mask

fingers and thumbs,
i feel,
are more effective as a mask for the face
than the face itself.

on reflection, eyes
shadowed or mouths closed
suggest only silences

in the letters written
drawn half-an-inch thick tightly pinching the cheeks,

i felt the covering sigh wrap around
your hands and my mouth and my face
covered lightly,
suggestions as sighs

the pause between
is a distance
notable and seen –
an arms length bridge

turn to the windows to avoid
anything given away by not speaking
somewhere a distance away
a dog barks at passing trains.

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broken threads of narrative

From the window, blue skies and bare trees, and white daffodils bobbing in a light breeze. They look like they are talking, a group of close friends sharing jokes; they look like a conference. Further, the trees left to grow from the muddy banks of the river, looking as nature intended, and further still fields for the playing of football. A goalpost stands ready and prepared, always set for its purpose, as nature intended.

There are many subject matters clumsily floating around my head, like bread in milk, with no apparent outlet for their communication. As with lottery machines, those hideous robots with unfeeling clunking heads, the ideas bundle and crash and bounce around until one small outlet opens for the selection of one and currently there seems no such opening. Only expectation, only the clutching of a ticket close to the chest.

Currently, then, there are ideas yet to be set down (or planted, or installed, or dismissed). From each is drawn individual contexts pulled away as doll’s hair knotted around the finger in abscent-minded boredom. It does annoy that my diaries sit without their own freedoms, the narrative which ran so free from January 2000 abrubtly stopped (aborted? curtailed?) in August 2008. Context, of course, but all the same…Currently, then, the birdsong and the humming and the tapping of fingers against the desk while on the phone. Currently, then, the frustration behind the pushing of so many words through so few holes.

Jack Peñate – “Tonight’s Today”

By way of invention former….what was it, again? New Brit talent, LDN icon…however formerly described, Jack Peñate returns with a modest new sound clearly more in debt to reinvention than absolute honesty.

Something within the Latino beats of “Tonight’s Today” does not communicate with complete clarity the voice of the man behind “Second Minute or Hour”. Repeated plays of the song drills the unfulfilling chorus into the head but only because of its familiarity to the sound of a kid with ADHD poking a parent up the nose with a cone of candyfloss.

The associated video is some bizarre circus act which has taken all the best bits from Madonna’s “Justify My Love” video with the addition of elephant footed abstract imagery. A certain Ms Allen turned a corner with success; Jack sadly has met a wall.

keeping secrets

Considering all which could lay upon my mind the scattered leaves and whispered breezes should not unsettle as much as they do. There are layers of doubt and suggestion, of confidence and of uncertainty. It requires more strength than I can muster to fully push the walls which build: indeed the wind itself has an upper body strength of great force, one which can press against the conscious.

My secrets had homes at one time, but like a door in the house of four winds the secrets had no chance against force [be the force suggestion, or rumour, or cynicism]. My tongue became loose on the subject of secrets and honesty, and as any writer of worth would confess influences soon infest the imagination. My diaries had to fend of a flurry of fireflies, hungry and copiously celebrating an ability to multiply by hundreds in minutes. It would be like a grown man attempting to defeat a flock of sparrows.

Consequences beyond my reason or control settled dust upon even the most pointed of corners among the hurried scrawl of thoughts and summaries in my diaries. I am annoyed that the weeks without returning to their pages turned with some sighed resignation to months. Any characteristic or tone given to each individual year is my responsibility; the overwraught giddyness all the more embarassing, given recent events. It was the death of my gran that closed the mind as well as the book; not that there can be any blame. Were I more determined in ways of expressing feelings the cupboard would be cleared of clutter and the diaries freed. Those four winds are cruel and determined.

So the worries, then? This is where my diaries would sigh, giggle, grow harder with the sensation of anticipation. Something suggestive of the word wet. I cannot cloathe with articulation the fullest worries, blazen or paranoid or unfair as they could be. Honesty has its modesty, just as the voices which are taught to pronounce honesty as you would over-emphasise particular sounds in French. My doubts are as likely to be minor unsettlings of the sanity as they would be genuine, based on evidence. But all doubts are secrets, and life has not faded the memories of many examples of my unlikliy role as keeper of the daily concerns.

