My Blue Muse Writing Life

January 29, 2004

Just a thought...

Not a big entry. Just wanted to pop in. That's a good thing. I'm hopeful that this site will soon become more home-y. Today I'm testing the waters. I feel as if I'm perched on the edge of a giant swimming pool anxiously peering in. This is the equivalent of a toe dip. *plop*

Posted by mybluemuse at 8:19 PM

January 26, 2004

Happiness is...

My words today are not about me but my wonderful husband. He's been such a tremendous support during this difficult time and here's a shout out to him, "Hey-A" (not sure how that's spelled). He expresses his artistic side through photography and he's created a photoblog website (Apparently there is a famous Jazz guitarist with the same name. Clever work around, eh?) Beneath each photograph he types thoughts or comments about the process and I find I learn about who my husband is as an artist. Who he is apart from the "death do us part" bit, and I really like who he is. How knowledgeable he is of his craft, and how much he enjoys sharing his process so that others may learn. And this inspires me; I tend to be very withdrawn and shy around my work. And I thought I'd be jealous of his successes (like this one and I'm finding instead a welling up of happiness for him. This is good, a relief, and such a blessing.

Another thought I had was about art itself. When people read poetry, especially other poets, it's with a very critical eye. Is photography the same? At fist I thought because it's an image and a beautiful one that the viewer would trust the integrity, but the answer I'm finding is no. That aside from the layperson who views or reads for enjoyment and only tentatively forms opinions stronger than "I like that" or "I don't like that", you find that the more you learn about the craft, the more you apply that knowledge to other's work. Martin's way of addressing "bad photography" is to teach generally through articles and how to's. A lot of poetry critique is about the individual poem, how to grind and grind away until it's bare boned and just okay. For this reason, I'm understanding that the best way to learn about poetry in general, and your own poetry specifically, is to read broadly on the subject and to keep coming back to your own work with new vision.

So, in the same way that a poem is never finished I imagine the photographer winces at the lighting, the composition, the technique, the subject and learns something new with each photograph taken. It is the only way to learn, to keep shooting, to keep writing, to stay inspired. After this year of one physical hazard after another, I thought my blue muse had slipped into a coma of boredom, and I realize that it is all about the inspiration to create. And I trust she'll wake up and take me back. Any day now...

Posted by mybluemuse at 8:20 PM

January 22, 2004

Where I am...

I've been sending out lots of submissions--41 poems are out there working. I received an acceptance today from an online mag and was very happy with the news. The editor asked me to do some major changes and after sleeping on it and tinkering, I agreed and am pleased with the result. It's tricky to accept but it's all in the best interest of the poem and not the ego of the poet. The key is to maintain the sounds, rhythm and intended landing place and I feel good that this was done.

Anyway, I feel like after this cruddy year, I'm finally getting back to work. I've been doing major and minor revisions and agree that having poems spend a year in dark file folders can do wonders for them, in the sense that a letting go transpires a lessening of judgment and obsession. After a period of time, the work can be seen with clearer eyes. And whether the changes are tended to with tweezers or buzzsaws, I'm enjoying the process.

We'll see what editors think! One goal of mine is to get a chapbook together by the end of the year. We shall see. Another goal is just to write. To write something new. See the world in a new way that inspires me to capture it in words. It's off in my peripheral vision right now, I can sense its presence, so I know this mental pause is not forever.

as H. Junker, editor of Zyzzyva says on all his rejection letters. And I'm accumulating a little pile.

Posted by mybluemuse at 8:21 PM
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