It’s been a while

Hello all,

How are you? Long time no see – my fault I’m afraid. To my dismay I haven’t felt much of a writing bug for a while, but have been feeling an itch growing lately. I do hope this is a positive sign. It was National Poetry day last week, and I wanted to share one of my favourite poems ‘La Belle Dame Sans Merci’ by Keates. It might seem like an odd choice for a 22-year old, but there’s something about its sadness, the fantasy and the structure I find pleasing. I discovered it during my university course, and it reminds me of the good times spent on the Jubilee Campus.

I have more news. No longer will I be living and working out in the sticks of Nottingham. As of yesterday, I no longer work at True Story Design Ltd as a ‘Quality Assurance Assistant’, but will be beginning shortly at BYG Systems as a Scriptwriter, writing copy for their educational software. There’s elements of research and copywriting which appeal to me, and I have always wanted to be a writer. The wonderful staff at True Story have been very welcoming, and the year I spent with them has been a good one. Now it’s time to start a new chapter in my life, returning to the streets of Beeston, which I considered my home for two years during my degree.

I have a lot of writerly plans, such as a possible column about my copywriting experiences with NWS, and a publishing idea I’d like to see take flight. Right now a lot of my thoughts are spent on moving and getting better (as I seem to have poisoned myself last week, and am still recovering.) I would also like to partake in NaNoWriMo, as I haven’t ‘won’ since my first attempt at secondary school. Shocking.

Without further ado, La Belle Dame Sans Merci

Oh what can ail thee, knight-at-arms,
Alone and palely loitering?
The sedge has withered from the lake,
And no birds sing.

Oh what can ail thee, knight-at-arms,
So haggard and so woe-begone?
The squirrel’s granary is full,
And the harvest’s done.

I see a lily on thy brow,
With anguish moist and fever-dew,
And on thy cheeks a fading rose
Fast withereth too.

I met a lady in the meads,
Full beautiful – a faery’s child,
Her hair was long, her foot was light,
And her eyes were wild.

I made a garland for her head,
And bracelets too, and fragrant zone;
She looked at me as she did love,
And made sweet moan.

I set her on my pacing steed,
And nothing else saw all day long,
For sidelong would she bend, and sing
A faery’s song.

She found me roots of relish sweet,
And honey wild, and manna-dew,
And sure in language strange she said –
‘I love thee true’.

She took me to her elfin grot,
And there she wept and sighed full sore,
And there I shut her wild wild eyes
With kisses four.

And there she lulled me asleep
And there I dreamed – Ah! woe betide! –
The latest dream I ever dreamt
On the cold hill side.

I saw pale kings and princes too,
Pale warriors, death-pale were they all;
They cried – ‘La Belle Dame sans Merci
Hath thee in thrall!’

I saw their starved lips in the gloam,
With horrid warning gaped wide,
And I awoke and found me here,
On the cold hill’s side.

And this is why I sojourn here
Alone and palely loitering,
Though the sedge is withered from the lake,
And no birds sing.

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