Thursday, August 20, 2009

"I am the one navigating the night without stars"

I just got back from my poetry conference in Cape Cod. I managed to get my beloved Canadian to come along with me, and it was such a peaceful and lovely trip. We were right by the beach and the town was pretty far removed from everything. It was so quaint and picturesque -- the kind of town that doesn't seem quite real. Everyone is so friendly that by the end of the 4 day conference I felt like I was part of a community. My workshop advisor was Kathleen Aguerro, and she was sweet as a peach and so encouraging, and had such great perspective on poetry and revising work. At first I felt a tiny bit nervous because I think I was the youngest person there by several decades, but I forgot about that pretty quickly when I realized we were all in the same boat.

One great poet I was exposed to, and to whom I credit my blog post title, was Martin Espada. Read his great poem: "Not Here"

I was having such a dry spell all summer, but Cape Cod really re-booted me. I wrote so much while I was there, and haven't stopped since! It was all pretty perfect, picture this -- sitting out on the porch and rubbing ice over ourselves (it was so hot!), playing the harmonica for a lovely mosquito audience, evening strolls along the beach, watching Saved by the Bell movies, eating steak every night, hearing the life stories of about a dozen cab drivers.

Have you ever played that game where you try to guess the color another person is thinking? You touch their temples and gaze into their eyes and have them imagine everything that comes in that color? You probably haven't, because I made it up, but it's a lot of fun. Usually when I play with people they never guess right, but with my little sister she guesses my colors right about 99% of the time. I made my beloved play with me on the trip, and turns out she can guess my color right everytime as well. Everytime she declared "pink" or "blue" with such quiet confidence I screamed and tumbled out of bed. This just further proves my theory that we can communicate on a different level.

Poodle peeking out.

On the way there we stopped over in Providence, Rhode Island, and I bought animal crackers from a man on the street. They tasted horrible but I found this owl cracker!