Monday, March 20, 2006

catching up with... everything.

I'm just reaching a point where I think I might be able to catch my breath. I've one more poem and painting to post, as well as a final poem. I have mixed feelings about the project, as my artist more or less abandoned the process the past few weeks. I can't take it personally, since we don't know each other, but I hope (no, I don't really hope this) that something awful happened and that is why they flaked out. I suppose my irritation will have waned by the time I get to meet them and we can talk about what did work and what was useful. More on that later.

Apart from that, I am gearing up for my last term as an undergrad. I'm being graduated summa cum laude in June and I've just received notice that I've been accepted into the MA - Poetry program. Additionally, I'm being given the Department's only graduate assistantship position for poetry, so my tuition is covered (plus a stipend), and that's cause for celebration. I've also begun an internship (unpaid, sigh) at a great little literary press called
Hawthorne Books, so I've been very, very busy. Still, spring is in full swing and I've planted flowers and vegetable and am looking forward to some quality porch-sitting time, as soon as the weather finally cooperates and gets warm. Next on the agenda (after graduation) is a trip back home to be a bridesmaid for my lovely cousin Candace. And probably looking for part time summer work. I don't know though. I feel more compelled to live out of my car for a few weeks and to drive down the coast, writing, and maybe making art. A good road trip would certainly provide some much needed inspiration and there's nothing like sleeping on the beach to help with that.

It's strange. I am accomplishing quite a lot, good things are happening, but I can't help but feel almost as though it's happening to someone else. Part of me just wants to drop out, live in the tropics, improve my Spanish skills, teach English, trade paintings, cook, love, live simply... Here there is school and loan debt and my future to think about. I am 32 but still respond to such things like an 18 year old. I don't want to work at a soul sucking job I care nothing about, and that, I'm afraid, is more likely than landing a gig doing what I damn well feel with language and paint and bits of sparkly things or rock and what not. There isn't a job opening for me to get paid to be me and what I do best isn't lucrative or dependable. If I fail as a poet, I can fall back on my art, and failing that, what? Sing jazz again? I'm tired of being poor and if I could actually sell out without that being a problem for me, I probably would. But I can't. It doesn't work that way for me. So instead I have to suck it up, get to like being poor, and do something interesting. If you see me on the street, pass me a smile. I'll always be grateful for one of those.