Category Archives: Poetry

September 1818: So begins the miracle of Keats’ ‘Living Year’.

In the late 1970s, in my mid-teens and already enjoying the poetry of John Keats (albeit without really understanding all of it) I read a book by one of the great twentieth century writers on Keats and his work – Robert Gittings. … Continue reading

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‘When I have fears…’ – John Keats on self-doubt

At this time of year – that rather doleful time between the Christmas festivities and the beginning of a new year – it is natural to look back at our achievements over the past twelve months and assess the success … Continue reading

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A very merry NoWriggling Christmas!!

This time last year I wrote a post wishing all those good enough to give No more wriggling out of writing their time a very merry Christmas, celebrating the fact that I had been blogging for a whole five months. … Continue reading

Posted in Art, Christmas, Keats, Music, Poetry, Random musings on family life, love the universe and everything | Tagged , , , , | 1 Comment

In which I avoid a difficult subject with a poem about snow

I have mentioned before that I attend a Royal Literary Fund ‘Reading Matters’ group every week. It is a wonderful idea; led by fabulous poet Julia Copus we listen to her read a short story and a poem each week, … Continue reading

Posted in Breast cancer, Poetry, Random musings on family life, love the universe and everything, Writing | Tagged , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

‘Parenting is such sweet sorrow…’

I am feeling drained at the moment. Sleeping badly; feeling physically creaky; eating all the wrong food again after five weeks on a healthy eating blitz: it is no wonder that my emotional reserves are in the human equivalent of … Continue reading

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On the 11th hour – Wilfred Owen & a most moving poetic parable

The 11th of November, and Remembrance Sunday were days my father held above most others. Some of my earliest memories involve standing to attention by the black & white television in the back room as  Big Ben chimed, the guns … Continue reading

Posted in Family History, History, Poetry, Random musings on family life, love the universe and everything, Religion | Tagged , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Advice to writers? John Keats on dealing with distractions

There are very few writers who do not, on occasion, have an attack of ‘the vapours’ – defined by the Oxford Dictionary as ‘ a sudden feeling of faintness, nervousness or a state of depression’. It is a  general feeling … Continue reading

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Four seasons in one week: on a love of the Lakes and sunburn in September

This morning I was sitting inside at the PC, by french windows opening on to our south-facing garden. After thirty minutes I looked down at my left arm to see a distinct patch of sunburn. As far as I can … Continue reading

Posted in Mental health, Photography, Poetry, Random musings on family life, love the universe and everything, Travel | Tagged , , , , , | 1 Comment

Forever autumn – fruitfulness, falling leaves and a poem by Philip Larkin

I love autumn, even in these earliest days of the season. It is not just now, as I (reluctantly) accept that I am middle-aged. I have always loved the colours, smells and celebrations in the months up to Christmas. The … Continue reading

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On my way to Ambleside: Stock Ghyll Force with John Keats

On the eve of my week long holiday in the Lake District, I thought I would post this excerpt from a journal letter John Keats wrote to his brother Tom, back in London, in the early stages of his walking … Continue reading

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