I spent five days last week on my own in a holiday cottage at Wells-next-the-sea writing. It was an amazing experience. My normal life is pretty busy with lots of different threads of things that I am involved in, plus I share a house with my 20-year-old son who is at Art School so my home life is often busy too. It was great to have time to just fully focus on my work. I found that I got into a completely different zone of thinking about it. I now completely understand why people go on longer writing retreats. if I had had another week or two I probably would have written an entire book.
I didn't however re-order my collection, but what I did do was generate a lot of new work. I already had a couple of new sequences that I had been working on and which I knew would change my collection significantly once I added them in. What I did when I was away was to write an entirely new sequence of about twenty poems that compliments one of the other sequences. I am very excited about it - I can now see that the collection is taking on a definite shape and isn't just going to be the best poems I have written over the last year or two - it will have a theme and a form. Now I just have to work out how the other poems will fit around the sequences.