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Last year I contributed some of my poetry to a book of photography by Peter Parkinson, entitled “Winter Dreams”, which is still available to buy for the bargainous price of £4.99, as follows :
The really great news is that I’ve just submitted 5 pieces of poetry, plus 2 from Scottish writer Samantha Reynolds, for “Winter Dreams Revisited” which we will see published in the very near future. It will complement further photography from Peter Parkinson exploring not only themes of winter, but love and loss, landscape and time, and their relationship with the bleakest of seasons.
I’m personally very excited to have worked with two outstanding creatives to produce what promises to be an outstanding collaborative piece, available to buy soon. Watch this space for more details! 🙂
“The Vintage Ladies” is a collaboration between myself (words) and MoGeo Photographic, which is now available to purchase as a print. The ideal birthday or Christmas gift for any appreciator of beautiful cars and beautiful words.
1982 was definitely my year. I’d just turned 18 and in my mind,
parental control was out of the suburban window, despite the fact
I was still living between their walls. I was a self styled worshipper
at the church of New Romantic Goth; Numan, Siouxsie and
Marc Almond were my holy trinity.
I lived just south of Manchester, but its playground soon bored me.
I yearned for the glamour of London’s streets. I’d read about the
“Blitz” club and its stylish sisters in “The Face”. Glamorous
weirdoes, whose parents didn’t pass judgement every time a new
version of me left the restrictions of their magnolia walls.
I yearned to be a beautiful stranger too, and it was my
immediate ambition to fulfil that dream.
Everyone made their own clothes in those days. Everyone
who mattered. Stray off-cuts of lace and velvet from
the local market stall, rare charity shop finds and my own lavish
embellishments formed my own unique designer garments.
They were admired and coveted by others, but worn only by me.
Finally, with a suitcase full of my individualistic clothes, and a
headful of optimism, I bade a fond farewell to my parents via a
carefully written note, propped on the mantelpiece. “I’m going to
London. Don’t worry”, it said. Brief, but to the point, I thought.
I found myself at Euston station without a plan. OK, I was in London
but what now? My instinct instructed me to head for the King’s Road.
That was where it was at, so, I bought a Day Saver golden
tube ticket, dumped my belongings in left luggage, and set on the
metaphorical yellow brick road to my own Emerald City.
On the tube to my destination, I noticed that I wasn’t as “unique” as I
was up North. Lots of people had the same look as me, and I was being
ignored. I felt cheated; I was promised a magazine’s eye view of a London,
and what I’d got in reality was the throwaway free pull-out supplement. Highly styled individuals with no individuality, personality, or
commitment to their cause. It was all just “a look”, copied to the last bangle
on their fashionable little wrists.
At Sloane Square, I hit the litter-strewn dirty streets in my widow’s weeds,
and sashayed along the infamous Kings Road in my customised Victorian
ankle boots. The place was awash with goths, punks, skinheads; all looking the
same, just a variant on a theme of rebellion. These were not “my people”; I
had nothing in common with them despite my appearance, or perhaps because
I decided to head back North to be the big fish, in a somewhat smaller part
of the ocean. It was my personal rebellion against London, and its monoculture
magazine mannequins. Of course I would lavishly embellish the success of
my visit, just as I did my clothes.
After all, at the end of the day, we’re all just putting together “a look”.
Has there ever been,
A more changing scene.
Than on the Soho streets
In London Town?
In the 50’s and 60’s
It was a classy affair
A place for artists and actors
Interesting characters to greet.
A place to retreat.
For the hustlers and the men
who dared to fall in love.
In later years the landscape changed
It was a brassy affair
Where dealers and rogues
Would sliver in droves
Marking the territory
Like an alley cat.
Gangs would fight
And hatred prevail
By those to ignorant to care
About the lady of Soho.
In recent years it was a sassy affair
Women who flaunt their wares
Without a care
For the passing tourist
Eager to take a photo
To remind them of Soho
in London Town
As winter wends its weary way,
Toward more Spring-like days,
Consider the beauty of nature’s frosty haze,
And icy sheets of purest glaze.
The Magician in Mother Nature,
Turning mere water
Into mystical forms,
And snowy blankets
Covering the truth that lies beneath.
Reality is blurred… And nature’s icy veil
Presents an illusion on the grandest scale,
Until the certainty of the thaw in later days.
All trees equal in the snow,
Ash, Oak, Yew, Pine.
All covered the same.
Until the thaw of their tomorrows.
The harsh morning, after the fun night before
Feeling more jaded than you’ve got credit for
Clothes all dishevelled and head thick with pain
Just like you’ve been flattened by a runaway train
Last night’s mascara and last night’s expression
Far too little sleep you glide into depression
Too many drinks and too much passion with strangers
Beguilled by the night, ignoring the dangers
Your memory’s fading with the dark of the night
Selective retention in dawn’s early light
Awakening in surroundings completely bizarre
Sneaking away from the place that brought you from afar
No idea of your mind, or your current location
You gaze at a map, and try to find a station
Others look at you sadly, eyes filled with pity
You have no concern for them or this city
Sunglasses on, and your best party dress
You recall last night’s fun, a total success!