All entries for August 2007

August 24, 2007

Fossil Fuel (ice cream, that is)

Here's a poem about ice cream, accompanied by a mildly amusing advertising image for the flavour. I'm seeing to a tub of Peace of Cake right now, although it was giving me headspin so I had to pack it in. Usually I can handle my ice cream just fine.  


Fossil Fuel (Ben and Jerry’s)

Grass-legged on the dirty hillside
I euphorically murder this tub of ice-cream,
my second of week –
tasting its liquidification.
I try to eat my way through this Fossil Fuel
as if fearing the collapse of the American empire.

August 20, 2007

The Dali Universe and beyond

The Space Elephant by Salvador Dali

If you've ever studied art and decided to leave some of its better lauded superstars well alone - for what's the point in producing the same project that generations of A-level students have produced before you - it's always a pleasure to one day stumble across what you've been missing. Dali's most famous paintings have always left me cold, but the extensive retrospective I found at the permenant Dali Universe (its' logo is a simple text / handlebar moustache combo - being an art gallery they had to skimp on  imaginative advertising?)

After returning to London Waterloo on Sunday morning, I decided to visit the South Bank, and that's when I found the Dali Universe at County Hall. I'd only visited the County Hall gallery once before and no idea that it housed this extensive collection.

The annex to the main display rooms is a black-lit hall is a place for Dali's rhetorical gifts to be displayed, as zillions of quotes adorn the walls. Like me, you might also take pleasure in how your shoes look when you walk across the floor projections.

I'm so glad that I got to see so many of his more obscure sculptures, watercolours and drawings. There's a kind of spicy mysticism to Dali that I had missed before. The exhibit is a lane peppered with all sorts of mythology - symbolism of course being the chair on which the whole thing is draped. This is a land peopled by stilt-legged elephants heaving striking crystal obelisks on their backs, presumably across the desert. Apparently, it is meant to symbolise pride, conquering. Although I know nothing about the interpretation of the tarot, I love the traditional images used within the deck, inspiring even for someone who is ignorant of the art of tarot card reading. Dali designed a deck that retails for a princely 100 US dollars.Maybe for my birthday? Other favourites include a huge, very 'solid' looking interpretation of a Renaissance venus that is exploding with Dali's trademark drawers of the psyche.  I'll be looking for a book with some nice pictures of this stuff in, happy to be a Dali convert as I now am.

That was the icing on top of a wonderful weekend. I now need a day or two to be in my bedroom, lighting incense (you read right) and switching the music between northern soul and the Velvet Underground. No apologies necessary.

August 15, 2007

Old news but…


It's not new. I have been making new things but I can't scan them yet. So here's old hat. This is a little depiction of me in a less than cheery mood! Disclaimer / It is meant to be tongue in cheek / End disclaimer.

b n b

Something I did for an issue of Tapfactory. Disclaimer / The text in the image isn't mine, I was professional enough to leave it in, however, you'll notice. I did take the trouble to cross it out (because I ripped the page straight out of the magazine and stuck it on the wall of the Art Soc exhibition. Another highly professional move on my part, I think.) The image is my take on a poem submitted by another student, which was a lovely story about a couple honeymooning in a seaside town. 

August 10, 2007

Arctic / review of the Poetry Cafe, Covent Garden

So I thought it'd be yet another evening staring at my Warwick blog knowing full well I had nothing to contribute as yet - shifting my eyes between three open Word documents and blogbuilder, tweaking two of four saved draft entries. Then I found this one in a completely random folder on my laptop. I'm sure that when I leave this earth, writing a few dubious poems will have been the least of my many sins. So let's go for it. 



everything I need is packed into
the arctic ice so when I excavate,
I find what I need and that’s just great
- I also find that someone has been here before
me and made provisions
Like someone who’d thought
‘bout where I was going,
how I’d be getting there
and what I need.

So why am I
just sitting on my sled
watching other intrepid explorers
move towards their next camp. Is it because
- I’m so stricken with jealousy
there’s not much more I can do.
Like frostbite in my toes…

A few words about my first time at the Poetry Cafe, Covent Garden: So  Tuesday night I decided it was time to go and check out the living, breathing poetry scene, if you were. I brought a couple of my poems to read as I figured that the sense of achievement would pay my own train fare to the city. The venue itself is absoloutely nothing like I expected it to look. From the outside, it has all the charm of a small travel agency (the upstairs interior is nice enough, a few pine tables with a bar), and the basement where the readings take place is akin to a doctor's waiting room with leaflets adorning the walls. Nevermind - a bit of mood lighting and a boozy atmosphere, together with an enthusiastic and committed crowd turn it into an engaging evening out. I've often found that poetry readings are best used for some alone time with your mind, zoning out and letting the words wash over you. I mostly listened though, was pleasantly very impressed with the standard of the readers - their humour and their variety, lovely stuff.

August 06, 2007

Sorority Garden

Sorority Garden

Why do taller, half-blood species struggle
to know the babies they share water with?
Tell me
do you find it a quest for alpha-sibling dominance?
you sigh as well, I see.
Can’t they see that we don’t want play,
and we don’t want battle.
All we want is prattle – don’t goad me;
I’m learning the force of what it means to be grown
and sometimes I just need to unload.
How dare she!
insist on my habits as outlandish,
or worse still: special.
Embaressed by my luck, I rush to give up,
I fall over myself to explain
my books, my clothes, my hair –
which is no ‘do, it’s a don’t resultant of a day spent
lounging in the front room, conspiring ways to escape
to people more my own age.
She announces her new ‘double jointed’ tendrils:
“maybe”, I answer, politely.
She’s now well-advanced in tae-kwon do, and looks as if she could really do injury.
She can huff and kick all she likes,
For I am the holder of a black belt in sarcasm.

August 01, 2007

Casual Addict

Casual Addict

Little tin clattering
for your dust and papers
- I: “craft kit for grown-ups.”
But I’m too advanced in youth
to develop a casual addiction now.
Too calculating to speak,
I leave the wine
- each drop has smarted my tongue,
and put it down
needing to fulfil my mission of speech.

Enough’s down already and I don’t
need to be filled.
Just look at your full lips
and teddy-bear eyes
- push your black hair back little girl
and take a deep intake of mystery.

You always had
to wait to get
far enough away from your house
to let your lungs full.

August 2007

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