Monday, July 21, 2008
Skids and Blurps
I cannot really think clearly due to being surrounded by gamers making bleeps and skids and blurps and chatting about their image maps, viruses, about re-installing, installing; “Where is the Fog?” “Who downloaded the Fog?”, all around me the skid of pixellated cars. The ones that screech around the corners ride on meticulously constructed roads and when they pass a certain point in the landscape a simple tune screeches quietly from the speakers with the signal “SCORE TWO POINTS” centrally aligned on the two inch screen.
We are to be infantilised. We are hoarded into these rooms that even though air conditioned have the feeling of a prison about them. We are not given anything to do. Unfortunately for the supervisors there is the internet so most of we so called “clients” spend time playing virtual snooker, Umming and arring, grinning into the screen and acting as if looking at a successful incentive award scheme. Admin staff clomp to and fro, trying to avert their attention, appearing like rabbits from holes, flitting from secluded office to office, chatting, mixing, mingling, in an effort to normalise the experience. Concentrating on the abstractions of filing and shuffling, hiding inside of paperwork systems, shielding themselves with the aid of the open lid of a photocopier, glancing occasionally at the clock, attempting to kill time.
Sunday, June 08, 2008
Out and About
Surrounded by the twitter and sliding whistles of hidden birds. The waving meadow sprinkled with buttercups. I sit, on an old wooden log, long dead, gilded like the elegant decoration of a tall mans tomb by a group of energetic nettles. They carry on guarding even as I sit here trying to stamp them out in case I get stung on my exposed legs. The ground is cracked and at selected times the odd beetle or ant crawls up from it's hideaway to give me a glance.
Whilst dangling from a tree lavishly, like a lion or leopard in the shade, an ant crawls up wild terrain of my index finger. Held up by the cross of branches, I angle my head to caste gaze across the hills and valley. Little toy houses bunch together amongst groups of pimply trees. It could be 1969, it could be a secret place. It could be for a Secret Seven. But I just sit in a natural seat, watching the ant crawl all over my white rectangle like it were football pitch, testing the grounds. The sun disappears, now just a luminescent glow fading towards the skyline. A coolness draws down on me and the buttercups go still. Telephone poles turn dark grey and I turn into just another shadow surrounding a log. The ant is blown off my hand. I elongate my legs and proceed to lurch over the long grass towards the dark corner of the field.
Tuesday, February 26, 2008
The wind is rushing about outside and I enjoy closing the windows to it. It quietens to a dull whistling breeze shifting the curtains slightly. I like the quietness; I like it that you can hear every noise as though inside a film, the creek of the floor and the drip of the piping outside. I turn off lights and turn small lamps on. Still, like candles, the lamps spray shadows across the magnolia paintwork. Everything adjusts to the new ambiance which is soft and delicate. As fine and outlined as I want them to be, devoid of any description from outside. At night the real-time worries, plans and purposeful noises fade and all that is left are the shapes of things when left with no purpose. The wind and the rain patter on the streets. The night is crowded out.
My place is here in my bed, the covers surrounding. The whole scene is straight out of some tale, with a knock at the door, my eye darting towards the handle; streams of water flowing through the dark streets. Putting my arm out and hanging onto passing lamp-posts. Being swirled around corners and being swept down into underground stations platforms.
Monday, January 07, 2008
Dreaming of Sounds
Laughter in The Woods
Monday, October 22, 2007
Purgatory (Treasure Island)
As I stand and think at the threshold to my new life I look down noticing the numerous books being lowered by crane onto the ferry at the end of the now distant waters. Merrily the boat chuffs its smoke at my very calling. I wave. The villagers peered over the moat walls. Strangely they are allowing me to make my voyage unharmed this time and even my luggage seems all intact by the binoculars. I see no tears nor bent spines. Glory it will be to unpack my great discoveries. Miraculously they have already rid my investment of corrugated Amazon card wrapping. Pity that, I was so looking forward to doing it myself.
Sunday, October 21, 2007
The Empty Space
Put those things, those events, those misfortunate happenings, those guilt inducing memories all together into a lockable box. Put that box inside another box. Then into another larger box. Then inside another this time with a turn-dial lock. Shut it away inside a cupboard. Then put that cupboard inside another cupboard and then another cupboard. Place the cupboard in the corner of a room out of the way. Ignore the cupboard. Do not bring the cupboard up in conversation. You find that you begin using that particular room more and more infrequently. Even though it is the natural to enter this room as one enters at the front door you still guide them past. Unintentionally you in part create the mystery of that room, the door, it's locked nature; what is it locked for, what is going on in that room? Where do you sleep, Is that your bedroom? No it is just the work room; "Clive likes to keep it locked as it contains many of his expensive tools". It becomes generally know that the door must not be opened. "Oh, Bridget’s house with the door, the door house, the crazy house!" Bridget now smiles, portraying no effects of stress or worry. She guides visitors into the kitchen. “A cup of tea? A scone? Have you seen the weather?" Phew it's not even December, hopefully not another cold one like last time."