My heart has its own beat, drifted over the bareness of beauty, detatched from the fierce ego of the fetishist.

repeated memes

In the dream, there was a group of men offering money for performing quite bizarre private acts. But the dream was not like that, as during this ‘scene’ a person I know in real life asked me for a loan of a tenner or somesuch, and took me to one side on the way to a bank. It was here when I was thrown to the floor and threatened with a gun for what is understood to be my behaviour behind closed doors.

My escape was invisbility, and teleportation, which are powers I have enjoyed in dreams for as long as I can recall. I would suffer “sleep levitation” in my youth which I connect with these repeated memes. The dream concluded with two seperate storylines: I was found clearing up balls of faeces and piles of clothes, and I attempted to resolve the prejudiced mind of the attempted assillient. There was no credits or theme tune, regardless (or inspite of) the filmic nature of the dream.

miscellānea

Words require writing, about a specific context which requires freezing at a particular moment while maintaining a suggestion of movement, constancy. Like a photograph, of sorts. These words have been scattered across the blog recently, and now additional ideas have been noticed as buds from these seeds, and should be cultivated. The problem of course is my own motivation. Sometimes the garden appears far more hassle to endure the sun, or the rain, or the liklihood of mud under the fingernails. Or the small of fish, blood, and bone. Or the certain discovery of worms or woodlice or ants.

Otherwise, words do not require writing. As I walked across the bridge over a flyover, no thoughts of flinging myself off without so little as a note came into the head. Nor did I wonder if there was any real significance in the constant cackling of magpies [overhead] or laughing children [unseen].

No intention either to write the big grand novel which has been burbling away in a constant commentary in the back of my mind for more years than I care to confess outside of a controlled environment. Currently I consider how actually brilliant a writer must be to find the time to gather together a managable number of characters, the situation these characters are to be placed, the start-middle-end of their story arc, and the inevitable twist to be found in life as commonly as it is to be found in fiction. My words dry up, unable to catch up with my imagination, which inevitably fails to continue along its own path for long anyway: echoes of second or third chapters are to be found suddenly (but always certainly) in known material.

Now are the days and months of different kinds of material, to specific audiences, rather than no audience at all, and I cannot always conduct myself well in this regard. And also this is the time when my claims are challenged in a real court. My confidence has always been found wanting: today, the wind howls specific words on its way from an open window to the underneath of my bedroom door.

birdsong

Something evocative about Sundays. The mild mornings, the stillness, the birdsong scattered among the trees, trees only budding still, no leaves. The rustle of newspapers and the slurping of tea, or coffee, the munching of bacon butties. Crunchy toast straight from the toaster, no butter, three rashers, brown sauce. The front room was dusty, dirty even, the television old but carried cable all the same, the dogs would settle on the windowsill and never move. Early morning walks were all part of the routine. Something about the way Sundays feel, a clothing around the mind almost, something peculiar.

The first suggestion is, “something spiritual”. But I would make a point of rushing to the radio to avoid even the first opening bars of whichever hymn was about to be released. The kitchen would fill with The Archers or Just A Minute or Hold Your Plums. My mum and me would be the only ones awake. My mum would choose the News of the World, I would try anything else but; even today it is a broadsheet, and always the rush to the restaurant review. Some quirk of a ritual remaining still.

The feeling, perhaps, most over-arching is awkwardness. An urge to leave the house and walk, walk without a destination, or purpose. As once was always done. A necessity. But all situations flow and alter so fluidly, that the freedom to walk for hours has to be tempered by the inability to leave people snoozing in my bed, as is currently happening now, my routine unchanged. As always happens on a day like this, the great freedom of the ‘pause button’ tendency. Which should be praised even in the absence of an ‘amen’.

Blood [Part III: Better Off Alone]

Okay, so the Greek in the previous post was a bit too much.

Funny feelings due perhaps to the time of the month, to coin a phrase. At some point in my mind, the memories of only a few months ago. Solemn heartfelt words in the hospital, and all the prayers I cannot recall saying but know I felt, and all the tears pouring from my heart. And this will be the first birthday without my gran which is a terrible thing to realise. The faded face I would sit next to and listen to for so many years came back to me unexpectedly a few weeks ago as I checked my new mobile phone, loaned from my mum. A photograph of my gran was left in the files, a small avatar, blurry, but the face I recall, and it knocked me quite significantly.

