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It is highly likely, dear reader, I could be tempted into wordy confabulation (see?) when it needs only my best & simplest words to adequately convey what I feel. The hell in a handcart shenanigans I predicted have occurred. It gives me no pleasure to be proved right. Being right about something so wrong is awful. Like almost everyone I know, this feels like a dark time. I’m not in the mood for hopeful memes or well-meaning platitudes – hope for too many people has been ravaged. Our hearts are hurting.

Saddened by what I see as a squandered political opportunity, I turn to that which gives me, on a very personal level, a measure of hope. When despair strikes, write. Reach for the words.

Mistress Crow has been ubiquitous. Landing in the skeletal birch tree, her feathered finery silhouetted against wintry skies, she’s been eyeing me for a few weeks now. Or so it seems. I try not to anthropomorphise wild creatures & resist the temptation to second guess a bird. But the version of me who toys with the idea of a muse can’t give up on the idea that some of the words I conjure arrive via some magical, possibly birdy, portal.

My next quest, should I choose to accept it, is to write the right book. Finish #Book4 – all 89,000 words of it? I still don’t know & the reason is simple: the singular voice of #Book5 will not be still. Like Mistress Crow, she perches, peripheral & illusory, whispering her intriguing, scary first person present words in my ear. And I can’t shake her off.

Come the next new moon – Boxing Day therefore perfectly placed – I have a decision to make. The write one… Right?

Onward & sideways, as my mother used to say… Not least about shenanigans.