GARDEN OF EARTHEN DELIGHTS
Title references Hieronymus Bosch’s depiction of heaven and hell. Recounts the
witnessing of a psychotic episode – and its denial.
INCARNATION: A NOCTURNE
A love letter to my mother, acknowledging a shared inheritance and sensibility.
Written in 1989, a re-enactment of Virginia Woolf’s final walk and suicide. And a celebration of her aesthetic. A major influence.
Innocence – and its loss.
The pain and confusion of dementia. And the further pain for the carer. Inspired
by and dedicated to my daughter, Danielle.
Dedicated to the kindness of strangers: those who attend funerals for the departed who have no mourners. They represent humanity’s hope.
AUBADE'S GIFT: A FABLE OF FAITH
A creative resurrection of hope and belief in a difficult world.
A study in loneliness – and family misunderstanding.
Vulnerability and the donning of social masks.
AND EXQUISITE GREEN AIR
The joy of being a child before the tyranny of adult rationality develops. With passing references to Noam Chomsky, Andre Breton and Mira Rothenberg.
YOU WHO LIVE SAFE: IN MEMORIAM
In memory of Masha Bruskina hanged by Anton Gecas (formerly Antanas Gecevicius,
a member of a Police unit in the Wehrmacht) in Minsk, Belarus on the 26th October 1941. Gecus, after the war, ran a bed & breakfast in Edinburgh. Information and inspiration from an article by Andi Engel in ‘enthusiam’ no. 4, pub. summer, 2001, for Artificial Eye, his film distribution company’s house magazine. At the time, I went to
the Edinburgh Film Festival – and stayed in a b. & b.
Acceptance and renewal after a lost romance, with a nod to past visits to English churches and the beauty of the English countryside.
The contradictory forces in the journey of life. Cuckoo spit is the white froth found on young stems and leaves of plants in late spring and early summer. It is secreted by the immature stages of sap-sucking insects known as froghoppers.
A mythic figure fishes in and beyond time’s flow. Vague allusion to Nick Drake’s song
of the same title from his album, Five Leaves Left (1969).
DRYAD: A LIVING REQUIEM
In Greek myth, a dryad is a tree nymph or spirit of the woods. A tale of bullying, punishment and child abuse – and the redemptive courage to break free.
A passing glimpse of someone once known adrift in the traffic of life.
Inspired by the Peruvian films of Claudia Llosa, especially The Milk of Sorrow (2009).
It references the savagery of men’s wars in South America and the effect on its women.
A woman unable to forgive.
MOON PRINCESS: A DARK ROMANCE
Originally a short film that failed to find finance. Converted into a tale of lost
yearning and desire.
PHYSIC: A EULOGY
Written to honour the memory of the late nineteenth century Dr John Fawsett, buried
in an unassuming grave in St. Mary’s churchyard, Horncastle, Lincolnshire. The
practice at the time of his death of segregating people in areas of the churchyard on moral ground was repugnant to him, so he arranged for himself and his family to be placed amongst those less fortunate.
My mother as an ageing representative of 1940s glamour.
A gossamer world compiled from a BBC list of the ten most beautiful words in English.
BRILLIANT TREES: A VALEDICTION
An insistent attempt to question and piece together a broken relationship, whose memory will always shine. The title is taken from David Sylvian’s first solo album
of the same name (1984).
PEACE BE . . . A ROUND
The rhythm and cycle of life.
Interpretation of messy gender relationships.
HYBRIDS OF PLANTS AND GHOSTS
Title a quote from Friedrick Nietzsche’s Thus Spake Zarathustra (1883-5): ‘Even the wisest among you is only a conflict and hybrid of plant and ghost’. The need for the
re-evaluation of values, especially human beings as a superior, rational animal. After
a relation was found dead in his garden after two weeks, a speculation on nature’s rearrangement and recycling of life.
FEEDING THE SYSTEM
Developed from a newspaper article concerning a court case where an anorexic girl
was told by a judge that her opinion regarding her placement carried no weight.
Relationship breakup – by numbers.
Emotional pain in a haunted seasonal setting.
Triggered by a misspelling on a poster, and the relativity and irretrievability of time.
OF MOUSE AND MEN
The reality of underpaid work behind the façade of fun with an obvious target. The
title is a reference to Robert Burns’ poem ‘To a Mouse’ and the tyranny of man, and
how both mice and costumed mice are often treated.
The hypocrisy of pious behaviour concerning life’s natural functions.
TRANSLATIONS FROM A FOREIGN PLACE
What it is to be an alien abroad and in your head: geographically and psychologically. Taken from a letter of gratitude once the traveller had returned home – in both senses.
Recalling a cuckoo clock/barometer in my childhood bedroom and the small figures
that emerged from it to reveal atmospheric pressure.
THE PEASANTS' TALE: everemoore
A Geoffrey Chaucer parody of serious intent: the historic ownership of land.
SIX DEGREES OF NICETY
History of the shifting meanings behind the word ‘nice’, combined with the idea that
all people (and words) are six or fewer connections away from one another.
ELENA DOES THE LOTTERY
The cost of taking a gamble on a relationship and the possible consequences. The character of Elena and her blue pills – although differently contextualised – taken
from Andrei Zvyagintsev’s film Elena (2011).
A WOMAN LAY DYING - for Anna
The dance of a supposed suicide pact in a setting of dutiful Polish Catholicism.
A FALL APART
Surrealist burnout and roadside breakdown – occasioned by a lost love.
An emotional distancing adrift in a seaside resort with the accompanying sympathy
of the weather.
JUST THE WIND
Racism and prejudice in Hungary inspired by Benedek Fliegauf’s film, Just The Wind (2012), itself based on true events.
The mismatches and mis-timings of love. And the bittersweet pain of travelling, and carrying a secret within oneself hidden for years. Seeming innocence – and unconsummated longing.
Release from the gothic web of dark fears and frozen emotion to the freedom from
which creativity would flow. Glancing reference to Charles Dickens’s Great Expectations (1860).
A celebration of the relationship between breath and life. In Hindu philosophy, prana
is a Sanskrit word for breath: the life force or vital principle of life.
Homestead, homespun resignation in a couple’s outback.
A study of an ageing individual’s arid rationality and calculation haunted by the misapplication of his ability and potential.
A conjuring memory of childhood’s fluidity with time and its playfulness.
I AND THOU
Based on the ideas of Martin Buber and his book, I and Thou (first published in 1923,
in English 1937), and the practice of Gestalt therapy. Dedicated to Tessa Gunn with profound gratitude.