Saturday, December 15, 2012

Good news

Two poets

December 15, 2012

Mother and daughter, one slapdash, the other precise,
mother accustomed to writing quick and dirty,
daughter preferring, even bound to, perfection.

Laura Jeanne Morefield and Charlene Baldridge
June 2008
I have spent the past 19 months laboring over my late daughter’s words, fulfilling my promise to collect and edit her post-diagnosis poems. There are many. They are good. There will be a book.

Other than the words I must produce – criticism and features mostly – my own creative work slowed to a trickle, partly due to anger and then, to grieving. Now that Laura’s collection is almost fait accompli, I’ve begun writing a book about our mother-daughter relationship. And I’ve also opened the desktop folder titled “My Work,” which contains my poems written since Laura's diagnosis and death.

It pleases me to announce that Laura’s poem titled “I Invented Body Surfing” has been selected by renowned poet Steve Kowit for publication in the next Serving House Journal, of which he is poetry editor. It further pleases me to announce that a recent poem of mine, “There Is a Stonehenge in My Heart,” will be published in the forthcoming issue of San Diego Poetry Journal.

These victories and recognition seem to indicate that our time was not wasted.

I have an ongoing relationship with Laura through words and dreams. I think of the children of Newtown with a heavy heart today, and I pity their parents, who were robbed of the richness of ongoing relationship and the privilege of knowing their little ones as adults. In light of their losses, I am ashamed to admit I still feel cheated, even though I had Laura for 50 years. I was fortunate to know my child as an adult woman. They never will have that privilege. May they find comfort.

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