I’ve never been a great fan of New Year’s Eve. I don’t like it. Normally a great supporter of confetti-based fun, the holiday involves too much anticipation and inevitable disappointment, too much sloppy LOUD, and an immanent sadness that has something to do with our collective desire to DO BETTER NEXT YEAR (and also, I suspect, something to do with this: http://www.npr.org/blogs/health/2013/12/31/256596253/nothing-focuses-the-mind-like-the-ultimate-deadline-death . I’m SO getting one).
Why do we have to do better? I did the best I bloody could this year, and now I’m supposed to resolve to do better? I call bullshit.
What if we all resolved to do just as good in 2014? Wouldn’t it be a blessing if we had just as much happiness as we did in 2013? Laughed just as much? Tied just as many kid shoes? Dropped just as many jaws at the bone-chilling beauty of humanity? Argued just as many well-reasoned points with absolute clarity?
I’m a supremely practiced lazy person, so part of my resistance to New Year’s Eve is the call to discipline embraced by so many. This year, though, lots of you want to do some great things: love fiercer, grow your hearts bigger, think up great challenges and channel your inner Joe Fraziers, privilege your art over your routine, use more patience, grow more food, bring more peace.
And some of you, like my dear friend whose babe was born just before Christmas needing open-heart surgery, are just hoping for more hope.
So, in light of all your light, I’m going join the rabble and resolve something. I’ve been thinking a lot about discipline lately, and also about French food, both things not my forte, and I got to wondering: could I, like that blogger girl who cooked all of Julia Child’s cookbook, write a poem every day this year? Could I make myself sit down at this blog, write something, and–the hardest part of all–share it with y’all? I don’t know. But I’m going to try. I have a lot of friends who do amazing things, like run 100 miles at a time, and quilt, and make gorgeous pottery, so surely I can write a poem a day for 365 days, if I really put forth the effort. And surely some of those souffles fell flat. In fact, I’m pretty sure Ce blogueur chienne surement menti. I have that cookbook. It’s hard.
So, some parameters. Because discipline it would not be if I just copied some old notebooks into this blog and called it good. One of my favorite poets, Lauren Zuniga, writes in her poem called Opening “this is an invitation to stop swallowing the art in your mouth”. Okay then.
1) No old stuff. The poem must be written within a 24 hour period and posted before midnight on each calendar day.
2) No bullshit. Not every souffle will rise, but no words on the page without dedicated, reflective thought. No Cloud in Trousers or A Few Whole Watermelon, There Is No Pope, unless I actually know what the hell it means. No haiku without inspiration, no petals on a wet, black bough with out an arresting image that I can’t wait to share with you.
3) Whole pieces only. Long poems are fine, epic poems are epic, but no posting half on one day and half another. See rule # 1.
So. There it is. If you want to keep your resolution to encourage new artists, to to find more zen, or to read more poetry (because I KNOW someone out there has made that a New Year’s Resolution), you can read ’em. You could even comment on them and keep your resolution to maintain more connections while connected.
If I have time and can continue to clandestinely blog while at work tonight, I will post some poems I’ve been meaning to share (including the boob poem, for those of you who have been asking for it), and then, tomorrow, BRING THE NEW.
Last night I made smores with my daughters and started a New Year’s Eve tradition of eating sweetness to bring the sweet. Today I woke with resolve. Wake up, 2014. I’ll write you a poem.