I’ve embraced productivity as a synonym for success for so long that it’s hard now to accept my desire for something else in its place.
The boats are heavy. My hands are soft. The portage “saves us” from a series of rapids and falls but is so taxing I joke that, next time, I’m just going for it.
I took the summer off, almost entirely, from any of the familiar measures of writing productivity. Here’s what I did instead.
Since my style is associative and imagistic, I’ve typically depended on being able to see the strange places things intersect. Losing that spacial awareness, even metaphorically, has been quite challenging.
This walk through the halls of “Is It Worth It” is an invitation to check in with myself and affirm that I’m still here for The Writing. I’m being asked to reacquaint myself with the landscape of my writing life, to see it anew, much like I’m being offered fresh looks on some amazing views right in my backyard.
I fall in love with some detail at each house: a cluster of dwarfs like my mom painted one year in a ceramics class; a blue canoe, upside down; children’s drawings in a front window, including a crayon portrait of a cat named Serenity. Think I can get away with that in a poem?
I love that Katie Manning’s list poem calls What to Expect When You’re Expecting on its shit. (If I remember correctly, there’s a section on poop.) And yet — I also identify so clearly with the poem’s anxious hopscotching.