A written plea for the next…

I’m currently reading Simon Armitage’s Sandettie Light Vessel Automatic and I came across this:

each new poem never anything less

than a written plea for the next.

from “Émigré”

This is, of course, spot on. For those of us blessed – or plagued (you choose!) – with the compulsion to write, there is always this sense of perpetual motion, of a continuum, activity without end. Perhaps even before we have ‘finished’ our last poem or story – or even sentence! – we are being propelled on to the next, and always with the hope that it will be somehow better, more profound, ‘perfect’.

If this is one of the measures of being a writer, then when we no longer feel that plea, sense that inevitability, perhaps it is time to stop.