Friday, 28 September 2012

Penthouse living

I feel like Anna Karina: all the dancing, all the screaming "ROLLER GIRL!"

Thursday, 20 September 2012


Autumn enters left stage with sharp teeth and shiny pennies.

An upturned copper coin: heads and tails and nobody loses.

Remember that word hibernate, remember the h you breathe
out and your breath a cloud of dust kicked up in the afternoon.

The sky kites freeze and crack like the wing of a dragon fly suspended in ice.

Let’s weave a cocoon of yak fur and alpaca and shack up together
until the seas round Manhattan turn to cubic zirconium.

Shack up and stay warm and crackle these tiny mind fires.

Paper gloves from the pages of books.

Monday, 17 September 2012

Grouse Season

He lines up the ducks and shoots them ratatatat.

Falling feathers tickle the sky; it sneezes.

You are standing in a field, face upturned, waiting for spittle.

Tell me, what do you get out of these roles of the dice?

What cloven pony hooves gallop on your heart?

Well, it is hunting season and the leaves scatter and curl on the ground

bright orange chanterelles dirtying in the gutters.

The new wind knocks him down like a combine harvester

and the gun goes bang.

Autumn is turning the leaves aflame in their puddles.

Pasted in the cobblestones, the leaves turn red.

Thursday, 13 September 2012

More tales of the princess

How do you deal with the fact that, just maybe, they don't like you? Do you lie in bed with your eyes drawing constellations on the ceilings, darting for Ursa Major and Perseus? Are you weak and weeping and done?

The princess closes her door and pulls the snib right closed. Sits on the floor with crossed legs and wet tissues like paper boats sailing shipping routes round her feet. The people do not love her. There is no prince with a dandelion headdress waiting for her hand. Once she was a real bitch and the consequences fill her drawers like dirty laundry, like too many two pence coins on the desktop, like used loose tea clagging around the plug.

How do you rule a town whose heart has turned to spit and sawdust? Does your voice keep steady when they hiss and they thud? Are you crumpling in your stomach, is your appendix wild with pain?

The princess was young, you see, and it is easy to be a dope when you are young and a princess, it is easy to think you have gold and greatness bubbling in the cauldron you keep in your tower. When your hair is field of rapeseed the summer's done with chastising, when your skin is soft soft softer than lips and silk. Of course, silk comes from worms and there are all kinds of things wriggling in this garden. Of course, she made mistakes and this is why teenage princesses should never hold the keys to the city, for they're bound to go out and dance and swim in a lake and lose them in the gutters, in the first glass of sweet desert wine, in the mulch at the bottom of the pool.

Did you ever think that maybe it's your fault? Do you ever question the heft of the questions you ask, do you ever decide they are elephantine and impossible and too much for her to hold above her head?

The circus came to town and the strongman lifted the princess up above his head with barely a grunt. The strongman's head was bald and his eyes seemed kind and he didn't ask, he just lifted. He always just lifted. 

Listen: I have a soft spot for the princess, I confess. Kindness smooth on your tongue as a pebble. Step back, place your rocks back into the dirt.


Let your hearts bobbin and spool.

Oh my god.

Oh my god. Everything worked out.

There is money in the bank and an apartment of dreams and a boy in love; there is sage oil infusing in the kitchen cupboard and beetroot vodka too.

I have been writing, writing allegories and recipes for happiness, trying to teach myself to shh and still and close the laptop lid. I think they might be working. 

I said deadhead your responsibilities like summer roses, Jane and then I did it: snip. Snip. Snip! 

Ben bought me a Hausaufgaben book with a unicorn and a princess and a sky castle. I write in my chores for the day and then I do them then I’m done. I have pulled myself out of the freelance guilt quicksand. I am dusting off my ass and grinning.

Turns out, I love making collages. Turns out, maybe I can sell them for money. 

Last Sunday’s Flohmarkt: a polaroid camera, a box of books on witchcraft and voodoo, champagne glasses that they filled with champagne. 

We are leaving the house. There are things to tug us from the delicious balcony, free John Waters films in cheap-beer bars, Gudrun Gut outdoor afternoon music, talks on revolution and beautiful trouble, a massage at the market, an aye-aye at the zoo.

Oh, I put on a sort-of Golden Hour as part of the literature festival and 150 people came, they listened, they cheered. It went…perfectly.

We are excited. We will be Berlin promoters. The venues here are waiting for us to trip and scatter them with words and music and red rope light dancing.

For my birthday, I will be in New York. 

Oh my god. Everything worked out. 

From now on we will support ourselves busking and snipping up junk mail and bubbling vats of chutney. From now on, we get a free pass from the pavement slab London sky. From now on, we never need to commute again. 

My fingers are sticky with PrittStick and it is time for lunch on the balcony. Eggs and smoked fish and black coffee. 

Good things. Happiness. Wow. 

Wednesday, 12 September 2012


Be kind.

Take your squawking soul out for kimchi, egg fried rice.

Dedicate Tuesdays as Wild West Days and spend the afternoons atop a pony, sipping bourbon, winking at all the pretty ladies in your cosmic saloon.

Breakfast in champagne and red silk while caressing the bubbles with your toes.

Lock all your assignments in pirate chests and cackle as they sink to the depths of the sea; watch the sharks whip their tails to avoid the plummet.

Plan a trip to Cambodia, to Christmas Island, to all of Jupiter’s moons.

And snip those maths-homework dirty-dishes have-to friends

from your life, close the doors in their face, listen:

I know I am adorned in cliches but this world does not tilt and timeout for the hours you have wasted mired in should.

It is as easy as I promise; it is easier.

You’re at a pair of swinging doors with bonsai shears in one hand, the Jack of Hearts in the other. 

Spit in the sawdust and burn a bridge and stamp your cockspur boots in the ashes.

Whoopee! You’ve the afternoon to yourself,

to paint your toenails gold and your fingernails crimson,

to be kind.

Perhaps you will become addicted to this moment.

Feel the phlegm in your throat. Feel the weight of the metal in your palm. Snip.

Monday, 3 September 2012

How to sit still.

I promise myself that I am going to learn to sit still.

Tell my brain to close the sluice valves; stop the heave and ho of the oars.

Stop the cells blaming each other for firing and bring back the boiling oil from the crest of the surrounding wall.

Cut away the world with pinking shears and perch in my garret. Caw like the lovestruck dove in the bellfry tower waiting for all the homing pigeons to come home.

There are so many mouthfulls of air in these surrounding streets and sometimes it feels as if I’ll never run out. Sometimes I wonder if there’s even a reason to fret at all.

The week begins and the floor is scattered with paperwork like love letters pasting the floor in the soldiers barracks.

I could toss die all day and never come up with double sixes, and that’s fine. There’s no gold star from the universe for a girl with ticked boxes in her columns.

So: breathe in and out from the air that sits and waits by your window.

Close your eyes. Stare at the warm orange of your inner eyelids.

Sit still and stop talking, Jane.

Breathe in and