Once again, I'm standing on a brink of another new year. For me, the year begins in September, the start of something new,something possible. I have been know to look at pen and paper supplies for hours, picking out the ones that will suit me without fail. The Sunday paper had a headline boasting money-saving coupons for Back-to-School. August can be filled with anticipation. 31 Sunday evenings, that anxiety of returning to work that never seems to be done. Grading is so repetitive. Once one group is all sorted out and humming along, there' s a new group that needs to hear your instruction. I want a nickel for every comma splice or split infinitive. Maybe I'll do that this year. Put in a nickel for each time I note these corrections. I bet it would buy me a night out. It may make the process a challenge, because the nickels should be less by semester's end, right? I think I'm going to do this and see if I'm making progress. This will be called the NICKEL ASSESSMENT.
Nickel in Yankee idiom means hug. So I'll expect a bunch of hugs this semester. I will keep you apprised of the experiment.
It's much cooler this morning. A perfect day to accomplish a lot. So far, so good. I have written letters and cards. Re-read my poems written during 31x31 poetry challenge. I can't believe that I've been on task with this. I have a million thing yip-yapping at me. The other day, I put by Apricot Jam (pure gold,as my mother would say, 'Too Good For The Common People.' Of course, if you were told this, you weren't one of the common ones. You were uncommon and would know what was uncommonly good. This includes you who stops by and read this.) Well, this batch of jam was a wrestling match. It bubbled and jumped out of the pot. Splats of sweet, sticky heat, enough to burn my forearms, face, wrists-- the price of close work. I was stirring with a kettle screen. The process took three hours. If any you get a jar of this jam, you are NOT to be less than enthusiastic. I know, I can't hope to have rave reviews, but it would be nice to hear that it brightened that muffin, or piece of toast, or ice cream . . . and you thought of us, of our attempts to live simply and honestly here on the farm. Every jar has sun in it. Imagine that!
Here's the latest issue of THE BLUE Heron Review. Please take a moment to peruse these exceptional poems. This is one of my favorite journals.
Back to work . . .