This is my studio: Along one side of the dining room in our small apartment. Red walls. My desk is nestled below a built-in china cabinet with old leaded-glass doors. I keep them open, and use packing tape to affix notes and quotes, to-do lists and receipts to the glass. Into the latch hole I have stuck two drying maple leaves---the first that I picked up this season, fallen to the sidewalk, vermilion and gold.
I use the shelves in the china hutch for books. I stack my books both ways: spines facing up, and horizontally. And in front of them, mugs and jars with brushes, pencils, pens. An orchid my husband gave me on my birthday, no longer flowering, but still with waxy oblong leaves sits on my desk.
Everywhere, heaps of papers, books, magazines, paints. They spread out in circles around me, like the rings in water after a pebble has been thrown in. I am at the epicenter.
Things I keep within reach: my laptop, my camera (A Nikon CoolPix5000, Jillian, since you once asked), a bar chocolate (this yummy raspberry kind by Lake Champlain Chocolates), my favorite volumes of poetry (The Rag And Bone Shop of the Heart, edited by Robert Bly, Inland, by Pamela Alexander, A Tree Within, by Octavio Paz, and The Complete Poems of e.e. cummings) a bouquet of dried roses from my wedding, and my address book (a Metropolitan Museum of Art item, with irises on the cover).
Things I keep in my desk drawers: Lots of stationary boxes---now filled with scraps, pencils, magnetic poetry bits, glue, staples. A small metal wind-up toy. Silver embossing powder. Thumb tacks. Quarters. Packing tape. Bank statements. Vintage postcards, sparkly ribbon, thread. An old wallet. Burt's Bees raspberry lip balm. Sharpies.