Why do it?


because of the words

and because of the books

because of the woman in the anorak at the swimming baths

and the teaching of that paying of attention

because of the should I have heard of you

because of the friendship

to celebrate my gratitude

because once, the blackboard groaning with homework, a teacher stayed behind to say how pleased you had attended their lesson and had you considered reading Lawrence?

because of the influences

and because of the kindness

because once I was dying and now I am not dying

because of Jörn Cann swearing about Arsenal while giving me advice about dying

because of the car parks

because to be recognised first we have to become vulnerable 

because of the cost of all this

because of the blanket, which is the shadow and the safe space

because of the readers, known and not known

because of the connections

because it can be taught

because it can be taught

because we love it because someone else loved it enough to make us love it

because you need to stay in touch with the part of your heart that can still be broken with wonder and amazement

because without this I’d probably picking up litter

to say thank you

to celebrate my gratitude

because it changes your life, permanently

because it teaches you to notice

because of the process

because you do not read anything for months and then bam you realise you are alive again

because there are more voices still to be discovered

because of the teachers

because of the students

because of the exhaustion

because once I was dying and now I am not dying

because I know what it is like to be rescued

to take a stand

to say sorry

to try out stuff

to say thank you

to say thank you

to say thank you


  1. Absolutely stunning post – your blog has inspired my writing since I fist came across you, but this one blows the socks off all the ones I’ve read so far – and I haven’t gone through all the links yet! First read the tag lines, which by the end I found had moved me to tears… Thank you so much for sharing all this – how generous and wonderful!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Mostly, I don’t write anymore…no time (hmm), too busy (repetition), lost confidence, too old, etc … A common list of excuses. Sometimes, I remember how important writing was/is. Sometimes I’m moved by the beauty and simplicity of someone else’s words. Sometimes I am inspired. This post was one of those times. Thank you…


  3. Specially liked ‘to be recognised we have to become vulnerable’, which in turn reminded me of the one about the blanket, which I’ve been thinking about all week.


  4. Thanks for this wonderful trove. It’s going to take some time to work through all the linked articles, but they’re full of inspiration for me!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Such a wonderful poem/post. Coming late to the party because it was linked on my newsfeed on FB today but no less marvellous for being an older post. I am inspired by your story and your writing, Anthony, thank you.
    PS Your blog is on my course reading list with (UEA) WCN and I am loving playing “catch up” wth your blog at the moment. Lots to read, thanks!

    Liked by 2 people

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