chores: an excuse for not doing more important stuff

I read this interesting presentation of Svetlana Lilova’s : Metaphysical Dictionary (2016) over at Caroline’s a few days ago.  Metaphysical Dictionary is a collection of “sort-of-poems” with illustrations by Graham Falk. I say “sort-of-poems” because, as the title tells us, this is also a dictionary – and as a dictionary; a rather untraditional & personal one. If everyone chose to write … More chores: an excuse for not doing more important stuff


I’m on holiday (=recharging) …; using An Absorbing Errand  by Janna Malamud Smith as a guide back into the world of creativity. True happiness, we are told, consists in getting out of one’s self; but the Point is not only to get out — you must stay out; and to stay out you must have some absorbing errand. Henry James from … More Recharge


How to write about nature in a way that makes the reader feel the landscape as if she was there; wandering through it … absorbed, possessed – ? Here is Jean Sprackland: Countless times I’ve seen the shore hewn and hammered, scattered with whole tree trunks, steel pipes, oil drums, concrete fence posts, dead sheep. … More Sea-change

It is hard to drop from the self into the soul

From “The Edge of the Frame”, by Tony Hoagland             (an excerpt)   Joseph Cornell collected souvenirs of places he was miserable in, which pretty much was everywhere he went. Churchill felt afraid on stairs. Terrible migraines of Virginia Woolf entered her skull and would not be evicted. I read biographies because I want to … More It is hard to drop from the self into the soul

On Grace

Even in our sleep, pain which cannot forget falls drop by drop upon the heart until, in our own despair, against our will, comes wisdom through the awful grace of God. — Aeschylus

The Art of Fiction

I’m reading “The Art of Fiction” by James Salter, an essay full of treasures, like for example this, on the language of Isaac Babel: It’s like a handful of radium—a brilliance you would never imagine. and then – on writing: Of course, not every word can be the perfect word. Not every room overlooks the river. … More The Art of Fiction