"She lives the poetry she cannot write" – Wilde
Those weeks where I dash up and down the country may be tiring for me, but at least they make moderately interesting reading for you. This week, spent entirely in my office, is not going to be nearly so interesting. Sorry.
Work was divided between work on the National Trust’s film/poem, National Poetry Day planning, and taking bookings
for events. In spring (Spring!) I’ll be reading not only with Jenn Ashworth but also with Joy Winkler, and with twinkly-eyed gardener Sam Youd. With Sam I’ll be doing a sort of ‘Gardener’s Question Time meets With Great Pleasure’ – I read poems and prose about gardens, he gives gardening tips and tells us anecdotes from the potting shed. Here in boat world our gardens are small, but we a bit of sunshine brings out all the boaters including my 90-year old neighbour Albert.
I did a bit of work too on Aching For Dick, in response to comments from our lovely director Kevin which amounted to ‘go back and start all over again’. In a spirit of humility and seeking improvement, I read Tom Stoppard plays for hours. Then I decided to kill myself because I could never write like this; then I got down to it. After all, even Tom Stoppard couldn’t write like Tom Stoppard until he got off his arse and wrote something. The resultant second draft is a partial affair, but already much improved.
Saturday was a day off – the sort of bimbly, nothing-particular-to-do day that I hardly ever get. I took the Smily Man to Tegg’s Nose, the country park near Macc where there are astonishing views and some surprisingly steep hills. We felt smug after our walk, so went into Macclesfield seeking sustenance. Deep joy – a little tapas place which I didn’t know about, and which turned out to be brilliant. The spread you see here cost us a fiver apiece.
Sunday was of course Valentines Day. Smily Man and I are bitter, cynical types who hold no truck with this sort of thing, but it was a good excuse to make heart-shaped biscuits. They went down very well with little friend Mathilda, and better still with the ducks who she threw them to immediately afterwards.
Smily Man is even more smily than usual at the moment. The Institute for Misunderstood Cherubs has broken up for half term, so he can spend a whole week chopping wood, visiting the local and buying Dansette record
players. He has a bit of a fetish for these, to the dismay of his parents whose lounge is now being slowly taken over by vintage sound systems.