After almost a year and a half of pretty intense productivity, it doesn’t surprise me that I’m not writing at all lately. I don’t really believe in “writer’s block” but at the same time it seems pretty normal to have periods when the writing just doesn’t happen. That’s happened before and it will happen again, and especially given that I’m in the very last stages of completing a big project, doesn’t freak me out at all.
What does freak me out, somewhat, is the fact that I don’t seem to be able to read poetry right now. I get to a page with a poem on it and my eyes just blip right over it, almost as if it’s in a language I don’t read. It is the damnedest thing, and I don’t remember it ever happening before. Maybe for a day or a few days, but not as an ongoing thing like this.
Maybe this is my reflexive way of ensuring that I don’t go back to my new manuscript until I’ve gotten some serious distance from it and can be somewhat objective. Maybe I’m spending too much time on Facebook and Twitter and just don’t have the attention span (or the depth of focus) necessary for poetry. Maybe zombies ate my brain. I have no clue.
Has this ever happened to anyone else?
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Also, there’s one thing that is annoying me right now about aforementioned Facebook and Twitter, and that is how the real-time nature of it gives me all kinds of reasons for envy (a feeling I do not like having). It is easy to become painfully aware of other people who have time in the middle of the day to write a poem, go for a walk, curl up with a book, send out manuscripts, take a nap – while I’m sitting in my cubicle or working with students at the reference desk. I like my job. I like it quite a bit. But man, I don’t really need to be reminded of how nice it would be to have more time for writing, and of how much better a writer I think I’d be if I had more time to give to it.
Assuming, of course, I would actually write if I had time. Which, right now, who knows.
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On a happier note, this weekend I am off to St. Louis for one more Springsteen/E Street Band show. This will be my next to last show of this tour, which is to say, my next to last E Street Band show for the foreseeable future. After November the band is going on hiatus for at least a year and a half, possibly/probably longer, and there's no guarantee of another tour. At the very least, it seems unlikely that, two or three years down the road, these guys will be doing the three-hour-plus, full-throttle rock shows they've been doing. Not impossible, but ... unlikely.
I’m certainly going to savor every moment of what's left, every bit of thunder.