Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Paths Not Taken

Every day I have a roughly half-hour commute to work in the mornings. The afternoons are my chatty Kathy times, but mornings are reserved for reading. Sometimes news, sometimes novels, but today it was poetry.

I was fortunate enough to study poetry in college under Pulitzer Prize winning poet Claudia Emerson. Much to my shame, I never took the time to read her award-winning work until now. But I'm so glad I waited. The me of my college years would not have appreciated the depth of feeling with which she writes, especially in the book Late Wife. About her first failed marriage, the time in-between, and her second marriage to a widower, there was a lot that spoke to me.

After college, I decided to get married and get a career. A practical one that paid the bills and allowed me to live comfortably. Several of my classmates went on to get their MFAs in creative writing and got to take their skills to the next level, though I don't know if any of them have been (monetarily) successful at it. I wonder what my life would have been like if I'd followed that route. The phrase "starving artist" flashes through my mind, but of course that's just the pessimist in me speaking:) Still, reading Late Wife reminded me that putting thoughts and feelings on paper can be beautiful.

I'm going to try and write more often.


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