Thursday, March 30, 2006


Spring is like a perhaps hand
(which comes carefully
out of Nowhere)arranging
a window,into which people look(while
people stare
arranging and changing placing
carefully there a strange
thing and a known thing here)and

changing everything carefully

spring is like a perhaps
Hand in a window
(carefully to
and from moving New and
Old things,while
people stare carefully
moving a perhaps
fraction of flower here placing
an inch of air there)and

without breaking anything.


I found this poem the other day when I was surfing about looking
for something to give my Thursday Y4 kids for handwriting
practise (er...practice...which? I never know). I also spent some
time considering 'Lady Lazarus'; and decided it was perhaps not
the right theme for 8 yr olds. In the end I settled on a
little ditty called 'Dimples' by Carol Ann Duffy, which bizarrely
I am unable to find a link to. Perhaps because it is so un Carol
Ann Duffy-ish.

Over the next few days I just found myself repeating the line
'Spring is like a perhaps hand'. I have this mental image of
a hand snaking up into a Georgian window box to move things about
surreptitiously, but then I wonder...what is a 'perhaps' hand?
Should the hand be invisible? Is the hand not there at all? What's
going on with all these people staring? Will there be daffodils?

In the meantime I wait for the trees on Knee Hill to burst into
leaf, and somehow it's all connected. Perhaps hand. Perhaps hand.

Monday, March 27, 2006

before I lose my nerve...

I'm in the TES Online!!

Sunday, March 26, 2006

brand new leopard-skin pill-box hat

The main feature of this weekend seems to be aspirin.

I took three and went to Bromley dancing last night. I'm not sure if it was the clammy headcold or just revisiting the place after a good 18 months away; but I felt more than usually detached from the clientelle. Mainly I think it's the worrying tendency towards the wearing of leopard-skin print, which I have never really seen at other venues. Since I've been away the cuban heel seems to be making inroads, too. I have nothing at all against muscular flamenco dancers in high-waisted trousers and cuban heels, but on the middle-aged South Londoner the effect is not quite so alluring. Still, I had a dance or three before I decided that the sweats were more to do with fever than a lack of air conditioning and came home to my bed.

Today I am a mass of fuzzy confusion admidst clocks changing and the ill-advised midnight neckage of Night Nurse.

Thursday, March 23, 2006


Hell, don't you just hate it when that happens? I have mood swings like rollercoasters have humps at the moment.

Wednesday, March 22, 2006

disgustingly cheerful tune

When you dance Ceroc, you really have to get over any musical snobbery that you might be harbouring. Last night I was was having a simply lovely time shaking my hips to some tune I'd not heard before, and lauched myself over to the DJ afterwards to find out what it was.

Gareth Gates.

Gareth bloody Gates. Listen at your peril:

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I know. I'm sorry. It's just absolutely lovely to dance to - something to do with all the breaks and changes of texture. Lots to play with.

I'm sure I have something further to say on the subject of the dancing, but it's going to have to wait until I haven't just spent the day with Year 6.

Sunday, March 19, 2006

an act of optimism

'So you're an artist as well' he writes. 'Do being an artist and optimism go together?'

No, no, no: no they bloody don't! I want to write. I'm a misery, a worrier, a waker in the night, a panicker in broad daylight. My email address, my username, my blog title - misnomers all. Don't be taken in by my cheerful exterior: beneath it beats a heart gripped by terror. Don't find out about me, don't let me in, because if cheerful is what you are looking for then mister, you are going to be deeply disappointed. Move along, move right along now.

'I would say I'm a pragmatist' I write back. 'I'm regarded as cheerful by my friends'.

Perhaps there is a scintilla of optimism in me after all.


Saturday, March 18, 2006


Sitting on the white windowsill in the sun - my white mug with the yellow interior. Every time I take a sip of tea the brightness and warmth of the yellow delights me. I want to immerse myself in it.

Newly onto the bed - my red, pink and orange duvet. The red and the pink argue forcefully with one another. The clash is awful and lovely at the same time. The contrast with the white duvet that was on the bed yesterday is enormous; suddenly the bedroom is alive. Instead of peace and calm it’s loud, brash and warm. I wrap myself in the colours and feel cheered by their strength and warmth.

Wednesday, March 15, 2006

who do you think you are?

'Just write anything' I said to the kids complaining at me today when they didn't know where to start. 'It doesn't matter what you put: you can always cross it out, move it around or change it later. Just make a start, it'll all seem better then. There's nothing worse than a blank sheet of paper.'

Don't I bloody know it.

I had a Cornish pasty for lunch, with brown sauce. It was delicious.

Monday, March 13, 2006

reasons to be cheerful

1. The Borderline. Just ridiculously funny. I thought places like this ceased to exist in 1986. I am so pleased that they didn't.
2. Bladder of Steel. Who'd have thought I could go an hour on a bumpy night bus without wetting myself? Not me.
3. Sushi on a conveyor belt. And eating more than strictly necessary. For a change.
4. Gordon's Wine Bar. It's dark, it makes you drunk, and then you do crazy things like going to an Indie club and coming home drunk at 3am on the nightbus whilst managing not to pee yourself.
5. Indian sweets and snacks from Plumstead. Ruinous for the waistline, but oh: delicious.
6. The mystery bruise which has appeared like stigmata on the heel of my right hand. I haven't a clue how it got there. Possibly from all the holding myself up whilst laughing at The Borderline.
7. The tinnitus resulting from Friday night finally going. Note to self - get earplugs. Tinnitus is a bit scary.
8. New blogs.