Reading in a Pandemic #WritingwithWoolf #NaPoWriMo2020 #NationalPoetryMonth

For National Poetry Month, I’m writing poems inspired by words, sentences, or ideas in Virginia Woolf’s Diary.

For this poem, I borrowed the syllable count from a Tyburn (2 2 2 2 9 9) but not its rhyme structure (the two-syllable lines all rhyme and those words are all repeated as the 5th-8th syllables in the last two lines, which also rhyme). That rhyme scheme gave me a headache (plus, to be totally honest, it’s far beyond my capacity as a sense-making poet).

Here’s the line from Woolf that serves as inspiration and found words: “Here I must resolve first of all to find some long solid book to read. What? Tristram Shandy? French memoirs?”

I have several long solid books to read but am struggling to focus and concentrate. Reading during a pandemic isn’t easy.

Day #8: Reading in a Pandemic

a long solid book. Tristram Shandy?
French memoirs? Perhaps Russian novels.

Photo by Suzy Hazelwood on

One response to “Reading in a Pandemic #WritingwithWoolf #NaPoWriMo2020 #NationalPoetryMonth”

  1. You’re certainly right: Reading during a pandemic isn’t easy! I’ve settled into fiction I’ve already read, since I don’t need more suspense in my life.

    I’m enjoying the poem structures you’ve been exploring (I think it was you who wrote the lantern the other day), and have been playing with them myself. Thank you for sharing this!

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