This is good news for all of us. Many of you know 65 and all of us hope to know. Some did not make it but lit the way of aging with commando* hopeâ€”going forth, being in the moment, unprepared, saying our lines anyway! Weâ€™ll hear poets writing in their late 60s, 70s, 80s, 90s, and 100+, and my sense, on turning 65, whatâ€™s old, whatâ€™s new, whatâ€™s borrowed, whatâ€™s blue, what matters, whatâ€™s the matter, what smatters, what shatters, what clatters, what spatters, whatâ€™s to enjoy, whatâ€™s to live for and against, whatâ€™s to say, who can say, who knows, whatâ€™s happening, some oâ€™ that . . .
So in our days of hot messes in this month of August, poetry cools us down, sees us in our glory, a magic mirror in which youâ€™re cool and beaming and lustrous. Thatâ€™s how I see you, earnestly living this life, striving to do justice to the gift of consciousness, and as I reflect on my birthday with you, I am brimming with gratitude and honor at you being in my life, this gift of a poetry community to whom what we say and how we say it matters utterly to our world.