It comes back eventually . . .

The poetry bug, that is. It's bitten me. I've been working on poems all morning and I'm excited about the thing I'm working on now. Yes, the poems will need to be revised, but for now I have a stronger sense of scope, scale, density. What's helped is the fact that some of the house chores have slowed down.

Rick Barot asked me in June whether I was planning on revisiting some of the characters in Names Above Houses. For several years, my answer had been no, but recently I had been thinking about returning to my Tiresias-like character, Manong Jose. I looked at childhood in that book and he wondered whether I was going to explore adolescence. I told him that I would, but as I've been writing, I'm seeing something else . . . It's funny how my mind revises all my best laid plans. Still, Manong Jose may pop up. There just hasn't been a situation for him yet. I do know that if he were to creep back in, he wouldn't be called "Manong." How's that for a hint?

The other question that came up is whether or not I plan on returning to the prose-poem form. To tell you the truth, it's hard to get out of writing that form once you start, and I think revisiting the form may prove hazardous to my lineation. I spent six years un-writing prose poems with Furious Lullaby.

Time will tell.

Oliver de la Paz