Thursday, November 13, 2008


This blog's been quiet since the beginning of November, partly because I've been busy and partly because I have a few subjects (WG Sebald & EA Markham, since you ask) I want to blog about, but which need more attention than I can give them at present.

Rob Mackenzie mentions the writer's block that follows acceptance of a MS for publication. I don't quite know if I have that strain exactly - I've written not-much all year - but it's certainly true that the liberation of being able to start something new is also a kind of bind.

I have a sequence in mind, and made a start by writing seven poems in seven days at PFFA. Although the pieces I've written this last week have some goodish features, I find that none of them quite deliver the effect I am looking for. I'll keep at it, but I think a sustained period of reading is in order, to de-gunk the old nogginbox and make the conceivable feasible. Aye.

Monday, November 03, 2008

Listen Again, Listen

I enjoyed - if that's the right word - this Radio 4 programme on 'Belsen After Belsen', the camp in which many of the survivors of the concentration camp remained for five years after liberation. Although the specific place and people remained the focus, the programme touched on a number of delicate, fascinating subjects such as the relationship of European Jews with European nationalities, the creation of the state of Israel and the attitudes of the Allied governments.

Also worth a listen was Ruth Padel's programme on Elgar this weekend. It's a series and I haven't heard the rest of it - in fact I only caught the end of the latest one, but the difficult topic of if and how music can represent landscape was interestingly if inconclusively touched on. Must remember to listen to the next one.