In one dream recently, the bedroom I called my own for so many years was featured very significantly. I cannot say with much validity that I can recall the smell or the feel of the walls or anything like that. But the feeling, that barely easily explained sense of recollection, I suppose that remains. It is a hand just above the shoulder; a sense you can feel but cannot describe. The sense of the heavy air between the potential assailant’s hand and your flesh. The time a cigarette lighter was found in my bottom drawer, which caused my mum to tell me off much stronger than when she found the dirty mag under my bed. And my bookcase, which was metal, and red, and not screwed tightly enough. The dry smell of comic books and computer magazines, mixed with dust along the windowsill, which was white and painted and never much cleaned.

There is no good to come from these trips along memory lane. One has to wonder if the guide book has ever been updated. Of course there is no argument from this side if the only smell now evident is one indicating even slight hypocrisy. The theme here is connected to the word “intrinsic”. All my fears and thoughts were once written down, but the diaries have been locked away, left alone from much else, even the most sporadic bursts of sunlight in triangles or squares snatched have vanished. Relics from my days which seem unnervingly distant. Greying and dissolving like the memories of late night television, sound down, towel against the bottom of my bedroom door. “What are you watching,” I remember my mum shouting. “Athletics,” I lied. The television show featured a couple who had agreed to have their sex life filmed by a camera crew, and this included having a camera inserted into the woman to show, amongst other things, what happens to the sperm at climax. It was on the BBC and had been trailed with many “BAN THIS SICK FILTH” stories in the tabloids.

I recall, many months later, walking through Wigan town centre, where an old shop had been boarded up with posters advertising the couple’s appearance at a club night or selling their new sex video or somesuch. It was tantalising and erotic and arousing, maybe in some ways it still would be considered so. The innocent arousal of young teenagers, where flesh is always willing, where the parts of the equation never fail, where there are always ripped clothes and passionate kissing and fluids and sweat and climaxes. The times of such clarity are fading, and on the eve of a birthday I wonder how further distant these emotions will ultimately become.

Killing joke

From my bedroom window, another window. This window has six frames, and one of these frames has been dubiously fixed by way of a sheet of un-cut Perspex, the glue dripping like blood, now frozen there. Smudged. From my bedroom window, framed by its curtains, are other curtains but I cannot see them clearly enough to describe how they look. Grey, sadly, grey and dusty and out of the image, cut by a sharp blade. I could scratch the image and watch the sky and the trees and the people smiling smear away into a rut of colour stuck under my fingernail.

From my bed, I can see my carpet, but not the floorboards. I can remember cleaning the floorboards with a paperclip, but something sticking and a splinter sticking into my thumb, looking like a brown smudge underneath the skin, like a long bruise. When I went to the doctors – my mother insisted – I had already squeezed the thumb long and hard in the waiting room, which caused a mound of puss and shards of wood to splurt out with all the minor shooting pain thereby connected.

Real life is outside the window, all the reality schtick. “Life suck, reality bites”, there’s a fortune cookie slogan they’d never offer, I would bet. Maybe not. Somewhere there’s a poet who scrawled that on a cigerette packet many years ago, in a pub maybe now not standing. From here, I can recall so much but there’s a magnetic pull to the real life I cannot escape. No strength in the upper body, you see. I can only run away on strong legs but not put up a fight. Comfort and strength and confidence flutter like drying leaves. Falling leaves, then, etched with….what? The word “eros” like a tattoo. I’d be pedantic – “ἔρως” – and for what gain?

From my bedroom window….a ledge, and it’s not easy to balance. I can concede so much and enjoy all the bounty of the heart, but…There is always something else, some other entity on the other side of the see-saw, pushing down as hard and forceful as they can. And from my bed the space between my feet and the floor just gets further and deeper.

Considering the past

You drew the wrong conclusions, as I feared;
scrawled them across your face, circled bulbous tears and
faced the wall.

Considered the distance between us with your eyes closed.

I wanted to advise that windows, walls, fences, trees,
did not grow underneath our feet, or cut through our skin, burst
up through the bed-sheets,

but this is a bad time to discuss all this;
too obvious.

Considering the certain cold hush of traffic,
the cold stillness of leaves and puddles after a storm;
I find the drifting purple and silver clouds masterpieces of
cinematography,

which is why I appreciate the pacing and stillness of
our arguments: and maybe why you assume before breath is drawn:

As though your argument is penned, mine penciled,

as though my words are scripted – though it often feels,
out here casting tobacco clouds across constellations I cannot identify,
as though these rehearsals are now rehearsals for another role.

You drew the wrong conclusions,
turned the tone of my silence upside down,
examined the details as would anyone in a role with a taste for the forensic.

You…