Well, well, well.
How the time gets away, no?
Here’s what’s happened since last we communed:
I attended my first residency as a poetry mentor in SPU’s marvelous MFA program in creative writing. We had to conduct the whole thing over zoom, but it was still so very fruitful, the students eager and energized. I profited especially from Lauren Winner’s seminar about Julian of Norwich, about whom I knew nothing, and from the poet Tim Siebles‘ readings and craft talks. I’m looking eagerly forward to our August in-person gathering.
Then, I published this essay in Practice Magazine about how I make poems. The editor asked me to detail, as literally as possible, what it is like when I sit down to write, what do I actually do? This essay is the answer (and features a near-miss with the Italian authorities). Any of you who are creatives, click around this site; there’s much to learn.
Also, I’ve got two new poems accepted for publication that I’m thrilling over–you’ll be the first to see them when they hatch!
My friend Brett McCracken has a new book out that I wouldn’t hesitate to describe as world changing, were its strategies adopted. Obvs, this sweet world of ours is beset with ills, and, to my mind anyway, this book outlines a good measure of cure. Brett recommends, among much else, paying attention to poetry under the “beauty” heading. I bet you can guess where I think you should start.
Alone with my Faith by Harry Connick, Jr.
I was a little afraid when this album was announced, and it’s a project I never would have expected from this celeb, but the players and the arrangements here are tops.
Hymns by Paul Zack
This fellow too has a good team of friends, including the remarkable Liz Vice. Though a dyed in the wool CCM fan, I still go back and forth about using music made for use in churches as entertainment or background music, but I find these tunes comforting nonetheless.
Aack! I almost forgot! Can I have your help? I’m thinking of rebuilding my website, an itch I sometimes get. I’m pretty fond of my current one, but this new platform is much easier and more fun to work with and it features lots less text in a way that I think makes it more readable. Not all the links and buttons work yet, but would a few of you click around and check out the new template, letting me know which you prefer? I’ve always wanted a dark-background website, but I can’t decide which to work on revising. Re: to this email and it gets straight to me.
Okay, that’s it. Next time I’ll have to tell you about how my kids found themselves in the belly of an actual whale.
Happy Easter, friends.