November 27th, 2007

scotland, ivy

Les Semaines for November 25th

Had a good Thanksgiving. John (poet, editor, friend since undergraduate poetry workshops) came down to visit from Victoria. I cooked a turkey (which was strangely dry and we used a whole quart of chicken broth to baste it and John still had nothing to make the gravy with). Jim made mashed sweet potatoes, Devin's friend Jeff brought sliced and baked squash, and Devin brought pumpkin pie. Luckily, despite the problems the turkey tasted good. It was a free-range turkey, and I think had done too much ranging.

After dinner, we went to Tamar's for desserts--lots of them--to see her family and some of her other friends.

Friday we went to Open Books, Seattle's poetry-only bookstore and tried not to spend too much money (we let John). Saturday after my writing session at Karen's we were going to meet up in Capitol Hill for a movie but couldn't find a way to do that without spending $16 on parking (two cars) so we went to Jamjuree (one of our favourite Thai restaurants that we don't get to too often) for lunch, then to Diva's for coffee instead. Sunday we went to Seward Park for a lovely walk. We'd never been there before because it's about a 40 minute drive across town, but it's a beautiful place. We started to circumnavigate the park on a paved trail, but about when my back was screaming about walking on pavement so long with firm-soled shoes (I'd planned for walking on trails) we cut off into the woods and my back shut up and it was so beautiful and damn I love forest. After that we went to Cafe Ibex which Amy took me to about a month ago.

We had bad movie karma but watched a few anyway. Talked a lot. Ate a lot. Read some. It was a very pleasant weekend. We need more four-day weekends.

Now it's time to start seriously getting ready for the thick of the holiday season. It's time to put together our holiday letter (if you're not on our mailing list and would like a letter, just email me, and you'll get to see new, unpublished poems by me and Jim).

Susan Palwick writes in her blog about trauma and stories/narrative:

Compulsive repetition of such stories isn't just a sign of shock. It's an essential coping strategy: the speaker is desperately trying to regain control by turning the event into a known, predictable narrative.

This explains a lot about me talking about the murder last spring. I knew this, but it helps to have it said flat out like this.

I'm trying to decide if I'm going to mention it in my holiday letter. It seems the wrong news for a celebratory time of year, but a discussion of my year without mentioning it seems false.

For summaries of my listening, reading, writing, and a piece from Jim's 1994 journal of our trip to Scotland, check out Les Semaines.