Friday, May 18, 2007
On The Sofa
My guitar is leaning and waiting against the middle of the sofa. The stereo is crunched up between a queue of disinterested comic books. Plants grow leaf by slowly developing leaf. Bits of drawing material sit together on crispy layout paper next to me. I can see where I have sketched lines into the underside. Disks and history books clutter down the sides of cushions into the valley, the light sky glinting on their sides. No homes are fully showing through the window frames as usuall, their horizontals and verticals edging casually around. Lines upon lines of slate cutting into the isometric facade of weathered rectangles. Best to go and sleep, shift things out of the way, dive away under the mass of covers, protect myself from the web of encroaching things.
Saturday, April 14, 2007
The phone rang and afterwards there was a long silence. Only marching soldiers are heard outside an open window. A fresh breeze blows the grey curtain away from its resting place on the green ledge.
Chief Commander Roberts instructs his fellow sergeants to stand to attention. "Welcome to the new world men, future generations will thank us when all is said and done, but remember this; tell them only the good things, the career prospects, the life of action, helping of poor and underprivileged refugees like, not killing them or anything nor manipulating their plight for queen and country and OKay, got that, eh Mr Jones? (Shouting in Jones’s ear) Have you got that Mr Jones I say (eyeing him closely, faces nearly touching). Superintendent Jones here, he is the company historian, isn’t you Mr Jones, “Yes Sir” who is employed to sort out everything out nice and tidily isn’t he, Mr Jones, heh. “Yes sir.” (Turning at last towards the lined up men, standing to attention) Go give it your best boys. We are outmoded. We are cannon fodder. When I die I will just be replaced by another? We will be heroes when we get it, typical of the M.O.D. that one, all their spin in’ it? Our helmets are made of cardboard and tin, our armoured vehicles fitted out with not enough protection for all the dangerous situations that they place us in. Yet men, we shall never complain, those are orders, but just remember, you've signed up for five years. Just thought I’d chuck that last one in to cheer the guys up, heh. Right, Fall out.
Friday, April 13, 2007
True bombs never land on our home towns. No missiles will land on our domiciles. Then there are the so called terrorist projectiles, passed through hands, placed secretly onto trains, riding with the passengers, cosying up to and resting against your under-sides. Every journey you get closer to bombs. Bombs, bombs everywhere you look. No bomb is a bomb until a bomber decides, then you get fragments all inside you and over you, hundreds and thousands of metallic messages. The evil menace then becomes flashed up on many news reels, political campaigns run with it, documentary retrospectives inform you about it, loosing its impact, loosing its steel. But there are always more out ready to re-new their charge, competing with the terror exchange; learning from experience, hiding on your journey home, watching where you rest and where you clatter on your computer desk. You think bombs can go flying and come to rest, in your tea and down your string vest. You fidget and scratch but that itch is still there. Itch, itch, itch, and then boom bam boom! Another person’s life is, sadly, and needlessly, over too soon.
The Policeman Who Fell to Earth
There is a new Mad Max film coming out. Set again in the desert at an unspecified time in the future and gangs roam the deserted landscape, adrenaline pumped and mega-death music blasting through their ears. In this version the police are the enemy, arrived recently from a distant planet, desperate for fuel and economic resources, with the aim of seizing control of earth and 'policing' the occupants into submission. Whilst siphoning off the worlds resources the bogus police demand legitimacy for their actions from the various tribes in the area, seeking to divide and rule they instigate a civil war amongst the various ethnic populations, arming and instructing various sides in order to establish their version of 'stability', i.e; the illusion that they, the alien police are a force for order and peace. The Alien police sit back and watch as the populace war with each other instead of with their own forces, being unable themselves to fend off a full scale rebelion. They want a national government on their terms, not the local populations, to secure their dominance of this vital resource area in the Universe. Until this happens no nationalism (dissidence) is allowed to sprout and grow out of control. Popular opinion is important to the these police, both on earth and on their own distant planet as this supports their legitimacy as a force of good. To this end the media is tightly controlled so as to 'shield' the public from the truth of what 'our brave men' are doing and why they are doing it. The 'police' are working towards 'democracy' and liberation for the earths people.
A surgical strike. They write their names on the bombs that roll out on the carpet, falling finally, ultimately, gloriously, across the towns and cities and people, not having time to run to the hills, to deny the enemy their assets. Admittedly some confusion was caused by areas by incontinent ordnance, the Germans and the Italians, oops sorry, the Americans and the British, unable by some logistical error to deliver their missiles to theatre on time or in the correct localities. Media outlets confirm: eighty percent total collateral damage.
The coalition verges on collapse with 'international' allies held back by an angry public at home. There will only be small demonstrations around the world reports government channels, only ten percent turn out, the rest staying at home and believing the news that we tell them on their TV sets; of heroes saving captives from nasty totalitarian leaders, whom we must hang, of the success of democracy and the failure of terror, of there being winners and losers and enhanced credibility.
