Perhaps I'm more intrigued with the ghost of John Simon Ritchie - useless musician, drug addict, spiteful bully, sneering poster boy - than I imagine? He returns to haunt me only ever once a year; I hear his rattling padlocked chain and the drag of those stolen engineer boots before I see him. Oh, but I … Continue reading Tea Stained.
The wind picked up & the air became wet & in-between trying to light the cigarette, the boy, turning this way & that, trying to catch the flame, started on some convoluted tale about how he had lost his girlfriend, got thrown out of his flat, & about how someone had stolen his hair clippers. … Continue reading Liam & Stan & Oliver.
Lunch was a joyless chore in South Shields. The allowed hour was passed in that miserable and stifled staff room of P. Marsk Hairdressing, where the legend We Make You Look Good - that irritating and irksome italicised 'Good' - bearing down erroneously from the brown wall behind him, into him, through his thinning crown, his dimming mind, … Continue reading Mirror 9 – JMW Turner [Shields, on The Tyne, 1823] postcard.
8 [photocopy of a snapshot] I cut Lillian's hair every twelfth week, dry it every sixth. It grows. I cut it. I dry it. It has become grey by increments; city pigeon to autumn noon, fading print to cigarette ash. Each accretion of tone slowly highlighting further her pink brittle cheeks, the pools … Continue reading Mirror (8): Pale Airman.
D. James' genre-mashing/-defying debut is described (rightly so) as a postmodern noir-detective story, but it reads as much more than this. It is a pseudo-biographic study of the elusive, mysterious, multimedia, avant-garde artist, Ezra Maas: one of the strangest artistic geniuses to almost emerge during the late 20th/early 21st century. For such a prolific figure … Continue reading The Unauthorised Biography of Ezra Maas (Daniel James, Dead Ink 2018) – review.
Do not want to hear bells! Bells!?? Weather!! One wit wrote, Every time that bloody bell rings it gets foggy! Stop it! But he didn't control weather, he just wanted to warn the ships in the bay. My wife can't sleep! Turn that light off!