Thursday, 23 October 2014

A Brief Meditation On Time - Drabble

Time gathered and heaped behind glass. Gravity was pressing down on the pile, driving the future  through the tapered present. Tiny grains of now. I try and clinch one in my sight, but it is too swift. Rapidly  supplanted  by another impelled from above. And then another. I can’t fix on any of these fleeting instants as they drop on to the mound of the past beneath. Whereupon they become swallowed and buried and I spend a lifetime trying to disinter any one lost moment. The future chamber is empty. Inverting  the hourglass I recommence the ungraspable passage of time.

Wednesday, 15 October 2014

The Eyes Have it - 10 songs about the eyes

He gazes into her eyes and she into his and they burst into rapturous song about each other. Or something like that anyway...

Here's 10 songs extolling the eyes, or otherwise.

1) "Smoke Gets In Your Eyes"
I first heard this original version on the soundtrack for Dennis Potter's TV drama "Pennies From Heaven" and although Big Band music isn't really my thing, I bought the soundtrack. There's something really fragile about this version.

2) "A Pair Of Brown Eyes" - The Pogues
When the Pogues first happened along, everyone thought they were just Plastic Paddies from the local pub, but in time Shane MacGowan showed what a fabulous songwriter he was. This song may have signalled the public recognition of that fact.

3) "Dry Your Eyes" - The Streets
Cheeky Brummie chappy Mick Skinner pulls off the not inconsiderable feat of writing a song about heartbreak and even tries singing it rather than his usual rap patter. Well the chorus at least.

4) "Gypsy Eyes" - Jimi Hendrix

How good is this? Nothing more to say really.

5) "Gary Gilmore's Eyes" - The Adverts
Probably the most disconcerting song in this list, a mental patient projects himself into looking through the eyes of death row inmate Gary Gilmore as he is strapped in for his execution. Wonderful stuff.

6) "Don't It Make My Brown Eyes Blue" - Crystal Gayle
As with Big Band music, I really don't go for Country & western, but this is saved by not having that Southern twang that to me always seems to undermine any sincerity or intensity. This was a song from my childhood that always seemed to be on the radio, but I never owned it.

7) "She's Got Dickie Davies' Eyes" - Half Man Half Biscuit
Oh those comedy punsters with their then pop cultural references. if you didn't know, Dickie Davis was a TV sports presenter, with a bouffant, two-toned hair style that seemed to put him a world apart from the oafs and lumps he was fronting live coverage of. This is spoofing the Kim Carnes song "She's Got Bette Davis' Eyes". Ah simpler times...

8) "H Eyes" - The Ruts
Malcolm Owen the lead singer died of a heroin overdose. His songs veered from an extolling of the drug, to a total antipathy as here. Sadly missed, though this isn't one of his best creations (for that I suggest you check out "Love In Vain")

9) "Junior's Eyes" - Black Sabbath
Yep, suitably over the top as per usual with the Sab, but just about manages to preserve its dignity without sniggering.

10) "In Your Eyes" - Peter Gabriel
I am so relieved that Gabriel still has a career and Phil Collins doesn't. What the latter did to Genesis was a travesty!

And what do eyes do, or sad eyes anyway? Why, they cry tears of course. Here's a mini chart of songs about crying.

11) "Boys Don't Cry" - The Cure
Proof that The Cure were a pop band before they became a pseudo Goth pop band if you see what I mean. And that they didn't take themselves too seriously as shown by the substitution of lookalike kids for the band members in this vid. Love it.

12) "Cry Me A River" - Julie London
Now this, rather than a C&W singer is more my idea of a chanteuse. Sorry Crystal

13) "So Many Tears" - Tupac Shakur
Not just a thug living a Thug's Life, but there is genuine sentiment in this song. Sounds like az man who knew it was only a question of time before he joined the list of fatalities.

14) "None A Jah's Children No Cry" - Ras Michael & The Sons Of Negus
What a voice! Man I wish I'd been at that concert.

15) "96 Tears" - Question Marks & The Mysterians
Hey I'm a sucker for hammy hammond organ chops

Tuesday, 7 October 2014

Night Vision - Friday Flash


He pressed his eye to the thermal imaging camera’s viewfinder and peered into the distance through the flimsy curtains of the house opposite. Satisfied the optic was correctly appointed, he addressed his laptop monitor. Moving blobs of curdled colour. Contour lines of heat seared by the camera’s penetrating photons and thence picked out in pixels on his screen. Stratified clots pulsing and seething, the iridescent masses of two convulsing human beings.

