Tag Archives: Norwich

Night shuffle

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Play.

I did not mean to walk your streets tonight, but I did. I walked past your defences, your missing kind, your barely hidden happiness, as someone held me and helped me up.

Skip.

Walls of colour, from A to H, spread themselves before me, leading to hues of pink, gold, oxidized bronze. Your trees hold twinkling fruits, and I still don’t know how to be alone.

Skip.

No silver, no wick, no weaving. The flint is still there, stubborn and content. Glint of glass walls further to one side, no one reading, seasons change, people fall, hearts beat.

Skip.

Is there something I should know? Hall after hall you still keep secrets, even in the open, hardly hidden, standing tall in stone and tar. Bridges need crossing.

Skip.

Before the other side, some of your plainness shows, and still manages to pluck, softly, strings that had settled, gently. You’re the lucky one, you caused it.

Skip.

Orion, inevitably on your sky. Fairy lights, also inevitably, on your skyline. Friends intermittently on your roads, this road. Some have come home, some on your back.

Skip.

It’s getting cold. I’m getting cold. Walk with me some more, first. A ghost above me, pasts beside me, a door just ahead. Am I ever coming back for you..?

…skip.

(Bonus track: No words left after all that. Just step forward, right or wrong foot, doesn’t matter. Time to walk again. Time to set out and find the next one. I might be back.)

Fossil Fool

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In the age of the son of Dick
dinosaurs roamed the earth again
funneled and shovelled into rooms of steel and of brick,
grooming in new taxes, fees and contributions
looming over tracks of grey grey grey…

In the age of the son of Dick
Shellfishness was on the rise
oil say – yeah, back to back
to the sound of beating drums
a black hum rising from
your interests – only green concern
is what you make when you burn.

In the age of the son of Dick
we fly our flags with pride
wear our badges, sound our voices
we have nothing to hide, Dave
and it’s not just ‘save the planet’:
We cry divest, divest, divest!
Do not feign interest, Dave
you’ve turned to fossil,
you look like a fool.
The solution? Divest.
Because we won’t rest tonight
we won’t rest tomorrow
we will burrow into your grey
with our orange – and we have no rhyme
but plenty of reasons.
We’re here to stay as long as we have to
as long as it takes, Dave,
until you say – we do different.

Partially improvised piece in occasion of the UEA Fossil Free 26-hour occupation. Read more about it here.

Ghostwriters

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They were huddled in the same room, as if in a crooked nest, some scribbling away, some, admittedly, were typing on small keyboards. At seemingly regular intervals, they would silently squabble as if their worlds mattered more than any of the others. It was a peculiar circle, with more sharp angles than you might envisage – you could feel the tingling tension zig-zagging around the table. There were some lights, but their warmth felt unsure, tentative, even scared of shining too bright, as the shadows would only grow deeper as a result. The trickling noise of tapping on the tables, the clicking of pens, keyboards, thin fingers scuttling across the surfaces, was only interrupted – almost as if on a loop – by a peculiar but all too familiar moan. It would hang in the air for a handful of seconds, haunting all present company, lingering just enough to become uncomfortable, only to slowly dissipate into the incessant scritching on paper, the constant clicking sound of keys.

No eyes looked up, no contact made between the figures in the circle, no movement other than what required for the production of more work, more words, more paper, more screens, more, more, more. Lines building upon lines, stories stacked up precariously and vanishing to other rooms, to other – much wider, much louder, much livelier – worlds.

 

Outside the building, in the growing chill of that autumn night, people passed by, entirely oblivious to the figures inside. It was as if they weren’t really there after all.

IMG_4145

NaPoWriMo 2015 Day 28 – Notes

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I* once knew a young man* in Norwich
who enjoyed** teaching classes*** in college****
I liked a good rhyme*****
if a few at a time******
flurb******* flergle flarg fliggle floridgh********

—-

*actually same person
**broadly
***seminars
****university
*****debatable, both the good and the liking
******is this even English
*******..wha?
********You just gave up, didn’t you?°
[°but you rhymed, well done. I guess.]

