If Not Writing …

There always comes the time when question is asked – what would you be doing if not writing?

You pause for a moment to think about it.

And you realise – you have never thought about it before.

Then you try hard to imagine all those things you could be doing;   

Dancing till dawn in sultry bars wearing nothing but feathered boa, hue of the deepest midnight blue, and purple suede shoes with a ribbon of black taffeta tied in a bow that makes your calves look long and slim,

Drinking red and amber cocktails from exquisitely crafted glasses, so delicate that the tiniest sounds escape from them every time the waiter, rather aloof and sporting long side-burns, passed them to you,

Making love to men whose names you cannot recall but know them only by the smell of their cologne and the way they try to pronounce your name, or the name of the place you told them you are from which changes as mood takes you,

Gambling large sums of foreign currency in the company of some aging gentlemen who pass themselves off as members of once distinguished, but now almost impoverished aristocratic family,

Reading poetry on the street corners to passers-by and downtrodden members of working-class, who are staging protests against capitalism yet again,

Travelling on barges across the old continent searching for the last remaining palaces with princesses still living in them, translucent with innocence,

Running across summer fields full of sun-flowers and small insects in a yellow muslin dress with tiny forget-me-nots dotted over it, gliding inside the folds of fabric, delirious with joy.

Oh, all the things you could have been doing!

Then you look around and you see the same old room, somewhat shabby and lonesome and silence falling over with dusk, only rain knocking on window panes.

And you reach for your notebook, dog-eared and smeared with tears and ink and unnamed substances to write it all down.

As quickly as you can.