augury doggerel

Saturday, December 20, 2003


Work is done for the year, and just in time. It was close, but I killed no one, not even me. Now I'm home and everyone's asleep. I've been up all night drinking tea, picking through books, cooling my head. This is how I was in the days before duties, after my father had finally gone to bed.

I want things short, I want to like these things, and I want these things to like me. I don't want to have to write the thing for the author. I want distractions between trains and birds and trees and aunts.

Wodehouse? No Wodehouse for now.

Maybe there are things in Yeats I could read again this winter. Keats? Geats? Hardy, maybe, for snow. (Something has been gnawing at the base of Philip Larkin's green spine. He was entirely collected the last I saw him.)

I can't read another drop of Raymond Carver this year. Or of Thurber or Perelman or E.B. White or Roy Blount.

A good detective? Father Brown or Sherlock Holmes or

Ghost stories? I've finished A Christmas Carol and Gawain for the season. This old dusty M.R. James? Henry James? Maybe Robertson Davies. I saw him in Boston once, before he was a ghost, but mainly I saw his long white beard.

Shakespeare. More ghosts.


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