Soul Mother

This is a teaser trailer for a forthcoming short film made by a talented friend of mine  by the name of Catherine Stepien. Having worked in film for a while, mainly within wardrobe and production design, Soul Mother is very much her project. Being her debut directorial outing, she also wrote the script, created the effects, designed the production and dealt with make up and wardrobe.

My old school mate is nothing if not versatile!

Please check it out. Turn your volume up.

 

A Four-Way Collaboration

I was sat in a café, reading a great poem about my home city of Manchester.*

The opening lines read:

Queen of the cotton cities,

nightly I pick you back into existence:

the frayed bridal train your chimneys lay

and the warped applause-track of Victorian rain.

You’re the blackened lung whose depths I plumb,

the million windows and the smoke-occluded sun.

 

A couple took the table behind me. The lad never spoke, but the girl:

“I’ve always had weird drinking habits. I used to drink the vinegar out of cockle and muscle jars. I think it’s the cause of my leaking bladder.”

 

All of this was underscored by a female cover of Frankie Goes To Hollywood’s The Power Of Love. Haunting and ethereal. Alchemical.

All of these things merged and mingled into one tributary, collaborative moment, leading me to the page, transcribing slowly.

 

 

*Manchester, Adam O’Riordan.

Songs Of The North

These three books constitute the (current) Songs Of The North poetry series, of which my book Heading North is a part.

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These words are from my editor Michael Kobernus:

‘I am proud of every book we put out, at Nordland Publishing. However, these are special. While they may not be everyone’s cup of tea, they elevate the written word into art, and that is amazing.’

My book, Heading North, is available here:

https://www.amazon.co.uk/Heading-North-2-Songs/dp/8283310097/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1491035913&sr=1-1&keywords=heading+north

All three different takes on the inspirational north can be discovered here on Nordland Publishing’s website:

http://www.nordlandpublishing.com/titles/songs-of-the-north/

Isn’t it time you journeyed North? 🙂

On This Day: Bones Of Contention

April the 19th is the day of Alphege, who was an Anglo-Saxon monk of Deerhurst near Gloucester. Old Alfie, as I rather irreverently refer to him purely because it’s easier, was made the bishop of Winchester in 984 and Archbishop of Canterbury in 1005. 

When he took the post of Archbishop he took with him the head of St.Swithin, like you do. I would normally just take a book.

When the Danes invaded in 1011 he refused to leave his people, and when held to ransom he refused to let the money of the poor be used to buy his freedom.

A 13th Century stained glass window at Canterbury Cathedral, depicting Alfie’s abduction. Note the Viking stood behind him giving him a Karate chop.


The following year, his captors, not exactly renown for their patience, finally lost it during a drunken feast at Greenwich and pelted him with bones and the heads of cattle. They then killed him with an axe-a noteworthy example of a martyr witnessing to justice rather than faith.

What’s it all about, Alfie? 

He became the first Archbishop of Canterbury to die a violent death. 

Alfie is shown here being asked advice. I would imagine his reply could be: “Don’t bother taking a Saint’s head with you for luck. It’s not worth the effort-and you could instead pack more socks.”

And The Clock Ticks On

A memory reblog-my daughter has recently turned ten years old. This was from when she turned eight.

City Jackdaw

My daughter turned eight years old today. On greeting her and wishing her ‘Happy Birthday’ this morning, she told me that she said a prayer last night in bed:

“Thank you for being seven, and thank you for all my remembers.”

I loved that last bit-thank you for all my remembers. Her way of summing up the past twelve months of her life, all of the memorable moments in the cavalcade of chronological events.

The other day I was watching her younger brother James from the kitchen window. He was out in the garden, studying a bird perched in a tree above him. He was serious and rapt, the hint of the handsome man he will be painted there on his face, and I found myself confessing a sad, wistful thought to myself:

I wish I was younger.

I have four children, and their arrival into the world was spaced…

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