Untitled

I always think it’s a bit of a copout when a painting or poem is Untitled, but the only title I could think of this week was The prospect of dying, which wouldn’t really encourage anyone to read it. I’ve been busy going over my lines for the play, which concerns someone who has died, for a start.

And on Tuesday, I was at the hospital, where I worked with a man who made me feel very humble. He knows he is going to die within a couple of years, but is just immensely grateful for each day that he lives – everything, he says, seems more distinct.

I discovered at the weekend that my lovely uncle died a couple of weeks ago, and nobody told me. I don’t know when the funeral is or if I’ll be able to go. And I spent the weekend with my mum, who is 87, and does very well for her age, but still…

But enough of that. I’ve done lots of other prep for the play. For a start, I re-covered an armchair, something I’ve never done before. It looks terrible close up, but it will look fine on the stage, so that’s ok. And the rehearsal on Monday went well, and I’ve organised a proper dress rehearsal with all the props – not possible in the place where we usually rehearse.

I’ve seen two films this week: Ex machina, which was quite chilling and gripping, and Inherent vice – seriously weird but enjoyable and immersed in the 70s.

I did lots of prep for this week, and worked with my amazing patients’ group in Gloucester – they go from strength to strength. And I had two meetings, one about some work I’ll be doing with the Croome poets, and another about the work in Hereford Hospital. This will happen; it’s just a question of working out the mechanics of it all.

I’ve broken a filling in a tooth, and managed to get an appointment to have it redone the very next day! That was on Friday, which was an exceptional day. Every day I make a list of all the jobs I would like to get done that day, and on Friday I completed all of them – something that happens only a couple of times a year.

And of course, I’ve had long phone calls with The Son and The Daughter and The Mother, and answered a whole load of emails, and carried on with all the little jobs for Artlift and Poetry on Loan, and written four – yes, four! – poems.

But I haven’t been swimming at all. I didn’t really feel like it after the cystitis, and then it all got a bit busy. Today, though, I will go swimming again. And next week I’ll think of a proper title.

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