20 November 2014


Good evening everybody,

    Outside it's nice and wintery, so staying warm in a coffee shop with my homework and friends feels like the right choice. Here's a picture of the spot where I'm writing at this moment:

            We're at a cafe in South East Portland for a change of place and to cheer us up during the paper writing marathon. At the moment, I am immersed in an analysis of a Langston Hughes poem and getting ready to start another paper about Jorie Graham. It's been poetry, poetry, poetry for the last few weeks: poetry presentations, poetry writing, poetry analysis, discussion, and I'm going to a poetry appreciation potluck on Saturday with the Poetry 301 class and my professor, Jerry Harp, at a friend's house. Also, I just registered for Mary Szybist's workshop class next semester. She is a National book Award winner and very kind person, so I am looking forward to even more poetry. Sometimes I feel like I don't live in the real world with all this "deep thinking," but at the same time it's awesome. When will there be a time in the future when when I'll have literary discussions everyday?
        Having a quick visit from my dad helped make life a little more real. College has made me appreciate living on my own, but I also appreciate mom and dad more. He took the day off Wednesday and flew to Portland in the morning to see my Dinah Dodds Endowment Presentation on the poetry research I did in Strasbourg over the summer. He took a pic of me presenting:

      Seeing him was a good reminder that there is life outside of school and also a reminder that I am supposed to be here studying hard and makin' the fam proud. This week I'm feeling happy/stressed/tired/inspired and very much in college.

I hope you all are making it through the college applications. It's worth it, so good luck!

Any questions, comments, thoughts? I'm here: marissaburke@lclark.edu