Tuesday, 29 September 2009

Diary of an unborn writer #31

I feel like I'm stretching wings but finding it difficult to leave the ground. Current social contacts I have with friends and co-workers have evolved in a way that keeps me down and redressing these takes a lot of energy. I don't feel my voice is equally heard at work and I'm puzzled as to why this is. Part of this is my sensitivity to being challenged. It knocks the confidence and the forum in which this is done makes it difficult to get subtle ideas across, and less space to defend them. Everything is safe, stable and uncreative. Hugely uncreative actually, which gives me little room to fly. I am considered a cage rattler and comments greeted in this way instead of being something that can benefit the group as is intended.

Coupled to this, I have a defense mechanism that kicks in whenever challenged. I jump into retreat rather than defending ideas. I have an innate belief that my point of view is shared and find it difficult to find a way to share ideas without being dogmatic. Confidence seems to be the key. Nevertheless, in this conservative setting, radicalism is not encouraged.

Emotionally the group is also a little low level and working together seems more about protecting each other than moving on the combined interest. There's not much of a perspective on what indeed is the combined interest - it's very narrow - and offering ideas perceived to be without its scope - ie broadening the field of view - are often shot down. Again, this has to do with improving my confidence in ideas put across.

I place a lot of importance on my ideas. Why? I think they are very good. I am able to see things that others aren't but often lack the quickness to describe this scope of detail beofre the point is shot down.

Meetings that are less like bunfights would help.

As would a change of situation. I'm not sure serving the wider corporate interest is my field. Especially on days like today

But your know what - I am damn tired of walking. I feel like I've been strugglig for weeks. Things keep happening - positive and negative - that shake me to my bones. I need some stable ground as time after time - I feel like I'm losing the plot.

I feel exceedingly isolated also. My mission is to become a big strong independent man, though at present I feel like an ice house. There is not one person that can relate to the things I experience except my guru - who is often out of reach.

I feel at sea and tumbling out of control often and rather than taking positive steps, I feel inclined to roll in a ball until it all fades away. I have expectation that this is not enough and that life demands my participation, but the burden of this crushes me more.

I feel my spiritual aspirations weigh more heavily than they enlighten. This is not quite true but I certainly apply more pressure to eevry day tasks than is necessary.

I wish I knew that there was some progress on the score of enlightenment. It's impossible and the psychological disintegration it involves is desired but makes for a wild ride.

I try not to dramatise as I write and intuitively, I know this period of wobble is flaking away uncertainty to stand in something deeper - that is the hateful-to-the-mind reality of absolute uncertainty and it's this I'm coming to understand. Until I get there though, I would like to record: the aches in my stomach, the whirling in my head and the mistrust of virtually every individual that I know.

Sunday, 27 September 2009

The word was influence she used and it ran through you like a hollow brick.

"I'm worried for the influence she has over you" referring to your Guru, which of course meant lack of influence from her. This is perilous for a woman seeking a relationship with a man. more so if she prided herself on immovability previously. There was a zone of yours that was beyond her reach and love seduced her to want to own it, though it was not necessary. He would have her, as totally as she would allow, though she could not accept that in him, lay all her passions and desires and to not be allowed to control them was for her the deepest self-betrayal.

Love left it quietly for a time, he softly whispered to himself, musing over a cup of coffee, alone in an apartment on a regular Sunday. Love left it quietly and then in loud thunder clashes made itself obvious to both of us, that in our deepest yearning, we find it impossible to break free.

Though more love, more peace than you have ever felt anywhere, and with her makes it an impossible goodbye.

Plot wagon #1

A world-wide millisecond tap on the world’s internet bank transfers siphons off billions of wealth disappeared to public eyes and resurrected in good will housing schemes worldwide.

Diary of an unborn writer # 30

The year was fire – this much is clear now and each of you burned up in different clothes, the scent of previous incarnations. The guise was studenthood – an impossible cliché of martyrdom for the cause of intellectual religion. Hygiene, morals, factual bases were sacrificed for the sake of the ideal. The ideal that smouldered in bones, was forever talked about but hid.

To the outside you were variously scum, oddballs, misfits and mysogonists and while each could well be applied these were masks for the embarrassment that somewhere three people gave a shit beyond overtures to fair-trade and recycling runs and allowed authenticity to shine as deep as cess pits of empty wine bottles and showers left standing with nine months of scum accumulating, magazines for toilet roll of gravy streaked across the kitchen wall, testament to abuse and profundity that saw beyond the daily chore.

The chores took the form of cigarettes and conversation, reading and painting. Each young man taking his course to its natural conclusion. The year was fire and burning though the pages of their learning, new lives were emerging, old ones falling into ruins. The fire burned anyone that stepped through the door, hence the nicknames and accusations of pretentiousness. If only they knew how seriously all of this was took. Drug dealers, psychopaths, trails of women of more or less mental composition. Each was fascinated, most revulsed and a few stayed along for the ride until it became too sincere to carry on.

