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An Occasional Post

Vermont College of Fine Arts residency report

After a more than two-month hiatus (rotator cuff surgery and other stuff), I have returned to the Kingdom of Blog. As I have said several times, I feel more like an occasional visitor to this kingdom than a participating citizen. I’m such a homebody. Today, however, there are a few things to report.

Generally, I tend more towards Eeyore than Pollyanna. Gloom and doom, laced with humor and cheer. I am, however, feeling very lucky at this very moment. Here are some reasons for cheer (even during the heatwave and my usual pessimistic thoughts about global warming):

I had rotator cuff surgery and did not die on the operating table.

I am not dead at all, in fact. This is a good thing. (Eeyore part: I have lost so many beloved friends.)

I have just returned from immersing myself in the Vermont College of Fine Arts MFA in Writing for Children and Young Adults residency. (Must make up a pronounceable acronym for this.) I am taking this coming semester off so I can do something-or-other (clean the basement, play music, burn all my old journals, think about exercising now and then, write on occasion, read a lot, etc.), but one would never know it from my daily presence in Montpelier.

And here’s the wonderful thing: I live here! I do not have to parcel out 12 days of prescriptions, pack a suitcase, or get on an airplane. I just Tootle off in my trusty Subaru and spend mind and heart-filling days listening to my favorite writers and the world’s best students (these two categories overlap considerably).

A pile of newly-purchased books by students and faculty is on the kitchen table (well, to be honest, there are many piles on the kitchen table. Some of them are books). A notebook is filled to bursting with notes from lectures and workshops, ideas and inspiration for writing and revising. My arms ache from hugging graduates and wishing current students a good semester. My heart aches a little from saying goodbye to students I love. They’ll be back (even most of the grads), so this ache will actually ease.

VCFA is a Very Special Place (thank you, Ruth Krauss). I am fortunate indeed to be part of such a creative community. Come on up.
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