Long-Overdue Update

Dear little mice,

How are you? Is it sunny where you are? If not I hope you have felt its beams on your skin at least twice this year. (If you haven’t … where are you?? I’d love to hear from anyone living in a cave/centre of the earth.)

So, firstly: I’m sorry. I’m sorry for starting a blog and keeping it running for god knows how many years and gaining your trust and making you believe that there would always be mediocre content at least once a month and then all of a sudden … dropping off the face of the earth.

Secondly: I’m not sorry! Because I have some good things lined-up for all you excellent, strange creatures that follow this blog.

I’m still writing, and I’m writing a lot at the moment. The reason you haven’t seen any of this is because most of that writing is a book — a novel, a book-book. And it turns out writing a good book is actually very hard, even for very arrogant people like me. But I am very happy to tell you that earlier this year it was awarded an Arts Council ‘grant for the arts’. This not only provided some much needed money (for some much needed food), but has also given me confidence that I am hopefully dedicating a large portion of my life to something worthwhile.

Other than that, I am currently studying for my masters and have had the blessings of a couple of other writing contracts that have kept me busy, and quiet. But no longer!

As of Summer 2018, I can confirm more poetry is heading your way (yeah, let those fist bumps lose!), there will be a video with me talking about being a failure at poetry (at some point), there is an article about superstition and assigning meaning to nature in Breathe issue 12 for you to buy, and to the wonderful person who wrote in to tell me they’d dreamt I’d put up another Motherisms, you’ll be delighted to hear one of those is in the pipeline — as is a Fatherisms.

I’m also still wanting to do a collective Motherisms, so please write in with anything wonderful/hilarious or ridiculous your mother might have said and we can make something funny together. Isn’t that nice? ISN’T IT??

 

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Pics: Alexandra Waespi

 

Happy Thursday everyone, it’s going to be beautiful (whether you like it or not). x x x

 

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Poem Published in 2017 Anthology

Have a poem published in this lovely thing by New River Press 🌟 (you can buy it for me for christmas …)

http://www.thenewriverpress.com/shop/2017yearbook

 

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Pregnant Witness

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There are two guys fighting on the street.
One is in a car
mouthing off,
revving,
head twisted back,
one hand on the wheel —
the other, I assume, is on the hand break.
The second man pursues the creeping vehicle up the hill,
speaking in tongues.
The first talks in spits and swerves his wheels.
I can’t hear what they are saying;
I’m sure it’s very important
but I am watching the pregnant witness
who looks out the window opposite.
Glasses on, she can see their very animated picture,
but she opens the window to better hear the drama
because her life is empty of it.
There is no darkness in her
refurbished house in leafy suburbia.
I would like a life like that
but I’ve too many shades on me, it would seem,
a spinning prism is my diadem.
So I’ll watch the pregnant witness
watching the two men screaming on the streets;
she’ll get some junk mail later
and that’ll be as bad as it gets.

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Photo: Martin Parr

Fancy A Little Guerilla Poetry Warfare In The Morning?

Back in the old days, when things weren’t immediate — when news didn’t travel at lightspeed and creations were nurtured in a bubble of time — things were said to happen in ‘the space of Pater Noster’, the space of God.

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Over the next 10 days (I started at 5am yesterday) I will be gracing my favourite streets in London — mostly ones I have lived on over the years — with a little surprise through the letterbox. The aim of the surprise is to serve as a bubble, a space in time between the bills and bank statements, where nothing is asked of you. At worst it makes excellent recycling material; at best it might add a little magic to your day — if you receieve one, whether you like or dislike, please get in touch (contact details on its reverse). x x x

Spoilt Rotten

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My soul has buckled under the weight of all the strange gifts you have given me,
Crumpled like the silver linings I crushed with the beer cans in the recycling.
But still you keep giving, donating twisted things to a
Cabinet of curiosities that’s already bursting at the seams.
You –
If that is your real name.
Me,
And my essence depleted to the compact crystals of flint.
But still you bleed me like a maple tree,
Leech from me
I walk through the streets like a zombie.
Not hungry.
Dim mist is me.
You
Who kicks stones at the legs that keep marching,
Keeps laughing at the ghost with no life-lines.
“She’s so persistent; but aren’t they all
Drowning in my dream whirlpool.”
Can you see us in the water?
Can you see us in the bright blue-green?
Can’t you see that I’m your daughter?
Can’t you see I’m in the waving trees?
It’s
Such
A
Long
Fall
For
You,
You who speaks in sunlight
But giggles in blackness.
Yeah you,
Who I forgive for the heavy treasures I did not wish for,
That I will not list here –
Did not put on my Christmas List either –
Because there is warmth in the wind, there are grebes in the pools and there is
A man who speaks softly to his dog. Who speaks like the earth.
Press this still-wet summer grass against my flesh.
In the seconds of this particular forever
All is well, and all that is wraps me in its bubble
And rolls me down the hill. To the lake
Where the bathers go to chill their brittle bones.
So cold.
Where did you go?
There are whispers when it’s hardest that
You
Do not exist.
But there is drama in your silence
Like the bottom of the sea.
See me: I am the echo of the waves.
Living proof of
Nothing
But a siren call called
You.

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Painting: Milky Way by Peter Doig

Mr Macmillan Blue

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I am a cat in love with a goose
‘A who?’
A goose. She’s the moose
Of the sky, the ice cube of the lake
She is the cherry on top of the
Farmer’s cake.
But I am a cat,
I cannot fly, let alone swim,
And what would the moose of the sky
Want with that?

I am no ordinary cat, it is true:
My name is Mr Macmillan Blue and
I’ve got 18 lives not 9 (I’ve already died 11 times).
Some other things it’s worth to mention:
I’ve never eaten a fish for supper and
I’ve not once killed a mouse; at age seven
I was labeled the strangest cat in London
Because I’ve never been able to purr a purr.
But what I know and all I know
Is I’m in love with her.

Oh my Lovely Lady Goose!
Whenever I go near,
She flaps her wings like an angry angel
And starts screeching in my ears.
I know that she’s just pleased to see me
But sometimes her squawking hurts my feelings,
I just want to spend one evening
With lovely Lady Goose.
My moose, my moose,
My moose.

I, Macmillan Blue,
Am the most romantic of cats,
I have left presents for my keepers
Everywhere from the litter tray
To the kitchen table,
I have meowed
The finest songs of love to butterflies
And beetles. But when I saw my Lady Goose,
Why! I got pins and needles.

Alas, there is a divide between
My great moose of the sky and I:
For one, we are a different species,
For two, I cannot reach her over water,
For three, I cannot follow her on the wind.
Other cats tell me that I’m foolish,
That we’re too different — ‘Two worlds apart!’
To them I say, ‘I love her features,
And it is the distance
Between us
That lets me see her heart.’

I, Macmillan Blue,
The most romantic of cats,
Will stop at nothing.
None of god’s obstacles
Can stop me from reaching
My darling swan of fighting.
No tides or winds can break me,
There’s nothing in this universe could shake me
Off this path of love —
Except of course, my Lady Goose
And her great big wings and screeching.

 

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Doodle by Andy Warhol x

 

 

Voyage D’etudes Scrapbook of America

The result of many hours shouting at a typewriter: Paula Goldstein’s amazing Scrapbook of America — it’s got chat from Buzz Aldrin, boobies, poetry, memories from the Civil Rights movement, skateboarders, New Yorkers, memory from Dolly Parton, a Kennedy …. basically everything that makes up modern America, including an FBI-themed investigation on the Darker Side of Disney from me.
Can buy here x