Sunday, February 1, 2009


It's a day for a little writing, a little poetry-packaging (trying to find good homes for poems), a little chili-cooking and cornbread, a little resting, a little (more than that) football, and Ricola cranberry vitamin C cough drops.

This birthday has smacked me more than others, something about that number. Now that the day is here, I'm ready to revel in it.

And I was working on my poem about my blast-from-the-past poetry teacher. I'd started a serious version and a funny version. My head and my throat are still stuffed up and I'm certainly not feeling coherent, but even I could see that the serious version needed to go right out the window. Vindication must be good-natured all the way. Lead the laughter.

Yes, revel in it.


Premium T. said...

Happpppppy-forty-(gggggasp)-ninth Birrrrrthday! (I'm stuttering consonants today.)

Peter said...

Happy Birthday Joannie!
Enjoy it! Weren't the 40's fabulous! One of my favorite decades.

I'm a few months ahead of you . . . I hit the big 5-0 in June.

Joannie said...

Peter: I remember that you're the experienced one.

T: By now, I'm just stuttering.

Thanks to you both for the birthday wishes.

Kristin said...

Happy birthday! May all your publishing dreams come true in your 49th year (or at least one of them, so you'll have some dreams to come true in your 50's).

Premium T. said...

BTW, I awarded you the "Premio Dardos" -- more on my blog!

Joannie said...

Kristin: Thank you for that nice birthday wish! I'm looking forward to the next year of poetry and the next decade.

T.: Oooh, intriguing! I must check it out.

tom said...

I visit here only infrequently. Perhaps by now your GASP has resided and you have bent your focus to happier thoughts. Despite my tardiness, I have a couple of comments.

Everyone falls prey to being smacked by certain birthdays. We get wonky and tend to see it as confirmation of being past our expiration date.

But there is another view.

Birthdays are a celebration of self and are actually life-extending events (the more you have, the longer you live.) Look not to the length of your life, but the depth and breadth. Here I perceive you ahead of the pack. When it comes to poetry, you are a virtuoso. While writing, you are doing what you love. Perhaps then more than any other time the light in your eyes twinkles and the fire in your heart burns brightly. Be still a moment then, and listen to your heart sing.

Artists seem to ride the tides of their emotions more than others (which may explain your gasping). Then too, it is that same emotional sensitivity that causes/allows you to express so beautifully in words what resides inside.

It is your wont to be hard on yourself (your Diary of a Polluter blog is Exhibit A), but you seem to living a busy and fulfilled life.

I'll end with a thought about life's moments.

“Sooner or later we all discover that the important moments in life are not the advertised ones, not the birthdays, the graduations, the weddings, not the great goals achieved. The real milestones are less prepossessing. They come to the door of memory unannounced, stray dogs that amble in, sniff around a bit and simply never leave. Our lives are measured by these.”
-- Susan B. Anthony


Joannie said...

Tom, thanks for your thoughtful perspective and support.

After I posted, I realized (finally!) that 49 had me in a kerfuffle because I was approaching it as a transition--one year-long walk to 50, one year to get ready.

Once I figured out that was the train of thought, I decided to buy a new ticket and look at what 49 looks like, where I'm at, and where I want to go.

beth coyote said...

I am, re, a bit on the older side. It has some benefits, like cheap movies...

Thanks for your past from the past blog. I had a teacher tell me to NEVER use the word 'suddenly' in a poem, a dictum I have been violating ever since.

Joannie said...

Beth, suddenly I remember that there are writing and publishing opportunities open only to those of a certain age (that I haven't reached yet).

So far, 49 has been fine, and I've almost gotten over the sniffles, too.