Across the fence

I’m finishing the final edits on This Pagan Heaven. With any luck, I’ll have it off my plate by week’s end. I’ve been living with these poems for a long time and want them to go on their way now. Recent events and the rapidly-approaching independent phase of my Ph.D. urge me back to the new book, the dissertation, which I started researching and fiddling with three years ago but have not had time to work on in any sustained manner. I haven’t had a break since Ecuador.

So this summer, I’m enjoying a stay-cation. While my officemates dutifully announce to Facebook that they are in their offices, I have an entire month off. Granted, much of that will be eaten up with yardwork, laundry, etc., but I’m giving myself as much time to write and to unplug from outside distractions as possible.

  • The Crabgrass Wars continue unabated. We’re having to chop it out a section at a time, and the roots go 6″-8″ deep. However, some veggies are in and the little flower garden at the poet’s patio out back looks great.
  • We’ve invited a few poets over this Sunday for a poetry potluck. La R. is also planning a party for some of her old students.
  • We’re in the preliminary stages of finding a location for her business, but start-up funds are almost nonexistent. She’s got to fill out all that SBA paperwork in between her crazy at-will job schedule. I’m committing some money each month to help her get started and want to get others to invest. The wonderful world of prosper.com has pretty much been shut down (at least put into “a quiet period”) by  the FTC, so getting a microloan there won’t be possible. It seems as if the P2P loan industry is under fire. I can only suppose that the big banks are behind it. Meanwhile, overpriced storefronts sit empty all over town. Disconnect? You bet.
  • I’ve got an interview with a local reporter about the book. We’ve been playing tag, but should be able to nail it down sometime this week.
  • The English GTAs got raises, for the most part–not a million dollars, but enough to make a real difference. I won’t see that money until August, though.
  • I’ve got to finish the Marilyn Hacker piece I’m writing for the scholars’ conference at West Chester. I’m nixing any flight to and from West Chester this year–driving is more fun and I despise the TSA strip-tease and unwarranted hostility. Why pay for the hassle?
  • When I return to the concrete campus, I’ll be teaching remedial English and taking intermediate Spanish. With any luck, I won’t be out there every single day and will be able to start reading for comps.

Each day, one step closer to the water.

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