Monday, October 26, 2015

Weaving Witcheries

Researching a new novel today, I came across this poem. It featured in the February 1892 issue of The Californian Illustrated Magazine.

My Library
by J.W. Wood

Within these covers, homely tho' some be,
     Life's kaleidoscope is writ in varying stage,---
The tragedies of war and poets' melody,
     The mimicry of love, philosophy of sage.
Here warrior tells his deeds of valor o'er,
     With gallant knight who poised his lance for fame;
The antiquary fraught with mystic lore,
     The pensive lover sighing forth his flame,
'Tis here most strange and pleasant company;---
     The sparkling wit, the weirdly muttering crone,
A rondeau neat, a dismal threnody,
     Compose this mimic world in calf-bound tome.

Here let me muse in silent reverie
     Amidst these mystic scenes of by-gone age,
And with the aeons past and aeons yet to be
     Weave witcheries for yet unlettered page.

I could find no information about the poet, but he or she perfectly captures (albeit in the hyperbolic language of the time) the task of the historical novelist--connecting past and future by "weaving witcheries" in the present. A wonderful image, especially with Halloween upon us. But whereas Wood's writer is trapped in "silent reverie" facing the "yet unlettered page"--suffering, in other words, from writer's block--I am about to embark on that curiously crazy endeavor known as NaNoWriMo, or drafting 50,000 words of a new novel in thirty days.  I'll be jumping four centuries and a continent for this new project and will need every bit of witchery-weaving skill I possess. Wish me luck!

Happy Halloween


Vicki Kondelik said...

Good luck! I will be participating in NaNoWriMo, too, for the first time.

Julianne Douglas said...

Good luck, Vicki! If you want to "buddy" me, I'm "julianned" on the Nano site.

Vicki Kondelik said...

OK, I will do that.