Posts Tagged ‘masks’


What we refuse to see, we dream.
What we refuse to dream, grows strong.
The roots and stones we rest on, groan.
By day and night our laborious weight increases.
Mass and energy, the great fall, the future rise.
Reconstructed are our histories, our reasons.

It is the bones that remain.
It is the bones we clothe
With fragments of colour,
Rouge and tinsel.
They mock us who
Do not delight in story
(Failing to see they, too, live enfictioned).

The essentials of life are child-like.
Delightful is the minute and the hour of silence.
Sustaining is the simple breath, the still gaze.
Listen, not even the stars, not even they, shuffle nor stir:
The middle of the night coagulating cold.

No thing can be blamed for this,
No thing blessed.
No distinction, no judgement.
An infinite web of choosing there is,
An eternity of outcomes.
Each path, unsigned, is sought out,
No goal but a calling home.

We have lost elegance.
We have lost the subtle shades.
Our cochlear spirals numbed
In loud foolishness, indocrinated false memories.
Sleight of hand – the key always was and will be, distraction.
Watch the bright light, the movement of the shiny.
The doctrine of no ghosts, neither holy nor profane.

The bones.
It is the bones that shape us.
The bones of the ancestors,
The bones of the children,
The hidden, red-marrowed, singing bones
Inside us.
Mortice and tennon, ball, socket,
Vessel, rope, sinew, glistening cartilage.
The slide and pull of grace.
The dance of staying in one place,
( an interchange of coming and going, being and forgetting to be).

What stirs us,
(I mean to say),
Is the equation of balance.
Number clothed in colour,
Colour clothed in light,
Light clothed in philosophy,
A weighing and positioning of fulcra.
Forgetting that stillness
Is not absence
But presence.

Holographic ideogram,
Mala, a string of meaning,
Where things slip between names,
Where a blink sees more than.
Circumstantial, peripheral,
Ephemeral shall I be.
Beams and motes –
A matter of simple perspective.
The opposite must also be true to itself.

The grinding down of bones,
A fertilising dust.
Tears frozen and thawed,
The watering of life.
Turn out the light, dear,
The stars shall be enough.


There is little logic in the arts of Christmas, nor is there any one cultural imprint. It is a mish-mash of archetypes and long-loved mysterious imagery. Thus this wandering of thought and layering of idea that flowed from finger to page this morning…… Reaching and goodness and redemption though, must surely be worthy ideals to construct neural pathways around. Seasons greetings to all and all.

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My name is
‘far from home’

My name is
‘forgotten, lost,

I name myself
Under all the names
Others have bestowed.
I name myself the seed
The root, the star
Hid by cloud.

I name myself
‘moonlight on roofs’,
Hugged hollowness,
Footsteps echoing.

I name myself
‘mystery, scribble,
Mistaken meaning,
A long road alone.

I name myself
‘roaring voice,
Bitterness, waker’
Too polite to manifest
World’s joy in wrath.

I name myself
‘uncertainty principle,
Void, precipice’.
Carrying a carapace,
A studied, practiced armour.

I name myself
‘foolish mirror,
Cascading breath,
Contusion of thought,
A persistence of error,
Circuitous conclusion,
Stumbled silence.

I name myself
‘No one is alone,
Wedded to their shadow’
Given form, formed,
Framed, fragmented.
By their shade
shall ye know them.

I name myself
‘rapture, remote view,
Releaser, pinion,
Branch, web, slurry’.
A cascade of chivied cells
Unconcerned, nested.

I name myself
‘shattered, frozen,
Shard spinning,
Glint and gone.

Each name an edge,
An arrived at limit,
A turning away.

Each, a thin ledge
Gratefully clung to,
A place to leap from.

I name myself
‘not object, not subject.’
I name myself
‘vowel’ with no
Restraining consonant,
A howl,
No glottal stop.

