I intentionally avoid using this blog for conventional blog posts. There's enough of that on the internet, and my goal in maintaining a blog is to have something of a presence for my more real-deal literary pursuits. Even so, it seems some updating is in order. In August I wrote an update indicating that I was residing not in my hometown of Minneapolis, but in my wife's hometown of Santa Ana, California. I remember writing that post I tried to be careful not to tip my hand too far; rereading it now I see I didn't do that great a job of hiding my unhappiness. Scrolling further, the poetry that came out of that time gave further hints ("Jilting" was me vowing to return a Minneapolis I left stranded at the altar -- I'm that important, while "On the Realization of Dreams" was about just that -- holding the reality of a life in California up to the dream of it, and also about how tragedy can feed a dream).
So we're back in Minneapolis, and for a variety of reasons, none of which really make enough sense on their own, but which taken together were like a tractor beam from somewhere deep below Minnehaha Creek. It's a period of adjustment, to say the least, both in terms of housing and employment, financials and long commutes and, frankly, the guilty feeling that comes from snatching a toddler out from under his extended family. We had that feeling in California, too, and it's clearly a situation for which there are no easy answers. But this is home, and despite everything, it makes so much sense to be here.
I was going to say that it feels so wonderful to be here, but it isn't, for the most part, elation, it's more a constant comfort, or rather, the absence of longing. It's knowing where the bathrooms are at First Avenue, or ordering a drink from someone at Muddy Waters I used to work the Monday afternoon shift with at Extreme Noise fifteen years prior. All sort of dumb stuff, but nice all the same. Turns out I was too old to start over, and I know it now.
In the meantime, though, the world is still a mess. I just watched a room full of students pledge allegiance to a country whose Central Intelligence Agency apparently thought rectal feeding was a thing that made sense/was humane/might produce some good intel. Further, it seems we are a country who thinks that white cops killing unarmed black men is completely inactionable. I believe in beauty and goodness and hope, but sometimes it's difficult to imagine.
And I know, too, that it's complicated. To quote the always brilliant Propagandhi:
"And yes, I recognize the irony. The system I oppose affords me the luxury of biting the hand that feeds. That's exactly why privileged fucks like me Should feel obliged to whine and kick and scream. Yeah, until everyone has everything they need."
So that's the update on my whereabouts and general feelings about the state of things.
I also have some writing news, which is maybe why you tune in. I'm thrilled to announce that my essay "On Infertility" will be in the final issue of Rad Dad Magazine. Their online presence is a little tricky to negotiate, but I believe that the tenacious among you can order your copy here, though it may take some clicking.
I find it tough, for whatever reason, to commit to serious writing during the schoolyear (did you already know that I'm a teacher?), and so don't produce a lot in the way of poetry or essays during these months, though I do have a lot of ideas ruminating in my head. I do, however, continue to write about music at my other web location, the Shuffler. I hope you'll consider clicking on over there as well.
As always, thanks for reading.