Herman was the live wire, the devil with a hot poker to stick the behinds of any. Rowan was passive, seeing life beautifully but dwelling in a pit. Stephen had taken a conservative route until then, captivated by alternative living he had found it to be a husk. He was – with girlfriend and degree coming to an end at a loss to the motivation in his life and there took his tentative steps towards religion. All three were mystics in fact, as Rowan would later observe. Life moved for them in patterns and was coloured by swirls. It was not the box sought to be ticked, nor was it satisfied by kowtowing to imagined futures. This realism and recognition of uncertainty was central to the psychosis, and while escapism seemed to be the symptom, it was realism that made each understand that the ground beneath their feet had nothing under it to stand on, and they let themselves be shook.

In doing so they lived in praise of a glorious future – the present being a daily-written hand note to advise their future selves, and placed in the freezer to be come across accidentally in months and years to come.

Rowan spent much time in bed, reading and listening to dour female indie artists from a small £15 portable hi-fi placed on the floor by his mattress in his box room. Curtains frequently closed the man in semi-somnolence. He would leave the house each day for around three hours, go to explore Leith and chat with old man in forgotten pubs. He knew he was a writer, a novelist and had a reading list of contemporary fiction that you weep for its depth and obscurity. Reading and lying, in sober grey silence, he spent a lot of time away, taking depression and literature on its natural course, the year was burning up his studenthood of writing, ready to begin him in a year on his first novel. Like the others, the education outside the classroom providing exactly what he needed.

Stephen was a quiet soul. A straight type with a steady girlfriend that mis-matched the explorations of the other two. He took a few of his courses semi-seriously and enjoyed getting blind drunk with Herman and discussing philosophy for hours. He had an interest in going nowhere. In each previous location he had done the same. He did enough to pass his degree, stayed sane but devoured his own ability to be strange. It was so obscured by the other two. The man tried and failed to match them but, like a fragrance, the fire left with him with more than enough food for future development. He was to write, also a year later, in smatterings of faltering poetry. For the year, though, he was the watcher and having gone in with a delight for novelty, sincerity and the intelligentsia, he left it with a yearning for God and merging with the divine. Of the three, his final personality would be the most changed in three years time – or at least he would observe.

Herman – the fire brand – was a whirl of chaos. A deep hearted man whose drinking inflicted his deeply-felt pain on his environment like breathing. He was a scolder, a tempter, a confessor, a priest. At the end, Stephen and Rowan could scarcely bear the sight of him but this did not stop his extraordinary seductive powers bringing them along on many misadventures. The three probably experienced some of the most joyful times of their lives together and some of the most hollow.

Sundays were the fine days. The chicken would begin cooking at 3pm and it was the linchpin of civilisation. Rushing round Lidl for the necessary poultry and vegetables provided the backbone of the week’s diet. Friends would always attend, though oddly they received only two invitations back. Wine and carving, cigarettes and philosophy. The occasion was often a stage for the three to parade their philosophy, brotherhood, tomfoolery and irritation before assembled guests.

Discussions were often heated but frequently convivial. The evenings would end with warm feelings in the pit of stomachs and hoarse tobacco burns at the back of mouths. These were the glowing fine times.

As the year wore on, each became more focused and frightened about his future. Stephen retreated into a curious New Age approach, reiki symbols haunted his dreams and the people around him less and less a pastiche of the life he would like. He carried on and burned it up to its end. On graduation taking to drugs and drink like there was no tomorrow – the way each of them preferred it.

Herman was drinking himself into oblivion and fading in and out of psychosis. One episode involved him slitting his wrists in front of female company claiming he was proving the separation of body and mind.

Rowan fled soon after this. Nether he nor Stephen knew how to deal with this suffering nor pain, close as it as to their own. This was becoming clear at the beginning of Summer and through it all jollity remained – just like the thread of the year – these months were made of many coloured ropes. To call it desperate was to dismiss the happy smiles and generous attitude of each toward each other. To call it convivial was to ignore the weariness the three had for each other’s company. To call it sad was to allow that each felt a despair for a life in mainstream society and was seeking strategies to cope.

You had a feeling, sitting on damp sofa cushions, gazing on the brown stained carpet, that this flat was on the edge of things. There was genius and desperation, sunlight came in through windows and wine bottles were thrown through them. The communist manifesto sat in the loo and lifeless clocks hung whimsically from lamp stands. The bread knife was used to chop kitchen roll in half to serve as loo roll and kitchen counters a more frequent home for dishes and sauce pans than the cupboards, whose doors hung off their hinges.

