january jetlag it was the year of “sloth in five syllables” auto-pilot engaged before the wheels tucked away a restless journey through turbulent time occupied by frantic wishes for some, real, repose
from the rapid decent toward the wreckage of countless unfulfilled resolutions the shaken and bleary calendar emerges into an air of urgent action
Originally written in 2009, I tripped across this almost a week ago. I had been frantically searching for something, anything, to submit to (at least) one of two potential $2,000 USD poetry prizes. I had known about the January 15th deadline since the end of November. The irony of this discovery was not lost on me.
I managed to not be distracted by the desire to come here and write. And, I did manage to get one submission in by the deadline of 11:59 pm. This poem almost made the cut (3 were allowed per submission) and I am still a little disappointed that it didn’t. After making the first submission, I realized that I actually had three additional hours. The deadlines appear to have been Pacific time and I am Eastern. Submittable gives you a real-time countdown to deadlines, which can be helpful for a crisis-driven procrastinator like me.
Working through the night, the deadline for the second, far more ambitious submission kept getting extended. At 4:50 am EST, I abandoned the project. I did, however, feel quite accomplished by the fact that I came very close to assembling a chapbook to submit. I was 2 pages shy.
Since then, I have kept waffling. Still weighted by the big low that hit me over the holidays. The jetlag from 2018… and, all the prior years… has been harder to shake than ever. Yet, somehow, I feel more accomplished in the endeavour than I ever have.
Despite the drag I still struggle with, I can see my movement forward. Pulling yourself out of forty-six years of bad habits and behavioural patterns is a daunting task. And, I am well on my way to replacing them with good ones and finding a rhythm. For the first time in my life, I have faith in what I create. And, I am learning how to make that my priority.
So, I may be four weeks late. But, I think I am finally shaking off the jetlag. Feeling ready to take on February. Ignoring any shadow the past may cast.
(LOL. Perhaps I am overcompensating with the early reference to Groundhog Day. Teehee!)