Dancing light, rippling reflections

Dancing light, rippling reflections

Having occasionally lain in bed practically hypnotised by the dappling and dancing of light bouncing from water up to ceiling, I liked Hoban’s reference to flashes of mystic writing, like a watery, visual morse. ‘… dancing light reflected from the...
Mastiff-like tenacity

Mastiff-like tenacity

Such jaw-gripping tenacity is used to describe the force that the ending ‘-cious’ adds to words, as in the word ‘tenacious’.  Thoreau observes and analyses language as incisively as he observes and analyses nature. ‘… the...
High-perched asylum

High-perched asylum

In his acknowledgements, Leigh Fermor thanks a number of people for ‘kindness and haven during restless literary displacements’, and it seems he spent considerable time writing at their homes, or homes in their possession, over the years.  One of those...
‘Write,’ he said

‘Write,’ he said

A fine parting injunction to a friend you are seeing off at the train station.  Julián did as he was told.   ‘Write,’ he said. ‘I’ll write to you as soon as I get there,’ answered Julián. ‘No.  Not to me.  Write books.  Not...
How hard one must work … and how!

How hard one must work … and how!

In recent weeks, while typing up scores of quotations from Thoreau on the nature of writing, I started reading some essays by Seamus Heaney.  The first one began talking about finding your voice as a writer, finding the words to express yourself, and then I see that I...
Heroic journals

Heroic journals

All laud to Labaume, going to such heroic lengths to write his journal. I will have to introduce this makeshift front-line writing into a story I’m concocting: gunpowder mixed with melted snow in the hollow of your hand, and your raven’s quill cut with the...
Over-wrought fretwork

Over-wrought fretwork

A damning description of Victorian writing, contrasted with the delicious sizzle and flavour of ‘fat-bacon language’. ‘After the fat-bacon language of my earlier reading I hated (Sir Walter) Scott’s dry, latinized prose, finding its false...
A butterfly in a cactus library

A butterfly in a cactus library

Such an imaginative construct to describe a jagged script!  I had fun looking for an image of a cabbage-looking butterfly flitting around a spiky plant.  And in case you aren’t sure what ‘Japhetic’ means, I have copied the wikipedia definition below. Bear in mind that...

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