Sides

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There is a square in the town
in the city where she lives
which isn’t.
It has three sides
of flagstone and brick
and then two more: an inside
and outside.
The inside feels, for all intents and purposes,
like flagstone and brick,
like sandstone and rock,
like concrete and mud.
The outside feels different.

There is a man on a bridge
in the city where she lives
who draws his life day after night
fighting the creatures on one side
and the other.
He knows the flagstone and brick
of the outside and inside
he knows the stars and sky.

There is a woman in a room
in a house in the city where she lives
who looks like a page from a book
but only for one day, one day in the year.
She knows the concrete and sweat
of the inside and outside
she knows the leather and print.

There is a book, there is a room
there is a bridge, there is a sky
They are the outside of the square
which is not a square in one
but multiple cities
of France of England of Morocco
and yet of brick and stone
and of stars and sky
of outside and of inside.

NaPoWriMo Day 8 – Falling

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September,
and the clocks strike autumn.

She stands, alone
as the evening lingers
for a little while longer
before submitting, fully, to dark.
The snailing pavements
of streets around her
remain quiet
in the dimming light.

She walks, alone.
Whenever she would visit
time simply stopped.
And yet, this once,
she watches the walls peel
in dregs and flakes of
leftover summer days.
The majesty of stone
of a faith now crumbling.

She stops, alone,
to look at the creatures,
still on their towers,
watching upon the city
below them, a rhapsody
sounding through their wings
as the wind blows through.

She smiles, alone,
at the memories of past
seasons, lost and regained
with another closed circle.
Different feelings,
tastes and smells,
from different places.

And this is where she stays.
As the ageless faces
of clocks remain silent,
as the austere backs
of walls light up,
as the grave wings
of stone rest,
we leave her here
alone.

Dance

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Not summer, but winter.
Not sunset, but dawn.
The sound is lost
but it’s what I see
that matters.

My arms branch out
as I try to grasp
the first wave of light.
My thoughts reach out
as I let that
particular feeling embrace me.
I may not walk, nor move
but I dance, oh how I dance.

I sway to the black and the white
shaking my crown of sharp silver.
I sway to the white and the black
in my slowly fading dance.
And I feel the sounds
getting lost
in a matter of seconds.

So I stand.
In winter, at dawn,
before the world wakes.

Another Anecdote

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I placed a jar in Norwich
but round it was, and rolled downhill.
It made quite a mess
as it fell.

The road rode up, around and into it
it became, for a moment, a creature of wild.
The jar lay shattered on the ground
shards glimmering and sharp.

It lay around everywhere
but not grey and not bare.
The light playing with its glass
changed everything in that street.

——
Anecdote of the Jar

I placed a jar in Tennessee,
And round it was, upon a hill.
It made the slovenly wilderness
Surround that hill.

The wilderness rose up to it,
And sprawled around, no longer wild.
The jar was round upon the ground
And tall and of a port in air.

It took dominion every where.
The jar was gray and bare.
It did not give of bird or bush,
Like nothing else in Tennessee.

Wallace Stevens

Beginnings

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In this place, even birds are different.
They seem to hobble, rather than hop.
Although majesty cannot be measured
I cannot help but think of them as old dukes
ruffling their cuffs of feathers, their coats of
black dusty velvet, croaking of times past
when they could have been royalty.

In this place, even spiders are different.
They have received ninja training.
Open your window, my friend, you’ll see
how fast they can link wall to window,
window to tree, tree to washing line,
washing line to clothes. They cling to you
as you dress, undress and crawl into bed.

In this place, even the weather is different.
At first you would think that mizzle
replaces raining, mist, fog, and storms.
Then in just under an hour
the equivalent of a season’s weather-load
unfolds, envelops you with sun, wind, heat and cold.
Confusing you, and itself, then changes its mind, again.

In this place, the University of Endless Acronyms,
nothing is the same, and yet…
In this place I’ll create another story.
Different, yes, but still my own.

(The first product of the first CWS workshop)