Writing imaginary letters
I feel my thinking
expand into places unexplored:
fields beneath the ocean,
valleys on the mountaintops,
the woods above the treeline.

To the Secretary of the Department of Agriculture:

I much like that after fifty, women stop being “female impersonators.”   Last year they ate a nest full of baby robins just outside our living room window.   This grieving business is VERY complicated, isn’t it?  The older I get, the more certain I am that nobody can FIX anybody else.  Certainly no one has every succeeded in fixing me, and not for lack of trying!

To Persephone:

I have finished reading Writing a Woman’s Life and liked it very much.  The Ethics Question about the letters:  there is one, and I’ve been thinking about it.  I’ll put some old fleece out for the squirrel to use–as if we need to encourage the squirrels around here.  I’m learning a five-minute bit of Mendelssohn’s 2nd:  “The night is departing,” a lovely bombastic thing.

To Mary Wollestonecraft:

The creation, as you say, is full of Wild Cards.    I love your fox story.   Among my favorite bits is “Exceptional women are the chief imprisoners of nonexceptional women.”  There is a red squirrel trying to remove from an odd wooden person who stands in our front yard a scarf that I made from some old flannel.  It’s funny to see her tugging away.

To Elizabeth Bishop:

I do like the obituaries you send:  so many interesting lives, so many different ways of composing them.   But most of all, I want to thank you for naming how badly I need a daughter!  Interestingly, mother seems to want to talk a great deal about that period of her life, which is so good, since we know nothing about it.

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