Tuesday, 31 August 2010

That place

I was just doing a bit of scribbling, long time since, and I wondered that what I’m doing is poetry, because I’m making a fictional world out of fact. I’m not ‘making things up’. I’m not into fabrication, fake worlds, dreamy realities, alternative outcomes, I’m into here now me, I’m doing this and it is affecting me, now, here, and I’m not making things up, and this is where the passion and ache lies, and I want you to see it the way I don't even know yet.

It comes from somewhere I can't even fathom. It lies in the same place that she riffed from, with a jazz backing, making my sore itchy-ill hands clap like they had no shame, shouting from the back with praise that I wanted to be heard but kind of not too as she was a little fearful. I listened to her lyrical virtuosity, ploughing at speed through personal and historical reference with an honest delicacy and burning yearning. She's digging to that unknown that I love, her own, and it chimes and calls out to mine.

Within minutes of this gig, if you can call it that, I wasn't so ill anymore. I had laughs and smiles. It glowed, what’s missing when I'm ill? Humour, rhythm, base emotions that makes an animal a human, things that attach the body and the mind and hold the soul up. These unknown crucialities that keep us sane, that when we stifle them, think we can command them, stop listening to the Sage or whatever, double-back and poison us.

When she had said about the brain being a a cool function, when Ruby Wax was talking about neuroscience, I made the mistake of thinking that understanding the functionality made it comprehensible. Er, no. It doesn't work this way. You'll never know the root of everything, the where what why is this happening, so just get on with discovering the unknown. It is timely to reflect on what you know to be right for you, and what is on offer. It's not about risks, but like an explorer setting off with a map, plans and knowledge. Go.

Friday, 27 August 2010

Held up

You don't look like you've got a cold, she said, when I have cold I look terrible. I tried to explain the cold was two days ago, now it's chest-ways, the bit where it can get me and I have to call the ambulance while he just lies there passed out. Another story. My physiognomy hides it well, but I'm actually concentrating very hard, I'm a slave to the virus, my lungs are broke, I'm out of control.

Yesterday I was fine enough to get a haircut and drink whisky, today I woke up with a paltry whimper knowing I had to call in sick, but I also had to wait a few hours as it was only 5am. Sad pathetic lonely whimper. Nothing like an illness to smash your independence down to size. Dependence, someone to hang on, someone to remind you you're alive and rub your back and buy you caramel digestives, that's what an ill thing needs.

I'm angry now. I've missed two days of work, and a weekend of bank holiday revels will no doubt have to slide. I'm deeply sad about that, I didn't want to put life on hold, look how exciting it was, is, look, look at my plans and designs. Why is it fair that I'm separate from what I want? Then I think back to Sunday, Monday. A hanging dread of change where the colourful bits were blurs and I was looking for extraneous light.

Being ill, a time to slow down. A time to be angry at your body, see it communicating with your mind, see it lighting your soul. They're all connected, but it's easy to let the mind think it's the thing. It makes me appreciate things, that my eyes mostly sparkle, my feet have a rhythm, and words are (hopefully) a lot more inspired by these ones. Maybe the recalibration needed a physical jar, to jolt everything into step. I know I'm not well when I'm neither laughing or twirling, physical outcomes married from the mind and soul in a happy accident.

Monday, 16 August 2010


Consciousness, so hot right now. It seems I can't open a newspaper, browse a listings guide, walk through my day without thinking about that gap between my brain and my skull, some soul space, where I become me. It's grinding against itself, sometimes parched and scratchy, sometimes wet and lubricated, swizzles round on an non-axis, and I'm not sure I'm awake, I'm me, I'm alive, I'm alive I am.

I did a hell of a lot of dancing this weekend. I had the most fun I had in a long time. I thoroughly enjoyed her rumours?, not really rumours, of me 'being a dancer'. I enjoyed my definition based on passion, rather than my contracted hourly rate. I got lost, watching some lovely gay boys watching me and some girls and most of the public all over him and his lasciviousness. A good contrast. The brushed voice of a wholesome woman in furs, rolled in and out of bed the same, she said, smacking a compliment on me with that amazing Wig-un accent. So real, I wish I was her.

A lot of dressing up. I'm concerned, in general, that I don't sit tight anywhere. I don't have a niche a place a style a crowd a language a decade a collective a real solid mass of existence. One minute it's six count, next I'm all northern, a restrained tea frame, a wild thing, and I'm all, I'm loving all without a lie. But what am I? What Am I says the Science Museum poster. See, it's everywhere. Neurons, pathways, excuses and explanations, it's like we're boiling down our problems to a cool point. She said she lost her mysticism. I was kind of saddened. She'd done that cool thing, separated the body and soul.

I told him how I thought it was dangerous that one can just get lost in the dancing. I remembered that period when it took three classes a week just to blur my present, a survival style. Then it came to the time when I was sitting around the dance floor aching to read my book, get into my head, having to forget myself at the wrong time was incredibly frustrating. But it helped me change. It's happening again now. My reality is switched around me and I'm looking for new markers. But this time round, it's fun. I'm wrapping my lost consciousness up in hops and spins.

Monday, 9 August 2010


There was a sentence in the wall text at the Tillmans, which described his process as a sort of engineering of chance and consideration. We spent quite a lot of time chatting in there, reasoning it, pitting aesthetic against obsession, looking for longer. Well she reasoned and I alluded, slightly surprised at my thought processes, almost feeling these dormant areas light up in my brain. They want to be lit, but are extremely rusty, leaving me listening, silently computing at times I should be talking.

There was a bit in the film, where Larry David is addressing the camera at the end, about how the presence of chance in our lives has so much more weight than we would ever like to believe. Several bits of the film drop how the universe is drifting away from itself, and there's a bit where the Melody character is having a natter about entropy, which is really annoying. But after sitting through it, enduring this film, that bit sat well about the chance.

There is a bit coming up shortly on the radio, about The Flavour Thesaurus. It's on my Wish List, I've browsed it in Foyles, I was thinking about it cooking last night, the pairings and food rules, searching for a clue about cauliflower. I haven't listened to Woman's Hour in at least a month, but today, I slept in ten hours, sat back in bed, and checked the schedule online. Exactly what I want. It was chance delivered.

I got the train to Edinburgh last Saturday. I'd talked about the paper on the bench with the strangers, trying not to comment on his Rapha pinking as I felt her burning slightly at me. How is it today, is it worth it, I don't usually buy it as post work it's expired and almost Sunday. Anyway, I decided to buy it, always feels like a slight gamble queuing in WH Smiths, trying to ignore the Dairy Milk. I'm giving up book time and tea money to a pack of potential that sometimes falls flat.

But today, I was lucky. Smack bang on the front of the Review is a well-informed, well written feature about literary crossover events, replete with a photo from the Zadie Smith Bookslam that I missed because of my concussion, and write up from the Homework I'd been to that same week. I'd only seen the poetry at Latitude because I was meandering by myself after not managing to meet the School girls, only asked him about shows because I bought his book and only bought his book because I sat in the tent at the right time.

Perhaps it's just I live in London, bound forever to be an ultimate trend filter, a future cultural icon, he joshed with a sting. But still, I hadn't bought the paper since before I last heard Woman's Hour. The chances? It makes me want to buy the paper next Saturday, today, just to spite the chance and prove I will always find the right thing, no matter how delicate I am with universal return. Anyway, the point might be, just keep calm, and wait for these things that spark. Tick for the Taste Tours. Abandon myself to the ether.

I thought I had abandoned the blog for a more refined outcome. I felt like writing today. I will be here less often as my words go off to different schools.