Monday, 18 May 2009

Shining Greatly

This morning I asked the I Ching for advice.

This is what it told me:
This is a time of gain, profit and expansion. Have a place to go. Enter the stream of life with a purpose, or embark on a significant enterprise. The source above has descended, and its Tao is shining greatly.

God, revising for his exams in the garden by William Blake

(Also available in paperback)

Auguries of Innocence

To see a world in a grain of sand,
And a heaven in a wild flower,
Hold infinity in the palm of your hand,
And eternity in an hour.

A robin redbreast in a cage
Puts all heaven in a rage.

A dove-house fill'd with doves and pigeons
Shudders hell thro' all its regions.
A dog starv'd at his master's gate
Predicts the ruin of the state.

A horse misused upon the road
Calls to heaven for human blood.
Each outcry of the hunted hare
A fibre from the brain does tear.

A skylark wounded in the wing,
A cherubim does cease to sing.
The game-cock clipt and arm'd for fight
Does the rising sun affright.

Every wolf's and lion's howl
Raises from hell a human soul.

The wild deer, wand'ring here and there,
Keeps the human soul from care.
The lamb misus'd breeds public strife,
And yet forgives the butcher's knife.

The bat that flits at close of eve
Has left the brain that won't believe.
The owl that calls upon the night
Speaks the unbeliever's fright.

He who shall hurt the little wren
Shall never be belov'd by men.
He who the ox to wrath has mov'd
Shall never be by woman lov'd.

The wanton boy that kills the fly
Shall feel the spider's enmity.
He who torments the chafer's sprite
Weaves a bower in endless night.

The caterpillar on the leaf
Repeats to thee thy mother's grief.
Kill not the moth nor butterfly,
For the last judgement draweth nigh.

He who shall train the horse to war
Shall never pass the polar bar.
The beggar's dog and widow's cat,
Feed them and thou wilt grow fat.

The gnat that sings his summer's song
Poison gets from slander's tongue.
The poison of the snake and newt
Is the sweat of envy's foot.

The poison of the honey bee
Is the artist's jealousy.

The prince's robes and beggar's rags
Are toadstools on the miser's bags.
A truth that's told with bad intent
Beats all the lies you can invent.

It is right it should be so;
Man was made for joy and woe;
And when this we rightly know,
Thro' the world we safely go.

Joy and woe are woven fine,
A clothing for the soul divine.
Under every grief and pine
Runs a joy with silken twine.

The babe is more than swaddling bands;
Every farmer understands.
Every tear from every eye
Becomes a babe in eternity;

This is caught by females bright,
And return'd to its own delight.
The bleat, the bark, bellow, and roar,
Are waves that beat on heaven's shore.

The babe that weeps the rod beneath
Writes revenge in realms of death.
The beggar's rags, fluttering in air,
Does to rags the heavens tear.

The soldier, arm'd with sword and gun,
Palsied strikes the summer's sun.
The poor man's farthing is worth more
Than all the gold on Afric's shore.

One mite wrung from the lab'rer's hands
Shall buy and sell the miser's lands;
Or, if protected from on high,
Does that whole nation sell and buy.

He who mocks the infant's faith
Shall be mock'd in age and death.
He who shall teach the child to doubt
The rotting grave shall ne'er get out.

He who respects the infant's faith
Triumphs over hell and death.
The child's toys and the old man's reasons
Are the fruits of the two seasons.

The questioner, who sits so sly,
Shall never know how to reply.
He who replies to words of doubt
Doth put the light of knowledge out.

The strongest poison ever known
Came from Caesar's laurel crown.
Nought can deform the human race
Like to the armour's iron brace.

When gold and gems adorn the plow,
To peaceful arts shall envy bow.
A riddle, or the cricket's cry,
Is to doubt a fit reply.

The emmet's inch and eagle's mile
Make lame philosophy to smile.
He who doubts from what he sees
Will ne'er believe, do what you please.

If the sun and moon should doubt,
They'd immediately go out.
To be in a passion you good may do,
But no good if a passion is in you.

The whore and gambler, by the state
Licensed, build that nation's fate.
The harlot's cry from street to street
Shall weave old England's winding-sheet.

The winner's shout, the loser's curse,
Dance before dead England's hearse.

Every night and every morn
Some to misery are born,
Every morn and every night
Some are born to sweet delight.

Some are born to sweet delight,
Some are born to endless night.

We are led to believe a lie
When we see not thro' the eye,
Which was born in a night to perish in a night,
When the soul slept in beams of light.

God appears, and God is light,
To those poor souls who dwell in night;
But does a human form display
To those who dwell in realms of day.

Sunday, 3 May 2009

Writing is Difficult

Writing is a bitch...

I've been on the road for a week, doing various kinds of things to earn a living. And I've had fun, and done well. I've been meeting people, talking, discussing problems, analysing businesses, and offering advice.

Now I have to write a bunch of reports, and though I know I can, and I want to, I hate it. It feels like it's going to be a struggle.

When I was six years old, I discovered I could write, and it was the most magical, powerful, and wonderful thing ever. I took to it like a duck to water, and by the age of eight I had my picture in the papers.

Writing, before the stars were torn down

When I was thirteen, I can remember being at home, sitting at my desk, and staring at the wall, and looking at the pen in my hands, and thinking I was sick and tired of being popular and successful.

A lot of things happened when I was thirteeen. Bad things, mostly. Regular readers of Hot Vimto may remember The House on Sandygate Lane. That was where we went to live when I was thirtteen. That's the great, hot, dry solid lump of a story that I set out to share with you last summer, and it's still stuck in my belly, making me vomit, and worse.

I'm going to hand over my voice to Sia now. Bless her, she's messed up and twisted, but she writes great songs. I sing along with her, and I dream that one day she will rescue from a dark, twisted sexual relationship with Amanda Palmer, and we will be free to love and cherish one another.

Until that day comes, we are siamese twins, conjoined at the groin and the liver.

Healing is difficult
Often results in psychosomatic
I admit to enjoying drugs
They get rid of tension, boredom and static.

Hate those adverse side-effects
Forcing the people who love me to scatter
Excuse me for being such a hypocrite
The way I see it really doesn't matter.

Why do you cock your head
To the side when you look at me?
Why are my skills in bed
More important than sanity?

To tell you the truth
I can't believe I love you so much
So much in fact that I don't know
Whether to weep or wind my watch
I have a sick sense of humour
It amazes me how points it scores
I'm addicted to vice
My best friends are pushers,
My boyfriends are whores.

Simple to see why I breathe
No one bothers me completely.

Simple to see why I breathe
No one bothers me completely.

Waking up next to you
Your morning breath
Reminds me of Lucy
The flies in the front room
Buzz round my head
And try to seduce me

If I contract illness
The last thing I want
Is to pass it to others
Fucking leaves guilt pangs
When I start forgetting
The names of my lovers

Why do you cock your head
To the side when you look at me?
Why are my skills in bed
More important than sanity?
written and perfomed by

Laughter and Love

Laughter and love are everywhere. The cathedrals, built in the ages that loved God, are full of blasphemous grotesques. The mother laughs continually at the child, the lover laughs continually at the lover, the wife at the husband, the friend at the friend.

"The Napoleon of Notting Hill"
GK Chesterton