On being a bad member of my literary community

The last two months have been so fucking strange.  I’ll confess that I selfishly thought that once everything shut down and I had to work from home that I would be so much more productive, as if the fact that people dying in a pandemic was a great excuse for me to write some pretty poems.  Then, I felt guilty about that.  Then, I felt guilty because I didn’t end up producing much of anything for a solid month.   I did end up firing off a small COVID-19 poem, one of those poems you write in one go, and to my surprise it was almost immediately picked up a new poetry journal called Passengers, with a first issue planned for July 1, 2020.

I tried to write a few other poems but nothing seemed to take, so I started thinking of other ways I could do poety works.  First, I’m going to be a reader for a journal.  A prose poem I wrote for my fiction workshop last year is now out in the After Happy Hour Review. We did a live zoom reading on May 5 and afterwards I volunteered to be a poetry reader for them.  Second:  I’m putting out a chapbook.  A poet I know from South Bend (now Arizona), Charles Edward Payne, has finished a chapbook and we’re working with Marcos Guinoza, a visual artist, to put out a chapbook under the dormant Retirement Plan brand. I’m organizing a live virtual reading that will take place in a month.

I know I need to be doing more.  I could start reviewing chapbooks, for one.  Ok, I’m going to order some chapbooks right now.  Ok, I just ordered three chapbooks.  I’d like to start writing a few reviews per month.  If nothing else I’ll *feel* more connected, you know?




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