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9:04 a.m. - December 10, 2003
Hold me and whisper in my ear, I believe in you
Scared-nervous about tomorrow. A hundred permutations of what if running through my mind and suddenly the order I've arranged doesn't satisfy me. I hope I'm in a small room so that if nobody's there I won't have to look out at empty seats and my voice will dissipate into the ceiling. I know I won't fail - before a group, do I ever? - but I don't want to shut down and be mechanical in my delivery. I want an intimate reading, the danger - safety ratio near equal so I can do my best and slay the demons that would keep me from succeeding. It means so much to me that I can do this that I have to, unlike the last time when I backed out. It's more than trusting people or a desire to share my poetry; it's about milestones, pulling myself across the Styx not to an idealized verdant garden with angels and bright yellow light, but simply a vista point against which I can guage the distance that remains and say, See, I'm making progress. Of course, I'm unsure where I'm going, but I'd like to think I'm going somewhere.

Thursday. Berkeley, California. 7:00 p.m.


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