Jul. 13, 1997

First Love

by John Clare


Today's Reading:"First Love" by John Clare.

The Great Circus Parade takes place today in Milwaukee with 65 restored circus wagons, 750 horses, clowns, animals, and marching bands.

The three-day Bon Festival begins today in Japan, also known as the Feast of Lanterns, with religious rites performed in memory of the dead.

The seven-day Maine Potato Blossom Festival starts today in Fairfield, Maine.

The 25th Santa Fe Chamber Music Festival begins today in Santa Fe, New Mexico.

Frank Sinatra recorded his first song record, "From the Bottom of My Heart" with the Harry James Band on this day in 1939.

It's the birthday of Nigerian playwright Wol e Soyinka, winner of the 1986 Nobel Prize for Literature, born in Abeokuta, Nigeria, in 1934.

English novelist David Storey (THE SPORTING LIFE) was born on this day in Wakefield, England, in 1933.

English Romantic poet William Wordsworth visited the ruins of Tintern Abbey on this day in 1798 and wrote a poem about them.

It's the birthday of English poet John Clare, born in Helpston, England, in 1793. He supported himself as field laborer and tenant farmer and spent the last 23 years of his life in an asylum where he continued to write poetry, including SELECTED POEMS AND PROSE.

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
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