Friday, 27 August 2010


I live in sorrow. I live in sparrow. I wish to lie down among bells until this grief passes. The problem is that I live in sorrow. The problem is that I live in sparrow. I live in sorrow. I live as a sparrow in a sparse spire. Everything I like is black and white. At night, I watch films while playing the piano. I watch a film about a nun on a windy hill. In the film there are great bells swinging. I am breathless with the anticipation of her inevitable madness.

The music on the page has many sharps. They sit in curlicues like gates to many previous keys. Even in sound, they sound like the past. It is a French song about war and it is sad cabaret. It is a feminine song. I nearly feel as if I should be well dressed to play it.

The nun is ready to jump. Her madness was never tampered down by gates and sharps. All wind is microtonal and wind will get through anything. I love a windy day myself. She takes to it and we don’t see if it takes her back. Mad women identify as birds. They begin to see themselves as augurs; as things that might crash into castle windows after scrying too long in the mossy well.

My voice trails out like smoke and fringe. The tone of it is all shawls, stockings and smoke in split glass. The restraint required is killing me. The sharps are gates that offer a glimpse into something like bars in a window of a downstairs restaurant. This is a glimpse into previous life; one lived in tableau of excess that had seemed romantic at the time. It is so lonely to look through the sharps into another life.

The languages of night.
Languages of the night.
The night of language.

A walk in the rain, while spiders scuttle through her hair.
Poor visibility.
Motorcar in the dark, an orange cat on a shed roof attending.
Winter speak.
Do you love me? Haaaaaahaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa>zïol.
Shirt hanging out of his trousers.
Lips slideslither
: mind my lipstick!

Another night.
Eerily still, only the whispering of spiders in the ivy.
1 orange cat enters the room.
Switch on the TV.
Invisible poor.
A walk beside the river.
Grey trees, matt cloudscape.
Do you recognise the handwriting?
Do you hate me?
Lips dry as poetry. (As).

Photo-spread of a prison cell.
In white & black
Disturbingly, the lower left corner appears to ooze disturbed.
No sun here.
A gasp of sun.
Bare back & the trees spitting rags.
Down among the blades.
Spying their feet.
Erotic cars motor away.
Central London.

Took shelter.
The world ominously fragile.
Where are these whimpering their origin?
From my own throat they come, touching your breast bone, beating at the window with sensationless fingertip.
Turns the last photo over.
The river vanishes for a while.
Endlessness of world.

Uniform fetish.
Good clean food.
Sleep here for unintended consequence.
How longing is an elastic bound?
Deliriously navigable church.
A lacy rabbit hutch in the sky & the river besides.
All living things are quiet, all dead things attend.
She tells him “closer.”

In close focus mist.
Strange colours, the prison walls fold in.
Shooting dots out of the sky, making necklaces of beaks & hard eyes.
Anxiety, desuetude.
Backed into a corner.
Jeans & lace up boots.
Scary motor cars now.
Taxi with smashed windscreen.
Stinking mouth.

Karl & Erica had lived in Stockholm for 9 yearsThey loved how you could buy pastries at midnight, how when it snowed all the church bells rang outThey spoke Japanese beautifully, they grew pineapples up among the owls, high in their rooftop gardenWeekends they would sail away, to a quiet place & vanish9 years later Stockholm seemed so changed, but so did Erica; &, as if implicated in last century’s thoughts, lace making no longer calmed herKarl played cards every Wednesday evening, as in the past, but often found himself thinking of George W Bush Snr. + getting an erection when he should have been concentrating on the game.

The bank robbers screamed at Erica to get down on the floorBut those days she moved too slowly for crime: the bank robbers knew their chance had goneScents of drug overdoses & frying beef & wild honeysuckle drifted through the windows of the bankStockholm forgot them.

& lace up bootsOn one side, the river; at his back some empty boxes, rubbish binsNo stars along the wallA scuttling soundKarl awkwardly brushes Erica’s lips with his lipsThe songbird in its cage starts upErica calls out to Karl in JapaneseHe listens, but understands nothingIs she saying goodbye?

They eat their pastries sat in front of the TV.
A beautiful human is explaining: the crisis will pass.
Sacrifices will be made.
Democratic values will prevail.
That makes Karl glad.
& Erica ...

she cries herself asleep, curled up in a ball on the floor of the bankThe robbers have a new set of demandsThey want the Orchester der Bayreuther Festspiele to be flown out to Stockholm & to perform the Prelude & Liebestod from Tristan und Isolde, right there in the zoo“You will sing Isolde’s part,” they tell Erica“But I cannot sing,” Erica answers them“You can sing,” they say“Trust us”

hues of

we made choices there

I love the sound
of the wind in the trees

in the trees in the hills now the blood
has left your body and your heart beat
stills by the side of this muddy river.

payne's grey
cerulean blue raw sienna
yellow ochre
cadmium yellow
permanent mauve
no black
ivory black
wax black

the finger on your hand
the fingernail on your finger

the ring on your finger
your fingers in the trees.

ars moriendi

absence that stopped us

Unter den linden

with a name like a bird or a river

will it ever stop raining.