Thursday, April 12, 2007
It began as a normal office; large windows and areas of sectioned flooring running the whole length the ground level, rooms set aside for the purposes of induction and basic training, with a main reception at the end of a long hall. All tables and chairs are cleared, replaced by hard wearing de-constructible types, easy to fix, looking just like the normal emptied out business spaces, now being been transformed for quite a different purpose. Squared intersections hide large winding snakes of packed electrical wire connecting to hidden cameras, security alarm systems and air conditioning units. They exit at flap-up electric socket covers every few meters. Water alarm sensors flash, remote controls beep, push button speakers are checked for use at entries and exits, and are all working well, ready to receive, to accept the first intake, the sixty odd people estimated to be travelling from all over the county that week.
Clients in their homes, nervous about the induction procedure, phoned in to check on the correct times; “no need to bring anything, just yourselves, alright Mr Hargreaves, Miss Plummory, Amy Inglewood, Trevor Harp, Billy Name, make sure you get here fifteen minutes early, it pays to be early.” The phone clunked down. A shrill shiver perhaps running down their spines, “that’s what they think, they think we’re just cattle to be herded around, prodded and poked around into stiles!”
“She, he, is for CDG!” ran the company saying. With quiet excitement, over the photocopier or printing machine, letting a laugh or a shared giggle mix with the mechanical paper shifter or the hoarse scanner repetitively etching A4 copies into the tray. The two women processing new applicants looked forward to the change of faces, the new clients for the corporation to guide towards righteousness, a valued place on earth. Satisfied in their world of official social security make believe, incarcerated high up there on the tenth floor of the work and pension’s administration office building. “Hey, look at him, do you think you’d give him’ a job - I wouldn’t give him a job (giggle), glancing at the latest mug shot to be positioned onto the A4 glass.
Certain people would disappear overnight from their homes. Nobody in the community knew where they went. “They’re not missed” neighbours would say. The T.V. news proudly proclaimed low government figures for the month. People were overlooked, not thought about, vanished from local towns and villages, sent to special camps, travel paid, told by officials that they are to receive special employment training. “Get there on time, don’t be late. We know you’re not used to getting up so early so remember to set your clock for nine. Time waits for no man; we'll give you extra money at a fixed rate.” The phone went down clunk.
Friday, December 22, 2006
Waiting for the fangs of time to sink into my vital veins, cutting off all supply. Hands are numb and are no longer able to draw my eyes open. The front of my head closes down with a slide of a bolt and a clang of metal that rings out across the floor. My Jawbone cracks and a zip slashes across my mouth.
Now I am thrown across a cold table, casually discarded, hands, elbows and feet over the edge. Then slapped to the ground. Gravity stamps on my stitched and bloody carcass as it flails about ridiculously on the floor.
Specks of rain hit the fire, sending sparks. Closer now, to burning in hell.
A hollow wind blows through the shattered glass. Rain flows with it, trampling steadily across the hallway and into my room, drenching the richly woven carpet, filling it up like a swimming pool, weighing the carpet down, threatening to submerge the carcass of meat. Some material underneath breaks and falls into the black, as if through a mirror, propelled like a magnetic lump of carbon into an endless pit. There, the other fallen lay about, some will never have left, the oldest now moulded into stones.
Acrid air eats into my constricted lungs. Grit grinds into my teeth to dust. My hair travels across the sand, held up by insects
Saturday, November 25, 2006
Behind Closed Doors
We live with the objects of our past; the worn out toys, ornaments that decorate the ledges and mantles of our rooms. Old clothes that remain at the end of the racks, compressed into the corners of our second-hand drawers. Items worn from trundling around with us everywhere, shuffling around from one rental room to another.
Books are piled up to keep the door open or to hold the computer screen at head height, else leaned on to form a shelf. These things induce the hoarders’ guilt of not wanting to give away or borrow for fear of loosing; feeling the urge to keep but not actually re-read. We create a familiar space, maintaining the order of a familiar world. Perhaps I delude myself that they will have some use some day in the future when I am dead and buried and gone.
Uncaring men or women wearing government uniforms will in the end be allowed to enter and clean the rooms, rendering my complex storage system that I have striven tirelessly to construct over the years meaningless. Unmarked trucks and cars will drive up next to the black mark scribbled on my door. A silhouette of cut-out people will be seen to fold out across the garden path, forming a chain. My things will trundle along from outstretched puppet arm to outstretched arm towards the back of the vehicles. When the job is done the men retract themselves backwards, clinging on as the vehicle bounces them back up the hill and away.
Due to a continuous neglect of layers, objects sink gradually downwards. They submerge and are gradually compressed into a peat bog of time. Nobody but the owner can prevent this process from happening. Particles dissolve to form a thick encrusted layer at the bottom. Dark figures pass through the drawers and cabinets snatching items and passing them from hand to hand, piling them up into a mountain of things. The tables finally begin to break, crumbling under the inevitable force of gravity; the slow motion demolition of a tower block, wavering awkwardly before finally crashing to the ground. What looks like a cloud of volcanic dust is in fact millions upon millions of human hairs drifts up, forming a dense cloud that disperses its content across a the wide area, killing the nutrients in the soil, spoiling the vegetation, killing the cattle for miles around.