Wednesday, October 11, 2006

Pessoa did nothing but write. He wrote all the time. All his different names, characters - so many. There wasn't tv to distract him. I bet Neruda wasn't distracted by tv, either. Or Plath. Emily Dickinson wasn't. I don't know when I had time for tv. It's not even as if it's living. Most of the papers become irrelevant if you don't watch tv. You don't understand the celebrities, the stories, the news angles.

There is no time in the evenings for tv. Maybe a DVD if I'm organised and haven't been out at work. Right now, when I have to work outside home, I have just about time to make supper and phone calls, check e mails, maybe put washing in the machine and wash up. Then the evening's gone. So I write in the mornings. I write my morning pages and then catch moments during the day. On the train, waiting for a meeting, between meetings, at lunch.

Then a poem will surprise me. And I'll know it because it fights its way out of prose, or I instinctively, unconsciously, shorten the lines as I'm writing, and then time starts to stretch and I don't want the moment to stop, like talking to someone you really like, like a good evening out, like a fantastic conversation that's taking you somewhere you've never been before. The poem feeling is a bit like lust in the early stages, tantalising, infinitely stretchable.

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