How was your long weekend? We missed a poetry class last week due to Victoria Day, which means there was a two week gap in between posting the first poem of my MFA and getting feedback on it. Over the course of the past fourteen days, I have gone from loving every single line to realizing it is absolutely the worst drivel I have ever created... and back again. Needless to say, I'm looking forward to finally workshopping it tomorrow.
One benefit of the long weekend: Lots of reading time! Sort of. I took my daughter up north with my mom and in-laws, so there was a lot of time spent chasing after a two-year-old and not so much time lounging around with a book. But if it counts, I did bring a very heavy pile of books up to Blue Mountain, and I finished reading The Corpses of the Future by Lynn Crosbie (2017, House of Anansi Press).
Crosbie's book tells the story of her elderly father and his battle with frontotemporal dementia and blindness following an injury. The confessional narrative style hits the mark on two fronts -- it manages to stay accessible while maintaining incredible depth and poetic mastery. The book was a way for the author to process what she calls the "symbolic language of dementia" and functions as a sort of conversation/collaboration between the speaker and her father.
Given the subject matter, of course, it's an emotional read. Memory, identity, rage, loneliness -- The Corpses of the Future deals with the pain that comes from simply continuing to exist while someone you love is suffering. I won't say too much more, but it's a fabulous read, whether or not you're usually a fan of poetry.
Today, I went to a publication seminar hosted by the wonderful Robin Richardson. It was nice to supplement my online MFA adventure with some in-person learning, and I highly recommend her workshops in general and this one specifically. The seminar has added a few titles to my very long reading list... Poetic Meter and Poetic Form by Paul Fussell, The Ode Less Travelled by Stephen Fry and Best Words, Best Order by Stephen Dobyns are up next for me.
Wish me luck at my workshop tomorrow!