Sunday, October 21, 2007

Checking In

I’m three weeks into my four-week “writer’s colony at home,” and yesterday I finished the draft of a new book. There’s still a lot (months) of work to be done, but the draft is on the table! I’m not sure I’ll follow C. Dale’s method of letting it sit for six months, but if I start working my way through it now, it’ll probably be at least six months before I get to the sections I wrote recently.

I couldn’t sleep last night and got up early and found myself rereading Robert Hass’s Twentieth Century Pleasures, particularly his essay on James Wright. I read Wright’s Shall We Gather at the River when I was 18, and it was my first love in contemporary poetry (I’m afraid my own poetry still has its weaknesses without its strengths). Later I got into the poets like Robert Creeley, Robert Duncan, and Gary Snyder who were considered cooler and hipper, especially in the Bay Area, but you never get over your first love.

4 comments:

Jilly said...

congrats I look forward to reading it

greg rappleye said...

Wow!

Congratulations!

KATE EVANS said...

Robert Hass is amazing. You should read what I wrote about him on my blog, when I recently saw him read (see here: http://beingandwriting.blogspot.com/2007/09/all-literary-all-time.html scroll down just a bit, past Dorothy Allison).

cheers,
K

Robert said...

Thanks, Greg and Jilly! I've never written anything close to a book-length sequence of poems before, so I'm excited about it (and also terrified that I will wake up to reread it and find it awful).

Kate, I can't wait to get my copy of Hass's Time and Materials so I can read it from start to finish.