Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Bad Mommy

This morning I was the wicked mother, standing at the kitchen counter stressed and indulging in invective over lemon bars. What does this have to do with writing poetry?

Choices. We make them every day. Work on a new poem or revise one that's been collecting dust or send some out (and which ones? where?), or do another load of laundry or figure out what to make for dinner or (in better weather) pull a few weeds or sit down with a glass of wine and think about what it will be like when all of it is done. Then, in an hour or so, the process of choosing begins again. At least, that's how it works for me.

I've long harbored a suspicion that I might be a better mother, wife, and employee if I more often made the laundry-type choices and spent less time thinking about, fretting over, and forgetting how to write any given poem. If I spent less time trying to carve out a space alone to think and more time trying to be a better person. (When I'm more focused, I start by trying to be a better listener—but then I have mornings like this morning when it all goes straight to Hell. Apologies have been made, but there is a residue.)

It seems ironic to me that after my youth of feeling isolated most of the time, I'm now trying to figure out how to get a little more time to myself. I suspect that if I got all I wanted, I would feel abandoned. So I'm back to trying to balance writing, with its intangible rewards, working, loving and being loved, and acting, most of the time, like the person I want to be, or at least like an adult.

Perhaps the holidays is not the best time for so much introspection. Or maybe it's the very best time. In the meantime, I'll try to work on a poem for poetry group tonight and try to listen more and wait to tackle the lemon bars until tomorrow.

(And if all this seems random, it is. I'm still new to blogging, and I'm trying to figure out what this is.)

No comments: