End on end

Here is a flat, seamless year’s end, in a pandemic seemingly without end. Given a lot of reflection, my hope has been to give it contour. Loss and hope weave themselves together, like threads in chambray melding into a single color. Love and anxiety as weft and warp conspire to drape us in silk.

These served as the major themes in my undergraduate writers’ portfolios this past semester, and I’m so proud of them for examining the subtle questions that arose in their creative work. Their recognition of the beauty in the fabric that 2021 has wrapped us in will serve them well in their lives.

Poets’ gratitude tends to be about the gifts we have cultivated and given. I’m grateful for my new-in-2021 watercolor practice, a few deepening friendships, and the extended family celebrations we were able to squeeze in between Covid19 spikes.

Infinity’s ink has spilled over me
And left me badly smudged

Charles Simic “Talking to the Ceiling”

My dream of first chapbook publication came true this year with Saffron Threaded from Dancing Girl Press. The sweet feeling of sharing it with friends and family was somehow completely different from that of my self-published, handmade chapbooks. Not sure why, but I’m so grateful for that experience.

I continue to find reasons to be grateful for poetry community. LiTFUSE, Attic Institute of Arts & Letters, Mary Newell’s ecopoetry collective, and Vermont College of Fine Arts’ alumnx readings gave me sustenance through the year.

Will we write even more compassionate poems in 2022? If the hard-earned fabric of 2021 wears well, I believe we will.

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