Here we are.

I’ve started practising music again. Plugged my 20 year old keyboard in and got a beginners piano book and, well, here we are. Practising scales again after all these years.

Phil  – dear departed Phil – was a musician. Oh I never knew, I never knew until I sat down and started to play, but music reminds me of him and playing it, playing it makes my heart ache so slightly.

Here we are.

I’ve got so many friends who are in dark mental spaces right now. Birds of a feather and all that, although it’s unsettling to be standing in the brisk air of dawn but seeing people still in their personal night. It aches, to know that I can’t lead anyone else out, that it’s a blind crawl we each have to make on our own. God I wish I could help, I wish

if you’re in that space, lost inside yourself, then I’m sorry. I can’t offer you any more than the cold comfort that I’ve been somewhere similar, too, and somehow made it out, after so many years lost in the twilight and the night, and the blood red earth.

And here we are.

Between jobs right now – I still wake early, listen to any Buddhist talks which takes my fancy. Meditate. Practice German, practise music. Gym.

The language is a good thing. I’d been learning Spanish but stopped when my 2017 breakdown really hit – not much point trying to learn another language if you’re going to be dead soon and I was expecting very much to be dead, soon.

But here we are.

I cried just now. Grief crept up on me, then came invited; a wounded animal, untamed, seeking shelter. Small tears then big tears then that strange keening howl beyond pain or tears, at the edge of human sound, at the edge of human being. Cried and rocked and held myself tight, sobbed, gasped. Gasped. Softly wiped away the tears, carried on breathing.


Here we are.

No time at all

I’m going to be 40 soon.

Well, I’m not. A few steps into 2017, I’ll be 36. I’m going to be 40 in 2021, God willing and with a following breeze and assuming I don’t have another little moment. 2021 is over 4 years away.

Which is soon, isn’t it? Eventually, 4 years becomes no time at all.

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By and bye

We hug. I feel his top under my arms and I squeeze, slim shoulders, back, solid and real. A kiss on the cheek, a kiss on the forehead.

We lie down, folding lightly into one another; we talk, he strokes his fingers against my nape, I trail mine up and down his thigh, up, and down.

A dream.

I know. I do know. But I don’t care.

I find a gameboy and on it we watch Mark’s new TV drama; next to us the music school is evacuating, a fire. Kids calmly walk out, rescuing tubas, saving music.

I start to pull away, I get worried sometimes that I’m being too clingy, I try to pull away but he gently pulls me back and I feel again him against me, my hand on his thigh, his arm around my back, warm and real.

I know, I do know. It’s OK.

We stay, a while. Lying on the grass, on the sand, the rocks, the pavement. We lie, by Charing Cross, by the sea, by Television Centre and by and by…

I have to go, we hug, we part but I can’t part, not yet. Our fingers still entwine, and I kiss them, soft and warm and real against my lips, I have to go, I know, warm duvet and pillow and birdsong.

I know. I do know.

It’s OK.


Screaming; I woke myself up screaming.

I never used to, this is new, new these past few months; this makes three times now I’ve woken myself up by screaming. Full on screaming.

I’m alone. Alone in the attic of an empty house, in the dark.

I’m afraid.

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The world goes from tissue to silk

I still can’t quite believe I’m never going to see him again.

I wonder if I ever will believe.

There’s a difference, I guess, between acceptance and belief. And it’s strange, because in the first few shattering days I did believe it, believed it horribly and viscerally. The truth of it was immense and blocked out the world, everything else becoming tissue paper, scrunched and disposable, disposed. But now…

The truth of it doesn’t settle in. It recedes. And the world goes from tissue to silk and we remember who we are, forget the absurdity of it all. There’s a difference, I think, between acceptance and belief. Or maybe they’re just two different shades of denial.

I’ve found a local Soto Zen group.


Bad night’s sleep.

They all are, at the moment. I’m sleeping too much, going to bed too early, forcing me down. In a strange hinterland between hypomania and depression, occasional bursts of brilliance, usually in mornings or afternoon, but a low tone of anhedonia rising in the evenings. Jittery but bored.

The skin around my eyes is tight, I couldn’t be bothered to moisturise last night even as I was scratching at my eyes and watching flakes peel off. Fucking lamotrigine, I think. I’m glad I have the drug and it’s hardly S-J, but I’m fairly certain this sudden rush of psoriasis is because of the lamotrigine, fiddling about mysteriously with my immune system. Last night I found it was spreading, too. Doesn’t help that I reckon I need an increase.

This all sounds grim. I’m not grim. Just in a hinterland.

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