Berlin, August 2012

The first weeks writing is trying to capture the right ideas, which hover in like butterflies through open windows, all flyaway and elusive. Just one irritating thought – something random – threatens to destroy the whole encounter.

I try to cherish the mornings, and not let the world in. To make it easier, I surround myself with sounds. Brittle sounds: the safety of a quiet radio, very quiet, so that all I hear is the tiny crackling. Like a mouse shredding paper. The church bells afar: near the cemetery, near the market. The clock in the kitchen, the sound of a page in a book. I make myself a cup of tea, a long one, in which I am focused on every detail. I say to my friends I am too busy to meet, and spend the day doing nothing but venting my slow thoughts.

I do not want to greet the ideas, at this point. I want to see at once that it was themselves, who flew in despite the ego of the creator. The purest thoughts are hard to recognise, they are disguised. They rarely have bright colours or garish outfits. Once I recognise the right thought, I act mercilessly and quickly – nail it to the wall, frame it. In the evening when I see the tea-stained cup, I realise something has happened.