Thursday, June 23, 2005

Consider Boris

Consider Boris, the actor 5 hours in the chair
Jack Pierce his creator
plucking his eyelids lashfree
days wrapped in cheesecloth
skull built up secured with metal clips
a silver rod through the neck
one highly flammable daemon at the casement
7 feet tall in his 21 pound wooden shoes
negotiating a bone china tea cup with difficulty
a ghastly grin wrinkling his lip
perusing additional dialogue:

“Did I request thee, Maker, from my clay
To mould me man? Did I solicit thee
From darkness to promote me?”

“You who raised me from unhallowed graves,
tortured the living animal to animate my lifeles clay
in your filthy workshop of creation”

“I have no name!
Botched from charnel, your improvised creation
carrion galvanised, hideous to behold
wlatsom as sea-changed flesh
You gave me no name Frankenstein
yours mine involute infinity sign
cut to our chase through snowblind wastes
eternally unkind.
Make me
mine own mate
I demand a creature of another sex
but as hideous as myself!”

Boris (to himself) I cant say this.

Mary: My brow is the creature’s brow
My eyelids his
My preface is by Percy
the creature strangles Victor’s little brother
my own sweet little William
I gave him your name
mea culpa mea culpa infanticida!

Mary: Dream my little baby came back to life
not dead only cold we rubbed it
before the fire it lived. (19/3/1815)

Tuesday, June 21, 2005



Up on Two Mile creek

a murder of crows rising from a mess of grapes

out of green alleys

in laconic arcs


the Boho cru in four fark antiphonals

to the stag of a king tree

grey box foe of ringbarking Footers

Thundercloudworks accumulate.

Skyhigh caucus of cockatoos

folds silent as napkins

on the Quarter Acre fig.

A country mile above Sugarloaf

the constant wedgetails revolve
in thermal gyres

sunstruck from granite Bohobodhisattvas

outcropping heads and shoulders

greened with lichen tatts.

Under white netting


rip nectarine flesh

pits fall click.

on rock.

Sent to Black Inc Flinders Lane attention Les Murray Meter & Doler
of Best Australian Poetry 2005, Bush Imajism, post Jindiwhatmeworrybuck. Fly little birds.

short & sweet playcomp

A play, 10mins max, entries close 12/8 to Alex @ theartscentre. Best 10 get produced. The Tropfest of the Theatre blogatees. Shorttime. The Prize is the Glory. Dramaticules. Think minimal How short can you get? Shorter than Sam Beckett. His last, 86? written in hospital death bed, WhatWhere, about torture. Timely. This is a chance for “the executive, the chef, the student, the accountant, the Man Next Door. Anyone.” says Alex the brochure. A possible cast of characters right there.
Sweet? A criterion? Turn of phrase, no more.
Let me count the genres:
An Acronym Tragedy DIMA DFAT SUNC SIEV
A Satyr Play, or The Up Jig: Vanstone & Ruddock with dildos, Bush as a talking twat, Johnnie with his head in the iconic Globite school case
A Comical History to wit:
Histry Straya in 10mins for 3 performers.
I shall keep myself posted.

Back in 10 mins

Thats better.
Histry Straya. Revisioned by Pauline & Les Fogittit.

In the beginning there was Nothin, right? Dont tell me blackfellas. Fuckall of them. Few hundred odd thousand. In the whole joint. Farmin nothin but flies till Cookie come.
When Cookie run up the flag, now that was somethin. One minute trackless waste, flyblown boongs
run it up the pole Real Estate! Crown Land! Bang like that. Monarchism when you think about it got somethin to be said for it. Possession possession possession.

