Tree trunks that seem to be me and my friend Fiona

Beginning Again

Beginning Again

It’s that time of year,
The new beginning.
It comes every year full of expectation,
New leaf turning over with distant chorusing of poor old Michael Finnegan
from There was an old man called … fame.

And on the first day
of the beginning
of the third year of mum’s passing…

I am reminded of the remembering compilation I made of her for my family, with Nick Mulvey’s fantastic Begin Again track that could have been written for her.


I always feel lethargic at this time of year.
Everything’s an effort of remembering and the need for reassurance that I’ve still got something to offer.
I can do this by marking off the previous year’s happenings:

  • Forming a regular meditation practice
  • Collaborating with an illustrator
  • Celebrating my sister’s 60th with a family gathering in St Ives, Cornwall
  • Platforming Disrupted Meadow at a symposium in Dartington, Devon and online for Creative Lives, Sheffield University
  • Publishing Redhair and Daffodil Friend
  • Cracking Mailchimp
  • Celebrating our Silver Wedding Anniversary
  • Surviving another year as an elected councillor
  • Signing up for the project group with Sandra Reeve and 11 other people
  • Committing to a creative collaboration

The year ended with losing a dear friend and also my last surviving auntie in my dad’s generation. Death is so much a part of life.

Forming, collaborating, celebrating, platforming, surviving, celebrating (again!), publishing, signing up, cracking, committing to and losing.

This list of ‘doing words’ makes me grateful for the past year and hopeful for the coming.

However, within this short post lies a creative dilemma. I have realised that most of my creative work has been largely driven by mum’s stories. Now she’s been gone for two years I have to get around to creating something new, with a new impetus and a new way.  This is the challenge of 2023 for me. I heard it in the woods on the day of Fiona’s funeral. When straying from the predictable track I ventured through the woodland at the back end of the Islington and St Pancras Cemetery. I didn’t know where I was going. The snow was pretty thick underfoot and my phone displayed a track that was hidden from me.  Straying from the path put me on the road of remembrance towards an encounter with people from the past, from a past life at teacher-training college many years ago…but also on towards something new, hidden beneath the snow, something unknown and yet to be explored. I am waiting for the thaw – the melting time

Footsteps in hidden pathway referred to in the post

Off the track with Fiona

Happy New Year if you are reading this.

Unashamed plug below:

Please buy my book for yourself or someone you think may like it.

You can contact me for a copy or you can order online.

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