From the moment we turn off onto the rural roads outside of St. Joseph’s, I’m ready. I’ve been anticipating today for days, weeks even. It’s almost writing retreat time! I’m soooo ready.
A full weekend of writing. Talking about writing. Talking about POETRY. With other writers and teachers. Being able to relax completely, not worry about showing what a geek for poetry I am. How much I love and know this art form and its siblings: academic writing, creative non-fiction, essay, memoir, and fiction.
So here I am, and the rain has stopped. The mists have lifted, and the blue Missouri sky is soft behind the high trees that ring the windows. I can hear the murmur of a writing group: someone is reading a piece to friends. (We’re all friends here, even the two newbies.)
I’m in heaven. Appropriate at a Benedictine abbey, somehow. Between the sense of spiritual calm, the inclusive welcome of writers I’ve known for a decade or more, and the satisfaction of working on new material? What’s NOT to love?
You need to get away. Soon. For whatever feeds your inner happy. Trust me — it’s worth the time and planning. Because nothing will connect you to your beginner’s heart like friends, time to enjoy them, and nurturing your own sweet self. Sleep in. Eat something delectably junky (I recommend my friend Sioux’s fudge). And try to write something about it all.