Having found my bearings (just about, as the wealth of information is so detailed and sprawling) in the new job, I was delighted to find that the old haunts of which I used to frequent (pubs, supermarkets, the local chippy comically named The cod’s Scallops) – handily near the Open University campus – have been supplemented with a new cafe, so having arrived stupidly early for one my shifts, I can sit back with a book, a coffee and a generous bacon cob and watch the world go by.
I always like to see a place wake up, the bleary eyed people (not me, I’m already on my second coffee), the workers, school children, the build-up of traffic and general early morning chaos. From my vantage point looking out onto the main road I can take it all in and feel slightly smug that I beat the rush, even if rolling out of bed early is a challenge for the moment.
As you have probably noticed I haven’t been visiting your blogs much of late and now due to my workload, I will probably only be able to visit once a week but will endeavour to be around more. I am also writing blog posts on my breaks at work so I can keep some form of regular posting going. Continue reading “To Start the Day”
Oh yes I did! I’ve only gone and added another job to my tally, and this , my third and final form of employment, is at the open university.
Celebrating its fiftieth year, the OU is all about getting people the education (and degrees) they wish for. A lot of focus goes on the part-time learners who are also earners, courses are all online and reach outside the UK to a further 157 countries.
You can find out all about the ‘deets’ elsewhere online, and if you ring up about anything, you may just be speaking to me as I will be the guy that sets you up on the course you need, offering up the best options and generally knowing stuff. In the meantime if you fancy taking a gander at the free courses on offer and seeing what its all about, head here and learn stuff gratis.
It’s always great to find a job that involves something you enjoy, and with this one I will be offering services of which will benefit everyone. Education is the key to a lot of the world’s problems so it is a fine state of affairs to help people better themselves and go home having done something worthwhile, which is a rare position to be in.
The sights and sounds of the morning fresh
Are subsumed within your deep, black depths
For a time nothing else matters but that scalding, fresh kick
A jump-start towards the obstacles ahead.
An effervescent explosion of ideas begins
Soon lost to the diminishing aftermath
To be forgotten evermore
Just as soon as the banal everyday acts crowd in.
Yet in that diminutive, personal oasis of time
where calm battles a raging heart and mind
I find my contentment in this swirling juxtaposition
And reflect on just how flawless life can be.
It’s always a shame to have to report a bookshop closing its doors for the last time but sadly its happened again, this time to my favourite second hand bookshop in Nottingham, Jermy & Westerman which ceased to be the last weekend.
I wonder if my continued support would have helped, had I not been abroad for the last year and a half, which in turn fuels my need to support the remaining bookshops when I have some spare Sterling. A noble excuse for being a book junkie but the mutual enablement is pitched perfectly.
Despite being a small book space with only two floors and a few rooms there were always plenty of good books on offer over a variety of subjects. In fact being a regular I noticed there was a regular turn over of stock, to cater to the needs of the obsessive. Continue reading “Jermy & Westerman”
Today I came across an email with the title, How many poems do you write? Quality vs Quantity. As a moderately interesting subject heading it seemed worth a couple of minutes perusal as an accompaniment to my breakfast of coffee and pandesal.
The email asked if poets and readers favour the raw poem as first written, or an edited version, which may be technically better but dilutes some of the immediacy of the original writing.
It then went on to mention that a question often asked is how do I get published in the print journals? The short and underwhelming response to that bein; nobody really knows, its all subjective, people on blogs and websites won’t be judging to anything like the same criteria as journals.
It’s a shame there was no real point to the email, as asking and then avoiding any real exploration of the question (but inviting you to hop over to the website to discuss it) just wastes everyone’s time. Continue reading “Quality or Quantity?”
Ways well worn
This familiar place of stone and brick
Temporal, yet not entirely material
Spectres of the past
memories distant impose themselves
On the present,
An overlay of times a world away
Recovered only in reminiscences
The bustling city
Shorn of its socialness,
A perturbing reminder of the past
Often we meet in imagination
Do I dream
Or the city?
I love the solitary art of reading, of being alone, even in a crowded place. Having never been much of a public speaker, its much more preferable to have the voices in my head – in a sane way – to be fluid and not stop/start like my usual delivery tends to be.
Editing, as my day job brings the same comforting seclusion. This has been the way of things for the past year as I rarely venture out on week days. The thought of staying within the literary world pleases me, although this isn’t really doable in reality, of course.
I like books much more than I do people. Part of that is down to the insulation that I put around myself, with all the various moving around that I have done in the past few years. I find that I would like to know where I will settle before I commit to roots being dropped and making friends.
I’ll be honest, this isn’t some personal post to let you in to my mindset, but really just a post to get words out there as I am struggling at the moment to get anything down that is either coherent or interesting.
I also recently wrote a sports article which one rejection letter said was excellent. I can’t give the article away though as nobody seems interested in taking it. Further words will be forthcoming when I get my mojo back.