marlene mountain
letter essay
january 1990


i call it haiku

dear anne 1/18/90

Your letter today and I wanted to respond. Thanks for your concern, but you are not to worry. And thanks for thinking to help. It's just when it gets exceptionally cold, the wood stove cannot put out enough heat for this old wooden house. Used to it, all these years. (Plumbing bill $200 for new bathtub fixtures.) Today tho its rather warm and I won't even build a fire until tonight.

PRC didn't accept renga with Sato, mainly cause they have the other from me.

I've been struggling with what to do about 'tonight i am mountain.' (One day I'd think it's too much, the next day, not enough--even tho I'd not really read things as I'd type them.) Began finding sequences I'd forgotten about-- scribbled in my notebooks. Several I'd written when in a lot of pain, and only booze would help. Raw, to say the least. In '87 I'd gathered (in order) every line that I'd written for the year (not in renga or other writing)--called it 'found sequence.' Recently, I did the same for the last couple years. Then decided I'd do it from June 81, when I began to scribble in a small book rather than on backs of envelopes, etc. Committed myself that they belonged in the book 'as it' before I began reading them. Whew!! I got one heck of a shock. Panicked, and called Jane R 2 weeks ago. She calmed me down, and said go to it, my writings have got to come out. Pretend I was someone else gathering it all. That's what I've been doing. Also talked with Adele, she said much the same. It's been a very painful time, getting into it all--and finally trying to read it. Do I really want this much known of me--it's rather an autobiography than a book of haiku. It will be truly hated. Mainly because I call it haiku, also the rawness. Today, after so much struggle, I said: dammit, yes. Tho I might change my mind tomorrow.

Well, those feelings plus your link today:

. . . and i don't know the password [a]

all or nothing the courage it takes to face my own writing [m]

If I do decide to get out 'tonight' I hope to include our renga if we're done in time.

Here's a piece about the gathering of woms.

Again, thanks for your concern.


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