So This is the New Year…

…and I don’t feel any different. With apologies to Ben Gibbard for stealing the lyric, this sums up how I feel nearly every new year.  I certainly cannot predict every surprise that may be around 2018’s corners, but I never have been the prescient sort. Although I will be one year closer to retiring from public school teaching, realistically, things will not change for me all that much otherwise.

I will laugh with my husband & my son, worry about my parents, appreciate time with my students & my friends, and fall in love with the first truly blue sky of spring.  My weight will fluctuate despite my best attempts to be fit, I will fight small battles with my health & aging, and I will stand on a beach & marvel at the ocean. I will crave pizza & mashed potatoes and wish that they were as good for me as salads.  I will stomp & sway, carried away by live music, shout lyrics at the top of my lungs, and I will write.

Some days I will write well, the words arriving like gifts from the ether. Some days I will struggle to fill a page, doubting every glide of the pen, every keystroke.  I will be proud of my work one day, and the next, I will question whether or not I should even bother. I will read poems in journals/books and convince myself that mine belong on those same pages. Then I will read poems in journals/books and despair that mine will never measure up. This year, I will be attempting to post here at least once a week, something that I have missed since letting it lapse months ago. So I will write.

And this week in particular, I will spend the rest of my school break  with my family and some good friends. I may write a lot. I may write almost nothing. But at least I plan on writing & reading, and I am taking two Christmas gifts with me for that purpose: Gabrielle Calvocoressi’s Rocket Fantastic & a new travel journal. I also plan to have Commonplace Podcast in my headphones, Rachel Zucker’s collection of intimate & insightful conversations with poets.

All of these things will bridge the gap into the new year – family, words, friends, love – and into new writing. So cheers to 2018 – and let there be no distance that could hold us back.

 

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