Monday, June 20, 2005

bloomsdiddy dum

The readership had practised. 3 Sunday afternoons. Plates were brought as you do to an Irish house, in this case Declan’s daughter’s flat. Phyllis a whopping carroty sausage roll and club sandwiches with the crusts off, Brian a family pie, bakery bought before the dawn. Nothing from me, the poormouth herald of the Wake but notions: let us pronounce the thunderwords, well
trovarrrhounawnskawntoohoohoordenenthurnuk, at least and let there be music, the Ballad of Finnegans Wake, which is how come Peter joined us on the second Sunday, bodhran at the ready to accompany me, had I been able to play the thing on the alto recorder. Utterly unable, I tee up a pipe practise with Peter at his place. He lends me his Soodlums penny whistle in C. He gives me a potted history and symbological explication of the bodhran and a mnemonic to remember its name, 2 cups of tea. He whacks on the Clancy Bros with Tommy Makem, reminisces of the heygomad, bushdancing days of the 80s. Pity its a bit early for a Bushmills.
Happily the Joycewords go play in the traffic in the back of my mind. For days Im in the frontal parlour obsessively tootling Tim Finnegans jig. Get it down. But in vain. On The Day a death in Peter’s family, he has to confront the real thing, no bodhran, no singer, no wry-necked pipe, no

Whack fol the darn-o
Dance to your partner
Whirl the floor
Your trotters shake!

Mortality. Smell of. Fuckit said the Unquenchable Spirit of Man in the shape of Marcus, lawyer, towsel-headed, out of the office for Bloomsday, Ill sing a verse and a chorus with you, sez he. And so we sit in the high & glassy interior of the Nicolas building to read Declan’s last minute redaction with a will. I am pleased to see the cold in Declan’s eye is healing nicely.

Matthieu Leon Gibert

Matthieu Leon Gibert est arrive

Saturday, June 18, 2005

The Big Day

Email from Declan on the Tuesday

Sorry for the latness of this message. On (Thursday) Bloomsday We are meeting at Collected Works for a reading there from 2.30 PM and afterwards a few readings through of the scripts at a room in the Writer’s Centre next door to Collected Works.

Declan works at the Postal exchange in Dandy. Night shift. So does Peter who plays the bodhran. The Post, subject to human agency and oddness of address, to a large degree eludes electronic scanning and remains in human hands, 1200 pairs. As his day job Declan has digested parts of Ulysses for the readings and typed them out in a variety of font and case. He hails from Sligo and has a wicked pack of Joyce anecdotes betraying a particular fondness for Frank Budgen & John Quinn, NY attorney and phynancial horse of the Modernists. The hail is hard to catch whenI first meet him at Khyats Hotel, Brighton, digesting a hamburger. Two pints of porter and all became plain. In 1989 it was himself that commenced the Melbourne Observance of Bloomsday abetted by John Flaus and a bunch of other joycephyliacs a year before they had it in Sydney, the copycats, though this global post modernist phenomenon sheets home to Dublin and the beginnings of the revival of the Irish economy in the exploitation of the things the Irish, producers of the lion’s share of English literature, are good at, things like cultural services, intellectual property & capital, processing information, managing knowledge, technoblarney, blablabla. Phillip Adams had requested no interview, publicising the Sydney comelatelies instead, thus setting a pattern of neglect and detraction. Rival players emerged in faction-loving Melbourne, academics, blue stockings particularly sticking in Declan’s craw, the butt of his mock and gave the enterprise the edge of grudge.
The day before The Big Day Declan sends a further email, in brogue:

A nap is indeed in the time frame. Thnak God ’tis the old age pension and not the blind pension yerself and John are getting or we’d be in all kinds of trouble that night!!!!

I like the blog ’tis good, only one little error, should be 7.30. Anyway not to worry we have good inquiries already, and yes to yes to a sound system too. Bejayus and begorrah the modern life is great….when one thinks of John Wayne in a Force 10 gale shouting from one end of a shop to t’other and guns firing all round at the same time and fires blazing, ’tis a wonder we won the war at all at all!!!

Judas took 30 pieces of silver and hanged himself in remorse: Pell took several hundred million and got a gong in addition. And Jaysus wept!!


Cast a cold eye
On life, on death
Horseman, pass by!

