the view from the tower

arcite's day

Saturday, April 30, 2005

My poem 'Chance Meeting' has been accepted for the next issue of Bravado. Great! I was just at the point of getting so tired I was losing faith and confidence that I bloody well could write any verse people would want to read. As you know I'm fiddling with poems for another submission and feel that I just need to write a few more decent poems.

I've added All's Well that Ends Well to my reading list. I have absolutely no idea what the play is about.

I am looking at $560 worth of dental work to fix up two teeth and clean my teeth from years of abuse. God knows what my insides look like. For some reason the visit to the dentist, combined with it being the last day of the holidays, really strung me out yesterday.

...arcite at Saturday, April 30, 2005...

Wednesday, April 27, 2005

On the stereo

1. never for ever. kate bush
2. settin’ the pace. john coltrane
3. nocturnarama. nick cave and the bad seeds
4. best of blur. blur
5. love. baby. gwen stephanie
6. best. of 2004. q magazine
7. bressa creeting cake.
8. First edition. PiL.
9. out of the moon. goldenhorse
10. chutes too narrow. the shins
11. yoshimi versus the pink robots. the flaming lips

(items 1-8 courtesy of wellington public library)

key tracks: all the things that i’ve done. the killers. holiday. green day. the dark of the matinee. franz ferdinand. if i was a rich girl. gwen stephanie.

so far this year has been fantastic for music. if I had money i'd be out there spending up large on the killers, franz ferdinand, green day, pluto, etc. the shins are a great delight. but i have our fantastic library to more than keep me going. a dollar a pop for a cd. and all the music mags you could wish for. i did find nocturama a little disappointing and somewhat formulaic—it lacked some of the spark of, say, the boatman's call. but how could you beat that cd once you’ve made it? & i saw this nick cave video that features a computer-generated bunny rabbit. odd. kasabian's LSF (lost souls forever) also has a loutish psychedelic charm ('the drugs are just an hour away!') with more than a nod to the happy mondays. listening to PiL again, i hear splashes of brilliance interrupted by long pauses where the lads tread water and wish for less histrionics (the downside of punk’s primal expressionism). read ted hughes pyramus and thisby in his tales from ovid—so that's the part Bottom is playing! I mean, I should have know that already, right? But I didn't. The blog of choice this week has to be Under a Bell—coming to us from the Netherlands which photos so good you can feel the cold in the sky.

...arcite at Wednesday, April 27, 2005...

Tuesday, April 26, 2005

Karori Road

As I was driving down Karori road, a stupid driver pulled out of the BP station and almost killed me. We missed a major collision by just a few centimeters. “I’m sorry! I just wasn’t looking!” he cried.

I went over the poems for PNZ with Wūlfræd and decided to pull two of the five. So now I’m back to more writing—and I’ve agreed to do another review for the Poetry Soc.

I’m writing another assignment for Teach Coll. and listening to the Gwen Stephanie CD I borrowed from the library which I can’t burn, can’t afford, and which is due back today. A fun CD—delightfully unpretentious.

...arcite at Tuesday, April 26, 2005...

Monday, April 25, 2005

No probs driving down the North Island in one day. Outside Bulls we hit a bad storm and by the time we reached Karori we drove slow to avoid skidding on the hailstones. At home a cheque from NZ Books (which would easily cover all our gas to Auckland and back and then some) and my review for the Poetry Soc. that features a minor typo. in the third sentence: all my own work.

...arcite at Monday, April 25, 2005...

Sunday, April 24, 2005

I'm having lots of fun up here in Auckland. Walking around Ponsonby, we stop at the Moa Hunter bookshop and I ask if they have a copy of Charlotte Bronte's Villette. After much searching, they find a copy. Tyger asks for a Garfield cartoon book and Roishan Mr Bean's Diary. Ta to The Blogless Aurora Floyd for recommending this to me--since leaving university I've started to enjoy books. But it does look slightly intimidating.

...arcite at Sunday, April 24, 2005...

