25 May 2017

I’d made the mistake of assuming we were all alike

I had to get a haircut
I grew up around these people and
They are still the same
Amazed by everything

Smalltalk will not get you beyond the £13 I intend to pay for this shit

The woman behind the counter offered coffee/tea/juice
I saw some optics on the far wall, glasses on a shelf and 
Bottles of gin, vodka, JD
She didn’t offer those
What a bitch

You sit there and stare at your own face
Eyes darting round the room to avoid taking
Too much of yourself in
While outside a drunk couple stagger past the open door
     ‘…do I really look that bad?’ she slurs
He mumbles something back
And she seems more at ease with her appearance

I don’t know if it’s a coincidence or there’s a
Convention in town but at that exact same moment
Across the street a young black girl fell out
Of the door of the off licence
Promptly sprang up off her knees and walked away
The sun shone hard
The evening breeze taking some of the edge off

I take issue with the necessity of it all
Having to call this guy to cut your hair
To fix the bad wiring in the walls
The gearbox on the car
Brake pads, oil, all that shit

2 days previous
I’d called another one
And there he was in the kitchen
Sideways across the floor and tools all over the place
Talking away as they all do
But this one
Told me about bands he’d seen
The Ramones at Brixton
The Damned and the Pistols, Black Flag and Crass
He told me of
His friend's little art punk band who played gigs for food banks
So instead of tickets the audience had to bring
Bags of food to get in

A swear to god he was a ray of sunshine in an otherwise
Shitty week

I feel a bite on the back of my neck where the clippers catch the skin
It snaps me back in and I realise the guy has been talking this whole time
I have no idea about what

I don’t dislike him
Or them
Or you
I just continue making the mistake of assuming we’re all alike.

18 May 2017

Chris Cornell May 17th 2017

Love leads to loss. There is no escaping it. The more closely you hold someone, something, the more pain is felt once it departs. We are instinctual in our love for family, mothers, fathers, brothers, children. But as individuals we create new connections with those beyond our reach - the artists.
We grow with them and they in turn form part of who we become. Imprinting their words, voices, feelings into us and injecting part of their soul into our own. Often this adds weight to how we view the world, ourselves and each other. But it is a weight we are happy to carry. There is meaning and beauty in the depths of the darkness they share.

And vicariously we jump and kick and scream and fight with them, through them, because our lives dictate we cannot fight, we cannot scream. The art allows you to become more of yourself. Your dna is engrained with it and so it turns to a devotion of sorts but one that gives just as much as it takes. And when they are departed it feels as though part of you has also, they are an old friend only you knew, who understood you more than anyone. And the hurt remains as music, as a voice. And you are left with the question of how to turn that back into the beauty of how it all began. 
Maybe I’m being overly dramatic - and all today I’ve felt the need to lessen the importance of all this. They are just songs, and singers of songs. But I can’t play the songs today. I can’t listen to the music yet and hear a voice that meant so much, that won’t sound ever again. Tomorrow I’ll try, I’ll dig out a selection of records and link them one by one as a screaming tribute. But for now, today, there's silence.

17 Apr 2017

Thanks Magda

Now I am quietly waiting for the catastrophe of my personality to seem beautiful again, and interesting, and modern.

Frank O'Hara


14 Mar 2017

A black hole of optimism

Another rejection letter another competition to enter
Another new indie website/zine something or other
To butter up with rambling unmarketable prose

I set the computer keys up so they click clack
As the typer used to
And try to remember back to when there was more fire

Try to recall times when the maelstrom was taking us
A circling tiger with teeth exposed
Muscles coiled and ready to jump

To repeat to re-live that fear
To replace this new dull grey adult anxiety 
To dig into the dirt and shit and come up with something

And after all these years I avoid any style
Duck and weave and resist entering any real form
Such is the curse of still needing to do this;

I am a painter with no school
A singer of cover songs
But how to convince people that every word I've put down

In black and white
Is all one huge black hole of optimism
Spinning there right in the centre of everything
Remains a mystery.

26 Feb 2017

New work Feb 2017

Frying pan

Having one leg shorter than the other
You search the same circle
Eyes down
Not to miss a detail
Some sign
The smallest clue
Year in year out
Cutting a furrow in the ground
The 9th circle
Out the other side
Float away
Spiral out
No longer tied down
The pattern you once tread
Now releasing you.


It sits closeted there
In the darkness behind
The usual weathered oak door
Blackened iron hinges still strong
Deadbolt fixed

And once red it has turned
Now a dark purple but no less alive
Kicking just as hard
A clenched fist
Bone sinew muscle
No time for punctuation
A straight line
Furious and still
Entirely lost.

17 Jan 2017

Positive positive

The lady down the street
whose name I’ve never known
The guy in the store where I get
My banana every morning
The mother
The child

The troubadours and poets and
Killers and gods
The dogs - but not the cats

Truck drivers and taxi drivers
The vans full of police and
Buses full of school kids
From Germany
France and places whose language I
Don’t understand
All of this conspires to isolate me

Their shadows animated
Shift together and drive me down
Into the cracks

And I let them
Some passiveness overtakes as
I resolve to fade
To blend, to yield
The joy of being comfortable
Within solitude
Invites a curse of emergent distance

As magnets repel one another
As wind affects ocean
As birds fall from the
I smell thick hot coffee
Close my eyes and breathe in.
I bend but do