Sunday, August 30, 2020


On Thursday, I received a copy of the Summer 2020 issue of the literary journal, The Lyric, celebrating its 100th Anniversary Year. The editor had accepted one of my poems for publication in this issue and had a question about a line in another poem I had submitted. I had written back to her and told her I agreed with her suggestion for a change, and when I looked in the journal, I discovered that she had published that poem as well. Having two poems published was an extra fillip to my day. I showed them to my business partner who was here for the day and let her read them, and it was nice to have someone with whom to share my good news. I was especially happy that "Diapason" had been accepted, because I dedicated it to our choir director, and I will send him a copy of the journal when I get the extra copies I ordered. Since he has very little  directing to do these days, I am hoping it will be an encouragement to him in the interim. The other poem is called "Bacchanale," and while I did have a glass of champagne before I went to bed to celebrate, I probably should have done a little happy dance as well.

Sometimes I wonder if am just taking these things in stride since I have had so many poems published or if it's because I no longer have my beloved husband to help me celebrate that my rejoicing is more damped down.

I wonder, too, if the fact that writing is now also my work and I'm able to spend more time on it means that I don't pause and rejoice in the poems that are published. I find myself striving to submit my poems but when they are accepted I no longer feel that rush of excitement that I often had when I was younger and just starting to have poems published.   Raising our six children took most of my time, and I loved being a wife and mother. Getting a poem published was like a mini-vacation, or getting a scholarship or hitting a homerun or sailing easily over a jump on a horse. It was out of the ordinary humdrum routine of my days of meals, carpools, laundry, and cleaning, reading a bedtime story for the 100th time or helping a child who was having a meltdown over an assignment due the next day, and hearing my husband quoting Anne Lamott, "Bird by bird," kiddo, "bird by bird," as he calmed both of us down, since I often panicked as much as the errant child.

Having a poem published opens a door into a magical world where the words I have spun together build a bridge to the reader. The poem is no longer locked in a binder, but flying out into the atmosphere like a shaman's call where it can echo in untold hearts and souls, and build one more corner of resonance and peace.  Sufficient reason to smile and celebrate!

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