Out of this window the day is thick with rain, but at least it scared the snow away. The whole country is on tiptoes waiting for the season to stabilise – if spring can ever do that. I am in the throes of April-poem-a-day, forcing nature into words, sometimes. Enjoyed a great poetry workshop with Ann McKinnon yesterday which brought me two poems in the long run – one to work on in time and one late last night for the month project…which needs a tweak or two.

I have come out of my hermit life-style quite a lot in the last five months, but only for writerly doings; a new phase has me, not quite a prisoner but slightly addicted and bouncy, although not in a physically active way. The big question is: will I ever get around to fixing the resistance on my new exercise bike. It’s sitting here, facing the window, and a sunnier disposition on the other side of the glass holds promise for the rest of the day. I have to go out for lunch, be sociable with old friends but because I start work at five I can’t join them in supping lovely whisky; a couple of glasses of wine will have to do me. The thing about these get-togethers is our noticing all the absent friends – and there are more of them than us now. We lost three in the last three years alone. There are group photographs of us taken more than a decade ago, one every year, laughing, full of good food and alcohol on New Year’s Day. Everything moves on.

Today’s poem might be stuffed with old pals and toasts, birthday numbers adding up like bills.


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