Friday, January 2, 2009

Back to the Blog with my Latest Publication

I've been away, visiting family in the D.C. area. While I was gone, my contributor's copy of Interdisciplinary Humanities arrived. It's the "Quiltworks" issue (Fall 2008), and it's one of the more enjoyable reading experiences of an academic publication that I've had in a long time. It's a great mix of scholarly articles, interviews, book reviews, poems and film reviews.

I love the fact that the journal is organized around the theme of quilting. I think that having a theme really, REALLY helps, whether or not it's a blog, an academic journal, a book of poems, or a novel. Of course, I have a PhD in English, so it makes sense that I think a theme is important.

Here's the poem that appeared in the journal:

The Precious Nature of Junk

If God is an old woman,
She uses no recipe.
Long ago she learned
what she needed to know:
how to make do with scarce
resources, how to create successful
substitutions, how to create
magic from simple kitchen chemistry.

If God is an old woman,
She saves all our old clothes. She alone
has a vision of a collage of cloth.
She cuts new shapes out of our discards
and pieces them into an intricate quilt,
even though she knows we will fail
to appreciate her demonstrated skill.

If God is an old woman,
She longs for closer connection.
She sends cards for every occasion
and fills the answering machine with cryptic
messages. She has such important
information to pass on and such little
time left. We listen
and wonder at her mental state.

If God is an old woman,
She knows that everything could have a larger
purpose. She hoards items we’d have discarded
long ago. She understands the precious
nature of junk.

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