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who knows where the time goes
Tuesday, October 25, 2005
but you feel you should know - or I will become as the emptiness of my XDA when I ran out of memory - a whole life lost. So much happens now in each day from week to week that I am unable to store the info. On the way home from somewhere or other last week I forgot my address. The taxi driver looked wary. I told him to start driving and I would direct him then it came back to me. A strange fugue moment.
So better list stuff - the Durham Litfest - highlight for me Gillian Allnutt and Peter Bennet - excellent contrast excellent poets (and scones - how genteel). But we are all a bit elderly and cosy aren't we. Needed a bit of Ginsberg up its bum imho.
Hydrogen Jukebox had Sean O'Brien and Angel Readman - both of whom read brilliantly well - it was a top night - band also excellent - Panic in Style - really good young band.
Amnesty gig at the Bridge last Thursday - a lorra lorra poets reading including me. Had a really moving conversation with Ian who's mum died recently. It was amazing - to be suddenly sharing incredibly personal information. Makes me feel it is still possible to connect because sometimes I wonder if I am turning into a complete weirdo.
The Handheld Learning Conference at Goldsmith's - interesting couple of days - we are no longer the only ones to make this stuff - everybody's at it. It was a daunting stage to present from. Had some fascinating conversations (there was far too much wine at the reception) - met a couple who share an ideas blog - they work together (what else I'm not sure) but use blog to share ideas about projects - separate from their other working collabs. Made me think you could have an argument blog with your mate - just put it all in virtual - in real life all would be sweetness and light. Or a lurve blog for illicit lovers. Oh shut up woman. OK.
New publication from moi - called Punchdrunk with Esa Hirvonen - incredible looking published by Ek Zuban - we are touring regionally then I'm off to Helsinki for a gig or two. Spent the weekend trying to make a audio/visual presentation to go with my set with the help of my teccy and very patient friend. We are using Sony Acid 6 for the soundtrack but then need to hook this up to a set of slides - using powerpoint but wondering if there is anything better I could use? Just want to be able to time some slides to go with soundtrack then I can do the poems over that? This set all about my father/myself - hard stuff but he has been dead long enough for me to address stuff with distance I hope. Wanted the poems to be a kind of tribute - will be better if I can get the show right.
So here's one of them:


He teaches her chess with a cheap set
bought at the NAAFI
explains each piece, its position and moves
She listens, a serious child,
her fringe pinned back
wary hazel eyes attentive
a fawn receives instruction from a snake.

The pawns are worthless -
Foot soldiers born to sacrifice
Drawn forward by tales of glory
A blinkered band of brothers
With hidden dreams.

Rooks are castles solid as a rock
travel in straight lines cover ground
But they do not move her.
Inside, there’s boiling oil
A tethered princess.

The Queen on her colour, her wayward crown,
her mad ambition, dangerous.
Runs rings around the bishop
Her laughter pierces like shards of glass
Mocks the mournful king
Locked, suspicious, on his square.

She loves the knight, his mounted grace
The magic of his patterned move
Transforms the board to a new world
Where other paths are possible.

Finns arriving tomorrow - better get the vodka in.
7:16 AM   1 comments

Howl for Now
Tuesday, October 11, 2005

"Six poets at the Six Gallery. Kenneth Rexroth, M.C. Remarkable collection of angels all gathered at once in the same spot. Wine, music, dancing girls, serious poetry, free satori. Small collection for wine and postcards. Charming event." This was how Mr Ginsberg advertised the first reading of Howl - commemorated last Friday at the Clothworkers Centenary Concert Hall at Leeds uni school of music. It was packed but more academic than angel - except for the beautiful boy reading from Howl - George Hunt - lovely Leeds accent - Allen would have adored him. And the music was extraordinary - a whole range of contemporary jazz pieces enough to blow your mind see I was entranced by the theramin. Have never seen anybody play one before - wondered why red-haired girl at the back kept lifting and lowering her hands then realised it related to the eerie sound like a 50s horror movie. And there were dancing girls and boys blackhooded and writhing - a tad fast show perhaps. Anyway thanks to route for putting it on good to remember the old boy and to hear the words hydrogen jukebox spoken in this context again.
But it was brilliant anyway - even though I had just come from Manchester after doing a massively teccy and frightening presentation and was be-suited and at my most serious. Then became clumsy and ticket losing and unable to hold a glass of wine and my laptop at the same time. It's symptomatic of the way my life is just now - the work/more work balance is well out of hand and I'm losing sight of myself as a poet. New pamphlet out this month though so maybe that will help plus Amnesty gig next week.
Have started a new version of Howl but lack the necessary innocence and self belief. But something will emerge.
5:38 AM   0 comments