I’ve been wondering what to do for my anniversary with my boyfriend (the day we decided to be “official,” which I memorized as I do all important dates in my life) for about a month.
When I was at Miya’s in New Haven with Joanna I mentioned to Bun, who runs the restaurant, that I might want to come there for it. And we’d considered a weekend in Vermont, where his family has a place. It’s also my last weekend in New York before I go home to Florida en route to Oxford.
What decided it was a Facebook notification last week from the Emily Dickinson page (probably the only ‘sponsored’ page I’m happy to get notifications from) that the annual Emily Dickinson Poetry Marathon is on September 21. In addition, it’s also the 10th anniversary of the Museum’s founding, AND my anniversary with my boyfriend.
(AND this year is the 200th year of the founding of the house itself, by Emily Dickinson’s grandfather, who also had a large hand in founding Amherst College - and went bankrupt for it).
Oh, AND it’s the first year of the Amherst Poetry Festival, which lasts Sept. 20-27.
So of course I freaked out, called Julia, went into Manhattan just to tell Aaron about how exciting this was. I hadn’t felt that purely excited in a while.
We booked an Airbnb room (all the B&Bs in Amherst were booked up, probably by other Emily Dickinson crazies), a photo of which is on the left.
I’ve been wanting to go to Amherst ever since the beginning of last year, and am so excited that in early fall of this year it’s finally happening.
Moments and coincidences like these make me happy to believe that my life is a “story,” that seemingly separate and yet important elements are closer than I think.
I just emailed them to ask to be a participant in the marathon, so we’ll see how that is.
I CAN’T WAIT.
I’m finishing The Life of Emily Dickinson by Robert Sewall in time for the Marathon. At the Corner Bookstore today I bought another book I’ve wanted for a while, with $15 I made from babysitting for an hour today (sort of “accidental” babysitting - I went to go say hi to Amelie and it turned out the mom needed me later that day.) The book is Dickinson by Helen Vendler, whom my Gallatin modern poetry professor lauded, and gives line-by-line explications of many Emily poems. I like to try to figure out them on my own and then read Vendler’s analysis, and feel successful if I’m on a track close to hers. She’s so good and readable.