An Open Letter to my Muse #sol16

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Erato, the Muse of Poetry by Edward John Poynter (1870)

Dear Muse,

You and I have had a tempestuous and fickle relationship these past twenty years. When I started writing poetry at 13, I mostly hung out with you for fun. It wasn’t serious, a fling. We got hot and heavy in high school, and I wrote some real passionate love poems about you in college (I was a Creative Writing minor, after all). Then, as I started teaching, my time became more and more pressed, and there was less and less room for you in my life, it seemed.

I tried to schedule dates with you, sure — the random graduate-level poetry workshop or narrative nonfiction class. Haphazard meetings during the Creative Writing electives I’ve taught over the last five years. We even produced some stuff I’m really proud of, and you helped me get published a few times!

Then, of course, I got pregnant, and while you’ve been around a bit to help inspire me to write about pregnancy and childbirth and parenthood, I’ve mostly been left to change dirty diapers and navigate the world of full-time working mom life on my own. Thanks for that.

So when the chance came to participate in the Slice of Life Story Challenge, I jumped at the chance. (Well, I missed our appointment on March 1st. Oops. Sorry about that.)

And here we are, on the last day. We made it!

Did you get as much out of this as I have? It’s been hard to find the time, sometimes. Between teaching, parenting, professional development, a fellowship, connecting with my husband, cleaning, doing laundry, cooking, running, yoga, relaxing, reading… I made a commitment to you, and as a result, at times over the past month I’ve let other things slide. I can’t always find balance. I worry that when I don’t have the looming responsibility of meeting with you every day, I will backpedal. My life is hectic, and sometimes your voice is so, so quiet.

But overall, thanks for sticking with me every day for the last 30 days. We have an unshakeable bond, and every day with you is a gift that I feel I could never pay back. I promise I will try to keep scheduling weekly appointments with you, and if I don’t, feel free to come kick my ass.

Love always and forever,

Me

slice of life

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4 thoughts on “An Open Letter to my Muse #sol16

  1. What a wonderful and clever format for this last slice! I have enjoyed reading your beautiful writing and hearing your witty voice tremendously over these last 30 days. Maybe Tuesdays can be a standing date with your muse?

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  2. I love it! I wrote a letter to myself, and you wrote a letter to your muse. I’m so glad you found the time. I will enjoy getting time back, but I will miss where daily writing takes me. Great job meeting the SOL challenge.

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  3. Wow! How clever! I love this letter. It shows your true intimacy with writing in the midst of it all. Yes, keep those dates. I have found joy, laughter, and insight while reading your entries. Thank you.

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