Singing At Heaven’s Gate

Today I am proud to be part of Divine Magazine‘s Pride Blog Hop, “All You Need Is Love”.


This hop has a simple concept that does what it says on the tin: love. Celebrate love.

I scratched my head about this for a little while, because hasn’t it all been said before and by people far more talented and poetic than me? I wondered what I could offer the blog hop that wouldn’t be a rehash of same old, same old. Then it struck me that maybe what matters here is that we just share a little bit of ourselves and what love means to us, and bugger being original or witty or all the other things we think we have to achieve.

So. Love.

For me, it’s not the beginning, when you’re sick and dizzy with it; when, like David Copperfield, love so consumes you that  “At home, in my own room, I am sometimes moved to cry out, ‘Oh, Miss Shepherd!’ in a transport of love.” That’s fun, a wild ride, but it can’t last forever. No one can live at that altitude forever.

It’s when the humdrum things of life nearly overwhelm you. When things just jog along, or they’re mundane, or even when they’re not going well at all. When you’re discontented and disillusioned; tired and overworked. When your ‘bitchface’ becomes the thing you see in the mirror most. When you feel you’ll never be successful, that someone else’s books will always do better, sell better, be better than yours. When you feel frumpy and old and what little physical attraction you may have had seems faded and worn. When you’re passed over for that promotion at work. Or when they all forget your birthday. Or … or whatever thing, petty or huge, that Life throws at you to prove you’re the red-headed step child, not the Golden One. You know. Every day stuff.

Love’s the person you come home to who makes you a cup of tea, and doesn’t forget to bring you the biscuit tin. Who says “I’ll walk the dog. You put your feet up.” Who remembers you don’t like mushrooms and who’ll fish them out of the risotto before dishing it up. The one who’s there to turn your discontent to contentment, peace and warmth.

This one. Shakespeare’s one.

When, in disgrace with fortune and men’s eyes,
I all alone beweep my outcast state,
And trouble deaf heaven with my bootless cries,
And look upon myself, and curse my fate,
Wishing me like to one more rich in hope,
Featur’d like him, like him with friends possess’d,
Desiring this man’s art and that man’s scope,
With what I most enjoy contented least;
Yet in these thoughts myself almost despising,
Haply I think on thee, and then my state,
Like to the lark at break of day arising
From sullen earth, sings hymns at heaven’s gate;
For thy sweet love remember’d such wealth brings
That then I scorn to change my state with kings.


And here’s Sonnet 29 set to music and sung by Rufus Wainwright:

Go and hug your Sonnet 29. They deserve it.





Comment here, tweet about this post or share it, between now and September 28 when the hop ends, and I’ll choose one person by the stick-a-pin-in-it method to win an ebook copy of The Gilded Scarab, my steampunk LGBT romance set in Victorian Londinium in 1900, when Queen Victoria was on the throne, airships filled the skies, the Britannic Imperium is ruled by an oligarchy of powerful Convocation Houses, and Rafe Lancaster, ex pilot in Her Majesties AeroForce, buys a coffee house.

Go HERE to enter Divine Magazine’s “Grand Prize” Rafflecopter giveaway.


The Blog Hop

And finally, click here to see the other blogs taking part. Why not go and see what their take is? I’ll guarantee you’ll be entertained and delighted and there’ll be lots of prizes to win!



  1. Oh, you are so right about the sustainability of love. I love that quote from Shakespeare–I’d heard it before but it’s been a while. Thank you so much for sharing it here!


  2. Hi Anna, I have shared and tweeted your interesting post 🙂 I do have a few favourite poems on the many aspects of love, but I am not sure of the copyright issues with posting the complete poems. One in particular is by WH Auden and is called ‘O Tell Me The Truth About Love’. This is the final verse:

    When it comes, will it come without warning
    Just as I’m picking my nose?
    Will it knock on my door in the morning,
    Or tread in the bus on my toes?
    Will it come like a change in the weather?
    Will its greeting be courteous or rough?
    Will it alter my life altogether?
    O tell me the truth about love.


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