Saturday, July 30, 2011

Two Cycladic Heads




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New additions to the tea bowl collection - six of the top bowl, two of the bottom.

Beautiful work.

If you're interested, go to this site: http://www.poterie-st-pere.com/poterie.htm


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Asemic Text (VII)

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collaboration with E.
(who likes Pandas ... evidently)

'See Inside' option at the Sticky Pages site

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series of asemic texts made during the past two weeks

see the Sticky Pages site for further information

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Friday, July 29, 2011



I've got a bike. You can ride it if you like.
It's got a basket, a bell that rings and things to make it look good.
I'd give it to you if I could, but I borrowed it.
Back in the land of the living ... at least the Cyber Men.

& new software is available for this computer, I see. Imagine what I've been missing ...

Anyway, in case you hadn't gathered, we've been "way down in France" (Zappa) in a spot where the internet is as common as a bottle of duff red wine. (Well, which would you prefer?).

Lots to catch up on - not least my typi!ng skills (read: typng ... typing) ... but for the time being here's one of the little books I put together:




Thursday, July 28, 2011

Fresh tarmac on the road. Brightening skies.

Now to buy bread.

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

A signal of sorts. A sunny day in prospect. Normal service to be resumed within a few days.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Apologies for the hiatus - connection problems.

Five new volumes & more to come.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011


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Some thoughts on the News International/ News of the World/ Murdoch events ...
  • Who, really, can be surprised? You mean you didn't know ... ?
  • Isn't it evident that if you deal with that kind of money and at that kind of scale you think you can get away with anything? (As Zappa put it - concerning other sleazery - : When the lie is so big ... Or cue Harry Lime in the Ferris Wheel car looking down at the people on the ground below: "Tell me. Would you really feel any pity if one of those dots stopped moving forever? If I offered you twenty thousand pounds for every dot that stopped, would you really, old man ...")
  • So we have a corrupt police force, a corrupt political system, a corrupt journalistic profession, a corrupt banking system ... just what is left of the 'great' in Great Britain (other than Kate's dresses and Pippa's assets)?
  • You can only sell a newspaper if someone is prepared to buy it. Therefore ... Let's look at the other side of the transaction. What desires are being catered for? Did you buy it? Are you buying it?
  • And talking about Harry Lime, what about the third man who prefers to keep in the shadows?
  • And as George Monbiot has suggested let's cut the talk about 'populism', the 'voice of the people' and reveal it for the charade it always was ( = dupe them into thinking this is what they wanted & we'll make a packet). Instead of 'grassroots' read astroturf.
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And here's some kitchen sink wisdom from your Uncle Jeremy (bet Rupert has a copy of his poems on his bedside table) ...

"And unlike Cerberus
we all share the same head, our shoulders
are denied the nuptial joys of television,
so that what I am is a special case of
what we want, the twist-point missed exactly
at the nation's scrawny neck."

('Die A Millionaire', J.H. Prynne)

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Meanwhile, if anyone has any wisdom or advice to dispense on folding bikes ("un velo pliable" round these parts), please let me know. The Dahon Vitesse D7 seems to the Bike Of Choice - given I'm not in the market for the Aston Martin option of a Brompton and I don't want something that will fall to bits or fold itself up as I cycle away from the shop.

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Till next time ...

Sunday, July 10, 2011


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Put together by Jake Tilson in 1986 (I think I'm right in saying) and lasting for only a few issues, what a great magazine this was. This has been languishing in my 'archives' for more than twenty years and for some reason I pulled it out this afternoon. I've lost the postcards and the Auerbach prints are somewhere else. Never mind, there's still plenty to enjoy.

Fond memories of a summer's day in London, too.

Friday, July 08, 2011



"Paper is the materialized energy of itoshiroshi, that extreme form of purity that is ladled out of chaos and which appears to us as both potentiality and actuality." (p. 14)

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I hesitated before buying this and had even gone a few strides down the road when - thinking again - I turned around and went back in. If I hadn't I know the book would haunt me for the next few weeks, I'd go back, the shop would be shut for the holidays, the only copy had been sold, they didn't know when they'd get another ...

I'm thinking of In Praise of Shadows - White working as a contrasting essay of sorts. And, indeed, Hara mentions the book in his first chapter. Yet it's another text that starts to emerge out of the shadows -




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- an Orientalism latent in Beckett? It had never occurred to me before. (Yeats & Noh drama ... Pound's Chinese fixations ... Mallarme's white page ... )

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"In fact the word iro, "colour" in Japanese, also signifies "lover" ... " (p. 5)

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Thursday, July 07, 2011



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'Such delicious new tea,' said Otoko, smiling. 'Do make some more - in the abstract style.'

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I stopped off at the (usually closed) secondhand bookshop on the way up to the University area. Statistically, my chances of 'finds' here in Belgium are much reduced (English books relegated to a few shelves or - as here - three boxes). Nevertheless, this was waiting for a good home & here are a few pages ...




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We are too late for the gods
and too early for Being
Being's poem, just begun, is man.

(Heidegger, The Experience of Thinking, 1947)*

& this - from the General Introduction by David Farrell Krell - seems to acquire even greater resonance with this afternoon's announcement of the closure of The News of the World:

"The question of Being is not bloodless after all, but vital.
For what?
For recovery of the chance to ask what is happening with man on this earth the world over, not in terms of headlines but of less frantic and more frightful disclosures." (xl)

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* the book arrived this morning - actually placed in my hand by the postman. The reason for the delay? A return to sender in the U.K. due to the address being erased by the rain. Appropriate in a way?

