BLAUGUSTINE / BACK TO ARCHIVE
31 January 2016
The book was Harvard Concise Dictionary of Music, p.454. The line I landed on: "the acceptance of the thoroughbass"
THE ACCEPTANCE OF THE THOROUGHBASS
Alas poor Bass
She suffered from insomnia,
That's how Bass became thorough,
30 January 2016
Making words rhyme is not only fun but also a sort of cave you fall into where innumerable connections lie in wait and all you have to do is link them up by rhyming. It's as if we have an in-built receptor for rhythm and automatically respond to beats and measures, whether in music, dance, drumming, chants, games. Here's one which popped into my head a little while ago, but not by the random bookshelf method.
The silver spoon was out of tune.
With silver spoons I made my name
Get me the tin spoon, there's a good girl,
29 January 2016
I swear I didn't open my eyes when pulling the book from its shelf or choosing page 78 with this sentence: "introducing an element of accident and chance". The book is: Francis Bacon: Taking Reality by Surprise by Christophe Domino.
INTRODUCING AN ELEMENT OF ACCIDENT AND CHANCE
Mortimer jumped on the table and began to dance.
When Mortimer fell off the boardroom table
This time, the first sentence didn't arrive suddenly when semi-conscious, however I was still in bed when I made it up this morning.
THE WOMAN WHO HOWLED AT THE DOG
The woman who howled at the dog
On Facebook and Twitter it trended
The world is going to hell
There's nothing new about such a process. Innumerable visual and literary methods have long been used to release the mind from the effort of rationality, allowing spontaneous invention to flow. Games like Exquisite Corpse or Consequences, or finding images in clouds, stains, inkblots and so on. Of course this doesn't mean that such methods magically produce masterworks, or even minor works, in any medium at all. But there's no doubt that something captivating and stimulating to the imagination happens when you give yourself permission to follow apparently nonsensical rules of a game.
In today's blind bookshelf-stroking, I pulled out Numbers: The Universal Language and p. 47 gave me these starting words: "Marking the empty place"
MARKING THE EMPTY PLACE
Oh now you're asking me to face
28 January 2016
AN EXPERIMENT IN MILKING RANDOMNESS
Boosted and bolstered by the response (on FaceBook) to my un-premeditated Man Who Typed Lear, I've decided to try a daily experiment. You're invited to join, if so inclined. Random, provocative sentences don't often appear to me when falling asleep, so, to trigger something similar to that state deliberately, I've devised rules of the game.
1. Close eyes tightly (no cheating) and approach bookshelves.
Here's my first one. The first sentence is from Khalil Gibran's The Prophet, p.50:
FOR THAT WRONG COMMITTED MUST YOU KNOCK
28 January 2016
STRUCK BY RANDOM RHYMING VIRUS
Knocked out by a flu virus over the past couple of weeks, I must have become susceptible to anything else floating about in the atmosphere. It started with this sentence that popped into my head just as I was about to fall asleep : The man who typed Lear.
Later that day, this is what emerged:
THE MAN WHO TYPED LEAR (1)
The man who typed Lear
His novel is not ready
So far, that's all he's got,
I posted it, and the subsequent rhyming things, on my Mirror Blog and Facebook. I do not pretend to be a serious poet, this is just for fun. When I've got about twenty I'll stop. Should I call them pomes, so as not to confuse them with proper poetry? I think I might add drawings to each one later on.
That damned Lear sentence is nagging me again. Here's a second version:
THE MAN WHO TYPED LEAR (2)
The man who typed Lear
26 January 2016
THE LESSON on GNARLED OAK
The Lesson is a video
If it's permissible to love some of one's own work (and if it's not permissible I don't care) then I truly love my 3-D tableau, The Lesson. If there was a fire I would probably grab it before jumping out of the window and trust naively that we would both not end up in pieces. The subsequent video was fun to make and I'd like to experiment with other versions some time but what I like is that The Lesson summarises what is essentially my outlook on life: not forgetting to be amazed. Not a happy-clappy wishy-washy cliché but solidly based on my own experience.
I must define what I mean by amazement, in case I'm misinterpreted as somebody who lavishes the word indiscriminately on anything and everything, in the same way that the words "incredible"' and "awesome" are flung about, unstoppable showers of stale confetti littering the environment.
What I mean is the realisation, sometimes sudden, of the magnificent and un-graspable reality of life, the universe and everything. Yes that is a cliché, but how else to say that standing on the corner waiting for a bus, for example, I look at the pavement beneath my feet and realise - actually real...alise that I'm standing on a sphere spinning around in deep dark space and, if that is not enough to be amazed about, this miniscule dot which is "me" is also, in reality, a cluster of unimaginably small whirling atoms which are also somehow conscious of being "me": this tiny cluster of DNA, memories, ancestors ...yes, I am aware of spiritual or materialist theories about the existence or illusion of self, ego, etc. but please please right now let me focus only on the amazement which fills me from head to toe in such moments, when ordinary life is actually seen and felt as beyond extraordinary and all the explanations, whether scientific, spiritual, philosophicall, aesthetic etc. are simply not enough. They're just hay-coloured needles in a multicoloured haystack.
Rolling around in that haystack is what I mean by not forgetting to be amazed.
23 January 2016
It's been a very slow start to the New Year and now I'm at the tail end of a nasty bout of flu that has knocked the stuffing out of me, left-over stuffing from the too-long holiday period. But what's more boring than griping about flu etc?
There hasn't been anything I wanted to blog about, hence the absence of blog posts. Now I want to get back in here before I'm totally forgotten by the cyber world. Imagine not existing AT ALL on the internet! The horror! A fate worse than real death............I'm joking!
Just to fill this blank space I've pulled out from the virtual filing cabinet something to entertain anyone who is still here. The image is new (drawn digitally with ArtRage software) but the poem is 2007.
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