... ghosts grey with gulls,
the voice thin-trailed sea-weed;
these shape scripts on sand,
a sacred text. Women's narratives
score the landscape; torn; dissected; lost.
An amethyst stone is the key:
its blue rites are gems, red over
empty pages; how they tumble
under coastal waters.
from "Cornubian Island"
Ghost-writers; writers as ghosts: some of those real writers of the past, now lost and forgotten are, in the present, ghosts. Living only in their manuscripts as invisible ink on snow-white paper they taper into insignificance whilst the rising silver-stars of so-called celebrity culture of the C21, who need words put into their mouths - although they patently have the gift of the gab and a real way with words - are gaudy christmas-balls, doomed to shatter into zillions of self-reflecting glass-shards; whilst the keys to the ghost writers of the past are those to the basement doors of library holdings of archival texts, where words magnetized are ether in air.
See The Pen Pushers, in Observer, 19th March 2006