the work

August 26, 2011 Candace Morris 4 Comments


I've always been more in love with the idea of hard work than with the actuality.  I imagine Plath pouring over her poems in the early morning (Ted got the afternoon to write), blowing on her hands to keep warm in that drafty house in Devon.  I've romanticised the writing life, of course I have.  There is a paradox I possess; two voices battling.  "Work harder. For Hours.  Daily."  Then the other "Enjoy, be less serious, live your art."

Both valid, no doubt.  But lately, I've felt guilty for how little I've worked on my recent project.  So this morning I sat to an hour or so of work and realized that amidst my laissez-faire attitude, I've written 11 legitimate poems.  Rough, in need of editing (which I confess I might like more than the actual writing.  There is something so pleasurable in all those proofreading symbols!), and not yet good, but STILL! They are written.

working on Nightwatch

Amidst the guilt and the voices saying it wasn't enough, I worked.  Since not much slips my notice, my perpetually-peeled eyes, I consider this a private and profound victory.  Intentionality, I have plenty of.  What's new is the surprise of enjoying the work so much that it feels absolutely nothing at all like work.

To my 11 poems,

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