W B Yeats (1865 - 1939)

Beyond Ben Bulben
An Australian Yeats Society
Visit our website at

Yeats’ rep. in the antipodes with an accent I thought had left the stage some time before 1904. Over the top, up and at ‘em for the Finnaginbeginagin Memorial. My snobsheart murmurs ambivalently. My humble kidney (left) responds there are many chapels in the Cathedral of St Jim. So I light a green candle at the Altar of Absurdity & into my my manyzippered, neverflown frequentflyer valise I pack:
1 Ulysses
1 Finnegans Wake
1 Exagmination round our Factification for Incamination of his Work in Progress
1 Soodlums Irish penny whistle
and dressed in three shades of green catch the 1.09 from Mentone to the city.

Tuesday, June 14, 2005

gothicka botanica Mary Shelley 2006

Mary Shelley Monstered in the Park, en plein air, son et lumiere, after dark.The Female Prometheus (no knickers)
Big Idea ie Greg Carroll using gear from Melbourne Shakespeare Co. in May post Games or during the Dread Games as cultural relief. Who’s paying what when how
Me to adapt. En blog. Some day soon, scanned & encrypted in editable form, right here blogateers. A visit to the Botanical wd be in order. Lakeside I wot
Musick? Violin, guitar, organ, koto, percussion. Mix with Neo Gothic, Siouxie & the Banshees? Bauhaus?
Characters on stilts, built up, Bread & Puppets, Peter Schuman style, like the Moon & Sir Timothy Shelley MP in 1975
Polidori’s Story: The Vampyre, Nosferatu/Byron connection
Villa Diodati phantasmagoria. Its animals: 8 dogs, 15 cats, 3 monkeys, an eagle, acrow & a falcon.
Mary losing her babies, guilt & horror. The buried child revived
New Induction. More eroticks. Ken Russell’s Gothic
Scene review:
1 Induction Break-in at the Museo becomes
Exterior. Break-out. (Percy Golem? Maria Vampyra? John Clare & the Ghouls?). Some monstrous thing(s) is loose and it surprises substance abusing neo-romantics in the Gardens.
2 The Godwin Exhibition.
Interior. Gothick Expressionismus structure, Tower, Grotto, Pavillion, Laboratory, Crypt cum Bathroom for the crazy old wanker
3 The Birth of Mary.
Interior/exterior Mary W. hanging from a birthing tree in a loooong white dress
4 The Boyhood of Shelley
Exterior. Entrance to a fairy grot. Corporal punishment. X Fade to interior chez Godwin & Girlhood of Mary.
5 Chez Godwin.
Interior.Percy pays a visit, falls in love. Lovers chased out on to the (Exterior) foggy streets of London.
6 Byron at Home
Interior. Pubic hair in the post. Claire calls. Time to leave England.
7 Graveyard at St Pancreas
Exterior. Mary W. rises & advises, placates Godwin. Lovers elope to France.


1 Low Country Operetta
Exterior. Lord Byron sings of Ennui. Puts down fat ladies. Picks up Claire who sings of her love for the clubfooted one.
2 Travels with a Donkey
Exterior. Percy Mary & Claire buy a donkey from the transformative Trio.
3 Waterloo
Exterior. Byron looks up a fallen friend on the field.
4 O Come My Muse
Interior. Percy in the throes of composition. Mary interrupts.
5 Dream of an Imaginary Baby
Mime with pillow & blanket with Trio. Mary smothers Claire. Baby disappears.
6 Clubfoot to the Lake
Exterior. Mary & Shelley & Byron & Polidori prepare a picnic.
7 The Lake
Exterior. The quartet go sailing.
8 Mad Claire
Interior. Claire plays madly with a phallic doll to the distaste of Mary & Byron.
9 Polidori’s Story
Interior. Erotomanic Giorgio’s deal with the devil.
10 Interlude
Mary dreams of bones & a baby with the Trio.
11 The Musical Demise of Claire &
Interior. A dance of death.
12 Mary Writes
Interior. Mary starts Frankenstein, asserts feminist principles.
13 Percy Unbound
Exterior. Percy goes sailing against Byron’s advice & drowns.
14 The Heart
Exterior. On the beach Byron retrieves Shelley’s heart. The band plays the blues.

