is the founding editor-in-chief of Whale Road Review and a professor of writing at Point Loma Nazarene University in San Diego. Her book Tasty Other won the 2016 Main Street Rag Poetry Book Award, and her fifth chapbook, 28,065 Nights, is newly available from River Glass Books.
Is This Homeschooling?
My 8 year old wants me to sit beside him
while he works on science, so I do. He
doesn’t need my help. He just wants
my body close to his at all times. This week
he teaches me about the Everglades. Most
people think of the Everglades as a swamp,
but it’s really a slow-moving river. He tells me
that this is the only place on Earth where
alligators and crocodiles live together. I want
this to be a metaphor, a cause for hope. But
then he tells me that humans are destroying
the ecosystem, that canals drain the water
away. “We need to go there and break
the canals!” he shouts, and I’m awed
by this storm who broke from my body,
whose body can break and be broken.
“I’m doing fine. Getting fired is a real distinction in broadcasting and I’ve waited fifty years for the honor. All of my heroes got fired. I only wish it could’ve been for something more heroic. I put my hand on a woman‘s bare back. I meant to pat her back after she told me about her unhappiness and her shirt was open and my hand went up it about six inches. She recoiled. I apologized. I sent her an email of apology later and she replied that she had forgiven me and not to think about it. We were friends. We continued to be friendly right up until her lawyer called. Anyone who ever was around my show can tell you that I was the least physically affection person in the building. Actors hug, musicians hug, people were embracing every Saturday night left and right, and I stood off in the corner like a stone statue. If I had a dollar for every woman who asked to take a selfie with me and who slipped an arm around me and let it drift down below the beltline, I’d have at least a hundred dollars. So this is poetic irony of a high order. But I’m just fine. I had a good long run and am grateful for it and for everything else.”
Source: Garrison Keillor’s statement to Star Tribune – 11.29.17