The Madness of Inspiration

It’s a sentence dropped in passing,

just a side-note to the conversation,

or a jotting blotted in the margin,

only really half a thought.

 

Yet it opens the earth beneath you,

hooks in under your fingernails,

drags you to dimly lit, dusty corners,

both imaginary and real.

 

It doesn’t care that no one wrote it,

or if someone did then they lost it,

or passed it into a safe place

too good given the hindsight.

 

It’s dug a home in the meat of you.

Demanded your eyes, you tongue, your head.

Drew a line between now and then

as translucent as spider silk.

 

Now you only have to find it.

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I’m working on a new poetry collection at the moment which I think I’ll probably name ‘Women, Water, and Witches’. The inspiration for it stems from the folklore surrounding women and water in Shropshire. This has led to me spending evenings researching Sea Witches, Jenny/Ginny Greenteeth, witch trials in Shropshire (there’s almost nothing in any source I’ve checked so far), then ducking stools and scolds, and even a policeman being sentenced to the stocks in 1850 for being drunk and disorderly.

More often than not, what seems like half an idea can lead me down a weird and winding path of research, which spits out even weirder tangents. A bit like a portal. (Ha! See my tentative link to the prompt there!)

The main problem I’ve run into so far is consolidating the history geek side of my brain which wants to fact check every source, to the poet side of my brain who wants to take a few artistic liberties here and there. The compromise so far seems to be that the poet can do what she wants, but the history geek will then get to write a paragraph of two for each poem to explain the background/history/lore. Hopefully this won’t put anyone reading the collection to sleep after the first couple of pages.

Anyway, I hope you enjoyed this little portal inside my brain. Thank you for reading, and happy writing.

 

Working Out The Kinks

She wasn’t supposed to save him, she was supposed to strike the final blow and end his suffering. That was the task dealt to her by the Valkyries and that was the task she had every intention of carrying out.

Until she saw his face.

Unmarried and without family, Eveline’s mother was labelled a whore when the village learnt of the pregnancy. Considered witches by many, Eveline and her mother keep to their woodland cottage, selling tinctures and salves to those who dare to venture close enough.

That is until the autumn of 1066 when William, Duke of Normandy lands of English shores to take the Crown.

When Eveline sleeps she sees the battle to come. She knows that the English King will fall and the Norman army will march on towards London where William will take his throne. The death of another King is not what wakes her screaming though.

The remains of the Battle of Hastings will bring about Eveline’s greatest folly, a folly that she will spend lifetimes trying to fix.

 


Do tell me what you think. As the title suggests, I’m still trying to work out the kinks in this story and a change of title looks like it may be needed since Henry Granger is no longer the main character. Oh well. We will see where this leads us. I’m hoping it will be in the direction of a finished draft.

Hunting for Creativity

Today I wanted to be creative.

I wanted the words to flow

Four am wake ups from rogue ideas

And conceded scribbles to bribe back sleep.

 

I needed the clatter of keyboards

Rattling my mind for the last drops

Waiting for the final thunk of gold

The smudges of ink that pulled a chapter whole.

 

Instead I got the crumpled paper

Of half hearted attempts to write.

Jottings, notes and contradicting plots

Which spin webs of confusion in my mind.

 

Works that once seemed good

Fractured beneath my own acid gaze.

 

I’m supposed to be a writer

Why can I not pin you down?

Where’s my sledge hammer for this block?

How do you bury my words so far beneath ground?