Monday, June 13, 2005


As night follows day.
after the funeral the Wake. A speck of the Wake.
FW is the story of stories
a shot at writing down the Dreaming of Indo-European humankind. Very few of us read it like honest Roddy Doyle.
Is it a preposterous, impenetrable & immortal folly? An unscalable babel?
The ultimate pancollective unconscious kaka cake or oneiromastic encyclotron, if you will but you probably wont.
It is was & will be a Novel in the original sense of the word, a new thing
cobbled together over 16 years by a nearly blind man for an ideally insomniac readership, a readership required to speakeasy in tongues, panglossaliaquoiquoiquoiquoi!
A tale told of stem and stone… etc is told in the dubble en tongue. Speak it I pray you, drunkenly, as a Dublin lush and meaning unfolds like a family romance in the Freudian mode.
Hot Mama, ALP, Here Comes Everybody the fallen Dad, rival brothers, Shem & Sean, twin daughters & incestibilty between one & Dad . The tale is subject to archetypal shift in the Jungian mode. Joyce’s relationship with his daughter Lucia is part of the story since Ellman more so after Carol Loeb Schloss has the tongues wagging with her Dancing at the Wake.
The Greeks wrote tragedies about fuckedup families. Joyce wrote a comedy. EP called him Jim the joker. As the man so his works. Joyce words act up. In the beginning was the pun. A pun is word behaving badly, meaning both one thing and the other, an destabilised word doing a pirouette, performing, Peter is a rock. Anna is a river.
FW is wordplay on an epic scale. It begs wordplayers to fool about a text as non-linear as the Book of Kells and as sensicle as Jabberwocky
FW is a comedy and Joyce put himself in it. Scholars agree, the dodgy, artistic brother Shem is a satirical self portrait. FW p.169:

“Shem is as short for Seamus as Jem is joky for Jacob….

Monday, June 06, 2005


June 16 at 45 Downstairs: Joysprickin’ or Joysseance or Joking Jim & the Joyceboys with Phyllis & so forth.
Bar opens at 7.00.

At 7.30 Declan (Turn a Cold Eye) Foley calls Joyceonanists & Joyceanistas from the bar & for a bit of shush to read in. Introduces the readers: himself, Brian, Phyllis Marcus Luke John ( no Matthew) Tim & Peter on the bodhran.
& the legenda to wit:

Paddy Dignam’s funeral.

Tim intros and reads Shem the Penman.

Viceregal cavalcade.

Gerty (esp p477).


Ballad of Finnegans Wake. Pipe & drum.

Mutt & Jute.


Peter Green’s Nora piece.


Molly in bed with Helen.

