Last Sunday, my husband and I moseyed over to The Bird House, a nature store in downtown Madison, for a "Creative Slam." It was our first time, and not sure what to expect, we brought our dish to share (cookies) and discovered that everyone else had also brought dessert. Except for the baked beans, but those were so sweet they counted as dessert too.
Anyway, it was great. Davy Crockett came and told his story, and his ghost came too, and updated us on the outcome at the Alamo. Several poets from the Green River Writers were there as well, including Anna Lucas, Ernie O'Dell, and Barb McMakin. I read three poems at first, then one more during the second hour. Paul Kelly (my dad) closed with juggling lessons. Graeme Fothegill MC'ed, and host and bird lady Kelly Misamore read a poem (by her sister) at the end. What a delight to discover this monthly event going on within walking distance of my house! If you're ever in the area, it's the second Sunday of every month.
In other news, I just found out that my poem "Hanging Laundry While Hoping for Heaven" is forthcoming in The Louisville Review. So that's exciting.
And I've been working on a novel about the Sarah Mitchell story (see earlier posts). So far, it's still in its infancy, but I love discovering the characters. Writing a novel is like walking through a maze. I have no idea where I am going while I am in it, but I know where it leads. It's just a matter of wandering through. And I'm fascinated with the issue of slavery and how it will play out: Sarah owned slaves, then became one herself, then went back to "owning" them. I look forward to exploring that psychological territory.
Finally, for inspiration and structural guidance (and just plain good company), I'm reading Sena's Four Spirits. And loving it. But more on that in a future post.
Hoping the cruelest month has not been too much so,