56º ~ while luxuriating in these days of warmth & sun, a subtle sadness permeates as there is this evidence of climate change, note (the lack of leaves on the trees means the sun has unfettered access and swaths the desk & my body
As I've aged, I've come to realize that I'm not really a resolution person. At one point, a therapist commented that I was one of the most self-aware people she had ever counseled. I do not say this to brag. For whatever reason, nature/nurture/astrology/etc., I'm the type of person who is almost constantly aware of my imperfections, and I've fought hard to loosen my grip on my attempts at perfection, which were more harmful than helpful.
Still, there are goals I keep in front of me all year round.
1. To slow down and push back against this speed-hungry & product-driven world.
2. To be kind & patient with those I love and with those who are acquaintances or even strangers.
3. To read & support my fellow poets by buying their books, subscribing to journals, or using the library.
4. "To live deliberately...to live deep and suck out all the marrow of life" a la H. D. Thoreau.
I do like the way the close of a year provides a chance to reflect and celebrate. Here are my numbers.
42 poems drafted ~ This number set me back on my heels, in fact, almost set me spinning off my chair. I am thrilled with this number, given the summer of troubles we had and the fact that I launched a reading series this year. Thrilled!
1 reading series launched ~ Of course, I had lots of help from colleagues and friends, and I am thankful for each and every one.
56 rejections ~ This number reflects the journals rather than individual poems. I usually send 4 - 5 poems in a packet, and if even 1 poem is accepted, that's recorded as an acceptance, so the other 3 - 4 poems would have been rejected. It's fuzzy math to be sure. Doing the multiplication sets me back on my heels as well.
20 acceptances ~ Again, this number reflects journals. All together, 33 poems were accepted as some journals accepted more than one poem at a time. Again, I'm THRILLED with this number and so happy to know my poems are finding good homes out there in the world. Thank you all for the support through the drafting stages and beyond.
10 hours per week ~ my average time (during the academic year) at the desk of the Kangaroo working on drafting, revising, manuscript ordering, submissions, reading, blogging, and recording acceptances/rejections. Slightly higher in the summer.
As 2011 comes to a close, I hope you all are warm, happy, & well-fed. May 2012 bring us all more victories than defeats, more laughter & love than tears & grief, and more time with poetry than with the dirty laundry gathering in piles around the house.