June 17, 2006

A-Millaying We Will Go

So it looks like, due to a generous disbursement of time from my employers, I might just get to to take Millay up on their offer for a residency in September. I am thrilled and just a little scared. I've done residencies before but...a month? A seven hour drive to remote, upstate New York? A total of only six artists? Could be incredible (EJ Levy and Geno Gloria both offered rave reviews)...or, it could be summercamp from hell (they weren't the only one to offer reviews).

But this is a necessary kick to get me writing. Now that the first book has clicked into place (not a printer's plate, mind you, but a far more ephemeral "place"), my perfectionism has been striking prememptive death-blows to subsequent non-manuscript drafts. It makes me think of Sylvia Plath's poem, "Stillborn": "These poems do not live: it's a sad diagnosis. / They grew their toes and fingers well enough, / Their little foreheads bulged with concentration. / If they missed out on walking about like people / It wasn't for any lack of mother-love. // O I cannot explain what happened to them! / They are proper in shape and number and every part. / They sit so nicely in the pickling fluid! / They smile and smile and smile at me..."

Sylvia Plath. Brilliant poet. Lousy Millay roommate, I'm betting.

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