The winds come together then go separate ways on this coast

the snow on the branch

and dressed in blue you turned and walked away

reservoir half empty


opposite of white and grey

when does night arrive. we are hungry

nobody dies

afterimage of night

cobbled path

through the windscreen wipers we can barely see the road

you never wear sunglasses. cool isn't cool.

30 things I noticed

filled with angels

what is left behind?

your free eye test

relics in boxes

Herefordshire and orchard

a needle through calico

the black death of village

a boil under the armpit

you are in my contacts

i love my iphone

and the red bush. the bush that seemed to speak.

she had not stood there long

he had not stood there long

they'll sleep only when there's a need

how ridiculous is money

i dream of the rood.

Wednesday, 11 August 2010


Sometimes, all the time, I like to curl up in the past. Or rather, I find it unavoidable. Because, if I don’t take an idle doze in it, it comes screaming in my dreams. It is a mistake to think this is psychological. It is the workings of time, which works as irrationally and effectively as the body. It’s akin to circulation problems and the way that flow of blood can collect and pool anywhere when a vein goes weak. The body does not always intuit other pathways that might keep the blood in motion. So it is with the passage of time as it collects and pools in the atmosphere. It’s almost as if one has to create the phantom limb that will provide the means of circulation; that is to say re-member. Sometimes the limb is a collective limb; in fact they may always be collective limbs for all I know. Maybe this is always how time is circulated.

I miss you. Limb, limbic, limbo-the body needs touch. If I can’t touch you, then you are not here. In this way, I am limited. I have to return all these books to the library. I think this may help matters a great deal if these things I have been touching return to their place on the proper shelves. I love libraries and the feel of them. I love the cool and spongy spined books waiting there patiently in arrangements that turn mysterious even in the face of a simple organizational system. It is such that if you turn the corner of a bay of shelving you might encounter anyone you’ve ever known dead or alive. I think this is true; then again I haven’t been to the library in years. I am too busy searching for angels in light boxes. I must return the books to the land of the tactile circulation.

I dream of books making their way across the bedroom, going slowly down the stairs and out the door, moving as things that are surfacing from the bottom of a long stagnant pool.

it is in the barcode black

and white in the photograph some angles some lean slight to the left

others to right

considered, arranged, taken

so in between I remember you

your face in the right hand mirror

the ipod your open mouth singing into the wind

then I thought. this is it. this is that
which my father told me of

I am about to die. not now but soon. time flies. tempus fugits

and all the helping in the garden didn't help

the apples shook down form the trees

I would kill for a cup of coffee.

I can't get a connection. no

black and white the light scans

the rice pudding

her lines
microfilm the photograph when

stood at the front of the cottage by

the new electric lamp post.

see. It comes back

the pond is still

and green

and the bubbles in the ice move.

I love the noise of moving ice.

I love pink
I love love

This is our land

our garden of dahlias.

And the wood
I would love to climb those trees again.

my arms are those of a teenagers.

I would climb and climb and climb.

The ground got steeper, & we climbed with our knees until the sun, naked & ill coordinated, rests upon our shoulder blades.

She slouched in the hotel lobby, her bag on her knees, & he creeps at her from behind to rest his hands upon her shoulder blades.

It got dark, & we could not move or cry out. The sun is unmoving, weighing like a sleepy wren upon our shoulder blades.

She got to her feet, shrugging his hands from her shoulder blades & says: I waited an hour for you, now I’ll wait no longer.

On the worn carpet a vase of plastic flowers, spill of grey & pink, + a penknife blade.

She asked him, how did this scar come by you, & he was learning to speak in the Dutch language & he answers saying someone cut me with a knife the blade was dull.

We had to bump the car from behind, to escape from the parking space, David can see the scar on Lisa’s naked arm as she works the steering wheel dull in the pink & grey streetlight.

We skipped downhill, no one laughed, the fat old dogs on the dump growl at us, Lisa displays her scarred arm they fall silently.

In the library I was blind; the police said now you have handled the knife your fingerprints are upon it. Amsterdam resembles a wristwatch wrapped in cabbage leaves.

She walked from the hotel out on to the street, he followed her they don’t say more than two words the entire day, the knife is where he left it in the library.

I followed her all day, & the ground got steeper & she floated up into the clouds & I prised my eyes out on a knife point & make a balloon of my tears & float up to join her.

Lisa swings the car into a suburb, zigzagging between 1. parked car & 2. dreaming horse.

They buried dead words in the library garden, a wren wakes from its slumbers & flutters down to rest upon Magda’s shoulder blades.

The sun was cold upon the blade of the gun.

It lay there, stretched in fine wire, & the fat old dogs laughed.

David took some drugs, lay down to attend to the future, a police car swung through the hotel corridor into his room right up close to the bed.

The clouds were disappeared & rain fell fizzing from our shoulder blades.

They walked around on the TV, helicopters buzzing them.

Lisa jumps through the mirror. The TV floods with tears.