Monday, May 4, 2009

Home Stretch

Tomorrow is my last day of classes as an MFA person. This is a bit unbelievable. But also a relief, not that I don't love being at Hollins, I'm just ready for the next step, whatever that step may be. I have a thesis more or less put together. Right now, After the Ark checks in at 59 pages of poetry (including epigraph and section headings). I think I'm going to try and trim it before sending it out into the world. Currently scoping out First Book Contests. It looks like the Crab Orchard Series in Poetry First Book Contest will be my first opportunity. Pipe dreams abound. Any approaching contests I should know about?


Killer first line of the now:

"No balm in heaven. Bone light. Things tick as they desiccate."

from Rodney Jones' "A Whisper Fight at the Peck Funeral Home"
(Kingdom of the Instant, Mariner Books, 2002)


Headed to DC on Friday for a show, good friends Anonymous playing at the State Theater. Love seeing these guys. Love kicking my feet and pumping my fists.


I missed this last week, but a million congratulations to Christine Schutt as her latest book All Souls was named a finalist for this years Pulitzer Prize. I'm in the process of reading her story collection A Day, A Night, Another Day, Summer and loving it. She was the writer-in-residence at Hollins last year, and her son Will is a good friend of mine and a fellow Hollins MFAer (soon to be MFA graduate, strange), so it's great to see her get the recognition she so rightly deserves. We once played with Great Pyrenees puppies together.


A student sent me an email today telling me she was writing a paper about my poem Laundromat, which appeared in the Autumn/Winter 2008 issue of Poet Lore. This made me incredibly happy. It's easy to forget that every once and awhile, someone will actually read these poetry journals. Sometimes the actual publication feels like an anticlimax, that is, until something like this happens, and then publication seems much more real. Now I have to formulate semi-intelligent thoughts about this poem to send to aforementioned student.


I bought fancy paper today. I've decided I want my own watermark.


DeadMule said...

Hi Luke, Remember me? Helen Losse from the Dead Mule. I started reading your blog after I saw you on Kay Byer's blog. Wishing you all the best in life after MFA.

Come see me sometime at

Luke said...

Thanks for the well wishes, Helen, and for checking out things here. I'll definitely be stopping by your blog (and Dead Mule).