In a beautiful pea-green boat. – for my dad (a year after)

There is a light and it never goes out. Like the kitchen roll boats I kept because they reminded me of him. The fisherman, druggy, bad-boy who begat this heavy heap of hippy who stands before you. The man with the far-away stare and the rum-warm voice. Could he be anymore mine than he is right now?

 A year my dear, is the long and short of it. Feeling through time is frightful but fearing the future is far worse. Floating: because all this time later, I still can’t get a fucking grip. Unhinged and I’m hideous in my heart. And wasn’t I always the sounds of the wickedness, the coolest woman to ever walk the earth? Or was it just a daydream dreamt too many days in a row? The funny-haha of it is that there’s a rainbow somewhere bursting beneath the dark of this daughter, I swear there is. I just don’t know how to show it off. Unless I’m singing, padding bare foot around my kitchen with the fizzy orangina sun spilling in, quenching my thirst while the pans bubble over and the smells spill around the estate.  

 My mind fairytales all the fuckery: weaving it into something sparkly dark and beautiful. Something to drape across my shoulders. Something to hand down to the mish-mash of orphan children I hope to inherit from whores too whorish to home-make. And the way I see it, Fonzie the cat didn’t die, he went to Bombay with Joss. Dylan’s somewhere under the milk of the prettiest wood, hooning around like a happy phantom, ‘chasing the nuns out in the yard’. And Captain Yiannis mans the beautiful pea-green boat expertly sailing the soak of the kitchen roll river towards a much greater ocean. A song in his heart and a spliff in his lips.

As for the evangelist who once lay on my ceiling looking down my top…I thank my stars above that he still has breath in his lungs and adventure in his soul. If not a little bitter from the long taste of me, but I hope better for the full buttering I bestowed on his soul.

 Looking at it this way, through these cola-cube eyes, line by line I re-write and clean-wipe it the way I want it. And when the big ‘the end’ comes, the fairy-tale would have left a serious smile and a swoon that carries like the wind whips in the corners of your cardigan cosy like cotton on your curling bed-toes. The kissing goodnight of the corpses I can’t cope with: making a carnival of cadavers like the Portuguese parading through the plaza in the dead of night dressed in death and disaster, dancing away their cares like Fraggles. And if you’re going to give grief a gateway, this is the way it should be done.  


Delivering Happiness: Amazing People. (And all the other things that make my beard itch.)

Rejection: like the stinging of a cane across your soft bare arse when you really did nothing to deserve it. It hurts and you’ll be sore and angry about it for years to come. Another harsh lesson in impermanence that life dishes out. Another thing to feel cynical about.

Splitting a bond like an atom and there’s bound to be a reaction. I can’t bare to think of my day without them there. The people who watched me get married. The people who know how brave and strong I can be when inside I’m fucked. The people who kept me coming back, day after day, just for the jokes and the piss-taking, if nothing else. The ones who i ‘stick it to the man with’, the ones who I talk food with, the ones who know when my farts smell like peanuts. I can’t face the soul-drudgery of a 9-5 without them and I long to do something drastic. To revolt. Show them all how much I love them and how personally I take injustices against them. But I’ve got bills to pay, I’ve got the sweet-hearted woman who begat me and a grumpy arse cat who depend on me to keep my mouth shut.  And i cant let them down, even though every fibre of my being screams for action: to rage against the dying of an artificial light, to rage against the machine in the way I would have in my teens (or when Dawn and Owen left). Those who know me best know how hard it is for me to ‘keep calm and carry on’ (and all the other pacifying poster boys I can’t be doing with).

And who would have thought that after failing GCSE maths 3 times, I’d spend my days pretending I can add without using my fingers. Pretending I did learn my times tables and all the other useful maths tricks instead of dossing around in car parks looking for good hub caps to steal. 8 years later, I’m unrecognisable to myself. Not just chubbier, but more diluted. And now, this is the only place I write. Because I don’t have time and when I do, my eyeballs reject the screen like the biggest case of rastaburn you ever saw. This is the ‘short term’ job  that came about from a deal I made with Phil whilst laying on a bean bag talking about the universe. He said he would move back in with me if I promised I would stop walking out of jobs and knuckle down for a change. In turn he promised he would take me seriously. Maybe now he’s gone that deal doesn’t stand? Maybe there is some poetry to the fact that everything around me is being snatched away prematurely, like the baby I had and the dad who always made me laugh. Or maybe I over-dramatise (as I always do) for the sake of my prose. 

Where you invest your love: you invest your life. And that wisdom works the other way around to. So you see they aren’t just colleagues. They aren’t just people I stop thinking about after hometime comes. They are people I’ve grown to love, people whose secrets I keep, people who deserve a fuck load better than they have. I can’t just shrug it off that they wont be here anymore. I can’t rest easy when I see their heartbroken furious faces. But there’s fuck all I can do about it but hug them and swear and try to reassure them that this wasn’t what they were destined for anyway. And in a funny way, we are all redundant.  

Delivering happiness: amazing people. This statement is truer than anyone knows.  It’s a shame that the people delivering it don’t have it reciprocated.These people are amazing, and they’ve been the backdrop to all my dramas and daydreams. They’ve made me laugh at times when happiness felt like a fairytale and I wont fucking forget that as long as I live.  And when a decision is made from so high up the management chain that no ones sees the mess it makes when it drops: it’s easy to be callous, to be cost-effective and keep the capitalist dream alive.

There will always be an era that belongs to us. Like the hippies in the sixties and the Wonder Years: we’ll have our own ‘back in the day’ stories of the humiliating hilarity of fights, fancies and fucks we witnessed during our time here. So almost a year after my dad died, his words come back to me now more than ever: the best way to say ‘fuck you’ is to be nice.