Monday, 27 February 2012


Joe Kennedy weighs in with a brilliant new critique of English terroir.

It’s now all too common to see novels, collections of poetry, and exhibitions being praised or dismissed in terms not dissimilar to those used to discuss a dining experience.  

Friday, 24 February 2012


Feverish, I jived and heaved through the night,
Blood on the nub and raw backbone, sleek sweat
And flesh flowering, pins and needles, neat
And nipping minnows, burrowing bird flight,
Jumbled Gulliver, Lilliputian fight
On the battlefield bed and me the meat,
Boxed beneath the ocean and the sinking streets,
Head housing hives of bees, crabs, crooked light.

Lull, largo. Morning gathers in the gaps.
Calm collapsing the cushions, policing pace,
Ringing out the real, the solid-soil sounds
And soothing muffled song of tuned-down taps.
Roundel of relief, and the furrowed face
Of my dad as he wiped my brow and wounds.

Thursday, 2 February 2012


Nigh-on unbelievable garden variety conservatism in The Guardian today:

People are fatalistic. Once they get used to the initial shock and fear of hard times, it seems, they hunker down and find that life, generally, carries on tolerably well.

My guess is that life carries on tolerably better for salaried Guardian journalists than it does for the 12% unemployed in the north-east. Perhaps this sort of thing isn't so surprising, but the vast self-centredness and anti-reformism of the liberal establishment is really fucking me off right now.

Looking forward to reading Stephen Harper's book on the subject, which should thankfully be arriving any day now.