14 months shouldn’t seem like so short a time.
But it was only last June that I published the first volume of Wild Sonnets, which included the initial one hundred poems in the series. And now, I am preparing the publication for the second hundred, which finds me in a very mode of mind.
To be honest, I wrote Wild Sonnet #100 in January of 2018, and spent the next few months deciding whether to self-publish or not, and then which vendor to entrust with both bucks and book.
As I near the writing of #200, I approach the milestone with a mindset that is almost diametric to the one I had last year. At the close of the previous volume, there was an overwhelming sense of the occasion – of having worked for almost two years adding poems the led up to the first great number. The effect on the final poems of that book – and the beginning of the new one – was that entries reflected the notion of reaching an endpoint, and setting off again.
In a sense, I felt that maybe the poems were a little too aware of themselves. While I don’t think that the work suffered from this meta sense of its own arrival, my initial intent that the art be focused outward went a little astray.
That isn’t happening this time. As I close in on #200, I have a more mature comprehension (I hope) that the series continues despite any numerical marker. And while I celebrate the centenary of the achievement as a personal victory, the poems themselves should not notify the reader of it.
One recent decision will help to cement this in the volumes to come. From this time forward, the paperback editions will still be published individually, while the digital editions will compile all the current volumes into one.
My intent here is this: that while the physical copies of The Wild Sonnets will mark the reaching of each hundred, the eBook will represent the greater work as a whole.
Be assured that both visions of the work so far have made me proud, while the work ahead keeps me humble – and ever searching for the next few words to sing.