One month and twenty days left as PL. Now everybody is asking me what will I do afterwards.
Sometimes I make a joke, "You mean Post Poet Laureate Stress Syndrome?" It's a joke nobody finds funny, so of bad taste I guess. Sometimes I know I have been doing this same work for thirty years and it won't be exactly a shock. Sometimes I am feeling I can't wait for peace and quiet to rear up again. And sometimes I think, who knows, the creative life has its mystery.
But in the meantime I have been full tilt, non-stop, having a blast spreading the poetic joy. If I never hear the words April Is Poetry Month again, it's okay. Today I have to drive in and out of Santa Fe twice, early and late for all the right reasons, a possible book, a radio appearance which is an oxymoron, and hearing WS Merwin who I got to intro exactly a year ago at the Egyptian Theater in Boise. He doesn't use punctuation when we writes poetry and he doesn't use capital letters when he speaks.
This I what I did this week. Jeremy Bleich and I did Joan and the Giant Pencil to about 90 wiggling and wonderful second graders at Cesar Chavez Elementary. Their teacher, Reverie Escobedo, should teach the goddess class in classroom management. She has them clapping, singing, and listening into silence in English and Spanish.
Then yesterday, in my hometown of Española, I got to spend three hours with a program called The First Year Experience Program at Northern New Mexico College. The idea is that if people can make it through their first year of college, they are well on their way. I saw half a dozen instructors I knew and read poems, lectured at great and embarrassing lengths, and wrote with about 80 people. Terry Mulert, one of the instructors actually said, "Would you do me a favor? Please talk about yourself." That was the most hysterically funny thing said to me in the two years as PL and non-stop self promotion. And here we are:
You know, Joan, after being away for a few years and returning to see all the ways you have fulfilled this role, I think I'm going to miss having you be the poet laureate. I suspect I am not alone, given everywhere I go I hear friends say how much they have enjoyed your dazzling presence in the community. Blessings that carry you through the post-part 'ems.ReplyDelete