March 2020

You Reading This, Be Ready

By William Stafford

Starting here, what do you want to remember?
How sunlight creeps along a shining floor?
What scent of old wood hovers, what softened
sound from outside fills the air?

Will you ever bring a better gift for the world
than the breathing respect that you carry
wherever you go right now? Are you waiting
for time to show you some better thoughts?

When you turn around, starting here, lift this 
new glimpse that you found; carry into evening
all that you want from this day. This interval you spent
reading or hearing this, keep it for life –

What can anyone give you greater than now,
starting here, right in this room, when you turn around?

Survival poem #17 by Marty McConnell


because this is what you do. get up.

blame the liquor for the heaviness. call in late

to work. go to the couch because the bed

is too empty. watch people scream about love

on Jerry Springer. count the ways

it could be worse. it could be last week

when the missing got so big

you wrote him a letter

and sent it. it could be yesterday, no work

to go to, whole day looming.

it could be last month

or the month before, when you still

thought maybe. still carried plans

around with you like talismans.

you could have kissed him last night.

could have gone home with him, given in,

cried after, softly, face to the wall, his heavy arm

around you, hand on your stomach, rubbing.

shower. remember your body. water

hotter than you can stand. sit

on the shower floor. the word

devastated ringing the tub. buildings

collapsed into themselves. ribs

caving toward the spine. recite

the strongest poem you know. a spell

against the lonely that gets you

in crowds and on three hours’ sleep.

wonder where the gods are now.

get up. because death is not

an alternative. because this is what you do.

air like soup, move. door, hallway, room.

pants, socks, shoes. sweater. coat. cold.

wish you were a bird. remember you

are not you, now. you are you

a year from now. how does that

woman walk? she is not sick or sad.

doesn’t even remember today.

has been to Europe. what song

is she humming? now. right now.

that’s it.


Marty McConell’s website:

ECCC Cancelled

HEADS UP: Emerald City Comic Con has been cancelled. Like, several days ago, actually. I’m just only now getting around to updating my website. And honestly I don’t remember how to edit my events, so updating in the blog area instead.  #OkayBoomer.  Anyway, if, for some reason, you bought tickets to ECCC and are ONLY NOW hearing about this development - well you should really check your SPAM filter, because you should have gotten an email from ECCC.  Also, you can get a refund!  Google that.  The convention is rescheduling (fingers crossed) for this summer.  We’ll be there, if we can.

Oh! And also! Please - PRETTY PLEASE - pre-order a copy of SPY ISLAND from your local comic book store. (First issue comes out April 1, which sounds like a joke, but isn't.)  Guessing our big SPY ISLAND ECCC launch might be complicated by the lack of an actual ECCC. 

I will look into that whole “editing content” thing.