Flattened by ambition (Check out the Ruby Slippers)

I guess it’s pretty obvious that I haven’t gotten around to blogging for a while. I haven’t been much of anything for a while really. I always hoped I would be able to write a book, but despite having the imagination, things lose the spark when they’re written down. And I’m expected to go on living while I try to do this, not that I manage much living either, I’m just someone who happens to be at some places, in the background, in the direction no-one’s looking in… I guess I’m saying I can get things done on the fly, like writing this blog post here but the more I think about them, the bigger they become, and I can’t remember enough to get them written down. I’m trying to get myself to write here more, so I need to just write, without a big subject. I have lots of days where I can’t see the way forward, and I think so much that I am exhausted from it by the time I am actually in the position to talk to someone. So this is me trying to talk, without writing something down first, or planning a subject, other than that I need to start talking. Which I have done in a stream of consciousness, but at least I managed not to be sorry for myself the whole way. I feel sorry for you if you’ve read this far. I’ll try to write something interesting next time. But remember interesting is a very subjective word.

The Comedians

The Comedians

I haven’t blogged for a while, I have been suffering quite badly from depression among other things, and it’s been hard to get myself to do things. To keep myself going I watch a lot of comedy, and I got thinking about writing a poem about it, about the people that make me laugh, who go back as far as the early days of cinema. I started out by borrowing the title of an Elvis Costello/ Roy Orbison song and eventually wrote the rest in one evening. I’ve also put together a gallery of some of the people I was thinking of, not used this feature before so as usual I’ve gone overboard. Most of the captions from my own recollection from books and DVD extras etc. I hope you like it. To absent friends!

The Comedians

They knew you from an early age,

Working the crowd long before a wage,

Daft kid spoiling the photographs,

It’s all worthwhile if someone laughs,

The hard life of a humourist,

Becomes much harder when no-one’s pissed,

Add sentiment to slapstick games,

They’ll root for you, they feel your pain,

They see you failing your romance,

Disaster strikes down every chance,

But don’t take it all to heart,

That’s the nature of your art,

A smile holds back a thousand tears,

Show your strengths and hide your fears,

That things going right going wrong goes wrong,

That the music ends before the song,

Let all that land on your persona,

But don’t let it usurp it’s owner,

Become the plucky underdog,

This contraption’s most important cog,

Be the creative destructive spark,

The firefly knife that cuts through the dark,

If it works, and you make it big,

Then give it all at every gig,

If it doesn’t, if no-one laughs,

Then dust the death off of your arse,

It happened to them all you know,

Can’t guarantee a perfect show,

Stan and Ollie, Charlie, Eric and Ern,

All of them, they had to learn,

To get there it was going to take patience,

To deal with all of these frustrations,

And many found, even at the top,

The heartache doesn’t really stop,

The struggle to retain success,

To remain yourself amid the stress,

Can tear apart a man inside,

Witness how poor Tony died,

He had an audience millions strong,

But he felt too much had gone wrong,

So if you still want to be a clown,

Kiss the heights, absorb the sound,

Make sure your feet still touch the ground,

If they don’t, it’s such a long way down.

Here I go again

OK, it has been an age since I posted on here, and at the moment I’m wondering how I ever wrote anything at all. I tend to avoid talking about how I am, because in all honesty, I don’t know what is going on with me. My mind is so clouded I can never think straight, and I don’t even know how long I’ve been like this. I think it was like this when I went to University, and I always just tried to keep going, but I’m feeling like I’m never going to have a normal life. I’ve always had problems explaining to Doctors, even though I can converse quite well, yet when required to perform a test, I somehow manage to do it well if I don’t try to think about it. I’m aware I might be something of a hypochondriac but I feel like there is something wrong with me as well. I briefly had a proper job for the first time at the age of 30 but lost it before long because everything got on top of me, even though it shouldn’t have been that hard, and I couldn’t explain what the problem was. I’m drawing on a good support network but going back and forth with depression and anxiety. So that’s where I’m at, I’m trying to get back into writing, but my mood is often so low and my mind so mixed up I never know how it’ll turn out. Hopefully I can spark something going and somehow get beyond this.

Return to the W

Well, it’s been a long time since the last time, I’ve been intending to get back, but as a writer and former student I’m prone to procrastination. Just a short post to get back online and make some ‘election promises’. If I tell you what’s in mind I’m more likely to do it.
A little late but one of my favourite comedians passed away a few weeks ago. I’m sure if you knew who he was you’ll know already, but I have some thoughts about Rik Mayall- coming up in a few days.

Broken Branches

Here’s another piece from the group, visualising the perspective of something by or of a river. Like many of my others it was partly inspired by the fate of David Oluwale. As such I decided against titling it with a pun such as ‘river sticks’!

I was once of the tree, held up high,

Till a playful child snapped me down.

and carried me from my brethren.

A toy for the moment.

Then roughly thrown,

Into the waters, which took me far

The flow of the current was now my home.

As I travel far, the world frightens me.

Though nothing as much as the thing that is man,

That cast it’s brother aside like a stone.

A River in November

A poem I wrote at the writing group’s last meeting, looking at life and rivers.



The river of life has an uneven flow,

Sometimes deathly calm,

Sometimes violently rough.

I may find myself bilious at the slightest movement

Or cling to the world for a dangerous ride.

Every fork in the waters brings a vital decision,

So many wrong already.

I am far from the place I was looking for

I try to take the right way every time now,

To try and return,

Further down the river that I should be living on.

Writing exercise- River ride

This is from the writing group I attend, and it’s the first time I’ve tried to create an exercise myself. Feel free to try it yourself, or share it , tried to make it pretty open ended so people can put their own spin on it, and would be happy to see anything inspired by it if you’d like to post it here or link to it on your own blog.


Recommended time 15 minutes

Take a journey you have been on in your life, or one that you would like to go on, or worry about going on- either one place to another or metaphorically- one state of being or state of mind to another, and imagine the places being on either end of a river- even if they’re in completely different places.

Now imagine yourself taking that journey along the river.

What is it like? Think about

  • the flow of the water,
  • the weather,
  • what is carrying you? Is it a boat, does it have a name?
  • Do you see anything in the water? Is it in your way, is it difficult to proceed?
  • Is there anyone or anything encouraging on the riverbank?
  • How do you feel as you get further down the river..?
  • How far along the river do you think you are, have you made it to the end or do you still have a way to go? How will you feel if or when you get there?

Describe all this in poem, prose, however it comes to you.