As it has been raining a lot here recently, it brings to mind one of those thoughts that is made for just such days. The creative flows when the rainwater does…
The ‘pock’ sounds on the fabric of the umbrella,
jarringly unlike the gentle susurrus of those
which thud on the ground.
Surroundings tingle all the senses,
the rising scents
the tangy taste on the air
the cleansed colours.
The walk is a glorious thing
especially shared with the closeness of a companion,
shoulders sometimes touching,
Perhaps an entwining
of hands on handle
A sense of total togetherness, intimate,
through delicate and momentary caresses.
The way that makes one feel
in no particular rush to be anywhere
under the brolly,
a closed world,
Shared solely between two.
*Picture found for free at wallpaperbetter.com
I recently had a moan about all the meaningless (and prolific) ‘inspirational’ posts that clog my Facebook feed, when all I want to do is have a quick and peaceful nosy into what people are doing in their lives. I’m sure some find such slogans helpful and positive but stop to give even a brief thought to the actual content and it quickly becomes irritating.
After posting a somewhat, ‘grumpy’ status about the situation, (and having no one really react which, perhaps, tells its own story) I came across another nettlesome post on Instagram, that was originally a Tweet. I’m assuming some of you came across this statement over the last week or so,
You’re not well read if all you read is white authors.
It didn’t take long to analyse the flaw in that statement. Whilst it is probably (hopefully) a well-meaning encouragement to people to read widely, the stench of identity politics is overwhelming. Substitute the word white for fantasy, people of colour (or your group of choice), gay, women, or men, and the point could still be taken.
White is the word that will get the most traction in terms of comments though and is most likely the reason behind the wording which will guarantee the fifteen minutes of internet viral fame so craved. On reflection it strikes me as lazy, picking an easy target. Like Trump or George W. Bush jokes back in the day, for example, it lacks finesse and plays only to the easily pleased crowd. Continue reading “Woken Up”
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.
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?
In a Tokyo suburb, a young man named Toru Okada searches for his wife’s missing cat – and then for his wife as well – in a netherworld beneath the city’s placid surface. As these searches intersect, he encounters a bizarre group of allies and antagonists.
Reading this novel is certainly an arresting experience. There is a cold aspect to the writing, a sense of detachment, which makes it nonetheless strangely compelling. The relaxed tone of the narrator makes this a novel of normality and functionality of life, which heavily contrasts with the extraordinary and the imaginative (or is it supernatural?) rabbit hole it soon encompasses.
Murakami doesn’t always join the dots, or at least not in an obvious way. I like that. Instead he encourages the reader to consider the bigger themes. It’s a thought-provoking piece of literature in many ways, crammed full with lots of symbolism and elusive connections, and one exceptionally gory scene which was a bit much, when it came to the details.
There is a rare insight into the Japanese people and their history, regarding the occupation of Northern China and the Manchurian campaigns of World War II. The themes of how different types of power and pain that can drive a person, and how different spaces can affect the mind are a constant companion, the book is about the physical as much as the psychological. Continue reading “The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle – Haruki Murakami”
It’s Monday and catching up on the YouTube I follow after a few day’s absence was predictably depressing. There was a ‘woke’ BBC sketch (this is the BBC that has admitted it would never commission something like Monty Python these days) that has been doing the rounds recently which was mildly amusing – at best – but (and although I don’t always agree with him) this Jonathan Pie tirade really gets the message across in a much more forceful way.
It’s a much-needed rant and I believe he speaks for many sane people on the subject, just with more expletives. We only get one life, we should concentrate on saving the culture as well as the physical planet. It would be great to hold all these virtue signallers to account and mock them mercilessly – as nobody has the right not to be offended – but if you notice, more and more websites are disabling or deleting comments that echo Mr Pie’s…funny that.