When you require renewal, is there a particular poem or book that you return to? A particular author?
There are several poets I turn to for different reasons. When I am feeling vulnerable and need a hug, I pull out my worn copy of Patricia Fargnoli’s Necessary Light (Utah State University Press). She worked as a counselor before she was a poet. I don’t think she ever stopped comforting people. When I’m feeling insignificant, I pull out Elisabeth’s Bishop’s collected poems. Her humor is sly, and her humanity all over the page. When I need to be reminded of resiliency I reread “Song” by Brigit Peegan Kelly. It’s a painfully sweet poem to read again and again. Can you imagine turning out just one such perfect piece of art into the world?
I have to say, reading these poets doesn’t directly renew my writing life. All of them intimidate me as a writer. But their poems renew me as a person. So it’s just one slow circle.. I come around in the end to a blank page.