When Death came walking up the road

A humorous poem inspired by Emily Dickinson, by CC author Tim (T E) Taylor

Tim's Blog

Well, I was trying to think of something to post on my blog this week, when I happened to come across a facebook post about Emily Dickinson (by Jennifer Wilson, in the launch party for Miriam Drori’s new book Social Anxiety Revealed).  This reminded my of the session we did on Emily at Poetry Day once, and the light-hearted (if you can be light-hearted about death!) poem that I wrote – part pastiche, part commentary on Emily herself.  So, I thought, why not post it here, then?  (It’s also in the Holme Valley Poets anthology In the Company of Poets).

When Death came walking up the road,

a chill as cold as space

filled me as I beheld his cloak –

I dared not see his face.

With shaking hands I combed my hair,

put on my finest hat –

but then I thought, “don’t waste this time:

others will…

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That Unwanted Guest

Launch party today…

Social Anxiety Revealed

What do you do when someone comes to stay and doesn’t leave?

It happened once in my childhood home. My parents felt imposed upon, but they didn’t say anything. After all, she was family, albeit distant. So they put up with her for two months until she finally returned to South Africa.

Launch Party

Social anxiety has been my unwanted guest for fifty years. I haven’t just told it to leave; I’ve fought against it. And lost. It never went back to where it came from – wherever that is. So now I’ve accepted it’s here to stay. In fact, I’m making friends with it and turning our relationship into a partnership.

If it weren’t for social anxiety, I wouldn’t have created the book


If it weren’t for social anxiety, there wouldn’t be a



If it weren’t for social anxiety, I wouldn’t be an author.


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The Eccentric Writer

Kathy Sharp

It’s no surprise if writers are a little odd. It’s an occupational hazard caused by spending so much time in your own head. But until the other day I hadn’t realised the oddity was visible, too.

I live by the sea, and one of the joys of my life is go down to the little beach nearby and watch the tide come in. There is something very soothing about watching time passing in this way. It’s also a very good background occupation while I’m working out what to write next.

So there I was, standing at the water’s edge, engrossed in both the puddling and ripples of the rising tide and a particularly knotty plot-hole in my current writing project, when a voice said, “Excuse me…”

I turned and discovered an old gentleman, complete with walking stick, looking at me earnestly.

“I just wondered if you were all right?”…

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Olga Swan: French Notes from a Broad

The Knitted Curiosity Cabinet

Good morning, Olga. Welcome to The Knitted Curiosity Cabinet.

olga swan paradis

Tell us about your new book. What genre does it belong to? What inspired you to write it? Is it based on history, or current events – or is it a wild flight of fancy?

My new release ‘Pensioners in Paradis: French Notes From A Broad’ (authl.it/86j) is one of Crooked Cat’s True Cats Non-Fiction Range. It is pretty much autobiographical, charting our hysterical journey from being self-deprecating, depressive Brummies, steeped in life’s troubles, and whisking us across the Channel. Readers will laugh with us as we encounter hilarious situations en France – from troublesome workmen, the infamous bureaucracy, and even sex à la française! You can take notes on this transition from English doom and gloom to la belle vie française, and follow the exploits of this oh-so-recognisable English couple. What could possibly go wrong?

Come to…

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Ma Vie Française #5: Author Olga Swan

Olga Swan appears on my French life blog today, talking about her humorous book about France, Pensioners in Paradis, to be released shortly.

Life on La Lune

Olga’s favourite tree in Gaillac

My latest guest is a somewhat unusual occupant of this slot, in that she had une vie française but doesn’t anymore. More of that below. Olga Swan has had several novels published by Crooked Cat Books, including Vichysoisse, part of which is set in this area of SW France during World War II. Her humorous memoir of her life in France, Pensioners in Paradis, is coming out shortly. Let’s hear from Olga herself.

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