The Reading Pile


Smashing through my roof,

soaring through the clouds,

zooming through space

at the speed of light;

my reading pile grows exponentially.

Balancing precariously beside by bed,

a tower of teetering, twisted titles

fuelled by my nocturnal dreams,

it’s a marvel of modern engineering.



The weight of ambition

far too great,

Rome falls.





cascade all over the floor.

Spilt milk

from the writers’ glass,

neither half-empty

nor half-full,

but always overflowing.

Words to spare.



Trapped in a pressure cooker

somewhere in between

my nightmares and my dreams,

an alarm clock and a ringing phone;

my reading pile grows


higher and higher

like marauding weeds.

A mighty monument

dedicated to Summers past

when I had time.


I’m still waiting for the holidays,

which seemingly never come


I am no longer my own.



Yet, I haven’t forgotten

how to dream.

Book by book.

Rome rebuilds

after the fall.

Because my love

has never died.


like an indefatigable knight,

I will charge on!



Rowena Newton 3rd January, 2016.


This poem needs no explanation, except to say that it’s very exceptional for me to share a poem straight away with anyone aside from my usual reader-in-residence, the long-suffering Geoff.

However, writing is communication and wasn’t intended to be something locked away but to be shared…especially with those who share your folly.

I’m sure many of you also have book towers built up beside your bed. which were, of course, constructed with the best of intentions.

I have so many unread books and yet, I keep buying more and blogging is only making it worse. I have ordered one book online over the Summer  break and am about to head off to the local bookshop for another. They are:

Dr Wayne Dyer: What Do You Really Want for Your Children?

Ted Hughes: Grief is the Thing with Feathers.

I seem to remember posting not so long ago about bad habits:

Meanwhile, as I add to the pile, I am also intending to subtract. If I lived to be a thousand, I still don’t think I could get through all the books I haven’t read in this house.

And yet, I will not give up trying!

Happy reading!

xx Rowena


9 thoughts on “The Reading Pile

  1. abyssbrain

    Nice poem.

    I read around 8 to 12 books a month, both fiction and nonfiction and not counting those academic journals and other advanced books that I can’t speed read. However, it’s still impossinle to ” catch up” since there are still many books that I want to read and they just keep adding…

  2. Norah

    Oh, I know. The pile just keeps growing and never receding. I’ve added to your pile, and now you’re adding to mine – again! I love Ted Hughes. I hadn’t heard of Grief is the thing with Feathers. I’ll have to get it, whatever the genre. I don’t even care. I love the title and I love the author. There’s nothing else needed in the decision making process!
    Your poem is great, Rowena, and I do identify. Thank you for the link in a comment on my post ensuring I came straight over. With my blog reading so behind schedule it may have taken me a while to get here otherwise.
    I love your images of books cascading over the floor, and the writer’s glass always overflowing, and those marauding weeds – they pop up everywhere, whether we like it or not. But of course we do like it, so they are not weeds after all, because, as you know, weeds are just plants growing somewhere unwanted.
    Enjoy your reading! I hope you manage to cross a few off that lengthy list real soon. 🙂

  3. roweeee Post author

    I have to stop writing first! I am trying to get back into the swing of doing the morning pages. I ended up writing 15 pages yesterday. I believe the idea behind it is declutter your mind and get all the junk out so you can focus on writing. I think it is freeing me up a bit. I also took on a bit of a painting challenge today doing about half the walls in my son’s room. Our daughter said she loves painting so this is great. She can get cracking again in the morning!

  4. Norah

    There are just too many things to do and not enough time to do them all. Being ambitious and goal driven doesn’t help. The goals are like the books. They pile one on top of each other until they topple over taking us to the floor with them.
    Good luck with the painting! And you assistant! 🙂

  5. Pingback: Coffee By Moonlight | beyondtheflow

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