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Journal, Day Five December 8, 2006: Reader Rowan Steigs, sounding slightly tetchy as though he himself may be short of a little quiet time, asks what I want the emptiness for. (See his comment.) This is a very good question. Just to have, that’s what I want it for. Just to jump in, the way Scrooge McDuck jumped—dove—into his money pile. It’s a condition of wealth. It just [...] by

Journal, Day Four December 7, 2006: Reader Kim (no last name) is curious about my admitted discomfort with using poems to describe what already exists. This came up earlier, when I was thinking about ekphrastic poetry. I said, essentially, that a little outside stuff goes a very long way for me. She thinks maybe I’m missing something. She quotes some ideas about what poetry does [...] by

Journal, Day Three December 6, 2006: This is a good question that reader Robin Yim poses: Can one court sensory deprivation (which I mentioned on Monday in relation to the camera obscura photographer) or does one just have to be ready to take advantage of it when it happens by? First of all, of course I’m not really talking about sensory deprivation. The phrase sensory [...] by

Journal, Day Two December 5, 2006: Ekphrastic poems. Norris Palmstreick asks if I write them. Well, now that I have looked up the word and determined that an ekphrastic poem is one that describes another work of art, usually a painting but also possibly sculpture or music, I am prepared to say that I have done so, after a fashion, but not recently. I should start by admitting [...] by

Journal, Day One December 4, 2006: In spite of my description above, I really haven’t been spending time blogging, or even reading blogs. This is my first, and undertaken because I was asked. I could give it a grumpy title, like Larkin’s title for his collected prose: Required Writing. My first impulse was to cheat and prepare a week’s worth of foil wrapped entrees that [...] by