Wednesday, January 28, 2009

In the Thick of It

The semester is well under way, and we are in the thick of it...complete with a snow day yesterday that has thrown off my Comp II schedule already. I'm still intent on finding the writing time, and I feel pretty good about what I've accomplished. I have drafts of two new poems, which is already two more than I wrote during the fall semester entirely, and I started some new lines yesterday that may turn into something (or not?).

I've been thinking about what I want my poems to do lately, as I've been rereading Glacial Elegies, my new manuscript, and preparing it to go out to possible publishers. As a consequence, I've also been comparing it to some of my favorite recent books of poetry. There are all of these questions swimming around in that fragile part of my brain that makes up "poetry." Here are some:

What is my voice? (a question I thought I'd figured out in Blood Almanac)
Is my voice boring? (yikes!) Is my voice evolving or is it becoming imitative?
Where do lyricism and narrative intersect for me? Should I be going for more of one and less of the other?
Is my language fresh/new/not boring? If I go too far towards the language, do I lose the meaning?
Since I almost always write short poems, should I be writing longer ones?
Should I be taking more risks?

For now, I'm trying to live with the questions and to write through them; after all, there really isn't any other way.

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