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blues lovin’ fools.

9 Oct

Today was, for all kinds of reasons and many years ago, an important day in this life. I don’t have very many of those, and my way of dealing with momentousness is to find writing that will remind me of the day (so here we go again).


Out of the chaos of my doubt
And the chaos of my art
I turn to you inevitably
As the needle to the pole
Turn-as the cold brain to the soul
Turns in its uncertainty:
So I turn and long for you;
So I long for you, and turn
To the love that through my chaos
Burned a truth,
And lit my path.

— Peake

The poem is for someone without whom this blog would never have been conceived, let alone executed; he handles all the melancholy writer blues I invent in spades with remarkable aplomb (and then cleans up after me). Living with me is never easy, and heaven help anyone who does so voluntarily.

The songs are for laughs.

Parting Salvo.

8 Oct

As people I love and grew up with hit the merry mid ’20s, all one can be expected to do is to furnish them with poems in their revelry. This is the last hurrah for 2010 (well, as far as I remember; my memory is terrible at birthday-documentation.) This one is for someone whom, if I were cooler and less awkward around slang, I would call Sistah!

Things the world already knows about her: she’s a peake-geek with a romance (and tentacle porn) fixation. Things it doesn’t (plenty) were presumably left mysterious with sound reason, and we shall not dwell upon them.


I cannot give the reasons

I cannot give the reasons,
I can only sing the tunes:
the sadness of the seasons
the madness of the moons.

Pan, Mervyn Peake.

I cannot be didatic
or lucid, but I can
be quite obscure and practic-
ally marzipan

In gorgery and gushness,
and all that’s squishified.
My voice has all the lushness
of what I can’t abide.

And yet it has a beauty
most proud and terrible.
Denied to those whose duty
is to be cerebral.

Among the antlered mountains
I make my viscous way
and watch the sepia fountains
Throw up their lime-green spray.

Mervyn Peake.

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Verses to Apologize.

2 Oct

I am, it must be confessed, an enormous birthday spaz. I miss them in spades, and at length. These are not small transpositions- not by, say, a day, or even a week. I have been known to be off for months, calling people in June to wish them for February. I am liable to skip years entirely; and my more patient friends call to kindly remind me to wish them. It is this haphazard jerk within that all my birthday-posts were intended to restrain, for if something is part of my writing calendar I can’t possibly forget, right?

It was a sound plan. Well reasoned, and so far, well executed. Then my writing calendar terrified me so much I began to avoid it. Tomorrow, I told myself everyday, I will look and see what deadlines I have. Blip! Blip! went the radar, while the navigator napped. This post is thus almost a week late, so back I go to being a jerk. Happy birthday, bluefloppyhat. Without you this blog would have no art, and it thanks the universe with me that you are alive. I forgot because I am an ass, but I do love you so.

This be the Verse

They fuck you up, your mum and dad.
They may not mean to, but they do.
They fill you with the faults they had
And add some extra, just for you.

But they were fucked up in their turn
By fools in old-style hats and coats,
Who half the time were soppy-stern
And half at one another’s throats.

Man hands on misery to man.
It deepens like a coastal shelf.
Get out as early as you can,
And don’t have any kids yourself.

—- Larkin

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Lost Loves.

14 Aug

I am not, shall we say, circumspect in love. I fall hard, often, and stupid; and I try mask this with smirks and snark. I doubt I am ever successful. There is, for sure, a romantic bone, for I have all 206 of them. It must be a relief to the victims of my violent affections, thus, that I am only as ardent as I am fickle. But this post isn’t about my love life (I promise), which is booming and joyous, thank you for asking. I was explaining my OCD approach to love only in the service of the broader cause: why, unlike Konkona, I would’ve jumped Ranbir Kapoor approx. 206 times over the course of Wake Up, Sid. Well, if he weren’t such a dope and had a better sense of humour. Assuming, and it isn’t a far stretch, that I’m attracted to slacker types who find their inner genius by avoiding it, I would be incapable of keeping a game face on in the throes of early attraction, and this blog is the last place one need look to acquire some knowledge of shallow feelings. And he certainly wouldn’t clog my space were I not interested. Give me six months and a wet bathroom floor, and I have no problem keeping it in my pants. Which is why the chronology of Wake up, Sid perplexed me rather.

Before I watched the movie, I imagined that they dated somewhere along the way and then sensibly broke up: her moving on to the jazzy editor; him to the eccentric arms of a design intern or, in a fit of rare maturity, the pining friend. Where it lost me was the last mad dash of Epiphany Boy to Tell Drenched Girl. What, you have a Mac and no phone? However, I do have friends who blame the bombay monsoon for dispensing magic spells of romance, and I suppose they distilled a vial for the making of this movie. It isn’t the first time weather has had more agency in a script than both plot and character. Remember Tum Mile? As my friend Niru put it, it was so bad that you wished people would drown so you could leave the movie hall already (but Aisha was worse): well, Sid isn’t that awful, which is an achievement in Bollywood. And maybe a blues lovin’, hard drinkin’ journalist is waiting in the wings for when she gets a bit weary of the adolescent.

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A Dream of A Thousand Cats.

22 Jul

crazy cats all in a garden

Another of my friends turns older today, and this post is thus in honour of her. In the event you are getting a little sick of all these hurrah posts- it not my fault half my friends are Cancerian, and you can rest assured them posts will now cease for a while.  (I use the sun-sign only to classify.  I don’t believe in zodiac poofery. Tarot I am gullible enough to accept, but I will NOT be clubbed willy-nilly with a twelfth of mankind.)

It is further to let Interested Parties know that the great day of her birth is today, in case of a most predictable reticence on her part. It is also, shall we say, intended as fair warning. Happy birthday, Joni!

I have run out of clever birthday things to say, so this post is mostly poems and pictures involving cats. This is apt, for reasons that might appear apposite to folk aware of her only as the grandest bitch of us all (this is a compliment, as we well know, so hush outsider pansies).

Suffice it to say that the cat above is the only one I have ever met capable of curling up as definitively as Ms. Mistoffelees.

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