The sound of morning.
The sound of evening.
I call myself


( the sketch is for a silver pendant i am designing: dragon dance. Sort of sums up flaming throught the void that these words also evoke, I think)

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The convention will be
To write of oneself
In the third person
As if it bestows some sense
Of authority:
The speaker is not I,
But a distant, more prudent eye
With sound judgement
And quiet discretion.

Avoid the possibility
Of monotheistic, dictatorial
Rant, the deus ex machina,
Spinning conclusions,
Brooking no opposites,
Constraining loose ends,
Sweeping inconsistencies
And paradox beneath
Reality’s rug.

Avoid the diamond bright,
But fracturing personal:
Become object, steady,
Measurable, a round peg
In a round hole,
Unthreatening, unsurprising,
Tamed, but, of course,
A valuable asset
To add to one’s library.

He thinks,
Nay, considers
(as it more calmly seems),
Or she, or it,
Is more properly
A they:
An Olympus of Many,
Peaks and troughs,
Conflicting, railing,
Boozing, boasting,
Plotting, muttering.
A hall of mirrors
Where the entrance was lost
A long time ago
And the exit, not even considered
Whilst so much fun is being had.

Microcosm of a medieval cosmology.
Replete, ornamented,
With intriguing pornographies
Of demons,
Scurrying from dark corner
To dark corner.
A few tedious angels
Sapped of backbone,
Whining, probably vegan.
Limp handshakes,
Postal workers of petulant deities,
Busybody do-nothings,
Front-of-house cosmeticians,
So very nice, so very polite.

They do not seem
To get an equal say, these legions
Of the backstage crew:
They may regret the day
They failed to overthrow
The uneasy status quo,
Voted in a nobody
To demark their presence
In the world.
All these front men,
These politicians,
So well mannered, so reasonable,
So sane.

The artist believes,
The author believes,
His mission, his vision,
His seminal works, his art,
Critical acclaim for, original message,
Ouevre,( my God: ouevre),
The watching gods would weep
If they were not crying
With laughter.
Same old, same old.

The Palace of Memory
Desolate, inhabitants silent,
Turned to stone.
Emperor’s new clothes
( the sheen of language,
This cut of the cloth of meaning),
Vaporous, ubiquitous.
The waste land,
Haunted by skeletons,
Plagued by mediocre excuses,
Wiping out populations
Of bright, bright futures.
Roads not taken.
Caution never, ever
Cast to any wind.

I speak for my constituents
(whilst ignoring their precise
And idiosyncratic wishes),
Loving the sound of my own voice.
We are loving that new look,
So you, so suave!
It is us,
The ones that placed you as our mask.
The many that flicker
Behind the facade,
That ruffle the petticoats,
That question in quiet tones,
Casting eyes heavenwards.
This was never the plan…..


Few readers, I think, will be aware that publishing houses expect an author to write their own biography and jacket blurbs. The assumption is that some benign and well-versed critic or literary lumina has taken a few precious moments to do an old friend a favour….

Knowing this, there can be a kind of bleak humour involved in seeing how pompous and delusional, or how tongue-in-cheek, a self-portrayal may be.

This, together with an interesting look at the political evolution of theologies and theological entities by R.L. Culpeper, created a soup of ideas that is still eructating around a fermenting brain. ( the madness may continue….)


This is a drawing of an Iron Age Celtic coin design. Part of an interesting group that is sometimes linked to a Classical commentator’s description of the progenitor god, Ogmios who is pictured as one whose followers are linked to him by the golden chains of eloquence. A series of coin images from Brittany show a large profile head surrounded by other small heads linked by rope or chain. Ogmios is supposed, though it could also refer to head-hunting, tribal obligations, or spirit helpers/ancestors. As they must have been magically approved, if not created, by the druid intelligensia, I am wondering now whether such images at least on one level, reflect the understanding of the levels of self/soul/spirit that would no doubt emerge from the long years of poetical and memory-based meditations and studies, which even impressed the Classical Greek philosophers.
This image seems to be a refinement on that series and seems to show a masking of one by another

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