Friday, November 09, 2007

The animal in my attic

There is some sort of animal scrabbling about in my attic. Must be a squirrel or a raccoon. It seems to move around at night. The cats are occasionally intrigued; I mostly cringe. I guess there are people who specialize in evicting such animals. Maybe I'll get a poem out of it anyway.

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This blog has been like Short Attention Span Theater lately.

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Books and journals are piling up. I don't need to take a month off work to write ... I need to take a month off work to read. And yes, when you work in a library, sometimes books just follow you home. We can renew most things over and over again indefinitely (unless somebody else wants it badly enough to recall it), which is kind of a blessing but kind of a curse too.

In a related event, I have made a small concession to middle age and purchased one of those little wallet-size magnifiers. What I really need to do is go to the eye doctor and get stronger bifocals. Sigh.

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I've just recently discovered the blog "A Voice Box," which has audio recordings of poetry readings from the Bay Area. It is exceedingly cool.

Generally at lunchtime I spend 15-30 minutes walking, listening to music on my cute little iPod shuffle. I think I'm going to try loading that thing up with poems and listening to those instead. There are quite a few good poetry podcasts these days, and I just don't have time to listen to them, or attention span. But maybe they can accompany me while I walk.

I might miss the music, though. Well, we can give it a try.

If only I could walk and read at the same time. That would be efficient.

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Really liked this poem by Sharon Bryan on Poetry Daily: "Bass Bass" -- I like how Bryan's language is very playful but has a definite serious undertone (more than an undertone). Also, my father was a bass player, so I have a soft spot for poems with a bass in them. That's long-a bass, not the fish. Though I have nothing against fish poems.

I do like the playfulness, though. I imagine a lot of poets started out by just being fascinated with language, the ways you can play with it. I remember when I was a little kid, both of my parents used to play language games with me -- for example, my dad always called the elevator the "alli-grue-a-tater" which never failed to make me laugh. (I was kind of a little baby word nerd, I admit it.) It's easy to forget how to play like that. I forget, a lot. Maybe that's the assignment I should give myself: just write silly shit for a while and have some fun with it.

Assignment. See? Already it isn't play. Good grief.

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What I really want is cookies. Coooooooookies.


jenni said...

I had cake and ice cream last night--yummmmm!

RJGibson said...

I think we undervalue the importance of play and just loving words. That's a big reason I'm so fond of Peter P's latest book, Elaine Equi's "Ripple Effect," Heather McHugh's poems etc etc etc. It's not something that shows up a lot in my poems--but it's a fundamental part of how I became a writer. I learned to write by doing song parodies and playing word games as a kid and adolescent. Sometimes I wish I could just unleash the rein and go, but for now my master/mistress is repetition and thing at a time I tell myself. I'll prolly get to jouissance by 2012.

poet with a day job said...

I hope it's not a roof rat! A friends of mine had one...we don't have screens out west (we should, I think!) ad she left her window open one evening and came home to a kitchen completely ransacked and pillaged!

I'm all for cookies.

Anne said...

ROOF RAT?!?!?!?

Anne said...

RJ: Yeah, I think most of us need to remember to play more and come back to writing just because it's fun. "We," meaning "me" of course. :) That's one thing I like about blogging, actually ... silliness seems to be implicitly permitted.

poet with a day job said...

Yeah, roof rat...sorry! Think of it this way though: they are way cuter than sewer rats.