Saturday, April 23, 2005

Sky Tower at Dusk

Arcite's day is crusing in holiday mode. We hit the St. James shopping plaza in Auckland and spent a little more than we should: 2nd hand Pokemon game for Roishan, huge Lego Ferrari car set for Tyger, new clothes for the lads, new jersey for word-girl and I blew $28 on Alice Sebold's The Lovely Bones. I read half of the book in one day! Luckily, holiday money had been given to us for the kids by my in-laws as well as money for our gourmet pizza dinenr (and beer). I don't enjoy the poverty of being an adult student but I don't know how I'd get by without being in my (Indian) family. Yes, they live in your pockets and have opinions on everything but they are also there in the tough times. Besides, the food's fantastic.

The night we went to the Sky Tower coz Roishan want to have a drink at Bar Three, a million-dollar bar with marble floors, marble bar tops and luxurious bathrooms. Mercifully, the drinks weren't at sky high prices: $6 for a Stella Artois.

...arcite at Saturday, April 23, 2005...

Friday, April 22, 2005

We're all in Auckland. On the spur of the moment we decided to make the ten hour drive up the north island to all invade Word-girl's sister's place in Auckland. The drive was fine. We made great time. Near Tokoroa I was chewing a Macintosh toffee when my gold filling--attached to my front tooth since I was ten--came off. I thought it was a stone in the toffee and threw it out of the window. Mercifully I am in no pain.

...arcite at Friday, April 22, 2005...

Wednesday, April 20, 2005

All my joints ache from this annoying flu bug everyone in the immediate extended family has picked up.

Royalty cheques for the Asperger & Adolescence book arrive from the UK. In total, it’s about enough to cover a weekend holiday for the family in Taupo. But we decide to stay put. Word-girl talks Roishan out of buying Pokemon Silver to add to his game collection only for us to spend twice as much upgrading the memory on his Compaq.

The Teachers’ College has given me an extension for the assignment due halfway through the school holidays. This gives me enough time to think about working on those new poems for PNZ—the editor did advise me to send in some new material soon. And I can waste time blogging.

A lovely email today from an old friend I met back when I was a Ph.D student in Gainesville who now crunches code in Kentucky. She signs off “Life continues its lack of dullness.”

...arcite at Wednesday, April 20, 2005...

Monday, April 18, 2005

After finishing my Teaching Experience, I finally clocked up all the hours I taught. Instead of the recommended 40 hours I actually taught 63.

Yesterday I went with Tyger to
Pataka for the opening of a group project one of my friends in the Poetry Society had worked on. The project combines original poetry with original artwork all exploring womens’ experience of domestic life. Her poetry was so sharp, so crafted, so photographic—you could see how the poems were also pictures. I told her in the crowded opening that I could see just what a monumental amount of work had gone into this show. During the speeches I could see she was crying. If you really work hard at your poetry and remove all excess and try to get to the core than you can make good art. I really should stop pissing around writing doggerel and concentrate more on arranging sequences of images. I still haven’t found my own eyes yet.

At the show, I bump into Martin who I used to hang-out with as an undergraduate. Martin had once been a very successful hairdresser in Wellington. At varsity he was a new romantic. Now he looked terrible, overweight, puffy skin and bleary eyes. When I asked him how he’d been he told me that he’d had to leave hairdressing because he’d been so ill but he was now getting better. So I asked him what he’s been will with and he replies “I’ve been quite mentally ill for a while. Depression and...and....” And I see that he’s been to hell and back. Right through the wringer. I remember how he opened the salon just for me on the morning word-girl and I got married all those years ago. Over his shoulder a Tibetan cloth bag and when I ask him he tells me that he went around Tibet to all the monasteries just before he became really ill.

...arcite at Monday, April 18, 2005...

Tuesday, April 12, 2005

babooshka kate bush: what an amazing little piece of play. how elderly and wise it sounds now, this looking back as part of the growing older, for what he wants is her before and what she want is also him. haunting and time. to love the beloved is to to also mourn the lost past. great night star watching. learnt the amazing constellation carina with canopus at the head. love the daft punk ‘robot rock’ video complete with foolish crash helmets. hey, by the way, ‘kāti’ in te reo means ‘that’s enough’ or ‘stop’, so............let's............ ‘kāti’ !

...arcite at Tuesday, April 12, 2005...

