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Archive for June, 2010

I have learned early that being published is not everything it’s cracked up to be. I don’t say this because I’ve been published, but I say this because I felt being published would make me feel more like a writer. But I’ve been reading and learning a great deal these past few months about myself and why I haven’t really felt like a writer and why I’ve let other people make me feel that way and I realized that to be a writer and to feel like a writer you have to write. TA-DA!

Not that I wasn’t getting up every morning to do such things – because I was and still am – but I suppose my purpose for getting up was to get published and not for the writing itself – not for the exploration and the process. It made me panic that it wasn’t happening or happening fast enough. It made me doubt myself. It made me uncomfortable in my own skin. I was getting ahead of myself and going to the end result when in fact it’s the twisty, dim-lit road to get there that’s worth everything. Taking that road is what being a writer means, it’s how you will feel like a writer, it’s how you will become a writer, it’s where all the magic (as they say) happens.

I also say this because I just got another rejection on a story and it makes me feel a little better, but I really do believe it. And this realization has solidified for me that I am in fact a bona fide writer and that I always will be – published or not.

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At night I crack open my ribs. stretch. breast meat. like tearing chicken in half. I sit hunched. over a desk. sharp pencils. stuck to the sides. write this and that. no. I’ll curl up. hunch-backed like the old lady walking by every day. lungs sucked of air. only cigarette breath. to breath. Open your ribs. your beating heart. crack the back of you. extend each succulent section of spine. like tangerine slivers. juicy. taste it. life beckoning in work.

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I haven’t eaten animal crackers since I was littler – not a little girl – just littler than I am now, but I bought some last night at the store. A big bag, not the little lunch box train car box you can get. can you still get those?

But now that I’m an adult I can take the lion, the seal, the llama, the giraffe – bite their heads off and actually mean it this time. That’s what it means to grow older – and then not apologize.

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Dream

I had dreams last night of poems. not words, not dreaming in poems or streaming words, but of solid beings and tangible beings. It woke me up in the middle of the night, but I couldn’t remember the words. Sharon Olds was there because we are friends. In my heart at least. I was dizzy with them and asleep with them. They were wind poems and water poems. That’s what they felt like to me – things that go through you. Don’t look at what makes them – pick them apart – look at the whole things for what it is. It’s not the molecules, but the water itself. As I fell back asleep, I knew I needed to hold on to something, but how do you hold wind and water? You turn it into something else – you capture it.

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Thanks for sharing, Grandma!

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I think the cello is a wooden heart with strings. Can’t it say things in sounds and tones we could never say with words? An extension of the body, I wish I could play. Deep and broken and wooded like thick oak trees. Moaning and sweet like willow leaves.

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