Jul. 13, 1996

Summer Images

by John Clare


Today's Reading: "Summer Images" by John Clare (1793-1864).

The C&O Canal Boat Festival begins today in Cumberland, Maryland.

Sodbuster Days start today at Fort Ransom State Park in Fort Ransom, North Dakota.

In 1977 on this day, the lights of New York City went dark after electrical storms knocked out power supplies.

It's the birthday of Nigerian novelist and playwright, Wole Soyinka, born in Abeokuta, Nigeria in 1934.

English novelist and playwright, David Storey (THE SPORTING LIFE) was born today in Wakefield, England 1933.

It's the birthday of French civil engineer, Eugene Freyssinet, born in Objat, France in 1879, who developed pre-stressed concrete.

It's the birthday of poet John Clare, a peasant born near Peterborough, England in 1793.

William Hedley, inventor of the first workable steam locomotive using friction between wheels and rails, was born today in Newburn, England in 1779.

Pistol and rifle maker Simeon North, who invented a way of using interchangeable parts in manufacturing, was born in Berlin, Connecticut in 1765.

Be well, do good work, and keep in touch.®




  • “Writers end up writing stories—or rather, stories' shadows—and they're grateful if they can, but it is not enough. Nothing the writer can do is ever enough” —Joy Williams
  • “I want to live other lives. I've never quite believed that one chance is all I get. Writing is my way of making other chances.” —Anne Tyler
  • “Writing is a performance, like singing an aria or dancing a jig” —Stephen Greenblatt
  • “All good writing is swimming under water and holding your breath.” —F. Scott Fitzgerald
  • “Good writing is always about things that are important to you, things that are scary to you, things that eat you up.” —John Edgar Wideman
  • “In certain ways writing is a form of prayer.” —Denise Levertov
  • “Writing is a socially acceptable form of schizophrenia.” —E.L. Doctorow
  • “Writing is like driving at night in the fog. You can only see as far as your headlights, but you can make the whole trip that way.” —E.L. Doctorow
  • “Let's face it, writing is hell.” —William Styron
  • “A writer is someone for whom writing is more difficult than it is for other people.” —Thomas Mann
  • “Writing is 90 percent procrastination: reading magazines, eating cereal out of the box, watching infomercials.” —Paul Rudnick
  • “Writing is a failure. Writing is not only useless, it's spoiled paper.” —Padget Powell
  • “Writing is very hard work and knowing what you're doing the whole time.” —Shelby Foote
  • “I think all writing is a disease. You can't stop it.” —William Carlos Williams
  • “Writing is like getting married. One should never commit oneself until one is amazed at one's luck.” —Iris Murdoch
  • “The less conscious one is of being ‘a writer,’ the better the writing.” —Pico Iyer
  • “Writing is…that oddest of anomalies: an intimate letter to a stranger.” —Pico Iyer
  • “Writing is my dharma.” —Raja Rao
  • “Writing is a combination of intangible creative fantasy and appallingly hard work.” —Anthony Powell
  • “I think writing is, by definition, an optimistic act.” —Michael Cunningham
Current Faves - Learn more about poets featured frequently on the show