Tuesday, July 01, 2008

Smoke from forest fires

...has been blowing this way, giving a weird orange glow to everything. There's a big one burning between Sandy Bay and Pelican Narrows, not so far from here, and ash from it was falling in town yesterday. Some of the ash was the size of large snowflakes. Small bits of ash came through the window screen and floated around the room. It was distracting.

This morning it's much clearer and much cooler. Perfect for reading. I'm currently rereading Nine Gates by Jane Hirshfield, pencil in hand, as I continue to prepare for the Fernie Writers Conference. It's coming right up! I'm so excited. Last year was a blast. Fernie is a forward-looking community. Just look at the list of sponsors! The conference has expanded to two weeks this year and the schedule looks great. I will be there for the final week. I'm gearing up!

Before heading to Fernie, I'll be stopping in Moose Jaw for the Saskatchewan Festival of Words. It will be a full weekend. I always take in as many sessions as possible. Among the presenters there's a number of poets I'd like to see. We ordered our festival passes and banquet tickets, so we're set. We don't always go to the banquet simply because of the cost, but this year Martin Levin of The Globe and Mail is the keynote speaker and I'm curious to hear what he has to say. More than anything, I look forward to seeing friends. It will be fun.

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