Sunday, April 22, 2012

Dandelions and Buds in Hulme

It is always the way that when you need something the most, it becomes out of reach; it dissipates, like dead dandelions to wind when you want to take them home and put them in a vase.
And then you fall upon a new verve you had forgotten you needed; it persists into existence from the earth on which you stand.
P.S. I always wonder why Hulme park - as part of its regeneration project - has a hill.

Sunday, April 8, 2012

All art history is contemporary

Recently, the department of art history - for which I work- has set up a blog for staff members to communicate their projects and ponderings on art and cultural things to students on the course and for anyone else who is interested. I don't usually discuss 'academic' stuff on my blog but I thought it would be rather sporting of me to give it a link (OK, a plug). Here, Dr Faulkner - the programme leader for our Contemporary Art History course - discusses why all art history is in fact contemporary. This is only the beginning - and it is never the end.

Thursday, April 5, 2012

When snow falls upon a Northern town

It is April and it hasn't snowed here in Manchester which feels strange when watching news footage of nearby places which have come to a standstill. However, I took a weekend away to the Hope Valley in February where it snowed so much that our taxi back to Grindleford from Bakewell nearly got stuck. I took some pictures then which I've been meaning to post as I love that part of the Peak District. So here's a few of them (I included a bleak one in yesterday's post). I've also written another bloem. I'm never sure how to construct poems. Does one need to learn this in the 21st century? Advice welcomed. It's something I'm doing to get by at the moment as I find spring a tricky time of year. So, in this poem I'm talking about snow. And, of course, other stuff too.

When snow falls upon a Northern town

Snow erases the pavements, worn shoddy by boundless weary footsteps
It wraps up afresh the tanned terraced houses, their stone ambushed by industrial smoke
It swathes the grubby river, littered deep with forgotten packaging
And encloses the ready traffic, setting cold the friction of rubber tyres on concrete

Snow glimmers like the white teeth of a tiger who knows you are aware of its volatility
Its beauty from a distance pinches your spirits, rescinds your routines and cancels out concerns
Excuisitley, it invalidates your everyday, offering an escape
enchanting, fleeting and unpredicted.
We lose ourselves in its frosty promise. We live with it and without it.

Wednesday, April 4, 2012


Following the rage and beyond the frustration is the void.

Nothing speaks from it.

The isolation rendered mandatory.

There is no selection. The choice is not yours.

I breathe into the silence and watch the condensation disband.

Fragments of feeling are lost and inevitably untraced.

We walk through tunnels we didn’t construct.

We glimpse faces we’ll never touch. Gazes unreturned.

I didn’t create your skin from scratch. Nor you mine.

We scatter our cells amongst the stillness.