damage

My leave ends as of tomorrow at 12:05 pm. Sigh. Got some stuff done, banged out most of a book, and though its chapters do not yet transition one into another, at least the guts are there.

Still, some things became the innocent victims of my full-bore dedication to writing.

* My yard: mowed the lawn maybe 4 times this summer. Never weeded the grass. Raked leaves in the front yard, but never in the back, so that I must have piles of molding blackness under all that snow out there. And speaking of snow, I shoveled two tire-tracks up my driveway every time it snowed, and that's about all. I weeded the garden haphazardly, and watered when I remembered. It's looking a little unkempt around here.

* My festivity: I put up one string of Christmas lights on my porch--didn't climb up on the house to do the whole shebang--and I didn't carve pumpkins, and I didn't put a wreath up in my gable, in fact a brass sun is still shining bravely there.

* My hair: Haven't cut it since April.

* My fingernails: Heh. At least they're UNIFORMLY nubbish. That makes it look intentional.

* My ass: Let us not discuss my ass.

* My record-keeping: Baby books, photographs, journals for Things all utterly forgotten in the past year.

* My cultural awareness: Haven't seen a movie in a year. Except Black Swan, which I saw with a friend, and liked. But then, I have very little to compare it to.

* My professional engagement: I swore off conference papers until I've finished this book, so I haven't even looked at a CFP since last January. Also, haven't attempted to get a poetry reading anywhere in that time.

* My mountains: I hiked twice in the last year, and have not yet XCskied this winter but for one time, and all with the Things, because if I didn't have the Things, my butt was in this chair.

* My good humor: Occasionally, but also

* My sense that my value as a human being was tied to this book. Not sure how that happened, or where along the way. Perhaps just the doing it, the seeing that it could be done, helped me to understand that it's just something one does, not something one is. Hoping to place this book, certainly, and hoping to place it well, but maybe I've finally shed my conviction that I'm a dilettante, a poseur, a fraud. Because I did, in fact, write a book.

Happy new year, all.


Lisa B. said...

I hope this new year brings more outdoor stuff and more fun to your life. Fun is good, really really good. Also perhaps some more fancy outfits, because fancy outfits actually suit you.

olddog said...

Wow! I am definitely do not consider myself a writer, But I love the outdoors and I know how the chores around thw old homestead can get ahead of us. Sometimes I find that doing meanial chores frees the mind and creative energy that was caught inside screams to be let out. As Lisa B Said MORE FUN! I agree Always thing MORE FUN. Look forward to your post.
~old dog~

squadratomagico said...

Happy New Year! And Happy FInishing-up-the-book!

Also: I think I just read one of your poems in print, in an Important Publication. How lovely!

Flavia said...

Here's to the return of your good humor and the retention of your sense of self-worth apart from the book.

Happy new year, indeed. Looking forward to seeing you soon.