The Intimacy of My First Live Poetry Reading in Two Years
wild heart banging
the words the words
parading off the page
into the air – marching
on shoulders, dancing on
cheeks, the eyes hot
the words the words
rooting out of my body
anchoring me home
in that room, making room
for language to zing
the words the words
purpose radiating – blissssss
my cells reverberating
alive in their reason
to breathe & oh!
family in the room!
the words! the words!
the intimacy of poetry
magnitudes of love
The Intimacy of Picnics
expanding the quilt
on the wind’s shoulder
settling down over soft grass
fresh bread, pull-apart soft
creamy cheese, salty meat
lazy laughter under a budding tree
friendship weathering the humble
first warmth of the season
We did it! Thank you!
Friends, family, new friends, new readers of poetry…of thimbles! Oh, what a fine, fun, fantastic time we had at the Windsor Yacht Club yesterday for the literary luncheon at which I had the honour of being the guest writer!
Indeed, it was the first live reading I did since before the pandemic…Including for the launching of thimbles, that happened in April 2021 via Zoom. I was nervous. Of course! But that’s part of my process. I rehearsed, prepared my thoughts and my heart, gathered my books and my fancy pen for signing…I bought a fancy new dress and some sexy tights. I Nair-ed my mustache, plucked my eyebrows, painted my nails…oh, and I even shaved my legs which I hadn’t done since January (or before…!).
I couldn’t eat the three course meal, though it looked scrumptious. My tummy and guts were standing at attention and keeping their strength to get me up to the front of the room. And then…and then…it was time!
The lovely Amanda Hanson on trumpet opened the reading with a gorgeous rendition of ‘The Sound of Music’…and my heart flumped out of my chest for all to see and hear. Nonna, in her angelic presence, put her hand on my back. I felt rushes and rushes of love and joy and…hot, hot purpose.
It was a deep recovery of me. Of that voice, that knowing that for so long had gone rogue…out of me…nearby but not in sight. Whooooosh! It slammed back into me, and I felt…a poet again. A real, live, breathing, sharing poet.
Even now…re-playing, re-feeling the day….my body flushes to joyous heats. The energy in the room was electric. It was like…we became a collective…one joined heart. And it was magical. We laughed. We cried. We talked. We cheered. We listened. We did what people do a poetry readings…we zapped our humanity together.
At least…at least, that’s how it felt to me. And afterward, we talked more. We shared stories. We gushed and thanked. And I felt, and feel, humbled and honoured to be a poet. To be able to write. To be able to read. To be able to heart connect with you. On the page. In the room.
For the first time in my poetry reading history, my dear, dear, true love family was in attendance. To look into the room and see my kids, my husband…it was extraordinary. To read a poem I wrote for the kids out loud to them, from my heart to theirs…Ooooof. It took all my strength to not bawl and lose it right then! But they pushed strength right at me and we shared the love. And my mom, she was there too. In her brilliant red shirt…pouring her love out. It was incredible. We cried!
This kind of intimacy was collective, ecstatic, palpable. I am wholly grateful to everyone who was there to share in the day! Thank you!
Today I floated on the aftermath bliss that is the day after a major poetry reading. It was sooo weird! Doing dishes, folding laundry, doing HST…with zaps of energy flowing in…remembering moments from the reading…reading thoughtful and generous comments on social media, in emails…not being able to respond without crying…and feeling like I need to pinch myself to believe it was so wonderfully real.
It’s like that…big…an existential expansion…being a poet. Being an artist. Being amongst poets and artists and creatives. Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!
Special thank you to Carol Parent, Sal, Matt and the graceful team at the Windsor Yacht Club!