You may stop holding your breath now. I made it home from my workshop with horror writers at the cabin in the woods.
Books with Bite was amazing, as was the entire Highlights Foundation experience. I’ll tell you all about it after I get some sleep and readjust to the real world, but today I want share one small snippet from my retreat.
One of the lovely things about my stay at Highlights was the word garden. On Friday, I walked around and, instead of moving any of the stones, I created a found poem through photos. This is what I came up with:
I spent the weekend grading my students’ journals, and it made me want to post this poem, which was published in Encore: Prize Poems of the NFSPS in 2015.
I straightened the mirror a couple of times, so I have OCD,
then got distracted by a dog, so you added ADD.
I washed my hands after your high-five, so I’m a hypochondriac,
and when I frowned in the crowded mall, you said, “Don’t have a panic attack.”
I didn’t cry in Titanic or Bambi, so you think I’m a freak,
but I’ve seen Star Wars a hundred times, so I must be a geek.
I got 2300 on my SAT, so now I’m also a nerd.
Then I tensed when you gave me a hug, so you say I have Asperger’s.
It’s hard to live with so many labels— you have a name for each of my moods.
Despite how much you think you know, there’s something you forget to include.
While you catalogue each sign and symptom, trying out every disease,
underneath those acronyms, is a person, and that person is me.