March 27th, 2003

2020 lack of vision

a weekend of silence, and standing on stone

Nights without moons, only the pinhole stars wheeling from cliff to cliff while the sea breathes out, breathes in, over long black beaches that bleach under sunrise to glittering miles of spring-tide sand, slow-draining water gilding the dun grit with stolen light, gathering round slithery rocks that twist under borrowed boots that later tramp up hill and down dale carrying pillarbox red hair and interesting hair past politely nodding goretex covered walkers tracking the paths with their hiking sticks (did they come here to get away from me? I smile anyway but it looks forced on them, fine skin crinkling round thin pink lips in automatic greeting, old people for old hills, all their bones sticking out, toupees of moss and sheep-cropped grass sliding off the stone scalps of the hills, black and grey and mottled pink) skimming eyes over water and scree, raven fall from black rock and another perfect view, surprise view, new view, back view, view view they loved it those crazy Victorians staring around with wild landscaping eyes at places that would be perfect with a safer walk to the waterfall, more opium-yellow daffodils, a railway, tidal defences, maybe an iron mine and we walk through their ruined gardens and abandoned cottages, pilfer haematite from abandoned green causeways, gasp at their rhodedendrons and creep quiet along an old, old path thick with moss and liverwort and the gasps of amazed tourists at tiny waterfalls chopped into valleys sharp and narrow (sick gust of cold air from places where no sun reaches) then out again into hazy sunshine where sheep pretending to be rocks and rocks pretending to be sheep watch jackdaws flight into clouds and then the tiny ancient churches and friendly pubs all in the same red sandstone worn by the sea and the sun into the last strong skeletons of bricks and for all that never sending you a postcard would rather send you a black stone but in my hand it turns from jet to an ordinary pebble, grey, unremarkable in its smoothness (and anyway you'd probably just think it was a bomb) I'm coming home.

Got my photos back, they came out OK.
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2020 lack of vision

familiar artist in unfamiliar context

One of the nice things about my job is that I keep turning up work by illustrators and comics artists in the strangest contexts. Illya explaining the problems of STDs, Woodrow Phoenix guiding you through self-examination for testicular cancer ... today it was the turn of Sina Shamsavari! whose ultra-glam pictures are all over Girls Finding Out, a CDRom resource for lesbian, bisexual and questioning young women. The picture which illustrates "being confused" and "lots of young women have these feelings" is my favourite -- a bescarfed, streak-haired Alanis Morissette type slumped weeping on her bed by a discarded guitar, accompainied by a comforting blue cat and a mournful moomin. Sheer lesbian glamour.
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