Gone Fishin'

HEY!

I'm not actively blogging here anymore. But if you got here because you were searching for something about bikes, you might want to check out my latest project, Vermont Goldsprints. In summer of 2014, I bought a used goldsprints racing setup and have made it a mission to get more bikes in more people's faces by putting on fun races in unexpected places. Come join me!

11.10.2005

On Poetry: Part I

I have realized that although I want to chronicle a lot of things in this blog that have to do with my ongoing situation in Missoula, there is a lot of background to fill in as well. Hence, my recent post about arriving on Cape Cod more than six years ago. Cape Cod is one of the stories, poetry is another, and before I brave actually posting any of my own work, I would like to tell the story of my relationship with poetry and why it is important. I suppose I came by my interest in poetry honestly enough. I enjoyed reading it, mostly Frost and Robert Service, maybe a few others. My dad taught literature at a local high school when I was younger, so there was a certain degree of exposure in terms of the books that were shelved around the house and the stuff in his classroom and office, where I spent some time as a kid, when there was no sitter available or when it was more convenient than finding one. The first poem I remember writing had to do with walking on a frozen pond at night in winter and then lying down in silence to listen to it pop and creak as it froze harder in the cold night. I think I was in seventh grade. After that, there were bad love poems, bad depression poems, self conscious poems about writing, and a few blissful days at the New England Young Writers' Conference at the Breadloaf Campus of Middlebury College. Those conferences convinced me that while I wasn't half of the poet most of the attendees were, I might be decent someday. For me, being surrounded by writers, or really any kind of creative people, is an incredible high. When I began my freshman year at Saint Lawrence University, I took an introduction to poetry writing course taught by Albert Glover. I enjoyed the class, probably didn't produce much worth keeping (and knew it, even at the time), but became comfortable with the idea of writing despite that knowlege. Probably this is why blogging makes sense to me. I had the opportunity to take a few other classes with Glover, to attend a few conferences with him, and to get to know him a bit. However, I was an Environmental Studies major and literature and poetry were too easy to justify my full attention in college. At least, that is what I thought at the time and what I now would pinpoint as the beginning of my turn toward law school so many years later. I wrote some decent poetry, got interested in prose poetry, got interested in W.S. Merwin's prose poetry, and then graduated. I struggled to write after college and into the present, but that is a story for another time. Right now, what I am trying to work out is why I stopped writing (eventually) after college, what distractions I allowed to overwhelm me, what strategies I tried to employ to keep writing and why they failed me, and how in an increasingly complex life situation, I might begin to write in a meaningful way. Further, I wish to try to understand the current state of poetry in America and how I might fit into it. Of course, all this is done with my firm understanding that I really ought to just start writing poetry if that's what I want, and not worry about the rest.