Friday, May 08, 2015

Clearing the decks

is a metaphor, among the many metaphors I have for finishing one thing before starting another.

Of course, I'm just talking about grading again, which I will be until I am finished with it. Which will be, who knows when. I'm currently pretending that I can still finish by the end of the weekend. This optimism is immeasurably aided by the fact that tomorrow is Saturday and not Sunday, which I briefly lost track of. Phew! Still two days in the weekend.

I just did the math. I will be grading on Monday.

I want to work on my manuscript with a clear head, not with a grading mind.

The above represents a hypothetical and metaphorical state of affairs which, in reality, has never occurred, not every, not even once.

Also, I want to celebrate my mother and go to a movie and take my son to the airport. I'm glad I did the things I did today--breakfast with my friend, movie with my son, birthday outing with my grandson--that meant I graded for two hours instead of a lot more hours.

I have thought about acknowledging the limits of my 'clearing the decks' metaphor by starting on my projects while still grading. Sorting through my clothes. Working on my manuscript. I might be able to manage the first, but not the second. It's a superstition, maybe. Or maybe it's real--there's a cleared-er state of mind that is requisite for revising poems, and it can't be simultaneously working on grading. Not enough processing power.

On Monday, then: on Monday the decks will be cleared. My metaphor will, if briefly, have force. And then, things will be messy again, same as it ever was. But I will have fewer clothes (please!) and a head clear enough (please!) for poetry.

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