Dark Heart

By | 1 February 2016

I look in here—this
notebook—& see
the notes for the

last review I did,
& note—that I am
about to write another.

Tho I would rather
write something else.
I whistle

bop a bit
try not to think
of the

vast tide of crap
the exhibition represents,

the sky: sere,
grey, pale up
one end of the street,

almost Neapolitan
at the other:
pale, but a distinct

with some dark smudged stain
drifting over it,

much closer to
than the far blue behind—
in those paintings,
from a volcano nearby—
almost like flak

in the old movies.
(Goya’s mantilla,
& parasol—

& the rumour
that nothing lasts forever)


It makes the sky darker too
an atmosphere
not a backdrop


a small figure, further down
Hindley Street
is crossing the road—I recognise

the coat
as much as the figure—
but who?


It is about time
I had a drink with Crab.
About time

for a lot of things. What
to do about this

I whistle ‘You’re My Thrill’,
the beginning—but, whistling it,
I end up, as always,

with the ‘Perry Mason Theme’
(I think)
(it is

so long
since I have actually heard it)
Instantly recognisable

when I was a kid.
I thought I didn’t like it—now it
seems I do
or something
cousin to it.

My Thrill’. Then
‘Couldn’t It Be You’—
I wonder what

the connection is —
the key, the pattern,
somehow relates?

calming effect
when I whistle it.
resignation, ‘getting on with things’.
Hate to turn

a beautiful tune
into a tic, a
neurotic response

tho again, luckily,
it is only the first few bars
I remember this way,

the rest of the song
is safe,

When I play it
I smile.

art then,
what to do about it?
Inflated in scale, naive,

‘done’ when its theme is recognised
— like slogans
for a moral position.

As if the viewer
should tick a
box, in approval,

& move on
perhaps ‘liking’ it
on their facebook page.

(their ‘mental’ facebook page)

Does anybody do that,
like it that much

that they could bother to register
this vote (?) their
‘shared concern’?
I doubt it.

But then
I am whistling the wrong tune.

I read in Denton Welch
(the Journals)
of some gypsies he hears

coming home from the pub
singing ‘Bye Bye Blackbird’

My father used to sing that song.
I love it.
The opening notes

of the John Coltrane version.

My father
sang it often enough
for me to know the words.

Denton, near the end—

“Chopin pours over me from the wireless.
Nothing but this small picture will be left
of the day. Many years after, people may
be able to read then say, ‘He was cold; he
watched the sunset; he ate a chocolate,’ but
nothing more will be left to them.”


Today I worried happily,
wrote stuff, ‘asseverated’,
was alive.

It was supposed
to get cold—but it didn’t.

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