Me and My Blog
Me and my blog have been together since 2009. Some of the entries seem to have disappeared but I think they're just hidden behind other entries. What I love about blogs is that they live in a liminal space between writing for yourself, writing what never will be read by another, and writing for a more far-flung world than is easily imagined.
The first word I ever wrote was yellow. In cursive. I was about three years old. Before I wrote I read, mainly the newspaper, there were few books in our house. Another thing I love about blogs is a thing I loved about newspapers they connect the written word to everyday people who may or may not read books. They are more intimate because they are more available.
The time I find myself writing blog posts most often is when I have written a new book. Blogs are a way to connect with readers. And they have become for me a customary celebration of publication. A part of my custom is to tell something in the blog I have not told in the book and something of significance. This time I will simply write, my daughter is grown now. She is twenty-seven. She is so old I am daughter no more. Mother only. This for me is a good thing. And I am about to be a retired mother, a mother in title, who doesn't have a job precisely because I have taught my daughter how to mother herself. I say this too, to be the daughter of a mother, and the mother of a daughter is to be profoundly and specifically placed. Mama's little baby, Daddy's little maybe. So literally are mothers and daughters connected, so profound to find yourself between two like selves but not selves. And for me it is amazing how big the difference between the two women. Yesterday, May 25, was my father's birthday. On my daughter's birthday this year she will be twenty-eight. The biggest surprise, the thing I have yet to put in a book, I gave birth to a baby who became a woman who is so like my father, who is so like the sister I imagined for myself when I wrote Pushkin and the Queen of Spades, a woman with a poetic swagger I could only remember and imagine, for years, and now I encounter a particular poetic swagger burning brighter than remembered on imagined--my grown daughter's power. This is the year, the first year, I am a professor and my daughter is a professor. It is a sweet moment in our family herstory. We have had, on the Bontemps side, father professor and son professor, but not I believe at the same time. And now this sweet, this.