He tells me how a new idea can distract him from The World Out There for days at a time and how he'd stared at the ceiling for three hours the night before with a new paragraph lodged in his mind. I can relate. Just this morning I'd woken with new lyrics behind my teeth.
As we are talking she appears in the hallway, wide-eyed with fairy pyjamas, bed hair braids and that perpetually loose front tooth. She's not supposed to be up after bedtime stories.
When she speaks, it is with both caution and a kind of pride.
"I couldn't sleep," she whispers. "Because I had a poem in my head."
The page is in her hand, the carefully linked words written in green marker.
Age Doesn’t Matter
When my Mum's gone she'll be burnt and taken far to the wildest place.
When my Dad's gone he'll be put in grave and go up to heaven I'm sure.
Neither of them will live longer than me if we're always safe.
Why does death have to exist?
But age doesn't matter it's the person you are whether rich or poor.
Cuddled up on my lap, with her page of poetry in my hand, my daughter is restless but relieved. Her little hands are still fidgeting as the clock's passes the ten.