Monthly Archives: June 2013

World Exclusive

I seem to have a hat-trick of these up my sleeve at the moment.

I have typed that sentence with my tongue firmly in cheek, in case the regular reader thought my years of creative failure had finally gone to my head… I can assure you it hasn’t. I live that part of my life very much by this maxim.

It serves me well. Today’s world exclusive is a fail better poem called Blake’s Tyger by the Thames. It was the first poem I wrote with performance in mind. The performance I had in mind was on the South Bank last autumn, but that went into the tray marked ‘tried/failed’, so tonight its premiere is on the Broken Verb programme from 8 p.m. on Reel Rebels Radio.

Reel Rebels is a community internet radio station and, in a virtuous circle that relates to my own Songs of Experience, it is based in Stoke Newington, Hackney, where I spent my wildest years (they weren’t that wild). They broadcast out of Politi Arts Centre on Manor Road, which is an old Turkish Delight factory, and literally round the corner from my last flat in Stoke Newington. It is practically next door to the Indian takeaway that often provided my dinner. I had no oven in the flat (other than a one ring camping gas cylinder) so I subsisted on basmati rice and raita from the Indian, boosted by a weekly dish of jerk chicken with rice and peas in Cricklewood. I used to skip lunch and breakfast was Jordans muesli and plain yoghurt. I was a lot thinner back then. Those were the days.

Anyway. Now you know.

And a thank you is due to Tim from No Tall Stories who, I think, is reading the poem.

So, thank you.

by Franz Marc


I can’t be trusted with this stuff, so cack-handed am I. But that didn’t stop me helping out re:form with an art project she is doing for a local wildlife centre. It’s a British birds installation and she’s done a great job. She was perching them on a branch from the Scientific Wire Centre… and I was hanging them from fishing wire.

When we had both accidentally superglued a bird each to our fingers, simultaneously, I didn’t feel quite so much of a klutz. Having said that, after we had finally freed the birds (nail polish remover) I promptly glued two more fingers to a blue tit.

Time for bed said Zebedee.


81% full (don’t know how much space a giraffe takes…)

The blog is nearly full. I’ve been at it for years now so it’s no surprise. I suppose I can buy more space to continue to host my internet meanderings; the project I am working on now needs a platform (apparently) so it would seem silly to start from scratch all over again someplace else.

I’ve had over 120,000 views on here now – plenty of which are spam sadly – but a fair few really aren’t. Some posts have provoked genuine interest, others less so. That’s ok, if you communicate constantly and compulsively, not all of it can be elevated above the workaday and mundane. I used to do a lot of ranting on here. This current government have knocked it out of me… nearly. I seem to work with people who suffer so at their hands day in and day out, ranting about it after hours wouldn’t really help them.

All of this is a bit of a preamble. The blog isn’t closing. It can’t! It’s out there on the interweb for posterity, or worse. But I am aware that my big writing project is taking more and more of my time and that the blog is not only nearly full, but it feels a little neglected too.

So, I am going to try some different stuff on here over the summer. It’s going to be like having a busman’s holiday. If it doesn’t make sense at times (well less than it already does) please forgive. I’ve got some fiction extracts and some old travelogue bits I’d like to get out of notebooks and digitised, and maybe some poetry too, so if you tune in and find yourself in Delhi in the last millennium, that’ll be why. There’ll be different voices because of the form and the timespan, but it’s all my own work and its something I’d like to do before I reach the dreaded full up point: 100%.

Come along for the ride? Suddenly, with the overworked bus metaphor, my recent Cliff Richard nightmare is making perfect sense. Let’s have a different song altogether to wipe that horrid thought from our minds.

Here’s my real summer anthem.


Last seen streaking across the concrete prairie that is a certain Southend supermarket car park.


Feeling a little like Rousseau


There is a long explanation of all this. It is written in my head. I will leave it there for now.

Instead, this is what Jean-Jacques Rousseau said.

We are reduced to asking others what we are; we never dare to ask ourselves…