January 02, 2011

To Die or Not to Die?

To Die or not To Die, now, that is a question.

Not quickly or too painfully or out of the blue.

And what does death actually mean?

Like the idea of a young man's death

Shagging, boozing, falling through the ice

After New Year reveleries.

But as you are drawing your final ice chilled breath

What if you have a change of heart?

In a flash, the idea of warm custard and Aretha Frankin

Might make you change your mind.

And if you throw youself from a tall tower

There's no way of defying gravity

Deciding gravy served with roast spuds are worth living for.

A big plate of pink beef and braised celery won't magic itself

And act as a platform for you to soft land in buttery mash just won't appear to break your fall.

The slow way, like slow cooked lamb has its compensations.

Are school dinners the only way to save you?

Or starting each day with a swig of Henry Weston's cider?

Better than a bowl of cornflakes.

Warming and apple tasting, this vintage product has its apple peel.

And there we have it.  Bad puns - apple peel, appeal.

That is the best you can do when it comes to what you really, really need.

To be a mistress of clever phrases;

Why, oh why, oh why?

Everything that is worth saying has already been said.

And anything worth saying that hasn't already been put into words

Won't be articulated by me.

Bob Dylan said: nothing succeeds like failure

And failure is no success at all.

Failure, failure, failure.

Let's not go there.

One woman's failure is subjective, of course.

But I know how failure tastes and looks and smells.

What of success?

What is that really like?

Success, success, success?

How does that taste and look and smell?

Don't know.  But willing to give it a go.

Your starter for ten.  Tell me what it is like.

I do so want to know.

It is having a face like Annie Lennox and a voice like Billie Holiday and a figure like Marilyn Monroe?

Being able to drink champagne without suffering a hangover; being able to walk for miles on legs like elastic springs?

Being Tina Brown or Ophra Winfrey?

Having ten children clustering round you on your fiftieth birthday with home made gifts?

Is it soaring through the glass ceiling in your Channel size zero suit?

Is it suffering but writing poems like Emily Dickinson?

Or is it just snuggling under the duvet, listening to Woman's Hour and making resolutions to be a better person?


- 12 comments by 3 or more people Not publicly viewable

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  1. Pauline Wallin

    This lady is almost as good as C. A. Duffy though lacking her talent.

    02 Jan 2011, 10:51

  2. Pauline Wallin

    What a genius or a geranium, either way, this work smells.

    02 Jan 2011, 10:52

  3. Pauline Wallin

    From Annie Lennox – yes, it is wonderful being me, doing good works, singing like a bell and being honoured by the Queen. I am how success looks, smells and does her damndest to change the world. Eat your heart out the rest of you failures.

    02 Jan 2011, 11:00

  4. Pauline Wallin

    From a plateful of custard – I am the perfect solution to suicide, if you don’t mind getting enormously fat, making the most of my deliciousness.

    02 Jan 2011, 11:01

  5. Sue

    It’s an interesting question and brings to my mind something my mother said yesterday. She brings it up every now and then and yesterday she came out with it while we were all together (I don’t think my children have heard it before). She said “Your mother was the cleverest of all my children.” Of course, this caused one of them to respond “What happened?” Whenever she makes this statement she always uses the word “was”. She then went on to tell them what a lot of “set backs” I had when I was a child. I don’t think she realises what a back-handed compliment it is because she takes it as read that one of my siblings is more clever than me because she is more successful in her career.

    I think that if you are happy with yourself you are successful.

    02 Jan 2011, 12:04

  6. Gavin

    I don’t even like braised celery.

    02 Jan 2011, 17:29

  7. pauline wallin

    What do you mean, ‘Gavin’, you don’t like braised celery? Shame on you. Who are you, by the way? Not that I give a flying fig.

    03 Jan 2011, 11:12

  8. How can we define success? A great question. There is no good without bad and vice versa. How we define good or bad? No success without failure and no failure without success. Success is definitely subjective. It depends in variety of reasons.
    The point is how you become successful. And this a great question. You may have no respect for people society and environment and become successful. But is that real success?
    Successful being without principles is not what i call success. I think that i will agree with Sue in the terminology of success.
    PS: i do not know the answer on the question to die or not to die but definitely either of them someone may follow there must be a purpose for it….......

    09 Jan 2011, 22:36

  9. George Ttoouli

    Cripes, Pauline, this is hilarious, not least for your own comments on it.

    If I’m to understand this right, genius smells of braised celery and happiness is Aretha Franklin covered in warm custard.

    I found the bits about food very apple peeling. But cut cut cut! What’s with all this cliché?!

    To Die or not To Die

    And what does death actually mean?
    Like the idea of a young man’s death
    ater New Year reveleries.
    What if you have a change of heart?
    The idea of warm custard and Aretha Frankin
    Might make you change your mind.
    And if you throw youself from a tall tower
    There’s no way of defying gravity
    deciding gravy served with roast spuds are worth living for.
    A big plate of pink beef and braised celery won’t magic itself
    and act as a platform for you to soft land in buttery mash
    the slow way, like slow cooked lamb has its compensations.
    Are school dinners the only way to save you?
    Or starting each day with a swig of Henry Weston’s cider -
    better than a bowl of cornflakes.
    Warming and apple tasting, this vintage product has its apple peel.
    And there we have it. Bad puns – apple peel, appeal.
    That is the best you can do when it comes to what you really need.
    To be a mistress of clever phrases;
    But I know how failure tastes and looks and smells.
    What of success?
    Your starter for ten. Tell me what it is like.

    14 Jan 2011, 08:56

  10. Pauline Wallin

    Your starter for ten. Tell me about the taste and smell of success. The taste and smell of excess not that you would know about tht, I hope. What’s it all about, Alfie? God, John Keats had it in his grasp; he knew it but the rest of the world didn’t. Till he was dead. Isn’t that heartbreaking. I listen to him every night on audio tape. And GM Hopkins. How did they do it? We read their work, take it to bits but it defies any kind of logic. Aren’t you just glad they wrote what they did. it’s enough, isn’t it.

    15 Jan 2011, 15:44

  11. Paul D

    I read this for an assignment. That is all.

    18 Jan 2011, 15:53

  12. pauline wallin

    Paul D. Did you really? Why? Whatever reason, good luck with your writing. I hope you like both braised celery and Aretha Franklin.

    18 Jan 2011, 18:28


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  • Paul D. Did you really? Why? Whatever reason, good luck with your writing. I hope you like both brai… by pauline wallin on this entry
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