In February 2015, I completed Tupelo Press's 30/30. According to their website, a 30/30 is "an extraordinary challenge and fundraiser for Tupelo Press, a nonprofit 501(c)(3) literary press.

Each month, volunteer poets will run the equivalent of a “poetry marathon,” writing 30 poems in 30 days, while the rest of us “sponsor” and encourage them every step of the way."

I'd accomplished two running marathons, why not a poetry one? I did it, and raised more than $1k for the press.


In February 2015, I participated in Tupelo Press's 30/30: write a poem a day for 30 days, or, in this case, since it was February, 28 days. Call me lazy.

I experimented with erasure poetry, wrote an incredibly long poem, collaborate with other poets, and many of the poems I wrote became the first iteration of my manuscript-in-eternal-progress: Inside My Hat Is a Foreign Body I Cannot Dislodge. 

Being deadline driven, I enjoyed the process: Each night, I—with the other participants—submitted a poem to Marie, who would collect the work and post it on press's website. Instant gratification—also a little unsettling to have something so new be published immediately online.

My style shifted. I read a lot more than usual. I didn't mind living in Dubai that month. I wrote about sand, but that seemed natural. 

As far as the fundraising part, I exceeded my goal of $300, and raised more than $1,000 for Tupelo. Everyone was a winner.