Every once in a while a flurry would ensure the house was clean and another two months could follow before anyone lifted a finger again. Each bill was two months over-due and wasn’t considered worth paying until headlined in red. Pencil-written comments, poetry and cartoons flashed on the walls, along with Herman’s paintings, a step ladder sat by the door (“For safety” said the landlord pursuing regulations with relentless obscurity), tripping them up if bin bags full of glass bottles didn’t (“for recycling” Stephen would promise through pursuit of ethics rather than motivation to follow it through) and a hammer (“for security” said Herman demonstrating how intruders could be serenaded with blows and not be allowed to make it past the kitchen. A paranoia demonstrated that was rarely ever escaped).

The blink at the end of the year saw them fade in different directions. Rowan went first, to China and optimism, a year of bed-laying coming to an end. He had an idea for a novel and skipped away with packages full into the back of his mother’s estate car. We felt good for him and he could not wait to see the back of us, Stephen recalled. Herman and Stephen invited Thomas in. Something of a magician, drug’s counsellor and music expert and so descended the summer for three of them into limitless dust and oblivion. Stephen lost one girlfriend and found three more ones, Herman descended and ascended as his glory would, wowing and confounding but all i his inescapable whirlwind of a life.He is Brahama and Shiva with Vishnu presently obscured. We still fear whether he’ll make it through. He left the apartment and slept on couches got fired from hotel jobs and left Edinburgh three months later to return in another year homeless and wearily making a life as successive doors would close. Stephen stayed on in Edina for two more years. Ringing parties and hippydom, the manifestations of a quiet untroubled life, left to his own anxieties that caught up with him in the end. He had two successive break downs 9 months apart and kept few close to him as his own train wreck righted itself. He was becoming a writer, a healer and philosopher of discontented wisdom and while the trail moved as slowly as his own desire for obsolescence would allow, he chased acceptance and poetry and let these come and go.

He fell for God more than anything and tracing those steps he found a guru and could no longer separate between break downs and openings, each sliding seamlessly into the other. He found peace in India and desired to spread it back home, which slowly, slowly he’s more and more able to do. Anxieties fade, wisdom dawns and the friendship of the other two his most treasured of possessions.

Brotherhood could not stand such times as these without coming out sober and clean and relaxed in knowing that whatever would come, they’d already been through and seen to the edge of glowing and to it’s sister edge despair.

Each of the three has yet to settle on a course.

Monday, 21 September 2009

Diary of an unborn writer #28.5

Why don't we live in those open fields?, you said You know the ones that happen at the end of films when the hero finally arrives. Do we have to cast a few notches on the tree trunk of life before sweating gloriously with our backs on bare grass and allowing rain to mix tenderly with ginger beer and dames coming round with trays. We didn't hire the, they just came to be here, lucky dames, feasting off the crowd and off of you in the pasture time and likely shades of growth that we began to forgive on.


Pasture times and pretty few get to live them. And if they do, they forget how the grime of city slicking made them who they are.

This and other thoughts torment my days. The pasture times haunt as a reminder of what you're still yet to become.

Picture courtesy of Bonnie Mincu. Buy it here!

Friday, 18 September 2009

Diary of an unborn writer #29

So you're sitting for the third cosmology lesson for the week as Richard - the fine-pointed nosed man, steel-rimmed specs speaks with his nose close to the table. He's looking for the fine lines in the wood and seeing where the grain rhythmically pursues itself again and again. "It's fractal" he says with some definition, the infinite repeat somehow forming into his view.

It makes sense to him like this, the lines and repetitions a way his mind can grapple with disorder "which it empahtically is not" he says indignantly. There's so much order around us, it's arrogant to think there isn't.

"Possibly a projection?" you counter. "I mean you've found a higher state of order, one that can cope with dynamics but at some point you're imposing stasis. You're recognising it everywhere but just as surely as economists assume equilibrium, you're assuming fractals. They blow you're mind and you see them everywhere precisely because you're putting them there. It's an expansion and mesmorising for that but finally, my man, the order melts in on itself.

He grudgingly forgives you the point.

Diary of an unborn writer #28

There are dimensions in which everything is a sphere, others in which everything is a donut

...and since all experience is a form of some kind there are dimensions of pure love, pure intellect, pure orgasm....

Indeed , Cantor's infinity of infinities, different rhythms and colours and equations of infinities. We compartmentalise it to get by but real understanding needs to include limitlessness at every step.

I wish there was a way we can do that with economics.

Would be good. So phase space is a way of seeing everything just as you want it, spheres, waves or otherwise. Once imagined in phase space the most complex situations can be imagined and manipulated. The space is showing you what's going wrong and demanding you make a tweak.

So these inner shapes are actually imposed?

It's difficult to know which is which. I like to think of it as perception lending itself a hand.

Relic opportunity

Just pack your things and go, no time to ask questions, just run. You're to go now to Portsmouth, pose in front of the relics of St Therese and pretend she got you pregnant. Your Mum will kill me otherwise....