He knew the outline of one of those forms intimately, yet he couldn't discern it from the other at all. They were too amorphous in their shifting stratified chroma. Hotspots (or cold spots) writhed in the centre of the two bodies. Shading into paler at the peripheries. Ectoplasmic as they squirmed and thrashed. Two bloated worms under his microscope. The heart and viscera eclipsed within the dark shades, the flimsy muscle and tendons hollowed out in the lighter complexions. Her dark heart possessed, it was hard to credit it was actually her in the room there.

Light didn’t code for sex, yet here one ranged through all the blue shades of the spectrum, while the other all the reds. Differing wavelengths, Dopplering away one from the other? Yet the two coagulations of colour were certainly proximate to one another. Where discrete fascicles overlay each other, the blue-red didn’t fuse into green. Each preserved its swirling integrity. A curvilinear puce yin and a teal yang. Or vice versa. Was it possible that she was blue with frigidity towards the man in there? Perhaps he was the one callously aloof towards her, but then his own dander raised as he thought of the monster just using her for his own ends. He returned to refocus the camera lens.

He resumed his gaze at the monitor. The heaving shapes looked like agar cultures in a giant square bed of a petri dish. These two bacteria, heaped twin bacillus cultures. Agglomerating. But not reproducing. It was as if another entity was walking through her body, working through it. Emptying it. Slowly eviscerating her. But then the pith hardened and reformed and grew bigger. A burst of passion perhaps, inflating the dark area. The cold-hotspot. He mustn't let his own emotions saturate their respective tints. Adulterating their complexions which otherwise might be far more complementary. The forms looked pregnant with another inside. Pregnant with each other perhaps? Swelling together. No longer possible even to determine dorsal from anterior. An infant’s shapeless painting. No longer human. The beast with two backs. With a single shot he could rupture those chromatic borders, bleed red into blue into red. Dark into light into crowning dark. 

But what if she had been similarly hued within his own embrace? He throbbing volcanic shades of red, her all ice-cool blue of detachment? A crystal sapphire of flinty indifference towards him. He had to know. He had to find out for himself. He had to get inside that house, pull the man off her and take his place. Then he would return here and consult the colour chart for her answer. For her true colours.

Wednesday, 1 October 2014

The Gift That Keeps On Giving - Flash Story

JANUARY: To see in the New Year and to prevent her head turning and casting a roving eye, I bought her a heavy choke chain necklace

FEBRUARY: For the designated month of love, I splashed out on pearl drop earrings

MARCH: Easter came early this year as did my beneficence, since her egg was a Fabergé one

APRIL: Ducking inside from a particularly squally Spring shower, I found myself imprisoned in a jewellers and could only secure our freedom through the purchase of a gold (contra-) armband

MAY: For my faerie queen I bought her a filigreed wreath, albeit it more closely approximated a diadem. Actually it was a diadem

JUNE: Flaming June and another coruscation of light refracted off gem facets. This time a diamond encrusted watch. Yet still she was forever late, perhaps getting lost in gazing at the diamonds and losing track of time

JULY: To prepare for our Summer travels, she had to get her accessories in order for our evenings out. Several handbags were purchased in different materials while I silently implored there to be no crocodiles or snakes where we were heading for surely we would incense these animal gods by culling their progeny and then flouting the fact

AUGUST: I had anticipated an expensive Caribbean holiday to suffice for outlay this month, but she insisted on a memento of the trip and that meant some expensive pearls which may or may not have been locally sourced. Then there was the 'small' gift from the Duty Free, just to exploit the tax situation on offer, because it would be remiss not to.

SEPTEMBER: I was given a month off for good behaviour. However I was exhorted to make a sizeable donation to her pet charity for pets

OCTOBER: I didn't know she was Jewish, no matter how much she had strayed from that particular faith. They apparently have four different new years and this month saw not only one of them, but the most significant. Even though it was the month of atonement and expiation and a laying bare, so that on the High Holy day itself leather shoes are not permitted as man is not to raise himself above the beast. She purged all her footwear and after the ceremonies were over, we had to go out and restock her wardrobe for an entire array of soles

NOVEMBER: Arrogating as many holidays as humanly possible, we were also marked to honour Thanksgiving and more importantly the start of the headlong rush to shop. I had to show my gratitude with a generous purchase of a bracelet bedecked with precious stones. I was a tad charmless in the store I admit.

DECEMBER: And what did Santa bring her for Christmas? Why an eternity ring of course. A same- again for next year and all years thereafter cast iron platinum plated guarantee. And what did he bring for me? A pair of fur-lined handcuffs.