21 February 2016


Is it just me, or is everybody who sometimes comments in blogs or other social media prone to angst-attacks, either before, during or after the act? If you are subject to this syndrome (which did not exist before the internet) I'd be interested to hear your variations on the theme.

Instead of expounding on my own foibles, faux pas, fears, fallacies etc. in this department I've enacted some of them in order to entertain you. This too is a form of egocentricity.

Comments conundrum

To comment please go to my Mirror Blog

18 February 2016


The logic of dream-life is what waking life would be like if it wasn't so illogical. Here's the dream I had last night:

I'm walking in a desert with my parents. My father is old and wears a dark overcoat and hat. My mother rides a horse. Suddenly I fall into a deep well, I look up and see my father peering down. There's no way I can climb out of the well. I'm thinking that it will take a crane or other equipment to lift me out but we're far away and this would take a long time and be very expensive. My mother goes off to get help. Then I see that I have a mobile phone and could call the Fire Dept. who will have ladders etc. to get me out. But I can't figure out how to dial their number. All of a sudden I'm out of the well and standing by a food stall just up the road. I ask the woman to show me how to dial the Fire Dept. She does so and I explain that I've fallen down a well and need to be pulled out. As I say this, I realise that I'll have to jump back into the well so that when the Firemen arrive they can rescue me. I can't let them come for nothing.

Dream- 18 Feb.2016

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9 February 2016


The serial coincidences that are currently haunting me continue to appear. Yesterday afternoon, Mel Calman's name came up in a conversation (the friend I was talking with used to know him). He happens to be one of my all-time favourite cartoonists. Tonight, eyes tight shut as per the rules, what book do you think my un-directed hand pulled out? I have crowded bookshelves in three different rooms and do not know what book is on each shelf.

The Big Novel by Mel Calman.On p.21 part of the text with the cartoon was: " tell me to observe the stars"


Okay but what can they show,
apart from Star Wars,
that I don't already know?

My horoscope?
That's just a soap
opera with predictable plot.
If I'm a Lion, as the star signs say,
why do I look like a dot
on the milkyway?

Is it stars of showbiz I should observe
or the other big biznesses with so much nerve?
I'm afraid I lack the concentration
to follow their myriad machinations.

If I had a telescope I might have been an astronomista
but right now I'm only an artista.

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8 February 2016


If you've read my in-progress on-line autobio, you'll understand why I am startled by today's encounter with this particular book and the particular sentence on the page I opened. The News from Paraguay by Lily Tuck, p.206: "Too late she realized she wanted to keep the baby." 


Now this is really weird,
how could you know these things are seared
in my heart and in my hand
a lost baby, a lost land?

Could this be the fourth dimension
where such deeply buried tensions
are revealed by random choices,
unifying disparate voices?

Mind blank, eyes shut, open a book at any page
and sitting there in a word cage
some kind of message waits for me
its coded meaning to set free.

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6 February 2016

Interestingly, I'm finding that relying on chance as a trigger for inspiration not only provides provocative themes, but also seems to find synchronicities between them. This evening I ran my blind hands across a high-up shelf and pulled out The Mind and Heart of Love by M.C. D'Arcy, opened it at p.248 and hit on this sentence: "the perspective of interests" leads the unwary astray.


Is a hidden agenda what you're trying to say?
If so I agree with the above,
there's more to the mind and heart of love
than meets the eye, the ear and more private parts.

When you say you love me more than all the rest
I'll never know if in your heart
you mean I'm the one who passed your test,
a test I never knew I took.

Unwary I am, unwary I'll remain,
my own agenda's an open book.
If our perspective of interests is not the same
well, that's a shame,
but the road we're on is called "Astray"
maybe we'll meet love on the way.

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5 February. 2016

The book randomly chosen tonight: Georgia O'Keeffe by Lisa Mintz Messinger. The random line, p.132: "...blurring the distinctions between what was near and what was far."


The future oh so distant
when I was just a child
is now the present instant
which I'm about to file.
Maybe these distinctions
between the far and near
are only false convictions
we cling to out of fear
of being lost in space
with no sense of direction
which is, in fact, the case,
worthy of inspection.
Why not a history class
where some ancient bloody mess
is not taught as the past
but today's news, hot off the press?
Is everything déja vu?
Yes, I think so. Do yu?

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4 February 2016

Blindly chosen book and line today: Thus Spoke Zarathustra by Friedrich Nietzsche, p.214: "... I talk to myself, as one who has plenty of time"


though time is precisely what I have not.
I say to myself as I write this rhyme:
As poet I know I'm not so hot,
so why am I wasting my dwindling hours
on what is a pastime, nothing more.
Shouldn't I be using my artist powers
on something closer to the core
of what I'm on this planet for? 

Are you saying what I think you're saying,
comes a reply from the other me,
that time is wasted when you're playing?

Okay, I say, I do agree
that art and play are interconnected,
but how will I ever be respected
if all I can add to my CV
is a rhyme for you and a rhyme for me?

Suddenly, would you believe,
something pops out of my sleeve.
It's Zarathustra and he's peeved,
shoves me and my other self away.

I'm the one you called today
when at my words you aimed your finger,
you're in luck 'cause I can linger.
Forget about esteem,
read what I said, page two-sixteen:
"....spread out laughter like a coloured canopy"
Avoid the bland, the syrupy,
the fake, the flip, the pre-digested.
And with this my case is rested.

To comment please go to my Mirror Blog

3 February 2016

At 6:14 AM today I was drifting into sleep when, again, a sentence just popped up. This time it was in French: "On peut forcer un souvenir"  I had to get up and write it down. Later the rest arrived. Here it is, plus my rough free translation below.


mais pas besoin de l'expliquer
passé, présent ou avenir
ne devraient pas se prolonger. 

Proust a cherché le temps perdu,
tant mieux pour lui, il l'a trouvé.
Heureusement qu' il n'a pas su
que sa recherche me fait bailler.

J'éspère vivement, O mes amis,
que mes vers ne vous causent pas offense.
Pour mon ennui, O je vous prie,
accordez-moi vôtre indulgence.


but there's no need for explanations.
Past or future or now and here
don't have to be investigations.

Proust did find his temps perdu,
all praise to him, it was well drawn.
But thankfully he never knew
his research only makes me yawn.

I hope sincerely, O my friends,
that my verse doesn't cause offense
and for my undoubted ignorance
I pray grant me your indulgence.

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2 February 2016

Dictionary of Shakespeare Quotations (Everyman's Reference Library) p.119, from As you Like it:


for that sudden urgent lawless yen
for Harry or Barry or Bob or Ben,
you will be charged with wanton lust
and with betraying someone's trust. 

But for Barry, Bob or Bill or Harry
the rules are different, and if they marry,
the power of that sudden flame
they will deny. It's just a game,
a game men play,
a brief delusion, they will say.

O women, plead guilty if you're caught
or hide your glee if you are not.
But in your heart (so shy, so pure)
O tell me, tell me, are you sure
that flame which burned so fierce, so real,
was not put there for you to steal?

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1 February 2016

Today's random sentence, "sewing creates swell" is from page 32 of Introducing Bookbinding by Ivor Robinson. Coincidentally, Ivor was a friend and a brilliant designer-bookbinder.


So that's how it was done!
God with thread and needle
making kingdom come.

The mountains with their folds
the fish the fowl the lemming
the carbon and the gold
all stitch and baste and hemming. 

It may be hard to see
but gee, isn't it fine
that they and you and me
are just a stitch in time?

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