Friday, September 29, 2006

Roaring Lust in a Farm

As we toy with the time-worn evening,
I see the friendly gauze of night coming.
It is creamy and simple against,
The tender and refined light of dusk.

Do you want to get the cows in?
Do you want to close the farm in tonight?
Do you want to put your wellies up against the door,
Lodged here, safe for the night?
Do you want to watch the little Rose-bay tails of lambs,
Snuggled up against the ewes?
Do you want to smell the chocolate of slumps,
Brushed off the side of your coat?

I do, I do and I do, you said.
I do and I do and I do.

The crackling fire,
The hot, red cheeks of the hearth,
The smell of moss on your hair,
The milk of your smile.

The snore of the old sheep-dog on the corner slate,
The daub of iron in the grate,
The reverberation of footfalls,
As the people turn in late.

And you, and you and you, I said.
As I tousled your fern,
Splitclickrattled you!
Clapraptapped you!
Slamwhamcrashed you!
TickCuckooTocked you!
Back-fireburst you!
Under the eaves of the ancient farm.

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

From Beside The Pool Thailand April 2006 - back of work notebook

Slightly overweight couple with an air of cheer about him and a distinct air of sadness and disappointment about her. He has a tattoo, she doesn't. He is or certainly looks younger than her and both seem very close. Sometimes she looks really down and he is very caring and tender towards her. They drink alot and have made friends with a stray dog that sleeps under her sun-lounger. Couple on holiday. Can't believe they are not bored of each other.

She Sat On The Bed (Feb 2006)

She sat on the bed and felt heavy. Laden with fear and uncertainty, not knowing herself anymore. Sun was exploding around the side of the curtain bleaching the carpet. A woodlice caught her eye. It was struggling against the pile of the carpet. Small fibres must seem like small branches. She thought about being kind and putting it back outside but wondered perhaps whether it preferred to lodge in the warm?

Do woodlice actually eat wood she thought. A stupid but nonetheless valid question. It struggled on its way bumbling across the floor to somewhere else in the house. Perhaps if it ate enough wood the house would just eventually implode and fold in on itself bit by bit culminating in a large, dusty collapse? She hoped so. But no such chance. She had to carry on and face the music. Why was it so hard? How could it be so hard? She took her son to see a children's animated film. In front of them sat a gianormous, childless couple. The man didn't laugh but the woman laughed alot and snuggled into her hefty companion. It occurred to her that some adults might be so desperate for children that they go to childrens films just to hear the vitality of the little audience's laughter. It made her feel sad. Later, they met up with Jim and pretended to be a family. They went out to a pizza place and used their son as a distraction to their fractured, chipped marriage.

Old (18/09/06)

My child is scared of me getting old
But no-one more scared than I
Today I look in the mirror
And I see a drooping eye
It's drooping because I'm sad
And not because I'm old
No one even notices
I'm old in the sense of bad
And bad in the sense of decay
And decay in the sense of cold
In a harsh and fearful way.

From The Top Of The Bus 2

I wrote about this on my blog - eavesdropped (and recorded on my phone!) on a conversation between two guys travelling on a District Line replacement bus around midnight from Turnham Green Station to Richmond a few months back. One was going on about how he was coping after dumping Jan his girlfriend. His friend was being irritatingly supportive in a really selfish way. He was obviously lonely and was angling for his newly single friend to move in with him. I've never heard such a shallow conversation in my life. Here are my notes:

What about Laura - the girl in the pashmina? Splitting up, insecurity. I've got a dry loft you can store things in. No water coming in or's safe from elements. We're mates...Jan's getting really petty. I had to do it. You're really brave. Everyone at the office thinks your'e amazing the way you're coping with it I'd be in pieces. Meet someone some day. Be thankful. Sounds cheap? Just embrace it......

From The Top Of The Bus 1

June 2006: scribbled in the back of my diary

Dartboard in garden, hoodie on line. Lobelia in a basket and a convenience store. Used to have a dog but had to have it put down because it bit Kayleigh.

Tuesday, September 12, 2006


Sore soaring up into the sky. Fingers plucking at the air-strings. All of those little place-parts that are part of the octave. It goes like this: flute, flute, flute.

