Homeschooling an MFA in Poetry

Last summer, my sweet friend Kara, got me a subscription to Cozy Blue Stitch Club. I love the designs that Liz creates and was so happy to know that new projects would be coming my way.

The last pattern to arrive was called Evening Walk–a field of wild grasses with a line of trees behind and flock of birds overhead. The scene looked so much like the view from our house across the river to the West Hills. I love the line of fir trees at the top of the ridge, and I knew those tiny blue birds were actually geese flying to the river.

A few years ago I came across an interview with the former poet laureate Ted Kooser. He talked about his daily writing routine. He comes to the page every day because “you got to be there when the geese come flyin’ in.”

From these daily pages he distills the year’s writing: “I feel that I’m really fortunate if, at the end of the year, after writing every day, I have a dozen poems I care about. That’s plenty.”

Kooser’s simple phrase–be there when the geese fly over–has become a touchstone for me. A little nudge toward the work I want to be doing. I want to show up every day so that I’m ready when inspiration alights. In season and out of season.

From the bluff above the river where we live, we watch the geese flying over, hear their calls, and see the neat Vs come unraveled. And every time it’s a reminder of this work.

This month I’m going to be writing about my Homeschool MFA experience–what’s working and what I’ve learned in the first two years of this project. Just click on each title to be taken to the post.

I’d love for you to join me. And do tell me what you are working on!