February 13, 2006
Speech after long silence; it is right, . . .
That we descant and yet again descant
Upon the supreme theme of Art and Song . . .
—William Butler Yeats, 1865-1939
Irish poet and patriot
”Speech After Long Silence”
When I cast about for a title for this post, I considered Mick Jagger’s “Start Me Up!” (“If you start me up I’ll never stop”) but decided that he was singing about something a little less sedate than a suburban matron’s personal website. When I thought of Yeats then I did a Google search for the accurate words and discovered that a number of online journals use these lines when their authors are starting up again.
It’s been six weeks since my last post, not a particularly long silence, but a silence I had determined not to enter into. But, well, I did. I can give the usual excuses. For one thing, I was sick. My paper journal shows entries from January 6 to January 12 on a single page, each of them only the date and the day. On January 23 I noted that it was Day 12 of the 10-day Cold From Hell. “If I don’t work this material [the ongoing "treatment" phase of the novel I've been writing for four damn years now] right here, right now, there is no hope for me as a fiction writer,” I wrote.
There might indeed be little or no hope for me to experience success or recognition (or whatever it is I actually seek) as a fiction writer, but I did get back to that, making some modest progress on that and on the other five goals of a quality life (emphasize the “modest” there).
And I’m back here, on what would be the 95th anniversary of my mother’s birth*, and the seventh anniversary of my first post, still wanting to descant on the supreme themes of Art and Song. Thanks for still being here.
(My mother, who graduated from high school in 1927, had a teacher whom she kept in touch with until that teacher died. Miss McInerney was adamant about distinguishing between one’s birthday [in my mother's case, February 13, 1911] and the subsequent anniversaries of that day. I remember being with my mother in stationery shops trying to find a suitable card. There was never one that said “Happy Birthday Anniversary.”)
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