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28 May 2012

I am footnotes


here's to the peace 
of walking
through an empty car park pausing 

at the lonely war memorial a starshock
of marble pointing upwards to a
blue blue sky
I am footnotes
in a small font
at the bottom of a page
I am fake sonnets and dandelions
or is that somebody else
am I somebody else when I'm in these
words and
these words are
in me 

little vignettes
this orchestra of concrete and light
naked flagpoles pose like 

white silhouettes
people talk 
about balancing
here's to the peace
of unoccupied spaces
how my feet
how they sound without other sounds around them
people talk
about balancing

24 May 2012

aubergines

"Lucian" written on the wall
in pencil
tiny brass studs
stick out from the square pavement
as if to suggest
these are the seams
of the city
bouquets of twisted metal bloom across the top of faded red gates
that old padlock
swinging like a pendulum
boxes of aubergines
that look like
genetically modified tears
the grocers stand cries fat purple tears
I start to notice how many cables and pipes run through this station
the chaos
and the confluence of it all
I cry fat purple tears and think about
Raj's favourite god his matted hair the Ganges
flowing from it
time is an ornament on his head
let all our blue throats groan
what poison
what poison we have swallowed
cry with me fat purple tears
let rivers roll from our hair
lets write our names in pencil
stitch ourselves
to these streets
the chaos and
the confluence of it all



22 May 2012

probability

slim strips of light
grey 
is an arbiter of illumination
bridges slung between
one piece of land and another
is it a pocket knife is it a pulse
how we hurt
tundras of felt I felt I feel
I'm not sure who he was
I remember his flip flops
and the report I read the following day
of his clumsy seppuku
unsuccessful
how that hurt
how that must have hurt
and Kelvin
who knocked on my scratched
perspex cage
the times his "uncles" his "friends" stole his pills
his home his anchors
its just probability
I suppose
these crooked tendrils tender
and devoured
Dawn, her bags of papers
torn and carefully packed
her love of Terry Wogan her
sharp right hook
slim strips of light
grey
is an arbiter of illumination
 
video

20 May 2012

I must find my voice


I don't know anything about opera, not a thing. But I was drawn to ENO's mini opera competition and well I have to post my entry to my blog in order to enter, so here it is based on a seed story by Will Self.


I must find my voice

I must find my voice
(to civilians) cast light
(to soldiers) cast light
I must find my voice
come futures
come haunt me


(soldiers) speak       (politicians) hush
(civilians) speak       (politicians) hush
(both)     speak        (politicians) hush
(both)     speak        (politicians) hush


who is potentate?
who decides this fate?
is it science or hungry metaphor?
you have made me a guarantor for war!

I must find my voice
(to civilians) cast light
(to soldiers) cast light
I must find my voice
come futures
come haunt me


(the futures argue amongst themselves)

(civilians)marionettes!
(soldiers) puppeteers!
(civilians) empty threats
(politicians) pioneers!
(both) cast light!
(both) cast light!


this intrusion this test
this bonfire this nest
who is potentate?
who decides this fate?
is it science or hungry metaphor?
you have made me a guarantor for war!


(soldiers) we       (politicians) me
(civilians) we       (politicians) me
(both) we            (politicians) me
(both) we            (politicians) me


come futures come haunt me 
come tear me and taunt me
come closer come here
don't disappear


(the futures voices get quieter and quieter)
 
(soldiers) going       (politicians) gone
(civilians) going       (politicians) gone
(both) going            (politicians) gone
(both) going            (politicians) gone


to whom do I speak?
do I speak at all?
does my voice make a difference
does it thicken the wall?
this is lost
this is found
this is sombre ground
this is people this is homes 
this is death this is drones 
to whom do I speak?
do I speak at all?
this intrusion this test
this bonfire this nest
who is potentate?
who decides this fate?
is it science or hungry metaphor?
you have made me a guarantor for war!

10 May 2012

low road (a guest post by my dear friend anon)

When my firstborn had learned to walk and I was working two jobs just to scrape by. 9-5 all week as a sales rep, trying to pedal a product I had no faith in. Then a sixteen hour shift in a truck, giving me time to reflect on all the bad choices and mistakes I’d made during that week.
I was twenty one years old with a wife I didn’t deserve and a son who loved me because he didn’t know any better.

She was a girl I called a friend when I was fifteen because she was way out of my league and I didn’t dare fantasise she could ever be more. I hadn’t heard from her since I first got engaged. She picked the worst time possible to come back into my life.
She’d been to Europe.
Become a successful manager in hospitality.
Lived with her boyfriend in London.
Got a tattoo.
Had an accident which rendered her barren.
Broken up.
Said she loved me all those years ago.
Asked if I ever felt the same.

That’s when the depression hit me hardest.
I believed I loved her more than my wife. Thought I would be so much happier with her. But my marriage vow was too sacred to me. Till death do us part. I couldn’t break it.
I began to wish for horrible things. Car accidents that would leave me free. Free to love another. Free from the pain in my head.
I hated myself. I would stand under the shower and slowly turn off the cold water, scalding myself as punishment for thinking so selfishly.
Eventually, I decided to do nothing. I would stay loyal and miserable.
The depression got worse. So many times I would almost drive into a tree, swerving at the last second when I thought of my son.
I began carving a pattern into the forefinger of my left hand with a rusty pocket knife, which ended up resembling a flame. On my first visit to my psychologist she asked if it represented an old flame.
More like a flame which never caught but refuses to go out.
I tried to quit my job as the sales rep, but my boss talked me into staying on.
He fired me a month later.
I stopped talking to my old friend. Stopped imagining how good life would be with her and started to realise how good my life could be as it was.
My wife stayed by my side the whole time, even though I’m sure I broke her heart. My son never stopped loving me.
He’s almost twelve now and still tells me he loves me every day.
So do my other three children.
So does my wife.

Sometimes my mind starts to wander and I wonder what if. I usually end up under the scalding shower again punishing myself for thinking like that before I get depressed again.
I’m not perfect.
But I’m happy.

I don’t know where my old friend is now.
She got married and had kids.
She had lied to me.
Was she really ever my friend?

An Edith Piaff quote comes to mind.

Farewell my heart
You are lost to despair
I will not
Give you my eyes
When you die.


" I've taken the low road and if you've done the same meet me down there by the train " Tom Waits

08 May 2012

on Voltaire and feeling


best friend of kings
rid your daddy's name
adore Newton and inoculation
exiled
love mathematicians
escape through your pages to
Constantinople
as it twisted
it twisted
a relationship with time
my
relationship with time
don't 
clean the dust
I don't
want to clean the dust
want to wipe my finger through it
through the fissures in Lisbon feeling
Gottfried's ego falter I 
want to wipe my finger
through it clean 
this fingertip in a river 
wilder than I
we are
wilder than I