May 1 came – the poems stopped
poetry writing month went
my poet friends wound up
their writing peregrinations –
quieted we all concluded
that we were done.
the silence is too eerie
something missing in the airwaves
the virtual words stuck
in the brain’s wetware.
I’m sure I’ll grow use to it
the way you grow used to
a lover’s absence. But now,
like a phantom limb
I feel the tantalizing prickle
of language just beyond
remember me, it hums
Tomorrow, April 1 starts the first day of me launching into concerted creativity. It’s the first day of National Poetry Writing Month. It’s also the first day of my course on Governance and Nonprofit boards so my hands, and mind, will be a bit full with last minute course prep.
I love the beginning of the term, the beginning of things in general. The promise held in applying the familiar, a course I’ve taught for years, to a new group of students and joining them in our collective travels to uncover new truths. I learn something every time I teach. Really I learn many somethings both about my subject area, about teaching itself, and about people.
This year I will have fewer students than ever, a situation that troubles me a bit. My program has changed in the past few years and the level of outreach and attention we used to put out has diminished. I don’t have a “cause-effect” here but the correlation seems pretty strong. Fewer people hear regularly about our program. Meanwhile, other resources have come up that seem like an able substitute for an intensive investigation of a topic. We’re a nation in search of quick fixes and that seems to be true in education as well as elsewhere. “I can learn what I need from a workshop.” So why bother with a ten week class.
I won’t count my course in my “creative” list. Although I am creative in developing the classes it seems like cheating. As a result, the next few months will be a bit of a time stretch in that way, fitting in poetry and like matters into the regular concerns of the day.
I almost labeled this post “not dead yet” in honor of a friend who just turned sixty. We went to his party decked out for dancing (though my shoes broke and I had to dance barefoot.)
When Bill turned forty we attended his dance party then at which time my daughter, aged about 6 or 7, said “you mean he’s not dead yet.” Such is the perspective of a very young person. But no, not dead then, and not now, thank goodness. We’ll hope for many more years.
I’ll be heading over to the fabulous Judith tomorrow for her hat soiree a couple of shoe sharings as well (Sheila’s and Style Nudge). I hope you’ll join me as we launch National Poetry Writing Month and a year of creativity every day. Let me know what creative acts you’re up to.