Thursday, February 19, 2004

Worried and Weary

My mother turned 88 yesterday. I just had some major dental renovation completed. I haven't even begun my taxes. I finished knitting two sweaters for myself that came out really well. I keep thinking of all of the things I want to blog about and then get so tired that I never make it to the keyboard. But here it is, after 11 p.m. and here I am.

Speaking of knitting, Allan Moult, over there on the other side of the planet from me, is publishing an attractively designed online magazine, Leatherwood Online, that recently had a really neat article about

a powerful art installation .... enabling everyone and anyone in the community to actively participate in the creation of a statement reflecting their love, care and willingness to protect the beauty of the Styx forest from further old growth logging. People throughout the community could knit red wool into pieces as short or as long as they personally had time and ability to produce, to be sewn together into 'hugs' that would be wrapped around the bases of trees.

I love the photos of guys knitting these bright red "hugs," -- punk guys, guys in suits, guys tending bar. What a multi-layered message about what's really important!

Jim Kulleny at NoUtopia is always posting important messages that add significantly to my worry about what's happening to my country. I happen to really like his piece on The Incorporeal George Bush, that. along with a great cartoon depicting George Bush's Vietnam war "decorations," ends with

For some, though, class discrimination is a way of life and as natural as falling into the presidency. This is what should matter to a nation stuck with the silver-spooned George W. The particulars of his story are important only as they reveal that while the probable Democratic nominee chose to lay his life on the line, George was busy forming an essential and enduring part of his character: enjoying the perks of influence while testing the meaning and value of connections and learning to smirk about it.

Meanwhile, I've been in and out of the poetry community, feeling like the "matriarch" that one of the poets (as a compliment) said I am. Well, I certainly have been writing and publishing poetry longer than most of the other poets in that community have been alive. As a matter of fact, I just took a big risk and applied to the New York State Writers Institute for acceptance into their upcoming workshop led by poet Eammon Grennan. They only accept "experienced" and "published" poets. While I fit into those categories, it still remains to be seen if the poems I submitted are good enough.

Actually, I did get accepted into and particpated in a Writers Institute workshop with John Montague, back in 1996. Suggestions he made for one of my poems helped me to get it published in The Berkshire Review.

I have no idea what my chances are of getting into the upcoming workshop, but, hell, it was worth a try.

I've been a little frustrated about not being able to post photos on this site. My friend Joan, the quilter, finished the piece she was making for me/about me. When b!X gets his DSL account straightened out, which he says might be as early as this Tuesday, I'll have to get back on my regular weblog and post a photo. I've got it hanging in the middle of what has become my "wall of power." Joan says that this piece is a reflection of her perception of my "inner" self. She's making another one for me that's more funky; she says that it includes an image of Betty Boop (a favorite character of mine) and one of my poems as well. Now, that's a real friend -- especially since, if she were going to actually sell the one that's hanging on my wall, she said she'd have to charge $300.

It's nigh onto midnight. Tomorrow I will find out if the people who need someone to edit their 400-page (about 8-times longer than it should be, as far as I'm concerned) proposal for a Charter School are willing to pay me enough to make it worth my while to get it done by their deadline, which is next Thursday. So, if I'm absent from here -- again -- this time you'll know why.

Just to add to my worry and weariness, on BuzzFlash, Maureen Farrell reminds me of those kinder, gentler days in her piece on The Way We Were


"The United States, as the world knows, will never start a war." – John F. Kennedy, June, 1963

"F*ck Saddam, we're taking him out!" -- George Bush, 2002