It might seem paradoxical or even impossible to embrace a low-stakes mindset about your important work, but it is very doable, and gets easier with practice.
She pours us tea, one that claims
to detoxify, to soothe the throat. Honey
dissolves in the agitated swirl
Caldwell’s poems manage to explore substantial themes with an intimate gaze; the humor is simultaneously empathetic and darkly cynical.
So it goes with writing and birding. You try to find a sapsucker, but stumble up on a tiny jewel of a hummingbird. You persist and strive despite a robin showing you the insanity of ignoring results.
We are literary. We produce literary fiction for literary people. That is why it’s paramount that we expose ourselves and our work to the same ruthless mockery as the saddest of Z-grade films.