I started this blog to practice writing for balance and sanity out loud, and to build a larger audience for my books as they rolled down the hill of paper and into, with luck, the arms of readers. 800 posts later, I pause for a post behind the posts.
My initial plan was to write everyday, which I did for a long time. The practice helped me aim my perception toward something to question, ponder, celebrate, or co-habitate with writing on a regular basis. Eventually, the everyday morphed into every few days although it seems the more I return to typing letters into this box on my screen, the more I want to return, yet when I’m in the throes of writing something else, especially and particularly poetry, I don’t have much to say blog-wise, and I’ve never believed in pushing the writing river.
So if you don’t hear from me for a week or so, it’s not because I don’t love writing to you. It’s simply because the writing has gone underground: into new poems or, far below that, a silent pond, waiting for the wind to work itself up again. I don’t believe in – and please, writers, don’t hate me for this — writer’s block, only writer’s-not-ready spaces. To that end, I tend to work on multiple writing projects at once, going where the energy of the words take me: sometimes into the workaday-life of revisionland, where we live as old marrieds with our prose or poetry, steadily applying letters to the page or screen, copying things over, reading things aloud, ready to catch whatever music comes through the grind. Other times, it’s that heady and breathless romance of first drafts, fishing for possibilities well beyond our frontal-lobe, pre-selected and old-dog-trick thoughts so that something alive, and surprising can come through. Sometimes it’s just writing shit, knowing it’s shit, but being okay with that because compost is golden, especially when it comes to making something new and nourishing.
Wherever I am, I try to begin with the obvious markers of time and place. I write this now to you, trying to make out what I’m typing from the dozens of tiny oval-shaped insects in love with the light of my computer screen. It’s night, I’m on the front porch, the wind roars and settles, the dog stares at the dive-bombing June bugs, and the cats sleep almost back to the back. The temperature is perfect for most of human life doing most anything. Like talking through this post to you at the moment, and thanking you for reading this and reading others posts (if you have) over the years. The intimacy and immediacy of writing a blog is as sweet as a spring night when everything, for a moment at least, quiets to wind through the cedars and crickets and the squeaking of old branches.