The Marine Honor Guard attended Uncle Joe’s funeral — “Taps” is the most devastating music — you respond viscerally, instantly. Even as we mourned, though, I was glad that they came, that they honored him, that he was remembered.
Funerals, memorial services — they’re important. That kind of communal grief is comforting, the communal recognition that this person’s life mattered. Funerals dredge up old griefs as well, as the new loss comes to stand for and encompass all the losses that came before. But that’s not a bad thing — we carry our griefs just below the skin every day — it’s a relief to wear them freely, to cry and feel freely, once in a while.
The Collected Poets Series reading last night with Kimberley Rogers and Ellen Doré Watson was tremendous and also cathartic — while their styles are different, they both write passionate, forceful poems. I hope to be able to share one of Kimberley’s poems before too long, so check back. She’s a voice not to be missed.
I finally have my copy of Poet’s Work, Poet’s Play, and I’m happy to report that while many of the essays are reprints, they’re reprints from a variety of journals, and there are original essays also, so I’ve only previously read one essay, Tony Hoagland’s, out of the bunch. I’m especially excited to see Chris Forhan in the table of contents — his book of poems, The Actual Moon, the Actual Stars is a favorite of mine. It came out 5 whole years ago, practically a lifetime! I’ve been wondering what he’s up to — while a new book is my heart’s desire, I can settle for an essay on poetry. For now.
Vincent is officially 2 — we did have a cake at my mother’s yesterday after the funeral, but it was a very small affair. This Sunday we’re going to have another, because you can never have too much chocolate cake, and though Vincent has very specific ideas about what’s good, he most wisely concurs. And he sings a sweet Vincent-y version of “Happy Birthday to You” sure to cure whatever ails you!