May 26

Up 8.


Out at 10, wrote yesterday’s entry + some email and worked on the interview until about 12:30.

Didn’t do a great deal w/ the afternoon, frankly, except for watching Not Reconciled (1965, Jean-Marie Straub [Huillet isn’t co-credited yet). Intentionally toneless, even relative to Machorka-Muff; similar thematic territory (and source material, Böll, who I’ll probably never get around to reading).

Re-read a writing productivity book and decided to sign up for a coaching session. Candidly, I don’t like reporting this - that after 1 (short) book of criticism, 1 of poems, and however much prose published since 1995 or so, I’m this stuck, and seeking help. But the main points of this journal are to remind myself of what I’m doing and to give others some window on what goes on w/ someone who’s trying to finish a book, just in case evidence that it isn’t easy or smooth helps anyone feel less ashamed of their own process.

After a thunderstorm, went back out and managed to work on a little section. Wrote for 10 min., the very minimal, gentle, do-able contract I made with myself, and then spent 45 finding related bits in another draft and incorporating them. I think it was useful. A little a day is better than nothing for days.

Came back at 8 and worked on charts for “Massachusetts” (Roberts/Razaf) “Have You Ever Been Lonely?” (Hill/DeRose) and “The M.T.A. Song,” (Bess Lomax/Jacqueline Steiner), sent them to L.C.’s band, and gave another listen to a few songs in the set. Knocked off 10:30.

Read 15 p. of Rogin and the first poem in Sara Nicholson, What the Lyric Is. I’ve read much less this month than usual; I’ll be happy if I finish both of these by June 1. Lights out 11-ish.