Poetry Challenge Post #1

Why hello there, dear readers.

No, I haven't died.

Actually, to the contrary! These past few months have been wonderful for both my body and spirit. I am doing well, dare I say, thriving? Anyway, I've had "priorities" to attend to. Work? Writing? Taking care of myself? All of that. So blogging fell a little bit to the wayside. But never fear, I'm alive, well, and in good spirits. Can't you tell from my picture? That's me, last Thursday, celebrating some wonderful news that I can't wait to share with you (soon!), and, also, the beginning of my vacation.

Life's been pretty good. Right now, I'm thoroughly enjoying my spring break, which is my calm before the storm. Today consisted of chatting with my good friend and fellow poet, Linda, about all things writing, meeting for sushi with the awesome gals from Devilfish Review, and an online poetry critique session via Skpe with two new friends. Today has pretty much been perfection. I'm enjoying it while I can.

Once my spring break ends, though, my life is about to get a lot more complicated (in a good way, of course). Naturally, I return back to work, but I've also got a boat load of events lined up, including an AWP panel to moderate in Minneapolis, a banquet to attend in Houston for the Texas Institute of Letters the very next frickin' day, a friend's wedding that I've promised to read poetry at the following weekend, and then, to top it all off, the Valley International Poetry Festival at the end of April. 

I am going to be a busy bee right until the semester finishes. So right now, I'm just enjoying the calm, the peace, the time to focus on the things that matter most to me.

Which brings me the Poetry Challenge. Rodney Gomez tagged me on Facebook to participate, to post a poem a day for five days. I get to tag other poets to do the same, and one of my tagees, Linda, suggested we take this to our respective blogs. Isn't she smart?

So, here's my first poem. I'll be back everyday for the next five days to share more.

In the Beginning

She made an ocean, ocher, filled with yolks
and gloss, a splash of milk as white as bone,
a sunray stream of butter, clumps of sugar
dissipating into amber swirls.
Then, she sifted what was dry: the dust
of flour, rising up like bits of ash
when poured, a scattering of salt, a drift
of baking powder, altogether formed
a snowy mound she leveled with her spoon.

She poured the flood of batter in the flour,
sprinkled midnight chocolate chips like stars
scattered in a golden, cloudless vault,
spooned her fist-sized worlds onto a pan
and formed then with her hands. When she was done,
she slid them in the oven, licked her sticky
fingers clean and knew that it was good.

Poem originally published in my latest poetry collection, Goddess Wears Cowboy Boots