Pretty Words

March 16, 2019

Poets make pets of pretty, docile words:
I love smooth words, like gold-enameled fish
Which circle slowly with a silken swish,
And tender ones, like downy-feathered birds:
Words shy and dappled, deep-eyed deer in herds,
Come to my hand, and playful if I wish,
Or purring softly at a silver dish,
Blue Persian kittens fed on cream and curds.

I love bright words, words up and singing early;
Words that are luminous in the dark, and sing;
Warm lazy words, white cattle under trees;
I love words opalescent, cool, and pearly,
Like midsummer moths, and honied words like bees,
Gilded and sticky, with a little sting.

Elinor Wylie

practice reading

March 16, 2019

But the problem with readers, the idea we’re given of reading is that the model of a reader is the person watching a film, or watching television. So the greatest principle is, “I should sit here and I should be entertained.” And the more classical model, which has been completely taken away, is the idea of a reader as an amateur musician. An amateur musician who sits at the piano, has a piece of music, which is the work, made by somebody they don’t know, who they probably couldn’t comprehend entirely, and they have to use their skills to play this piece of music.  The greater the skill, the greater the gift that you give the artist and that the artist gives you. That’s the incredibly unfashionable idea of reading.  And yet when you practice reading, and you work at a text, it can only give you what you put into it. It’s an old moral, but it’s completely true.

Zadie Smith
Interview KCRW’s Bookworm program

unseen forces

March 16, 2019

Witchcraft is the art of obtaining power through growth of self and the understanding of where self intersects with unseen forces.

Devin Hunter
The Witch’s Book of Spirits


March 16, 2019

It was a rather blustery day –

Winnie the Pooh and the Blustery Day
animated film from Walt Disney Productions


We’ve had the rain, enough to drown poor old Noah’s soul, and now we’ve got the wind – blustery doesn’t cover it! It’s blowing a feckin’ hooley, boys & girls!

Last night the wind was racing like a feckin’ express train through the sky. It was so strong we thought the hills would come untethered and flap free across the moor like giant vampire bats. Dustbins overturned; metal lids rattled – windows and doors rattled too; slates parted company with roofs; and a neighbour’s dog began to howl like a feckin’ banshee.

Nothing now for me to do but curl up on the sofa and watch “Winnie the Pooh and the Blustery Day” And wait for the storm to ease –

14th March 2019


Ten Lines

Come closer. So close I feel you,
how easily you breathe.
Imagine that I lead a life,
which consists of moments
and blows away in a moment
if the wind turns imperceptibly
when the door’s still open,
enticing you outside,
where there’s nothing but the others —
turning round and round with the wind.

Karl Krolow,
Field no. 78, Spring 2008