Some people say they are lucky. You know they type; they always win prizes in raffles, parking spaces magically appear for them and life always seem to turn out with a cherry on the top.
I do believe in luck. I think. Or, perhaps, coincidence. I’m not a mathematician and probability eludes me, but there are some things in life that happen for no good reason whatsoever. We call it luck. Sometimes good; sometimes bad.
“The harder I practice; the luckier I get”
I think there are times when you can make your own luck. And that’s what I am trying to do at the moment. Create opportunities for myself that prompt exclamations from observers of ‘Lucky you!’. I smile and nod, but I am making it happen; it isn’t luck, it is sheer determination.
For example, I write this sitting on the train from King’s Cross to Edinburgh. I am going to the festivals for the weekend with the intention of, naturally, seeing a few shows but moreover to promote and distribute poetry. I assume you are aware that I co-run a website called ‘Paper Swans’ and we ran a micropoetry competition on Twitter, the winners of which have had their poems printed on pocket cards (currently residing in my suitcase) to be given out and discussed at the Edinburgh Book Festival. When I said to a friend that I was going to Edinburgh, his response was (naturally) ‘Lucky you.’ Don’t worry – I didn’t labour the point, but it made me think and about all the time and effort (and money) I have put into making this happen. It will be a success – I know it will, because I will fulfil what I am setting out to do. Luck will be if I happen to meet a poetry agent or small publisher who takes an interest in what we are doing. Luck is if I get through the weekend without it raining or if I bump into Hugh Jackman at a bar. But getting to Edinburgh, having these beautiful poetry to cards to give out – I made that happen (with my cohort, Stephanie, of course!).
It’s funny how pensive you get on a train, isn’t it? Hours of time to kill, the outside rushing by. In a few hours I will be swept away with the hubbub of ‘arty types’ and, as I’m travelling alone, I’ll be feeling as alive as hell.
And if you’re wishing you could do something exciting too? Well, good luck to you.