Monday, 1 February 2016
Sorry for the delay.
I have been laid up in bed with a bug. The bug kept to his side of the bed and I kept to mine. Nothing untoward happened except that every time I tried to put one of my feet on the floor the bug wrapped one of his feelers around my leg and wouldn’t let me go.
The bug must have been very fond of me.
This has been going on for thirty days hence my absence from the scene. I never once woke up to find that I had turned into the bug which is kind of a shame because it would have given me some very interesting writing material that might have made me a household name if someone else, like so many other things in life, hadn’t already beaten me to it.
Mind you, there are limits as to how far I’m prepared to go to be a smash in this business: imagine trying to type with a proboscis cluttering up the keyboard.
Thursday, 31 December 2015
In The Blood - Andrew Motion
Poor White: A Novel - Sherwood Anderson
My Name Is Aram - William Saroyan
Her Fearful Symmetry - Audrey Niffenegger
Selected Poems 1976-1997 - Andrew Motion
The Jungle - Upton Sinclair
Spring Chronograph - Red Shuttleworth
Barrels In Babylon - Red Shuttleworth
The Uninhabitable City - Aidan Andrew Dun
The Idylls Of The King - Alfred, Lord Tennyson
White Wings - John Freeman
An Extra Blue Mile - Red Shuttleworth
Nampa Lights - Red Shuttleworth
Stand Magazine, Volume 1, Number 2 June 1999
Amulet - Red Shuttleworth
No Time To Cut My Hair - William Michaelian
Mr Mercedes - Stephen King
Jack’s Porch - A Chapbook Anthology
Morning Poems - Robert Bly
Rose Madder - Stephen King
Complete Poems - Alfred, Lord Tennyson
The Four Quartets - T.S. Eliot
Final Light Of Day - Red Shuttleworth
Cider With Rosie - Laurie Lee
What’s It Like? - Dave Kelly
Collected Poems 1909-1962 - T.S. Eliot
Campsites Of Ghosts - Red Shuttleworth
Friday, 25 December 2015
It might have been The Who: their original name was The Detours and it seems to me that sometimes you can learn a lot from a band’s name.
With hours of festive freedom ahead of me I take a few detours of my own and drive along an unfamiliar road that leads to a churchyard. I park up on a patch of gravel in a green grotto of yews with blood red berries that shine in the gloom. I share the space with a burgundy car belonging to an old couple placing flowers on a grave in the rain. I am in an expansive mood like Scrooge after the visit of the third ghost and feel like saying hello although it doesn’t seem right to break the silence so I don’t.
Instead, I lift the latch on the churchyard gate expecting someone to leap out from behind a grave and challenge me at any moment.
They are impressive graves, especially the great white sarcophagus that seems to glow in the grass next to a moss coated cross with fast fading Celtic knot work.
I come to a wrought-iron lamppost in an early twentieth century style: it seems like the perfect place to wait for Mr Tumnus except that there’s plenty of rain instead of snow.
Then, feeling like a burglar, I try the handle on the sombre church door. It’s locked and there’s nothing more to be done except to keep on walking in the rain looking and not looking for the next detour.