I wrote this at the beginning of break, but it needed some time before I could post it.
Greetings from upstate New York.
The poet Marilyn Nelson wrote my title line, which is strikingly similar to one of my favorite Modest Mouse lyrics: “so much beauty it can make you cry.”
In the interest of truth-telling, I have been struggling this winter. I miss home and my old job, despite having a cozy yurt and a great job with amazing people and kids. Maybe it’s the sun who stays hidden most of the time in the UP. Maybe it’s just that I struggle with permanent change. Always have. Maybe it’s not teaching American literature. At any rate, you get used to a place, all its perks, faults, beauty, and idiosyncrasies.
Frankly, the way I feel has nothing to do with what I do have in the UP. Our time here in the UP has been full of blessings, including 3 and counting free propane tanks. :-)
Anyway, this general sadness, in addition to the piles and piles of stuff to grade, is why I hadn’t posted in a long time. I can’t find the time, and I just keep thinking, “If you don’t have something nice to say, don’t say anything at all.” I haven’t felt inspired. Even my Bread Loaf books haven’t sucked me in.
And yet, even on a night when I was really struggling, I looked out the yurt door and saw this and remembered what I know. The land is always trying to remind us to live in the here and now and to appreciate the beauty around us. So I try.
Oh, and I hatched a plan with my mom to get out of there for my spring break. It’s not a tropical paradise, but my mom, grandma, and John are here. They’ll take good care of me and in theory, I am finally going to crack my Bread Loaf books for this summer.