Saturday, 28 December 2013

Hello from Yesterday

I heard from an old friend. Funny to hear from someone after a thousand years. He is not on Facebook either so like myself I assume he doesn’t have unnecessary connections. The past tends to stay put, but there’s nothing like a little nostalgia every now and again. So it was kind of nice to get an email. 

   He was the only boy in our gang, apart from boyfriends, who never quite counted. He was funny and kind and ate loads of garlic. He had crazy girls and nice boys. Everyone had a five minute crush on him. He wore cool retro clothes and had a traffic island in his room. I remember making up a dance with him to Octopus’s Garden which I still perform whenever I hear it. We kept up for a while, he came down to our Brighton fancy dress parties but then as people do I went away and he drifted away and the organised people in the group became more concerned with organising marriages and families. 

   He is in Brighton now, and happy and married and childed. Maybe I will coffee cafĂ© him when I am next there. But too much nostalgia can make one nauseous (I site listening to 80s Cure or U2). 

   He played me this song once, which is just the right balance of then and now (give it half a minute): 

Train of Thought

Sun strikes clouds, strikes me, hard in the face. In the face of it. Then sadly the banks rise and for a while there is a subterranean feel. Mmm, nice pen, nice paper. Book a little small, but suitable for journeys, journals. The train is calming. When do you relax? When I am on a train. Swoops of birds over fields and buildings painted in golden light. The rhythm echoes the womb I can only assume. The toil of the day is realised and I could so easily sleep. This is also cutting down to one coffee. And there are the graffitied carriages, discarded, or are they home to the hermit? Slowly everything turns pink, but there will be no delight tomorrow, I know it is going to rain. Sheep sprout out of fields like mushrooms. A man pushes a skinny trolley full of temptation down the aisle. If I push my head to the window I can see a scribble of sunset. My phone sparkles a message; it is nice to be loved. Grey boxes of Basingstoke and tingles of pins and needles in my right foot. Orange ticking electronic clock counting my life away. The sky rolls from pink to purple to grey, which suits the land’s industrial mantle. Pylons are strange stick men marching along the landscape and we are out of town and can breathe again and are at ease again. Christmas lights light up little villages, the back drop to celebrations we are not party to. The last lines of fire make a dragon on the horizon and so maybe I will come back.

Saturday, 21 December 2013

We are not aMused

I have been hunting ideas recently, in increasing fraticosity. I am snatching at whispers, dreaming of addendums, trying too hard. Ideas for me are very much like Douglas Adams’ instructions for flying, which are so brilliant I believe them:
‘There is an art, it says, or rather a knack to flying. The knack lies in learning how to throw yourself at the ground and miss. Pick a nice day, it suggests, and try it.’
(Life, the Universe, and Everything, 1982)
It’s all about the moment of distraction. I’d also like to take a mindful approach, be all Zen about it, but it’s hard to relax when you have a deadline. (You know it’s bad when you decide you must go out and buy a new pen and writing book). I have a proliferation of writing, I’m writing right now, I have lots of possibilities, but what will work? What to pursue?
  • Waking up with a different face every day
  • Riffing off paintings, joined up Flash fictions
  • A liar that lives in a cardboard box
  • Resuscitating Baroness Elsa von Freytag-Loringhoven
  • What about Witkacy?
  • Time travelling cheese monkeys
I could just roll a die like Luke Rhinehart, I could close the book, did Bastian Balthazar Bux ever do that? Or I could just bloody get on with it!

Saturday, 7 December 2013

Still Livid

They’re still chopping trees down because of the whim of some insane dictator. How can a tree hater make it to the top? That hater has infiltrated the Trust. And still they trust. Maybe that person is phobic of our entish friends, maybe a branch fell on their head when they were a baby. Now the same imbecilic people in charge are attempting to rob us of our park. It seems our rulers are unfashionably unenvironmental. Nature is your enemy. It is uncontrollable, unpredictable and far more beautiful than you, little lab rat, will ever be. But hey, we need a new leisure centre and hey, we need to get rid of every tree that isn’t indigenous. They are trying to rip the soul out of the city.  

And another thing that makes me angry. Cleaning. Hoovering. This fills me with fury, with a loathing at the world, at the house, at existence. Maybe we should shave the dog. Maybe next time we’ll get one of those really ugly bald dogs.

This day must improve, but as soon as I write that I remember that I forgot what came before. This day had a great start, before my happiness was hoovered away. At 9.00 this morning I was dancing around a badminton court. Niaing, jumping, punching, freedancing with a fantastic abandon. What joy!

9.00 – 10.00: so happy

10.00 – 12.00: so angry

12.00 onwards: so so. I’ll aim for philosophical.


Hoovering Theme Tune:

Thursday, 28 November 2013

Over my Head

My days are being meted out by the waning moon, who is out more at the moment or maybe I am out more at the moment. Hence I notice the moon. With the excuse of a dog I see many sunrises. The gold clouds turning pink turning white. The occasional extraordinariness of skies on fire and circular pre-dawn rainbows. At the moment the simple pleasure of an icing sugared world. All this through dream-soaked eyes. It’s easy to find magic in the mundane. 

The library will be closing in 10 minutes. Please bring any items to the counter to be issued as soon as possible.

Sunday, 24 November 2013

Dewey Eyed

I frantastic, scribble down every book, every poet, every thought. My visits to the depths of the library are always with that muted excitement. This book may be the ‘one’. I confess I am fickle, and fall in love too often. And after I’ve been there, elsewhere, otherwhere, when I have to go back to the real world, everything is grey. Heartbreak happens at the end of every good book.
My guilty pleasure is re-reading. I go back to stories I’ve enjoyed at the expense of new books or even reality. A similarly afflicted friend once buried his set of Lord of the Rings, he was so trapped in a circle of rereading. A solemn funereal farewell to a good friend or a desperate attempt to cure his Tolkienian addiction.
I am currently building a Babel’s tower of books. I promise I have not maxed out my public library card and that I haven’t taken cunning advantage of the fact I have a staff card as well as a student card at the University. But I have thought about it. I’ve tried to impose a law on myself; no renewals. This is to force me not to just get books and hope they will jump into my mind by osmosis, but so I can conquer this Jenga of knowledge and also to keep things under control. I have only broken the law twice. I do keep beginning them. This week I began Don Quixote, Ulysses and Frankenstein and I’m itching to lift the cover on the Inheritors (but that would be back to rereading).
The problem is one thought leads to another thought, leads to another. The problem is the connections. But this is not the problem, it is the pleasure, it is the possibility, it is the whole bloody point.