Introduction – Peg Duthie

Howdy! I’m Peg. I also answer to Mechaieh, Pixel, Pixie, Ribbons, Marriott, “no sister of his” (*waves to any Sherlockians reading*), and a number of other monikers. My last name is pronounced “DUH-thee.”

I became acquainted with Mary and Joanne via their online journals around — oh, golly, at least five or more years ago? I started reading Mary’s journal back when it was called “Prosody and Perl” — I think I happened upon it via some sort of update-your-journal-daily-in-December challenge that another web-friend was participating in, and I remember going “Ooh! Someone else wrestling with every damned cadence and breath…” (Witnessing people care about getting the details right is one of life’s bonniest pleasures, as far as I’m concerned. Mind, it’s a fine line between devotion to craft vs. driving everyone else batshit with one’s overthinking (never mind perfection vs. paralysis), but that’s a topic for some other post some other week.) Joanne – I think there was a link to her journal from Jessie’s that I happened upon; Joanne was running a monthly collaborative project called “Ampersand” at the time, and I ended up writing poems on DNA and posts about Fra Giovanni thanks to her prompts.

There’s a meditation lurking somewhere behind those details about the joys of online friendships and creative pingpong, but that too is a post for some other time. I may also indulge in rambletations on holiday poems, “The Hound of Heaven,” Jill Essbaum’s tattoos, and other mayhem. Work and bronchitis are currently cramping both my style and schedule, though, so for now what you’ll get are quick recs and a bit of shameless self-promotion.

First, the recs:

(1) I’m the kind of perfectionist dork who often feels compelled to look up a source even for a silly fly-by comment, so I Googled Blake’s “Little lamb who made thee” earlier this morning. To my delight, one of the links that showed up was this tribute to Tygger. I haven’t paged through the entire comment-thread, but “tightwhitepants” offered a vignette that ended with this gloriousness: “For the next half an hour, the friends sat and argued about whether Eeyore’s name was iambic, trochaic, or even spondaic, until it was time for tea and everybody went home.”

(2) I’m enjoying Samuel Wharton’s poems at No Tell Motel this week. They’ve got a spooky-creepy-playful vibe that’s connecting with me. The last stanza of “Humiliation Pictures” is so good I wish I’d written it.

Shameless self-promotion:
(1) Version 3.0 of Things Japanese in Tennessee went live yesterday. This is the latest incarnation of a course I’ve helped produce for the Japan-America Society of Tennessee over the past couple of years, and it now includes a section on poetry. (This is a beta release — the official premiere will be next month in Raleigh.) I think it’s a nice bit of fun (it’s intended for ages ten and up, with features such a selection of kigo (seasonal words used in haiku) read aloud in Japanese), so I encourage you to go see (and hear) for yourself.

(2) I found out this morning that my poem “Playing Duets With Heisenberg’s Ghost” has been selected as a “Judge’s Pick” in this year’s Science Fiction Poetry Association contest, which means it’ll appear in the winners’ chapbook later this year. I confess I’d been feeling more down than usual lately over some recent rejections, so aside from the never-ever-will-get-tired-of-it thrill of someone else liking my work, it’s a welcome shot in the arm. I also probably owe Heisenberg’s ghost some sort of libation, since this is now the second poem about him I’ve managed to sell. 🙂