Sunny days are such a boost to the system, aren’t they? This weekend, it’s hard to believe that ‘The Beast from the East’ is waiting to do its damnedest. Yesterday, I dragged a hardwood chair from the patio to a sunny patch at the far end of our north-facing back garden (not far, actually, as our ‘new’ garden is very small). Cat senior joined me in catching some rays. I didn’t stay put for very long, just long enough to feel more alive under an optimistic light level, the sharp air pinching some colour into my cheeks. Indoors, a vase of supermarket daffodils lights up the kitchen.
As a gesture towards spring-cleaning my teeny tiny blogsite, I’ve changed the header image. The previous image is several years old; I like this one as it’s spontaneous rather than posed. Photo credit goes to Ambrose Musiyiwa, a familiar face at many cultural and other events in Leicester. Thanks, Ambrose!
I’ve made a start on gathering together poems (my own and others’), internet ‘finds’ and reference books with a view to a new writing project related to the old wives’ tales, superstitions and slanted childhood memories that I grew up hearing from my grandmothers and mother. It’s a tentative start but a start nevertheless. And I’ve been doing a little more writing in, and gleaning from, my notebook, too.
It’s been a while since I last participated in a writing workshop. In a bid to sweep away a winter’s-worth of cobwebs, I’ve signed up for Jen Campbell’s online workshop, Poetry and Fairy Tale. I’m hoping that it will help me throw new light on a problematic poem that’s been stewing for too long – or spark something completely unexpected. I’ve also splashed out (I blame recent social media enthusing about poetry festival goings and doings) and booked myself a place on George Szirtes’ masterclass, Liberated by Constraint, facilitated by Writing East Midlands. I hope this one will jerk me right out of my comfort zone.
I’ve not done a great deal of reading, this week (yes, I’m still reading that back issue of The North, as well as a novel that isn’t engaging me as I hoped it would). I did read last Sunday’s Brainpickings and especially enjoyed, in The Temple of Knowledge, about Ronald Clark, who grew up in a New York public branch library in an age when library caretakers and their families lived among the books. As the only bookworm in a literate but not a book-loving family, I can’t think of anything I’d have liked better! His story sparked personal memories of spending hours of a Saturday, lounging on a beanbag in the children’s section of our local library, lost in a book; sitting at a table in the enforced silence of the reference library, copying passages from a book, for the love of it. I came across this quote, by Jorge Luis Borges, at the bottom of this morning’s Wordery email: “I have always imagined Paradise as a kind of library.”
I hope you’re enjoying the sunshine at least as much as your writing and reading 🙂 x