Life Stuff

I have a love/hate relationship with the constant reminders that grownup life is…well…grownup (though who doesn’t I suppose. but if you are one of those people who has a love/love relationship with being grownup, I don’t want to hear about it). I love that I have new experiences, build new relationship–that evolution happens. I have that such evolution involves the maddening details of the two following significant events in the Fierce household:

  • moving. We’ve decided to relocate to a bigger house with a bigger yard that actually retains heat. I love what it will be. I do NOT love packing up our lives while both of us work full-time and care for dear S-G. Once upon a time, I could move by throwing all of my belongings into a duffle bag and a couple of boxes. This move involves many many many more boxes. We also have to do things like change of address for a billion different accounts (life insurance, car insurance, health insurance, renters’ insurance, student loans–though I’m tempted to not tell them), empty about a billion pounds of compost out of our bin, break down our raised beds and re-landscape the yard, and still grade papers, teach students, play gigs and change diapers.
  • job hunting. I have officially declared that this is my last year teaching at St. Mary’s Academy. So after 4 years (I feel like I’m graduating from high school again, with a similar sense of “what the heck am I going to do next” as I had almost FIFTEEN years ago when I did actually graduate), I’m ready for the next adventure. I love that I will (hopefully) have my own language arts classroom filled with wild and wacky middle schoolers. I do NOT love that this involves job applications, interviews and the ever-uncertain realm of funding for public schools.

So as a very non-detail oriented person, here is how I am attempting to stay sane while negotiating this labyrinth of annoyingly grownup details:

  • Nutella. Of course.
  • reading Neruda to Sophia (“and a vibration starts up, vague and insistent/a great fragment of of thunder set in motion/the rumble of the planet and the foam,/the raucous rivers of the ocean flood,/the star vibrates swiftly in its corona,/and the sea is beating, dying and continuing.” from “Poet’s Obligation”)
  • awesome Lebanese take out food. Lots of it.
  • babysitting provided by the extended Pierce clan so we can pack without worrying about what Sophia’s trying to climb on or eat.
  • the hilarity of Parks and Recs. Thank god for Amy Poehler.
  • listening to The Moth radio. Powerful stories that help me keep my life in perspective.
  • And cherishing moments like the one captured in the photos below. I rediscovered my old tape collection and took the opportunity to wax poetic to Sophia about the wonders of a lovingly created mix tape which far and away beats out the pleasure of making a playlist on iTunes. She took the opportunity to ignore said poetic waxings and to create her own visceral experience with these remnants of an analog age.




About jessicaepierce

Jessica Pierce has worked a a farm hand, file clerk, bicycle mechanic and teaching poet. After taking up space every where from the San Joaquin Valley to Arkansas to Boston to Guatemala to India to Oakland, she now lives in Portland, Oregon with her husband, a sitar player, and their two year old daughter. As the lead teacher and language arts teacher at an alternative school outside of Portland, she works with high school students at risk of dropping out. She also teaches summer creative writing classes at St. Mary's Academy in downtown Portland. Her work has been published in the Painted Bridge Quarterly, the Christian Science Monitor weekly magazine,, The Times of India (Kolkata), and the Northwest Review, which nominated her for Meridian magazine’s 2007 Best New Poets anthology. She’s had the privilege of studying with Rosanna Warren, Dorianne Laux, Pimone Triplett, Sam Witt and Jorie Graham.
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