Salted Maybe there are choices to be made the cawing crow doesn't seem conflicted undisturbed by harbingers of the future I will roll up the hill drift out to sea taste the salt on my tongue a seasoning to keep me for tomorrow ©AndrewJamesMurray #workinprogress
I spent the morning finishing The Innocents by Ian McEwan.
I felt a great sadness when reading a letter contained within it, suggestive of other lives and other alternatives.
Literature, art, has the power to do this.
I find myself more and more subsumed into the creative life.
I’m currently on the second draft of a novel. I’m not a very disciplined writer. I don’t put aside set times to write. I just decide to go over a chapter when I have a window in time. Although this may seem a quite casual approach, from crude, rudimentary beginnings the book is beginning to take shape.
And yet, amidst this deliberate foray into fiction, poetry is beginning to call to me again. I have long had an eye on a second collection. Not one to multitask, I intended to turn to this after the completion of my novel. But words are beginning to nudge their way in, filter through. Single words, combinations of words, predatory lines demanding attention.
Inspiration doesn’t pay respect to timeframes and schedules.
I have a few new poems written: Judas Kiss, Boathouse, My Father As Child, In Brigantia and others. I’ve not posted much poetry recently on City Jackdaw as I’m holding them back for a possible next collection.
At the moment I’m still deliberating the order of my creative endeavours. My procrastination was given a nudge recently when I received a letter in the post from a great writer and poet that I gave a name check to in the foreword of my debut collection Heading North. Now in his 81st year and still as creative as ever, he wished me luck on my own foray on this open and crafted path.
This path of conjured words, and alternative worlds, that exist long after the demise of their creator.
Seven Winds The seven winds. Are there seven? Stapling 'Missing' posters to telegraph poles sweaty black leather and the odorous stink of sex and B.O. A slip with a girl's number on it found in the pocket of an old coat ragged and threadbare could she still be out there? a fixed point in a perishing dream. Coffee. Caffeine doesn't keep you awake it's a myth it's the toilet trips that need to piss every goddamned hour slipping through the tincture of light that crawls from the horizon with a Kirlian glow. There are friends long gone who festered for a while couldn't take the hint but maybe I was their project grasping for words as the dying gasp for breath carving my affections instead into the flesh of trees. ©AndrewJamesMurray
Poetry is when
the language of the soul
the common tongue.
©Andrew James Murray
I was sat in a café, reading a great poem about my home city of Manchester.*
The opening lines read:
Queen of the cotton cities,
nightly I pick you back into existence:
the frayed bridal train your chimneys lay
and the warped applause-track of Victorian rain.
You’re the blackened lung whose depths I plumb,
the million windows and the smoke-occluded sun.
A couple took the table behind me. The lad never spoke, but the girl:
“I’ve always had weird drinking habits. I used to drink the vinegar out of cockle and muscle jars. I think it’s the cause of my leaking bladder.”
All of this was underscored by a female cover of Frankie Goes To Hollywood’s The Power Of Love. Haunting and ethereal. Alchemical.
All of these things merged and mingled into one tributary, collaborative moment, leading me to the page, transcribing slowly.
*Manchester, Adam O’Riordan.
These three books constitute the (current) Songs Of The North poetry series, of which my book Heading North is a part.
These words are from my editor Michael Kobernus:
‘I am proud of every book we put out, at Nordland Publishing. However, these are special. While they may not be everyone’s cup of tea, they elevate the written word into art, and that is amazing.’
My book, Heading North, is available here:
All three different takes on the inspirational north can be discovered here on Nordland Publishing’s website:
Isn’t it time you journeyed North? 🙂