Monthly Archives: March 2019

Swans…

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‘Birds-of-the-Beyond’, Mountain-Ana called them.

She bought us a book.

The picture of the Lir-Clan huddled on a rock in the middle of a raging sea, slipping into Swan-Vests still remains, clear as each new day that dawns.

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“They’re here!” she said, her eyes aflame.

“What are?”

“The-Birds-from-Back-of-Beyond.”

I smiled at her memory, “They’re where?”

“Our-Back-Field!”

“Not possible,” I said grabbing my coat.

But I was wrong.

It had rained heavily overnight and two swans now swam on an impossible lake in the middle of Our-Back-Field.

We watched them all morning and wept when they flew away.

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Art Club Ghost…

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It was only a matter of time

before we decided to explore the Pitch-Black.

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It took the form of a dare:

to walk the corridor end to end without breaking into a run.

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Easy enough for those with no fear of the dark,

albeit this was darkness so thick

you could not see a hand in front of a face.

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We did not even get a light for the stair-well.

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Down we went…

Three fools who laugh at fear.

Each determined not to break into a run,

or at least, not before the other two did…

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The creak of a door.

During the day we would not have given it a second thought.

But now, that over used staple of too many bad horror flicks

seemed in league with the darkness.

The door closed on our tomb.

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We turn and make tentative steps into the black.

Normal darkness the eyes grow accustomed to.

Not here.

Here the darkness bounces against the back of the skull,

stirring no shadows.

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The creak of a door.

Not our door.

The one at the far end of the corridor.

From somewhere, a light shone.

There, suspended from the door,

was ‘Bones’,

the Art-Room skeleton.

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We lost the dare.

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Art Club…

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What’s with the Art Club?

Seven ’til Ten.

I’ll take you, if you like?

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And so… we did.

But he did not get it.

None of it.

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Certainly not, what was so good,

’bout going back to skool

when you are not supposed to be there.

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Villains of time and season

lifting never seen before shots.

Moving naturally.

‘stead of in designated lines.

Free.

Which it was.

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The corridors were now phantom walk-ways

which perchance would never be used again.

In winter they were all Pitch-Black

until the switches were flicked…

By us!

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Even the people

there looked different

informally un-uniformed

they finally seemed real

instead of pretend.

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We got to use Art-Room materials

to draw or paint

whatever we liked!

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And there was music…

An old record player.

Curiously, there were never any arguments

over what should or should not be played.

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It was good too,

sometimes

just to watch others

…quietly.

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Thanks to Tony Carroll, Carol Miller and Ken Dorrington.

Stepping Stones?…

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Three days of fog and endless trek…

Suddenly the mists cleared to reveal a shrouded figure struggling with his boat.

“Sprung a leak, dammit,” he said scratching within the folds of his hood.

The sound of bone on bone.

“…Course, you normally have to pay,” he said, eyeing me and snorting, “but as you’ll be crossing under your own steam…”

I looked down at two large pennies in my hand.

“…you can keep ’em.”

A low snort again rang out…

The thin, black draped arm, was theatrically withdrawn to reveal the stones.

On the far-bank the sun was rising.

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Isle…

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 Standing in the waves,

looking out to the west,

a mysterious island appears on the horizon…

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We swam

and we swam

O’ how we swam

over the sea to the isle of Clear-Glass.

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We climbed

and we climbed

O’ how we climbed

up the sheer cliffs to the Shining Peak.

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We rolled

and we rolled

O’ how we rolled

down the steep slopes to the Sandy Beach.

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We ran

and we ran

O’ how we ran

across the flat sands to the Leaping Sea.

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Standing in the waves,

looking out to the west,

a mysterious island appears on the horizon…

Son of Chaos…

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There is a sound in my room.

It should be a commentary for the visuals which play upon the walls just below the ceiling but it warbles like a wayward tape machine in my soft, pink, newly formed ears.

All that remains of the story is a collection of mismatched noises, fake moans and tired, exasperated sighs.

Picking out the sense is a delicate task, nuances of truth a no-no, and of your sweet voice… nothing.

Just the words, daubed in graffiti red, dripping in splodges, down the white walls…

“Don’t do as my father does. Do as he says.”

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The Prisoner…

 

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Beauty dived into the bushes led by Prince then gasped as one of the thorns from the brambles traced the delicate skin of her inner arm.

The blood came in spurts and rivulets.

“No wait,” she cried, pausing to peer back through the leaves.

The first yelps of the Bull Mastiffs could be heard on the breeze and soon Hog-Headed guards would swarm the grounds.

“Strange…” She mused, “how even the most well appointed buildings can be used as a prison.”

Prince smiled, turned, and moved off, deeper into the wood…

Behind him fell a glistening trail of crimson.

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Free Passage?…

 

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‘It’s easy,’ she had said, ‘you believe the other-world to be greater than this one…’

‘Do I?’

‘You believe those that have passed can still see you…’

‘That’s true.’

‘…but you can’t see them?’

‘Not ordinarily, no.’

‘So there you go.’

Inescapable logic.

‘Yet, you believe life to be greater than death?’

‘I knew there would be a catch, one would certainly hope so.’

‘So what’s your problem? Get up, and walk forth… into life.’

Easy to say, much harder to do, but the corridor did look different…

The stone was gold-suffused-light.

Out of the old world into the blue…

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Walking with Grief…

 

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‘I cried like some grandmother, I wanted to tear my teeth out, I didn’t know what I wanted to do.’ – Walter E.Kurtz, Apocalypse Now.

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The ‘Good Colonel’ is here reacting to a particularly distressing, and at first sight vicious and meaningless, act of war.

However, a culture which can organise the systematic removal of the inoculated arms of its children must have a pretty clear conception of where it is at, of precisely what it means to be there, and also of just how to remain in that place.

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‘Good Grief, Charlie Brown…’ – Lucy, Peanuts.

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Can grief ever be good?

Charles M. Schulz clearly thought so.

The phrase runs like a litany through Charlie Brown’s debut T. V. outing casting noble failure on all his best efforts, and simultaneously highlighting the noble failure of all life to make any kind of a lasting impression.

Sometimes Schulz talks like a prophet and at other times like a lost soul.

With this particular ‘bon mot‘ he talks like both at the same time.

The meta-gag of this same episode is Charlie’s dream of sending the football soaring through the sky.

It never happens.

Lucy always removes the ball at the last.

It is Charlie who soars… to end… lying flat on his back, gazing up at the sky.

A living cadaver capable of pondering its own plight, and ours.

We have the terms ‘a proper Charlie’ and ‘a right Charlie’ for those unfortunates who end up looking like chumps in life’s Divine Comedy.

Are these phrases ‘Chaplin derived’ or much earlier?

King Charles I of England lost his head, and his life, for clinging on to an outmoded principle.

Scotland’s Bonnie Prince ended his life in ignominy and exile but even before that he was a Charlie.

A clown’s name for a clown’s game?

Perhaps.

That principle?

The Divine Right of Kings.

To do what?

To rule…

To rue the almighty hash the politicians have made of it?

No, not that, simply to rule.

To run the measure over the populace and let ‘the Gods’ or ‘the Fates’ decide, which they do anyway, ultimately…

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‘Death’s at the bottom of everything…’ – Major Calloway, The Third Man.

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