The Diving Pool

A place that forged me no longer exists. Stafford Leisure Centre was razed to the ground long ago, but I have such potent memories of it. Of the sparkly Blackcurrent drink that the vending machine spewed out for 35p. The inexplicable tannoy announcements of ‘211140 to Z2’, and the sillhouettes of folks walking to the…

Tendere

I dearly love this hulking, hump-backed thing hovering on my lawn. An exotic beetle- This time capsule, poised taut and proud in Summer rain. Walls tight as a drum skin bead away rain as I gaze at my childhood colour. That orange- so bright outside but within? Lurid. Flaming. Bathing everything in a warm glow….

Those Hands I knew as a boy

They gave me the gift of time, those hands. Turning over fossils, reading millennia like braille. Pointing out constellations and meteors. Slowly making smashed treasures whole again with painstaking stillness. I watched them as a boy, in awe of their size. Gripping the steering wheel, driving us to mountains. Oceans. Leathery. Big, turgid veins like…

What did you mean?

When I found you, you were ragged. So dusty. Sleeveless in the cold of your neglect. Though metal-rimmed. Built to last. Bumping through the decades, from storage to storage.   But what did you mean? You were and are a demo. So: Did you spark a tryst? Give words to some unspoken love? Why didn’t…

Luminescence of a Summer evening.

A momentary glow. Warm evening embers. Tender shoots blessed with hazy radience. Others by purple shadows. Air-formed dew already in the air. Grass seed on my damp shoes. and my mind full of nothing but the colours…   Yet with this child’s-eye view come a throng of memories unbidden yet welcome. The beading of dew held fast…

Beyond the frame of favourite movies

  Beyond the frame, there are the answers. Hidden explanations of tantalising scenes. Those ‘what’s down there’ queries.  The curiosity of ‘who’s that, and why him’? The seductive, inky details that fill in the blanks on my imagination’s map. Those fleeting blinks of spaces and places that make my pupils dilate. These secret places that…

Back to Work

  A Treasure Map. In my workaday pockets, brushed by inky, clammy fingertips. Once pristine, lacking any wrinkles. A land to discover. Now dog-eared, yes, but also gilded with love. My memories, awoken by this talisman? Emerald roads, scarlet paths, like veins- All leading to wide- sweeping beaches. Undulating hills with cloud-shadowed flanks, now just sleepy…

Nurture

Early morning Sun lit your strong hands as you cradled the roots. Brows knit in concentration, tenderly lowering the blooms. Patting the soil as softly as I used to dry your tiny, unfurling limbs, when this was your bath. Your deep, Brown eyes look at your handiwork, then duelling crows on our rooftop drew you…

Pearlescent

All it took was early Sunday light spilling across the onyx- hemmed pearly squares; fresh bright glaring light picking out the delicate mosaics between them. My son had set up the board within pulsing sunlight from the window, with all the fierce focus and sensuality of the young and keen. Harnessing the beauty of the…

Brutalism

I love Brutalist Architecture. I love it. I love the size and the shape and the colours (or lack of colours) of it. I feel strongly about it. To me, it is anything but brutal. It is sublime and sculptural, and makes me feel immediately fascinated yet humbled whenever I see it. As an appreciator…

Fire

A friend has asked me to write about Fire. As a subject, I immediately think of it as a double-edged sword. Beautiful and seductive if tamed, though evil and repulsive if left to its own devices. Heavenly or Satanic. Tantalising. I have always felt an affinity with the fellow who asked me to write this,…

Aberystwyth

I lived on the seafront for two years. For two out of three years of my degree, my calendar was dictated by the waves and seasons. June sunbathing on the stony shore after lectures. November kitchen tea-sipping, whilst  gazing at waves battering Victoria Terrace bringing with them pebbles that strafed the road. Cycling down the…