half the night by a throat fever. Sweat refuses to break out, the aching
remains bottled in the bones. A few days of this, hot-footing it to Covent Garden where a silver builder floats two
feet clear of the ground. A natural wonder. Of course there has to be some kind
of trick but no-one can see any strings as they circle round and around
clicking their phones saying over and over how
does he do it. A gold builder is also in on the act. He sits in mid air
without moving a golden muscle. A little further on Charlie Chaplin, sorrowful
white face and toothbrush moustache comes back from the dead. His over-sized
boots flapping on the cobbles as he twiddles his cane in the same old game, the
same old routine that still works its wonder on the technological digital
audience which makes me wonder how we would have managed without it all. The
answer being quite fine thank you but
this comes later on the night of Halloween when earlier I had walked into the
city the leaves like discarded wrappers on the pavement and a vague feeling in
the bluish air with its silver lights that has the undeniable effect of making
me feel younger as if a great weight has been lifted from the pressures that
have been causing my face to act as if it was being stretched earthwards on
invisible strings attached to invisible fish hooks. The feeling is a real one:
no twist of the imagination. The feeling of the spirits being lifted on
Halloween before it really gets going and all of the other ghosts come back
from the dead. But for now, I’m just happy to spend some time with this ghost
nights in succession the mirror of sleep has been broken.
The dreams and
reflections it reveals shattered.
as far as
I can tell.
shadowing the windows,
creeping my stairs.
skeletons rattling the latches
started it but that’s all over now.
Two o’clock and I wake in blue light
sleep has packed her bags and gone.
I take a
daily walk by the river than runs through the city park. There are some fine
trees and the grass rises and falls in pleasing shapes. The path is
strewn with yellow leaves. The willows and chestnuts drape the walkway and
brush my shoulder, head and face.
conkers lying on the path. In homage to the inner child I fill my coat pockets
still there now wrinkling like someone who has stayed too long in the bath.
favourite bench is the one closest to the water.
I can’t sit here.
man sits on the graffiti: head slumped as he resists or welcomes an afternoon
sleep, his long white beard flowing down into his grey raincoat. Tufts of white
hair on his head. The soles of his boots laugh in the breeze as a tinny voice
comes out of an old transistor radio resting on the bag by his side.