Wednesday, July 06, 2011



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Thick Pigeon ... one of the worst (or best, depending how you look at it) titles for a band. Who cares? It's good music to make books to on a changeable weather/whether-wise day.

Yes! F..i..n..a..l..l..y ... copies of apri'll are going out accompanied by a lo-fi edition of Words of Wisden.

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twomb

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(i.m. Cy Twombly)



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Tuesday, July 05, 2011


raku bowl by Sarah-Clotuche

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Things work together. A morning spent reading Kawabata & then I stumble into a shop selling raku bowls.

Here's the website & further links: http://www.lecameleoncoquet.eu/album-1749252.html

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so-so sushi

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then ... buying fish it occurs to me - why not? - and so here's a first attempt. Crude (in several senses) but by general agreement it tastes good. No doubt chopsticks should never be left crossed on the plate etc. but we were all too astonished to consider such breaches of etiquette.

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"Can you hear rain over the telephone?"

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Monday, July 04, 2011


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"Writing is after all, in its way, a satori: satori (the Zen occurrence) is a more or less powerful (though in no way formal) seism which causes knowledge, or the subject, to vacillate: it creates an emptiness of language. And it is also an emptiness of language which constitutes writing; it is from this emptiness that derive the features with which Zen, in the exemption from all meaning, writes gardens, gestures, houses, flower arrangements, faces, violence." (Barthes, p4)

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"Paper, I understand, was invented by the Chinese; but Western paper is to us no more than something to be used, while the texture of Chinese paper and Japanese paper gives us a certain feeling of warmth, of calm and repose. Even the same white could as well be one colour for Western paper and another for our own. Western paper turns away the light, while our paper seems to take it in, to envelop it gently, like the soft surface of a first snowfall. It gives off no sound when it is crumpled or folded, it is quiet and pliant to the touch as the leaf of a tree." (Tanizaki, p17)

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"Deciphering, normalizing, or tautological, the ways of interpretation, intended in the West to pierce meaning, i.e. to get into it by breaking and entering - and not to shake it, to make it fall like the tooth of that ruminant-of-the-absurd which the Zen apprentice must be, confronting his koan - cannot help failing the haiku; for the work of reading which is attached to it is to suspend language, not to provoke it: an enterprise whose difficulty and necessity Basho himself, the master of haiku, seemed to recognise:

How admirable he is
Who does not think "life is ephemeral"
when he sees a flash of lightning!

(Barthes, p72)

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Thinking of using the Tanizaki as a Part Three IB text next year (fulfils the requirements of a work in translation and a different place). Examination requirements aside it is a thought provoking essay & sends me back to Barthes (1987 written on the flyleaf, I see - that long ago?). Perhaps that's the key to In Praise of Shadows: what Tanizaki's slim volume suggests, hints, sketches out. Shadows, indeed.

This afternoon: The Narrow Road to the Deep North and Other Travel Sketches (Basho).

& if anyone reading would like to suggest other texts that I could work in/around the Tanizaki essay - themes relating to Japanese culture ... history ... language ... writing ... (I'm aware of Kawabata's Thousand Cranes, for instance) - please let me know.

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BBC 4 profile of Merce Cunningham last night. How to explain my fascination with this kind of dance while classical ballet, ballroom, etc. leave me cold? Not to mention my own refusal to take the floor at parties ...

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Cunningham's morning routine: get up, make breakfast (tea and cereal), then a daily practice of writing and drawing.

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A retrospective of sorts from Andrew Topel containing "vviissiioonnss" (as he says) from 2001-2011. Beautiful work - as always.

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In turn, I know I still haven't got round to sending out copies of apri'll. I'll really try to get them off by the end of the week. I would also like to do a small run of Some Words of Wisden but a trial using card covers just felt wrong - I'll have to rethink. & another Journal should be emerging soon. Then there's ... and ...

promises, promises ...

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Saturday, July 02, 2011

Crosfields 1974


I haven't a scanner large enough to take the whole school photo - so here is a previous self (above) ...



... and someone else I knew then and who made me laugh and now makes my daughters laugh 40 years on. I suppose this is why people go on Facebook but the very thought gives me the creeps. But who knows who might drop by on this Blog & recognise the picture.

If you're reading, Martin Evans, let me know.

Friday, July 01, 2011



January

11 Tuesday

I go back to school
Had one new boy

15 Saturday

It was sunny

February

9 Wednesday

The beatles are not playing together again

10 Thursday

Power cut

14 Monday

Power cut

15 Tuesday

Power cuts

17 Thursday

Power cut

18 Friday

Power cut

20 Sunday

Power cut

21 Monday

Power cut

March

9 Thursday

End of Dr Dolittle
I scored a hatrick against Oratory and Captained

24 Friday

I broke up

31 Friday

I learnt to roller skate

April

6 Thursday

I caught a fly christened him Jasper

9 Sunday

I found Andrew the frog

10 Monday

I made a computer

12 Wednesday

I found Cyril the spider

June

12 Monday

I swum the length

November

27 Monday

Got a colour T.V.









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