Welcome to my new home. In the spirit of keeping things simple, I've exported the few good blog posts from my old WordPress blog, and have deleted that site. And, in the spirit of creating the life you want, I've taken quite a leap and bought my domain name (because if there's another Tara Shea Burke out there, I want to meet you, but you can't have my .com) and created a more simple space to showcase my writing and teaching.
The blog was fun, but it was becoming a bit of a burden. I feel like I grew there, learned to anticipate audience there, found better syntax and clarity in my prose there, but it was just too much. After moving and spending the past year in NM shedding dead skin and planting my feet down, really looking at who I am and what is sustainable for a creative life and career, as well as a home I can feel secure in, I feel like I know more than ever what I want. And it always comes back to poetry, the power of voice and the written language, and giving back. All I've collected along the way (in yoga and spirit and meditation, love, animals, restaurant work, etc.) shapes and will help shape who I am becoming, but when it's all stripped away, this is my truth: I am a poet, a writer, a lover of stories and the personal as political. So my life will grow from this. I will teach and be taught, write and read, and of course love the body and yoga in between, but I don't have the energy to build a business or be my own boss or self-market (much.) I just want to read, write, teach, and connect. This is my story.
And so, this website will have some prose like before, news and publishing updates, and will serve the purpose of a home base for my published work, teaching, writing projects, and maybe more as it all grows and morphs together. I'm applying for teaching jobs again with the intention of making a simple career that gives me a purpose but also gives me space, one that is creative and connects with others, but also supports my life at home. This will take time, and it will take a sincere focus on sticking to my decisions like never before.
I wrote a book of poems. It's in the hands of a few publishers and first book prizes. It will be a while before I hear any news, so it's back to the page for me. The cycle of creation is wild. I have this thing that I worked years on and feels finished, but I also just have my voice and an empty page again, and all the emotional ebbs and flows that come with it. April is NaPoWriMo and I'm going to use the month to write a poem a day with the big community of poets out there to just play--to see what comes out of me next. I want to explore ancestry, particularly my Irish immigrant side, but who knows.
In the mean time, I'll be at AWP 2016 in Los Angeles this year! I'm volunteering most of my time at the book fair table for Sinister Wisdom and A Midsummer Night's Press. I'm also helping my dear friend and editor, Julie R. Enszer, who has given me many opportunities for growth. She can't be there so I'll be sitting in on 2 of her panels, speaking for her and Sinister Wisdom. It won't have my name in the book, but I'll be participating and helping out someone who needs me. It feels more than good (and nerve-racking!) to step up and speak in her place. I hope to see you there!
Here are the two panels I'll be speaking (for Julie) on: https://www.awpwriter.org/awp_conference/event_detail/5802
And find me at the book fair, table #640 in the mess of tables, books, and writerly joy.