Friday, September 30, 2011


Thank you to Will Nixon, who invited me to be a guest blogger on his Hudson Valley Poetry Blog. I'm not sure exactly what Will anticipated, or actually wanted, but this is what I felt like writing about: Tenderness. In poetry. Here's how my essay begins:


"I want to feel my life. That unbidden line keeps circulating through my mind these days, reminding me to pay attention, to be open, to let the world in. To say yes. Toward that end, poetry widens and deepens what I feel. It colors and enriches my existence, joins me to humanity.

One of the ways a poem awakens the heart is through revealing our human tenderness. In a fabulous piece by Stan Rice, "Monkey Hill," there is a gift of a line: "Over and over the egg of tenderness will break in our hearts." That kills me.... " (Simply click on the "Tenderness" link to leap to Will's blog and finish reading the essay.)

Scrolling through my photos for an image to accompany the piece, I came across this picture. By contrast, the essay is serious, but somehow this bit of over-the-top visual silliness works in tandem. Look, apparently I'm incapable of keeping my camera away from my mother-daughter monkeys, one of my favorite gifts, from my dear CSJ, who knew I needed them.

Click on image to enlarge.

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