I’m in grad school now, and James is right. Every graduate class expects that you are doing nothing except working for that one class. In reality, though, we have three. And a job. And a fiance. Or friends. Some of us even have Religion. Or babies.
So I spent most of the day reading. Taking notes, because sometimes it’s hard to remember things from what I read. When I realized writing was slowing me down, I read a non-instructional book like I might read something for fun. But faster. Unfortunately, this schedule of reading and class and writing and more reading doesn’t really allow for reflection, absorption or deep analytical thought. At least not without toil and sweat and time that might be better spent reading those other books for those other classes, or being a poet, making some poems.
I feel like I’m on the verge of a poem. I might be nearly finished revising my muse. I’ve enjoyed about half of what I’ve been reading, and I look forward to uncovering some secret amusement in the things I haven’t liked so much by discussing their intricacies in class. Even the prosody’s not so bad. More delicate than what I’ve known before. Both intuitive and formulaic at once. Mathematical at heart, before the brain can do its damage.
I’m just feeling like I’m in a racecar. I know that there are trees and people and pavement and light outside, and I can look at it, but I wouldn’t be able to tell the color of one man’s hat, or remember the shape of the cloud, because all I get is a fast passing glance. Welcome to grad school. Maybe my mind will eventually fall into step, get up to speed.