It’s that time of year where people make lists. Lists of resolutions, new ideas, plans for the future. Lists of best and worst of [fill in your cultural category of choice here]. These lists, at least for me, fall into the category of festival literature. Festival literature is, by its very nature, designed to both commemorate as it moves us forward. These texts mark the passing of time but also indicate that time is still in motion as we move out of the seasonal dark of winter and into the light again. (Of course, festival literature is an extraordinarily Western concept.) For awhile now, my friends Walter and Dan and I have had our own form of festival literature– our top five moments of the year list. Typically, this list is come up with on the sly, over a pint or a cup of coffee, during our annual post-Christmas get together. Here’s my list, slightly amended from what I told Walter (and it’s kinda of longer than 5 items).
1. Kyle and Terry–two new additions to the family–sister’s boyfriend and mom’s fiance–who not only have made themselves people I care about, but they did so because they’re just awesome people.
2. New experiences–this has been the year of having experiences: Chicago trip with the siblings, Boston in April, Austin in Sept. for RSVP, Ohio for Lily’s birthday. Some of these were blended work and pleasure trips, some not. Some weren’t even trips. Shopping, lunch, and that cool bar with Emiy in Tulsa. Sarah Vowell over spring break. Going to Matt and Katy Henricken’s Burning Chair poetry series in Fayetteville. Painting with a Twist with the lunch bunch girls for Christmas and eating Hawaiian food after was such fun. I want more of this. (And yes, I packed 8 things into one item here.)
3. Wait, wait don’t tell me live. I laughed so hard my cheeks tingled. They tingle when I remember it too.
4. The Periodical Poetry Index went live!
5. I’m deeply proud of the two essays my PerPo collaborators and I wrote.