April 30, 2007
April, Fidelity, Signs, Proposal, Orchis, Making the Crane, You Were You, Antietam, The Sacred Heart, Muscadet, Vocation, Elegy, The Crowd, Love Poem for Virginia, The Spell, Beauty, Love Poem for Wednesday, Against Grief, Your Mother, The Minotaur Speaks, Love Poem for College, The Taxonomy of Houses, Love Poem for Los Angeles, How I Got Hit, Fidelity (II), I Don’t Fear Death, My God, Fugue, Monday, and The World War Speaks.
What I learned:
-Repetition may be the hobgoblin of small minds, but it is the saving grace of NaPoWriMo. The tireless pace of drafting forced me to "allow" myself to reuse a syntactical framework over and over, which turned out to be a useful experiemnt. Sometimes I liked the latter incarnation better than the first one, which is usually where I would have stopped.
-I'm a love poet. That's the relationship dynamic I'm drawn to, again and again, even when it is strictly metaphorical. No point in being ashamed of it.
-When I don't have time for more thoughtful revision, the most important question to ask is: Does this poem really start 3 lines in? Could it end 3 lines sooner?
-I don't have to be in a a studio or a barn or a vacuum to write. I really can draft a poem on the metro. I really can draft a poem watching TV. I really can draft a poem in bed. And when I have those glimmers of ideas I really should get my lazy self up and get it onto paper, eventually. I'll be glad I did.
I'm tempted to rework the strongest of these, at least half, into a chapbook--a Book of April 2007, essentially. I like the idea of reading poems grouped in terms of when they were conceived, versus an explicit thematic thread. The most liberating thing is that there's just too many poems here to rationalize that they belong in an existing manuscript. Time to think beyond the first book.
Congratulations to all who attempted, particularly those who survived, and thanks to Maureen for getting us all wound up...