The Servitude of Work

I’m at work, in the grounds of a stately home. I argue with David Cameron about who will have the last t-shirt promoting a new Bluetooth frequency. I win.

I try to find the new frequency by asking Siri. It doesn’t understand me.

The public come in. They mostly rush past, to the outdoor funfair and the events happening there. Two chaps stop, to ask questions about a Sony Ericsson phone and a Romanian answering machine shaped like a roomba. I help them as much as I can.

Katie and Hannah sail past on a pallet, using a sheet as a sail.

Inside the stately home, I help to clean some rooms. One is a large white room with snow stacked in it. I mop where I can, and get a shovel to throw the rest out of the window. I open a wardrobe in Dave Myers room, there’s ice in there. I scrape it out and throw it out of the window.

I return the next day to continue. Outside, a multipack of dog food is on the ground, one tin is missing. Through sliding doors I can see a dozing collie dog and a frustrated looking receptionist.

I go in. The dog is very friendly. The receptionist asks me to wait, someone has just gone in for an interview. I wait. She ushers me in to see Dr Kevin Fong. He thinks I am here to apply for the position of private dancer. I explain that while I have done that kind of work in the past, I’m here to continue clearing snow from inside the building. Dr Fong explains that a group of Romanian students are already doing this, and I realise that they don’t need my help. Outside, through the window, I see a group of men in traditional Romanian dress, some on horses. They’ve already nearly finished.



Don’t Forget Your Boffs

I’m in a shop. Mick Voo is returning something. I borrow a book, it looks like something The Residents may have written about the occult. Upstairs is a music shop. I admire a 50’s red flute. The staff in different departments jam a version of the Beatles ‘Let it Be’.

I walk into a side room, my mother is there, in a drum circle. The teacher tells the class of an exercise where each of them hits their drum in turn, getting steadily faster so it sounds like one continuous drum roll. I press a sample on my iPad to demonstrate. The teacher nods.

People play me a couple of songs they’ve written about how great I am. I’m close to tears. I leave the shop, Mick has waited for me. We catch a dark blue double decker bus. I’m lost in a vision, clutching a rifle, and I miss my stop. The driver fetches me and turns round to drop me off in the right place. He tells me that I will enjoy the book.

I see a vision, a flash of the books content. A woman stands naked on a bed. At different points her skin ripples and turns in upon itself, fleshy waves always changing.

I’m back walking to work on the roadside. A van reverses into a school. I’m late back from my lunch break, but I have no idea what the time is. I pass the shop again, and the owner comes out to give me a pink packet of Boffs. These are psychoactive tablets that make everyone else look like Frank Bough.


The Wall of Insanity

I’m a musician. I’ve written something that sounds like Pink Floyd’s “The Wall” album. Every time a stage version is put on, I turn up to join in, even in the smallest town.

I walk down a street, conducting the music coming from a nearby village hall. A policewoman pulls up in a car, and asks what I’m doing. I explain that I’m conducting. She looks concerned.

I wake up on a blue bed. My memory is confused. I ask the policewoman not to leave me, but she’s already gone. I’m inside, but I feel like I’m outside, vulnerable, exposed.

There’s a chest of drawers inlaid with German writing. Inside I find a blue stick recorder. Playing it back, I hear my friends Steve and Louisa talking. I go downstairs. The room is full of my washing, hung out to dry on clothes horses.

My hair has grown long, I’ve been neglecting myself. I talk with Steve and Louisa, I’ve lost years to my insanity.


Inland Pier

I’m on Teignmouth Pier, but it’s inland, surrounded by a river and a low floodplain. I cycle across its grassy surface, and around the massive roots of trees that anchor it to the land.

To get off the pier, we have to squeeze through a tiny grate in the floor. I won’t fit, so I go in search of stairs or a lift. I wander dark abandoned rooms. There’s no other way down. I realise I’ll have to climb down the outside of the pier.


My Life as a Dog

An antiques market. Inside the greyhound dog is befriending people and animals. Kids and old ladies stroke him, and cuddle him, cats sit on him.

He is loyalty. He is affection.

He meets a goat, he loves the goat.

My group of friends take him home. I have family visiting, none of them remember me.

As if I was invisible as a child.

The next day, we returned to the market to try to find the dogs owner. I let him off the leash, running through the furniture, heading to a tent used for educating small children. Inside is a camel. He befriends the camel.

With difficulty, we separate him from the camel. The camel is as loyal as he is.

Outside the market the dog is upset, wants to go back to the camel.

Children and old ladies fuss him, cuddle him, comfort him.

He plays with a border collie, trying to pull a rainbow leash off a cat.

A man asks who’s dog he is. I explain how we found him, and returned to find an owner. Behind the man, the dog runs into the distance.

Looking for somewhere to belong.

Looking for someone to love.



Rains streams down
Like my tears
Flooding the sewers
Full of my personal shit
Forcing it to float
Not hidden, contained,
By a surface of artificial normality.

My tears flow,
And wash away the facade
Of normality
My tears flow,
And I become,
An open sewer of emotion.