Iris Litt’s Comments
Poetry feels dictated to me. A gift. Some writers say writing is a lot of work, but it doesnt seem like work to me. I get the poem on paper as fast as I can, and then something like work begins: revision. And I find poems I wrote a long time ago but never sent out and now, with a better-trained eye, I critique and edit them and do send them out. Ive found poems I wrote as a very young woman and never sent out and I think some of them are excellent. But in those days, I thought they couldnt be very good if I wrote them! Now, after years of leading writing workshops and reading a lot of poetry, I sometimes revise them and send them out.
The Handyman falls into that category. I wrote it many years ago (I was into renovating old houses). Love Song While Shopping is one of my few totally joyous poems. I, like many writers, write more often about sadness and pain, although in my case the poem often includes acceptance and optimism. I wrote Now the Scientists Say: recently, inspired by a news article on a recent trend. To a Married Lover was written in the Mexican tropics and I think it blends the primitive landscape and mood with the emotional experience. And Proud, Full and Evergreen represents a period when I wrote a lot of philosophical poems.
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