So I had a blast on my big bold beautiful day yesterday, the day of my birth, August 3, 2011. Loads of items and well wishes and Ana may have created a monster with a bottle of Châteauneuf-du-Pape, a wine we’ve thought about since its first amusing scene in an episode of Midsomer Murders. Among other bounty, I also received a gorgeous female unicorn that we have named “Leonora” (Ana says ‘an Amy King poem is like looking at a Leonora Carrington painting!’) made by the hands of Janis Mars Wunderlich, who now knows how often I teach the stellar documentary she is featured in, “Who Does She Think She Is?” –much to my delight!
But the icing on the birthday cake was the “surprise party” I found in another envelope. Well, I have given to Heifer International in the past and have been meaning to ask others for awhile. But I neglect, I neglect. For my big day, Ana secretly created a registry page in my name and asked a small handful of friends to chip in. They did! And now three families have, in Ana’s words, “received three (3) wonderful, wooly, milky, meaty sheep!” According to Heifer:
What makes Heifer’s approach different is Passing on the Gift, where a family is required to pass on the offspring of their animals to another family, creating a sustainable circle of hope.
I echo that wish for those familes and extend the same to my friends and anyone who gives two shakes of a sheep’s tail! So this blog post is ultimately a shout out and THANK YOU to the peeps who bought the sheep and to anyone else who would still like to contribute any amount on the occasion of my 40th year, here!
Thank you, Michael Steinman & Lorna Sass, Aimee Darrow & Caroline Harmon, Justin Marks & Meridith Rohana, E. Tracy Grinnell & Julian Brolaski, Sampson Starkweather & Paige Taggart, Amy De’Ath, Matt Rotando, and Vanda, Miran & Angela Bozicevic — lovely peeps, thanks for the milky sheep! And as Ana notes, “Sometimes humanity is the best bestiary.”
p.s. There are 40 candles on that drawing!
Amy King is the recipient of the 2015 Winner of the Women’s National Book Association (WNBA) Award. Her latest collection, The Missing Museum, is a winner of the 2015 Tarpaulin Sky Book Prize. She co-edited with Heidi Lynn Staples the anthology Big Energy Poets of the Anthropocene: When Ecopoets Think Climate Change. She also co-edits the anthology series, Bettering American Poetry, and is a professor of creative writing at SUNY Nassau Community College.