Prose Like Rain

Louise Erdrich was the guest author for the annual 49 Writers' retreat at Tutka Bay Lodge in Homer. She was so generous and genuine it made me want to be a writer again. (Lately, as you may have noticed, sitting at my desk has been a little low on my to-do list.) I used to think that as I grew older, I would have more time, but there's less. Actually, that may not be true. My oldest child turned 34 last week, and she was here with her family (husband, two children, dog) and just left last night on the ferry. I could have written while they were here. But I didn't want to miss a minute. Plus, the dogs needed walks, and the rest of the family was over  a bunch-- all six grand children. Here's my issue with time management: I want to hold these days with all of us close. The day after my daughter's birthday, my dad had his 84th at his farm in New York. He lives there with his big dog Sunny. In my heart, my children all look like my grandchildren do now, and my dad is younger than I am. But of course that is not true.

I have been thinking that my sense of time has a lot to do with being an obituary writer, but I think it also has as much to do with being a mother and now a grandmother.  Which brings me back to Louise. She too is a busy mother and grandmother and deals with many dogs. She referred to one troublesome terrier as "a plague of dog" (with a  nod to her novel A Plague of Doves). She said, "I have a lot of things I like to do. I go for long periods where I don't have the time to write." 

Here is the wonder of this observation: the minute you say it out loud, you really, really want to get back to the work of writing. I have a new book to begin, and hopefully finish, in large part anyway, by Spring. ( I have a lot of notes...) Louise also said "Poetry is like lightening, prose is like rain."

Bring on the September rains.

(In the meantime, I need to  check on a possible obituary for a former resident, and since I'm an assembly member attend a few sessions of the Southeast Conference, a regional economic development organization holding its annual meeting in Haines today and tomorrow. The healthcare and energy presentations are what I'm most interested in.)

In other news, wash your hands a lot, there is nasty virus running through town. Fevers and sore throats and headaches-- Also, it is picture day at school, there are 14 moose taken so far ( Chip has been hunting on his own this week, as I have chosen the company of grandchildren and puppies), and mushroom expert and Pulitzer Prize nominated, Guggenheim winning author Michael Millman will read from his latest book At the End of the World of the World: A True Story of Murder in the Arctic at 6pm at the library tonight, then take everyone on a mushroom hike down the Battery Point Trail tomorrow 1-2:30, and finally speak on mushrooms tomorrow night at 6 pm at the library.

When it rains it pours. Lucky us.



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