Saturday, June 04, 2005

bloomsday last

The first copy of Ulysses I opened had a brown paper wrapper over the green cover with the bow down the spine I knew nothing about, the property of my uncle, a seafaring man. I was a pre-ejacaculative adolescent in New Zealand, mid 20th century. I was looking for dirty bits and 4 letter words. My uncle had probably purchased it Sydney with the same intent. It was not well thumbed and dogeared like Ruby, the Indian Girl from the Olympia Press. For the syntactically incompetent Ruby was better value. Molly diddling through 3 prodigious sentences eluded me till Stephen Dedalus had replaced Holden Caulfield as my teenage rolemodel. What a callow young tosser the Artist turns out to be forging the uncreated conscience of his race in the smithy of his soul, clang clunk. As I reached the Age of Irony he diminished & I saw the guiltriddled faker, spellbound by his own genius, pissing away his talent gathered in like a prodigal by Leopold Bloom with whom my sympathies now alligned themselves. Once the faintly urinous tang of grilled mutton kidney pressed against my palate fine, I was Bloom. I found I could speak the language of cat. I was swept away by the sullied stream of blooming consciousness, to the stale flowerwater breath, to the plump mellow yellow smellow melons of Molly’s rump. What is all this but the magic of dirty words made flesh? Chrysostomatic Joyce made a Logophage out of me.
Years later I’m still gnawing at the entrails of Ulysses and Finnegans Wake. The enthusiast eats Joyce’s words (or those of Shakespeare, the Pentateuch or any true poet) then breathes them out aloud, effecting a communion, an act of transubstantiation. The secret is in the saying, the reader is a party to the poet’s creation, she comes to a carnal knowledge of the words through aural sex.
It was Siobhan McKenna who taught me that the Wake, delivered in a Dublin accent can warm cockles, in some parts even produce erections. James Joyce is a sex mechanic, his words are sex machines. He has the happy knack of putting the Eros in the Logos, the enlightening tendency to corrupt, a corrupter of words like Feste the clown in 12th Night. And in principle, corruption is generation.
Two of my children are named Finn and Anna Pome, a testament to an order of influence worth trying to explain. I didnt read them the Wake at bedtime. I never read them Dubliners at all. Mea culpa. In fact I havent partaken much of the corpus since the 70s and here I am stepping along Flinders Lane, Bloomsday last, to join in a Joycean cenacle at 45 downstairs. On the nonce. Itchy for a read. There are gatherings all over town: at the Celtic Club, lost in the Twilight of the Pokies. The State Library’s got medialinkage to Dublin, live from the House of The Dead on Ushers Island Dublin. Organised by the techno jesuit CEO. Properly global for Joyce Lives on the Net. No way to get my Shem the Penman on the menu there, unless by guerilla action but I am sober and Security would be tight. Molly Blooms in South Melbourne goes through the motions, Collected Works in the Nicholas building keeps the faith, Here Comes Everybody re- Joycing, but to this white walled subterranean gallery I have come on a wintry night. Things are clearly not in hand as I part with $10 at the door and get stuck into an iced cold can of Guinness. It appears that the man in charge, Declan “Cast a cold eye” Foley, convenor of the Beyond Ben Bulben Society and the present soiree, has fallen from the roof of his home and broken his neck. Gravity prevents any apt comparison to the fall that broke the skull of Tim Finnegan of the Ballad and the Wake. It means they are short of a reader. The offer of my services is accepted with alacrity and I, petty poormouth, ask for my $10 back. This tickles big John Flaus, basso, polymath and archivist who files it under Anecdote (active list). Dark, lustrous Helen who once played Mary Shelley, is here in green, out of an Edwardian poster for Pears soap, to give her Molly. Yes. I try and con my Joyce writ. I was wearing this same leather drizabone in a publicity photo with her long ago. One of three other Elder Readers kisses her hand with blushing fervour. Nelly cum Molly, the persona descends. With all my imagination I thee endow. I approach. Turns out she’s not doing Molly at all, she’s doing Gerty McDowell, the fireworks of Bloom’s coming. Yes, time for a Jamiesons, I shall wing it. Jah, oui, Joyceance be my friend!
The room was long, the house was thin. Lone males, three kinds of couple, some Dedali, mostly middle aged, post-Bloomfolk, eternal studes of Himself.
His speak was spoken trippingly in a velleity of dubble N accents. Paddy’s funeral in the morning catch as catch can, knowing chuckles among the nodding and the blank till memorably Bloom’s late afternoon Jouissance. Interval & Guinnessance. Then we staggered on into the night, my delivery becoming increasingly thick with phlegm and stumblejim. Elements in the scattered crowd drifted away on private streams of consciousness. The rest picked at the crazy sonic salad, peppered with epiphanies of sense, some good bits. A fair bit of lingua incognita burred in their ears till we all came yea-saying home with herself doing the Mollymonolorgasm. And waxed fat about doing it again next year. The Joyce jazz, the jism of the words.
The Wake I said.