July 3, 2010 at 5:06 pm | Posted in jazz poetry, sheer selfindulgence, writing | 5 Comments
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… a reality whose connection to the actual world of the imagining reader is tenuous at best. The truth becomes gloriously irrelevant, postulations on orchids,

How old fashioned thinks the vicar, louche on Ms Helpburn’s divan. Now we are in the post-Victorian in which all is quaint decoration and pop but he remains tightlipped on the outside of whatever’s slightly outre.  Rain, he suggests aloud as she pours his tea, and struggles to find a tiny niche in which to survive like some strange insect. Happy for the shelter of a waxy leaf from which water drips, snoozing through the day with a low buzz which may just be tired lungs and excessive humidity,

She sits, decorously, Vicar, it is such a wonderful word, don’t you think. Sorry, he says, I was just looking at your garden, so gentle and pretty in the afternoon rain, Ms Helpburn. Do you have a gardener?


The world goes madder as I get saner

February 25, 2010 at 8:07 pm | Posted in poetry, writing | 22 Comments
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In my early days I would have
spun a pun on

over blowing things up he is
opting for wigging other people out
in the moment.

His source of greatest pride is
that I have managed to wig you
out of all people.

Today was a’messing with


simple adding and subtracting

January 28, 2010 at 6:22 pm | Posted in australian poetry, poetry, sheer selfindulgence, writing | 12 Comments

last year i took away a word ‘gravity’
.I’m not so sure that was a good idea
now. I think I will add a few like ‘eucalypt’.
It looks like an anagram which as a tanka began,

(I like the way in this version ‘.I’m’ sits directly above ‘now.’ which makes a small poem inside the larger poem. A tanka officially has a structure. The number of syllabubbles in each line is supposed to be, 5, 7, 5, 7, 7. Although it should be noted that the difference in the basic structure of Japanese and English raises the question of whether these syllable restrictions have much meaning. There are some who suggest the idea or the mood of forms like tanka and haiku are more important than syllable counting. Anyway, that is a long discussion, it has been going on for as long as I have been around. Here is the original poem, changed a little to fit a formal tanka structure. It is interesting to me that the central line is like a version of the tiny poem contained in the first version.)

Last year took away
a word ‘gravity’ not so
sure that was a good

idea now i think i

will add a few like eu ca
lypt looks like an anagram
which as a tanka began

5000 red marks

November 24, 2009 at 6:37 pm | Posted in blogging, writing | 23 Comments
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(character voice) – Why must you ignore the rules of grammar? I will have to argue with you about every single one and I already know you will never give up. Stalemate.  And stop messing with the tenses leashes and start barking mad giving the characters names so we know who you are talking about.


The Editor.

(another character voice) – Holey mackeral, sorry.  Grammar is a boojwah affectation. So which was the first red mark again,

Taking stock.

November 17, 2009 at 6:34 pm | Posted in memoirs, poetry, portraits, sheer selfindulgence, writing | 18 Comments
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just because you believe time is not linear does not mean I didn’t used to write this piece as a slightly drunken father on a starry night round a fire, a blur of his tattoo, an English flag long forgot on his forearm round his son saying,

there is still the past, both recent and distant, line them up. Look up boy, you’re always looking at your feet you should be looking for friend or foe, the pass, the defender, the ball rolls by itself. He was alive when they won the cup, ’66, so I was three.

He was a submariner at sixteen and Welsh coalmining stock.  Stocks which someone had spent some time building.

in the absence of war

November 11, 2009 at 6:49 pm | Posted in blogging, writing | 14 Comments
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and idling with neither provocation nor criticism, two things will result. An attempt to escape into fantasy or the creation of some utopia in which everyone can say whatever they want and everybody can listen to whoever they want. It is however a dangerous idea. It would involve making a distinction between a representative democracy and a democracy. You end up in anarchy, a temper tantrum of Shakespearean proportions, a whirlpool of emotion.

At some point self-censorship is required. This is in order to preserve the species. Morality is, at its heart, born of necessity. It does not require any God. It is a simple choice to act or to be acted upon. And the only stasis is death. Cold and brittle. There is no honour in victory he coughs, only in struggle. And the primary struggle is with the language. It is slippery and disobedient. And sometimes I do enjoy a good full stop.

fleeing in the third person

September 21, 2009 at 7:07 pm | Posted in poetry, writing | 16 Comments
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I wonder why they ask for bios in the third person. Is it some tiny test of writing skills. Perhaps they just want to make sure you have a third person in case the first two fail? (interlocking snail trails through mushroom forests seeking

I’m reconnected to the internet. I am lighter from exercise surprise surprise, and browner from sunlight.  The invoices I mean envoys have been de-patched, despatched, unlocked, unpouched and ancient yet with correct accent.

Shall we extrapolate horizons
begin the study of the linebreak
silver across the darkness of the sea

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