It was six-thirty in the morning, too early to be awake at a writing conference, and yet here I was, a lone fiction writer standing outside the Sewanee Inn for a bird walk with a group of poets. The genre imbalance made sense to me. I’d long felt that it was only poets—only good poets—who could do justice to the beauty and the weirdness and the rhythm of birds. While I was looking forward to the walk, I was also a little anxious. After almost two weeks of attending readings and lectures, of nonstop close listening, I wasn’t entirely sure I had it in me to listen to birds, too.
A Tribute to Wyatt Prunty
Lee Conell’s debut novel is forthcoming from Penguin Press. She is also the author of a story collection, Subcortical, which won the Story Prize Spotlight Award.