Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Yeats on Writing

Clea Simon sent me this poem on writing (Adam's Curse by Yeats) and I love it so much that I am reproducing it here. This is for all the writers who were ever asked, "But what do you do all day?" or were told, "You have it so lucky!  You get to stay at home and just hang out and write."   There is also my personal favorite, "Oh, you're a writer!  I am going to be when I have enough money to retire!"  I think people love the idea of writing, but they don't realize just how hard (and wonderful) it is. 

A line will take us hours maybe: 
yet it does not seem a moment;s thought, 
Our stitching and unstitching has been naught.  
Better go down upon your marrow bones 
And scrub a kitchen pavement or break stones 
Like an old pauper, in all kinds of weather; 
For to articulate sweet sounds together 
Is to work harder than all these, and yet 
Be Thought an idler by the noisy set of bankers, schoolmasters, and clergymen 
The Martyrs call the world.


Leora Skolkin-Smith said...


Clea Simon said...

There's actually a lot more to the poem, but this is the protagonist speaking about writing and I just always find it apropos: "A line will take us hours but if it seems more than a moment's thought, our stitching and unstitching is for naught...."

Ain't it the truth?

Anonymous said...

What's Happening i am new to this, I stumbled upon this I have discovered It positively helpful and it has helped me out loads. I hope to give a contribution & help different users like its helped me. Great job.

My weblog: payday loan no credit check
My page > instant approval payday loans