Friday, June 29, 2007

Sonnet 18

Shall I compare thee to a summer's day?

Please don't. Please don't call me Ishmael, either.

Because of the writers' conference, I am anything but temperate; I have scant days to get in a set of student evaluations, provided I can stay awake. Sally is taking steps to get her life back, which is to say, what she considers a sensible routine of walks, coffee houses that allow dogs, and writers' workshops that don't go roaring on until three in the morning.

And summer's lease hath all too short a date. On this night of June 29 and a lovely full moon, the days have begun to act like a Wal-Mart t-shirt, they have begun to shrink.

Ishmael may have had time to sign aboard The Pequod because he had some personal problems. More like he was bipolar, but never mind. In all innocence, he, Ishmael, had Ahab to cope with.  

I have (metaphorically, but nevertheless a strong enough metaphor) the forty-third president of the United States and his vice president to cope with, the two of them seeing white whales of one sort or another everywhere. 

 Go ahead, laugh. Thanks to the Secret Service, I can't get within harpooning distance of either of them, but while Ishmael goes about with a cold gray (although I think he used the English spelling) December in his soul, I go about on this summer's day and most others with symptoms of raging frustration and Bush paranoia, which really isn't paranoia if half the people on the planet can't stand us.

There is work to do, a book to finish and another to get started in which the techniques of actors' workshops and writers' workshops are merged, and heaven knows how many editing projects I promised to take on, and the splendid sense that the short story about a Cro-Magnon clan, lost these years back when the hard drive of a computer crashed, has begun to dig its way up through the archaeology of my mind. Good, cheery times, really, if it were not for that idiot and his Frankenstein's monster vice president.

Okay, so compare away, I feel like a summer's day and although bone tired from running the late-night fiction workshop for the past six days and moderating the new book panel and hanging out with writers such as Chris Moore and Leonard Tourney, whom I only get to see once a year, I'm thinking maybe my eternal summer shall not fade, at least for a few years.

Just don't call me Ishmael, okay?

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