Sunday, April 10, 2005

secret ways...wrote me & the seventh form. getting ready for next submission to PNZ. had a long bath. cleared the back garden. watched the ludicrous royal wedding for half and hour. tediousness distilled. went to the movies with word-girl and watched ae wee kiss: the lead guy can't act. now me, word-girl and wulfraed are all at in the writing game. small world, very small world.

...arcite at Sunday, April 10, 2005...

Saturday, April 09, 2005

under heavy manners

MANNERS : under heavy discipline or punishment. for example when Kingston is under "heavy manners", they have a curfew or call out the army.

all carpet slippers & mint imperials from now on

not that we want to make you unhappy

rusholme ruffians

The last night of the fair
By the big wheel generator
A boy is stabbed
And his money is grabbed
And the air hangs heavy like a dulling wine

She is Famous
She is Funny
An engagement ring
Doesn't mean a thing
To a mind consumed by brass (money)

And though I walk home alone
I might walk home alone ...
...But my faith in love is still devout

The last night of the fair
From a seat on a whirling waltzer
Her skirt ascends for a watching eye
It's a hideous trait (on her mother's side)
From a seat on a whirling waltzer
Her skirt ascends for a watching eye
It's a hideous trait (on her mother's side)

And though I walk home alone
I might walk home alone ...
...But my faith in love is still devout

Then someone falls in love
And someone's beaten up
Someone's beaten up
And the senses being dulled are mine
And someone falls in love
And someone's beaten up
And the senses being dulled are mine

And though I walk home alone
I might walk home alone ...
...But my faith in love is still devout

This is the last night of the fair
And the grease in the hair
Of a speedway operator
Is all a tremulous heart requires
A schoolgirl is denied
She said : "How quickly would I die
If I jumped from the top of the parachutes ?"
La ...

This is the last night of the fair
And the grease in the hair
Of a speedway operator
Is all a tremulous heart requires
A schoolgirl is denied
She said : "How quickly would I die
If I jumped from the top of the parachutes ?"
La ...

So ... scratch my name on your arm with a fountain pen
(This means you really love me)
Scratch my name on your arm with a fountain pen
(This means you really love me)
Oh ...

And though I walk home alone
I just might walk home alone
But my faith in love is still devout
I might walk home alone
But my faith in love is still devout
I might walk home alone
But my faith in love is still devout
La ...

1. i can’t stand it anymore. the velvet underground
2. tentative decision. talking heads
3. new feeling. talking heads
4. rusholme ruffians. the smiths
5. i want what i can’t have. the smiths
6. what she said. the smiths
7. levi stubbs tears. billy bragg
8. the window. leonard cohen
9. redemption song. joe strummer and the mescalinos
10. scholarship is the enemy of romance. billy bragg
11. young pilgrims. the shins
12. one star awake. gramsci (nz)
13. claire. minuit. (nz)
14. menace. minuit. (nz)
15. where do we go now but nowhere?. nick cave & the bad seeds
16. the drowners. suede
17. almost done). morcheeba
18. my oblivion. tindersticks

the last night of the fair...............

...arcite at Saturday, April 09, 2005...

Thursday, April 07, 2005

I am very tired but at least the Winter sky is here. A lovely view the other night of Libra and my favourite new constellation Corvus, The Crow. Of course, it's all upside down here.

Another small, ancient constellation, yet very easy to recognize. Corvus was a bird of the god Apollo, who in different stories upset the god so much that he transformed the crows feathers from silver to black and placed his image in the sky. Corvus can be found sitting on the tail of Hydra, the sea serpent. Another way to find Corvus is to look just below the constellation of Virgo, the maiden.

That quake the other morning was all in my head. But the drills we've been having at school are all too real.

...arcite at Thursday, April 07, 2005...

Tuesday, April 05, 2005

Tyger was sick with a tummy bug this weekend. Now he's over it but I feel tired from not going out and having a break. Although Capital Central is considerably richer than the last school I taught at in the Hutt, the kids are very difficult to focus and keep on task. Academically, the school's not doing as well as it could. And I wonder about just how much drug-taking is going on which is really quite scary.

Also a little scary is the small earthquake I felt at 5.45AM this morning. Why do we seem to be having so many in the morning?

What I'd like is just a little more time to work on some poems.

...arcite at Tuesday, April 05, 2005...