07 October, 2014

poetry day

At some point soon I will talk about graduation from teacher training, and yoga, and some of the more surprising (to me) revelations contained therein. But in the meantime, a different sort of revelation.

Ten British actors read 10 British poems.

I love that poetry lives and breathes because these actors make it live and breathe, and that people actually care about that. I try and imagine a US network doing this, and I can't. Perhaps one has, and I just don't know about it.

I admit a particular perspective (the writing teacher in a classroom of business, econ, engineering, and biosci majors), of people who do not like poetry in the same way they do not like vegetables, because it is perceived as unpleasant or difficult or whatever. I wish we had some aesthetic, trained from school, that this stuff is beautiful and important. I don't know that I had teachers try and explain that to me until maybe high school (it obviously stuck, because here I am); but they were exceptional teachers, too. Deidre Gilbert and Margo McCoy taught me how to read it, and maybe more importantly, to hear it.

So go listen.

Anyway. Two of my favorite WWI poems are partway down the page. The Eccleston version of "Dulce Est Decorum Est" gave me chills. (But, confession: much as I adore Cumberbatch's voice, I still don't much like John Keats.)

31 August, 2014

not at all lazy days

Summer is almost over. We are not amused.

I'm in the middle of teaching my final project for the American Viniyoga teacher training. It's a 6 class series themed around The Avengers and aimed at Geeks with Ambition, which is to say--people who spend too much time sitting in front of computers, but who also have aspirations to badassery like their favorite characters. So yeah, aiming at the Comic Con crowd. In reality, I'm teaching 1-3 students a session. I don't know how I feel about it yet. Teaching yoga and teaching writing have a lot in common. I'm not exactly nervous, except that I'm not as much an expert in yoga as I am in writing. But I also don't know if I like it that much, teaching yoga. Still deciding. I do like creating sequences. That's more like algebra. There are rules to follow, and a certain elegance when those rules are well-executed.

I'm gathering courage to actually cut the Icelandic colorwork sweater I made for Nous so I can install the zipper. I have a deep-seated aversion to actually cutting stitches. This may take another week of courage.

Round two with the agent and revisions. I was not in a good place at first, having to do another round. You know. The doubts descend: it's clearly not good enough, just fucking quit and go watch more Veronica Mars (which I recommend with some reservation) and get on with knitting those baby hats.  For the record, the agent's been stellar and nothing but encouraging, so the issues are mine; I think she's trying to get this manuscript as clean and flawless as humanly possible, because the style's difficult and it won't be an easy sell (which I knew, and I'm happy as hell I found someone in the field who also likes a book where you have to pay attention to the words). The Rat has agreed to read the whole damned thing again, which only proves she's the best friend in the world.

Baby hats, yes, but not my baby. The Rat and Shan are having Evan in October, probably right around the day that revisions are due, school starts, and my final yoga weekend commences. The hats, by the by, are finished. Shan hopes very much that Evan's head is as tiny as the hats appear.

Visited parents. Parents visited here. Next year I'd like to spend a week in CO, in a cabin someplace where we can bring the cats, and just get some damned hiking in. People can come up and see us. We shall see. The job hunt begins again for Nous, so next summer is this vague shape of Things Will Happen.

Honestly, I like my summers blank and dull, with a few weeks of interesting, so that I can catch up on knitting projects and get some actual writing done. I've been lax on the latter this summer, or at least, I have produced nothing of length for submission. I do have a pile of books to read for research, however, for the next project.

And! This is how I started my summer. I tell ya, if I'd had tattoos in my 20s, I'd've been a lot more diligent with the sunscreen. This is the HĂ„rdby swordwoman they found, which lots of folks are calling a valkyrja, and which lends support to the idea that women in the Viking age might've fought.

29 May, 2014

up and down and up again

Yoga training for this summer was postponed until September (exactly when I can't commit to 25 hour weekends)...and then un-postponed again within 24 hours. My teacher wants to run it for the seven of us who committed, even if he he might not do better than break even on the work. I suspect his assistant wasn't too thrilled about sending the second email, but I know *he* wasn't thrilled to've cancelled in the first place, and evidently *his* teacher suggested he go ahead anyway. So I am back in training starting a week from Friday, which will entail some creative logistics to get me from last day of class, ending at 1:50, to the training site by 2.

Mom's got hernia surgery today. It's out-patient and supposedly easy and minor, but it's still general anesthetic. One frets, long distance.

Mid-April, an agent asked for revisions on a manuscript. This was both an up and a down--up, because omg, someone read my work and liked it and down because it wasn't an offer. But those revisions are done and go out today, as soon as I get enough courage up to press 'send' on the email. The Rat, despite crazy work and her father visiting, came through and read the whole lot of it for me, catching typos and stupid sentences and generally making sure it all makes sense. She is my hero. I would buy her a beer except she doesn't drink. I think I'll buy ME a beer, then.

Really, I think this day just needs beer and yoga, and not in that order.