'The stern Bard ceas'd, asham'd of his own song; enraged he swung
His harp aloft sounding, then dash'd its shining frame against
A ruin'd pillar in glittering fragments, silent he turned away,
And wander'd down among the vales of Kent in sick and drear lamentings.'

I've been reading Peter Ackroyd's biography of William Blake (Vintage Books, 1995) and the above is quoted on page 71. It is somehow comforting to read Blake's own testament to his fearsome frustrations with his writing and his experience of what must have been almost writer's block.

So even the most famous, prolific and spiritually fuelled, sometimes doubt. And, of course, in his lifetime, Blake did not have the recognition he got after his death. He was sustained by friends and a few connoisseurs, furthermore, he believed his creativity was God-given.

What am I sustained by? I don't subscribe to Blake's God, but I do have a compulsion to keep writing, to continue experimenting and giving my ideas free rein. I am also encouraged by good friends and, like Blake, I am moved by nature. At the moment, I am fascinated by trees, how tall and abundant they grow, their colours and shapes. Though sometimes I study them and think that there is little point in trying to replicate what so magnificently exists in reality.
Muse-less morning
The words I thought of
are undeniably gone,
flown back to the muse.


The other morning I woke at 2am with a perfect line for a Haiku. It formed into a complete little verse and I thought I won't leap up and write that down. It is only three lines, 17 syllables. I will remember it. I did not. I know the middle line had the words "undeniably gone", but apart from that the rest has evaporated.

Here then is something I wrote many more moons ago.

with inspiration from Emily Dickinson
In a moment a life is conceived,
in a tortuous age is it extinguished,
in a silent moment hangs
all the soul can breathe.

In dashes - in after-thoughts - she spun
verse - a trust in - a creator,
too huge for her sentences,
too small for her vision.