First let me say I hope my first response didn’t come across as bitchy…that’s certainly not the way I meant it. I just noticed that you have a entirely different voice in your poems than in your essays, and both are great. I just prefer poetry (yours on anyone’s). And I do the exact same thing which is why I noticed. It’s a challenge for sure to mesh the poetic voice and the essay voice, but I think this is the key to success (however you want to define it). Intelligent people tend to overthink and get in their own way.
As for going to a shrink, I’m trying that now and tbh @Gutbloom has helped more than therapy! My little summer journals don’t amount to much in the literary scheme of things, however, they are good practice for staying true to my real voice (for whatever that’s worth) and will hopefully lead to a more satisfying end. I’d like to hear more stories from you similar to the one about waiting out the tornado warning. But who am I to give advice or ask for more of this or that?
Just some thoughts from a fan of your writing.
P.S. 10 hours is a lot for a poem. I bet you could whip out one in less than 10 minutes if you let yourself go.