"About the Work" with Stevie Edwards


In our "About the Work" series, Natalie Tombasco asks recent contributors for insight into their writing or for current sources of inspiration. Read Stevie Edwards's poem, “Some Lines for the Looming Apocalypse," in SER Vol. 40.1.


 

I began drafting “Some Lines for the Looming Apocalypse” in April 2020. Like many people, I spent April 2020 in full quarantine mode and was overwhelmed by the uncertainty over how COVID-19 would affect my life, the lives of those I love, and the world at large. At the beginning of quarantine, I found myself returning to the poem “A Song for the End of the World” by Czeslaw Milosz, which is a poem that (at least in my reading) is about how everybody will be too busy with their daily lives to stop and notice the world ending and how nobody will believe that it is ending. This poem resonated with me largely because so many people seemed to want to ignore and deny the severity of COVID-19 so that we could get back to business as usual. In my own poem, I tried to capture my attempt to cope with the fear of what was to come during the early days of the pandemic and my staunch hope to survive it. Though I lack a green thumb, I found myself starting a garden, partially to give myself something to do outdoors because I was cooped up inside all day, partially because I was afraid of food shortages and went into a bit of a survivalist mode, and also because I felt a strong need to nurture something.


 

STEVIE EDWARDS is the author of Sadness Workshop (Button Poetry, 2018), Humanly (Small Doggies Press, 2015), and Good Grief (Write Bloody Publishing, 2012). She is a lecturer at Clemson University and holds an MFA from Cornell and a PhD from University of North Texas. Her poems have appeared in Poetry, The American Poetry Review, Missouri Review, Crazyhorse, and elsewhere.