Coming Soon: The Fabiana Epistles

And who, you may wonder, is Fabiana? She is an enigma, an alter-ego, an anachronism. She is a voice who wants a mouth, and she seems to be taking over as the voice in my head when I write in my journal, which I use as a warm-up to drafting poems. So I made a bargain with Fabiana:  if she will cease pestering me to be the speaker-in-chief of my poems, she can have that role in one poem, to which, if she does a decent job, I’ll grant airtime on this blog.

Mind you, I don’t dislike Fabiana. On the contrary, I enjoy her because she is many things that I don’t get to be. She is vain, needy, grandiose; she is a cliche and a lover of cliches; she is haughty and entitled and frequently self-deluded. You can see why I want her to stay away from my poetry notebook. Yet, like one of the characters I’ve heard fiction writers say sometimes move into their imaginations and take over their stories, Fabiana has insinuated herself into my journal. Yesterday, she just materialized in my mind, like a Star Trek character beaming on board; and since the moment she stepped off the transporter pad, she hasn’t stopped talking.

What Fabiana most wants to write is not poems, it turns out, but letters. And, since this is Fabiana, she means not just letters, but epistles. Yes, as in “epistolary novel” and “Epistles of St. Paul.” We’re talking about the epistle as art form, narrative unit, and tool for clobbering. And she instructs me that her audience (that’s us) is to picture the sublime words of her epistles as hand-calligraphed on fine stationery, not indifferently keyboarded into an electronic document.  (I offered to write her missives in ink and then photograph the results for posting, but she scoffed at the lack of curlicues in my penmanship.)

Fabiana, clearly, knows what she wants. I’ll stay in touch with her and let you know what she writes.

Cheers, and more soon,