Being good

I’m trying to be a good mother, a good employee, a good boss and a good poet.

What degree of good is achievable when so many goods are sought?

PS I would also like to be a good friend, a good citizen, a good reader, a good cook, a good hostess, a good tennis player, a good knitter, a good fiction-writer.

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7 thoughts on “Being good

  1. Woolfe suggested a room of one’s own, but it seems to me, that time would be more useful. I have little time for doing any one thing well (except parenting I hope). It didn’t bother me much until I started writing. I really want to do that well.

  2. Yes – ironic or what? She said women will never produce competitive (with men) literature until they were materially independent, with the “room” a symbol of that independence. Now here I am, independent up to my eyebrows, thinking, sheesh, wouldn’t it be cool if I could be a stay-at-home mom with someone else bringing home the bacon. Think how much poem-writing and poem-studying I could get done, heh.

  3. yes, i really envy those who have hours a day to work on their poetry. but like you i’m also a mom and a boss. and an excellent neurotic on top of it. loved that story about your son claiming it was him in the tub with the cobra. hilarious.

  4. Interview with Kay Ryan..

    ‘… Ryan has fashioned a life conducive to poetry […] Practically speaking, that means a lifestyle with few obligations. Thus, she has taught the same subject – remedial English – at College of Marin in Kentfield, Calif., for the past 33 years. She limits her classes to Tuesday and Thursday afternoons. “I’ve tried to live very quietly, so I could be happy,” she says’

    Would be nice. Or would it? I can never really decide.

  5. I’m lucky to be a stay-at-home mom, but still find writing difficult — there are always intrusions. Convenience and inspiration seldom strike at the same time, and even if they do, my position on the learning ladder makes me question, revise, question, revise; I get nothing accomplished. I wonder, myself, if going back to work would return to me the self-assuredness I (surprisingly) lack as a mother. Perhaps lightning will strike each of us at our own personal moment of perfection!

    Nic, I admire your poem in the Shit Creek Review, “April.” It has stayed with me for months.

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