Writer’s Lament
by Robert Wynne
Music: “We’ve Only Just Begun” by the Carpenters
© 1998

I haven’t yet begun to write
Deadlines, they come and go
Still I sit with an empty page
I haven’t yet begun

I haven’t yet begun to write
Editors phoning me
They paid advances six months ago
And still i’ve not begun

Writing down stuff that is ridiculous
Ball it up and throw it all away
If I could only get a page or two
Then I’d be well and on my way

Another day gone by and I
Got not one damn thing done
I’ll get up tomorrow and start again
And I’ve yet to begin

There’s a wonderful scene in the musical 1776, between John Adams and Thomas Jefferson. The latter is supposed to be writing the Declaration of Independance, and the former has come around to check on his work. When Jefferson fails to produce the document, Adams sputters “Do you mean to say you haven’t finished?”. Jefferson replies calmly, “No, sir. I mean to say I have not yet begun.”

Boy do I know that feeling!