I wonder where all of the minim parts go? Are they hiding in amongst the dirty parts we hide? I look for them amongst fluffy crotchets. Dancing, dancing pianissimo moments in the dark.

The dwell on one note is always beautiful. It is always clarinetandsugar. It is in me and diving through me and out through my mouth. The mouth-piece of word and finger. I am licking at it and sometimes I want to throw it out to the world. The truth of it all. On the tip of my tongue. The lark-voice, the little lippings that make up a song.

One, two, three. Fox-trot in the darkness.
Waltz-marks on my wrist, the dancing knife was there.

Oh, the staccato dreams and the dip, dip, dip sound of movements up and down the harp. It is a the scree and talus fingers that move up and down the scale.

Oh how I long, I love to play the piano. With all of its heart and the fingers, the fingers. I want to play to you. I want to play into the night and into the day. I want to play 'Pavane for a Dead Princess' all through the fingers hear the lovely warmth of death.

Friday, September 08, 2006

Once in 1975 near a cess pit

In amongst the grass,
There was a little girl,
In her red dungarees,
Face smeared with mud.

In amongst the orange pipes,
They were filling the hole,
The cess pit.

In amongst the bricks and piles of dirt,
She hid.
Found nests full of blue eggs.

Climbed onto metal buckets.

Skipping-rope dreams,
And buckle-up hopes,
And bobble hat it up,
And hatandgloves kiss on cheek.


I remember being so very cold,
With no shoes.
Looking down the hole,
I found an abandoned cat,
Skinny and hopeful.

He looked up at me,
Tortoise-shell plea.
I let down my bucket on a piece of string.

Up he climbed.

His little face peeping out,
Laughing almost,
That someone had saved him.

Out he leapt,
Into my arms.

Oh, how I love you,
I cried.
Oh, how I love you!

He was out of there like a streak,
A whip of blue air.
Off he whistled,
Through the bushes,
You'll never catch me!

Sunday, September 03, 2006


I look for you, Heather, amongst the new faces. I look for your shining hair and your milky smell. I look for you amonst piles of books. I can't seem to find you anywhere. I send off for you using coupons on the backs of magazines but with no reply. I look for you in the bin and behind the hard-backed cupboard that you used to lean against.

I look for you under the hymn books and the empty mugs. I search for you entwined in small shreds of hair that hide in corners. Under the chairs and in the vestry, I'm still looking. I want to find you in children's faces and fairy tales. I lost you amongst the voices and in the heat of the August sun. I lost you under the mottled greens of a warm evening. I see a morsel of sound flick through the air and think it is you but I am mistaken. I watch acid burn in test-tubes and wonder if it is your voice.

I look for you, Heather, under the dusty cover of an ancient typewriter, seeing the words you used to say printed out on a tea-stained page. I hear your laughter in the dry leaves that crinkle-divine. I thought I saw your reflection in tea-leaves today.

I talk to your empty chair at seven thirty a.m. I rock your chair back and forth and look at the place where you held your hands in your lap and brought me tea. Your laughter still bounces off the walls, Heather.

I caught sight of your face in the handle of a door, Heather. I watched it flicker. I held onto it, as if it were your hand. I dance down corridors, wanting it to be how it was. You've been gone for over a year now, Heather. You've taken away the youth of this place. I looked for you in the dust, Heather and inhaled you just a tiny bit at a time.

For Heather.

Saturday, September 02, 2006

Bob's Childhood Detention Story and an Old Ariels Poster...

We were noisy one day in English class when our regular teacher was off sick so her replacement 'punished' us by making us write an "essay" (hardly seems to descibe this fragment....) about our childhood dreams. Some punishment. I enjoyed writing more than listening to them spout bollocks anyway. The above is my effort.

This is a poster for A. Radiographer and my old band, The Ariels. A. and I designed the logo together, the Hoskins image and text is mine, I think. It was topical at the time - Hoskins was doing those BT adverts some of you may remember. It was a bit of a catchphrase a gang of us picked up on at the time. There's a nice Michael Caine one somehwere, I'll try to dig out and post up soon.