Thursday, 17 September 2009

Diary of an unborn writer #27

She gave me peace, you said, and it shocked the listener accustomed to tales of love and emotion coursing through breastplates and armour sworn to protect suddenly melting away. This way, you said, I have no feeling for her, only knowing - a devil to detect.


And a barrage of projections aimed to make your situation clear. This was the disaster clarity that sweeps all event s aside and makes plain the world dies on its axis each day. Breathes a cacophony, then dies. We the breathtakers cough, laugh and dance and get destroyed. Blessing to rise again if we'd only be granted the gift. Tight times rhyme and ride and you're passing like thick spaghetti through a cheese grater - the edges getting worn (see 16.09.09) and humanity found laughing at your sides even I pass beyond its reach.

The whole time the mad man kept quiet until silence popped, Earth breathed a tremendous exhale and he flew a precision dart through the gap, the trap that man had made. Damn near didn't make it but the song he sang came out in purple wisps and some stopped to listen and admire the haircut.

Tepid fools.

The picture basked and sang with him. It was a Balinese woman with lips and headress of an African, Orange and supposedly reflecting sun. It was a dry day but a tidy one and the mirror mentioned in passing that he wasn't looking too formulaic. Rather like a tree, but Guided Man said his way was unknown to even him so he'd better put up with the lesions on his face. He simply had no choice and Grace, darling, would surely show the way.

It just might be that this coffee time conversation ran a little wild. He was glad to write like this. It gave him the impression that in the ordered mass of efficient things some edges were still a little woolly, he wouldn't bandy in the shallows of the explainable but could express the inexpressible depths the ordered failed to trespass.

Damn Few, he thought

Damn few of us and the others so ready to lay blame.

Diary of an unborn writer #16.09.09

He called it "the essential typology of life".

"It came to me while I was studying Chaos theory and came across the idea of phase spaces. A phase space is when you combine variables on a graph to depict wider trends in behavior. So you can combine in a single portrait speed, position and time. The pictures come out quite beautiful and that the depiction of a straw circling down a plughole can in certain phase spaces to be seen exactly like a cube. They show another truth of the event, one you wouldn't otherwise see, but no less valid.

"It occurred to me that there was an ultimate phase space - one in which all events occur and this gave me some comfort relating the musings of science with ultimate reality. At some point they connect. At some point everything connects and it's nice to know science is not excluded from that."

Once you start seeing the world as shapes, patterns become evident. I don't mean the geometrical breakdown of a sunflower or even fractalising it to perfect its infinitely repeated pattern. What I'm interested in is some kind of inner geometry - the soul of the thing. Numbers too. Once you see dates as a swirling combination of shapes patterns, as I say, become evident. The connections between Barack Obama, the date 12/09/09 and an old lady doubled in rags bringing a Mercedes Benz to a screeching halt on your bicycle journey to work become clear if you just looked at the shapes involved. We're all just flows, frankly. Looking deeper, the shapes are not representations of the thing being witnessed. They are that thing. And sometimes I think a truer expression of what is there than at point blank."

You're a little stunned and ask him for an example. You're grasping at the corners of his possible psychosis, grappling for a foothold as the phrase "the space in which all things occur" ripples through your mind. The profundity and inanity of it equally tortuous your head's spiralling up so you lay the concern aside. He's still speaking and you've missed most of the last bit so you ask him to illustrate. On a napkin, pocked with traces of grease and salt he draws:

"September 2009 was a powerful month. 09/09 is enough to ring alarm bells if you're not British and don't see the ninth day as code for the emergency services. It was a very urgent day the 9th. Urgent in a way that folk were on their way to something. I spoke to a man desperately seeking new employers with a Finance degree. Myself I was calling all the international high schools in town looking for a new job. There was a lot of running, not to get somewhere, just make sure we're on the right way."

He draws the shape 1-16.09.09 and somehow it's obvious. The laser beam, the womb and the projectile. It was a trumpet of a little over a fortnight sending us on our way. "Things had to change in those days" he exclaims "and it's been like that ever since Pope Gregory said the calender had to be a certain way.


"You see here how 16 brings it all to harmony".

It's a relief to hear and you ease into coffee conversations and the mill of politics. The shape of things just done merging into talk of disappointed girlfriends, news of home and the racket the people make in the appartment under you on a Thursday when for another week, the dole cheque did not come through.

Monday, 7 September 2009

there's a day when you're so delicate

a sentence could break

into something you hadn't seen for a while

"you look wrecked" came the American Voice

Lady sledgehammer transparency

shot through

help shake out the dew

dreamy afternoon

word spilling

black coffee

lisa hannigan

avoiding any excuse to work

lyric for a song

We can go all ways


My dying
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