Friday, September 27, 2013


I just got back from Bogota, Colombia -- I went there last week on one day's notice to address a major disaster whose details I can't reveal publicly. But in dealing with this disaster that made me feel like my life was one bad C-version of a James Bond movie telenovela, the days were jammed with heartbreak, despair, intense frustration -- I came back and several people observed, Wow: you've suddenly got white hair!

There were also a few dead moments of waiting for various things to happen or not happen (ever noticed how life is also filled with these idiotic periods of waiting?). And I am pleased to report that, notwithstanding the disaster unfolding around me, during one of these waiting periods, I wrote a book review of a poet's memoir just because the book moved me to do so (one of a group of books I randomly grabbed from my To-Read pile to bring along on the trip). (The memoir is WHAT THE STONES REMEMBER by a poet unknown to me, Patrick Lane.) And I am so pleased because what this proved to me is that even when I'm not consciously thinking of poetry, poetry (concerns) dont' leave me -- they are so integrated into my life now like ... breathing.

That is, I used to be concerned about carving out spaces within my life to address poetry. Now I know -- I've restructured life so there's no seam between the two. Many wise poets say that to write effective poems the poet has to change one's life. I guess I did ... and, btw, for this past week I also had to change my diet. Here's a touch of yummy Colombia:

Ay yay yay -- those lovely chicharrons!