London Writers’ Salon

They had me at London. And Writers.
They write online at 8 a.m. London time,
12 a.m. for me. I’m up till midnight
anyway when I post the day’s poem,
so when the message pops up,

Writers’ hour starts in 15 minutes,

with a handy link, I decide to jump in,
wondering how many people are up
at 8 a.m. London time ready to write.
284 people today—that’s how many—
popping in like kernels coming to life
in a hot pan.

284 people writing, together, in silence
for 50 minutes at the beginning of
a new day (the very beginning for me).

And because so many leave their cameras
on as they write, I do, too, admiring
the morning light coming in Katrine’s
slanted ceiling window behind her, not
to mention the skylight over Jim’s head.
I relate to Patricia, chin cradled in her hand,
admire Carolyn’s profile at her computer,
am intrigued by Leigh writing in Dubai, a
faraway place I can only imagine.

We are all ages, shapes, sizes and colors.
Cathleen’s resplendent in turquoise,
lovely against her mahogany skin,
and Silvano’s giant glasses slide down
his nose, light gleaming off his smooth head.
I don’t know how to pronounce Wibke’s
name, but I love her thick black bangs,
and Oli has her eyes closed, perhaps
meditatively typing?

I’m deeply grateful to Matt and Tracy,
our hosts, headphoned and on camera,
Matt looking off into the distance, pen in hand,
stretching, taking a drink, fingers to
forehead, thinking, which counts as writing.
Tracy gazing into the screen, making me
wonder what words are coming to them
this morning.

I want to crawl through my screen into
Alison’s bookshelf behind her, give Sheila
a big high-five for appearing onscreen in her
pink robe, and props to Hilary for writing
outside in what appears to be a vigorous wind,
her hair blowing skyward.

I don’t know any of them, yet I feel like
one of them, some of them signing off because
they have to go to work (“Thank you for the space,
peace and companionship,” Net says). Me with
a poem draft that didn’t exist an hour ago,
thinking about bed almost an hour into this new day,
my bookshelves night shadowed behind me onscreen,

marveling at the writers around the world writing
at the same time—four times a day in different
time zones, oodles of us—as I pick up and sip
from my typewriter mug that says in bright red,
“You’re my type.”

All of you so are.


You can learn more about free writing dates with the London Writers’ Salon here.

About janishaag

Writer, writing coach, editor
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