Finally, Crazy Jeannie and Pleasant Terry got married again. Fair play to them. But, somewhere, somehow, along the way, in exchanging names twice, they confused each other’s nicknames, so that he, at last, found her, pleasant, and she, him, eventually, crazy. The actual details of how, or why, this confusion occurred are obscure. That’s … Continue reading An Unexpected Butterfly.
We rolled her up in a big blue blanket, belting the middle, taping the ends, and we bore her, between us, right through the town while everyone slept. The street lanterns pooled the asphalt but would not give us away. The shop glass, only fleetingly. The gutters blubbered and bubbled. ∞ Shush! Shush, the fossils are … Continue reading Aspects & Angles
Sam, his teeth scratchy yellow, leaning dangerously away from the table, on a chair stood on two legs, passes the smoke jar and says, “diamonds, dear Sidney, may well be a girl’s best...” He holds up one hand, clenched. Then the other. He gathers eyes. He opens the first fist and blows into his palm. … Continue reading Greyhound Suggestion.
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.
Portholes, or rather, representations of portholes, allow wet light to pool on the dim floor and walls of the aquarium. There are several vast glass tanks of impenetrable green in the centre of the room bathing all visible lifeforms, this afternoon me, in a weed green sheen. An assortment of cheaply framed and fading posters crowd … Continue reading An Aquarium Question.
It is a large, damp, sea-facing attic with a boxy bedroom, boxy bathroom, boxy kitchen. The walls bow beneath my palm. I best not get drunk. I move in and I make a pyramid of my belongings: how did they do that? On a shelf above the bath I find a paperback of Graham Greene's … Continue reading The Quite American.