Tuesday 31 May 2016

God knows, save my soul from the sword.
It goes on, this winding stair. Every tread is new, and already trodden. How many times will I imagine the end...? How much better, to make a life, and be within it. I see myself, what, cutting wood..? Fashioning what, some object..? To imagine yourself, that life.  But this is all it will ever be, we know it. The rain of our imagining always breaks upon every step. That's something, then. Knowing it, something.
So it goes. Well I can report the facts, can do that.
There's Gareth, down the hallway. Was he ever anywhere else? There's Helen. Actually, where is Helen? She has clients round the clock.
It's all the same, then, all the fucking same then. But is it, really?
How many times will I tread this winding stair..? We have all been dead a long while. Have you any idea of the sheer effort to climb these heights simply to say hello, again? To you, again? I will scale higher and higher to the tune of your indifference, it's known. But no birds sing in this house. Oh sure, it's true, we live in different worlds now. But there was a time our worlds met. Wasn't there, Mum..? Mum? Fucking hell.

I struck myself on the side of the face with the base of my hand, kicked open the door. Everything was here, intact. I slumped into the client chair. Agrippa, Paracelsus, Fludd, my Ouspenski. It was all here, everything. What was I thinking. I hit myself again, the other cheek, breathing deeply, until I heard the soft thud of Gareth's car door. Another day, with relief.

Monday 1 September 2014


Why has he not deleted my posts? Is he unaware of them? No, I don't believe that. There is every chance he is reading this right now.

Well like I said, no more games, that's not me. And if this post stays here for fifty years or five minutes, no matter. At least I've done it. I will always know I did my best to be truthful. Because there is such a thing, whatever He says. So, here's what happened: Bare with me, I may not have his florid, his...insinuating prose style, but I know the truth when I see it. Four days ago I knocked on his door. Of course, it gives me no pleasure to say that he looked older, tired, craggy. In fact, mildly decrepit, I would say. He opened the door quickly, as if he'd been waiting. Had he? No, won't go down that road. But- and this was even more unnerving- he ushered me in with an impatience- almost a familiarity- as if I were an errant son or nephew who'd been popping round the house for years. Of course, he said, remembering to smile. His greying hair was stuck upwards like he hadn't washed for days. In fact, he looked like a 20th Century painter whose name I forget. He led me down the hallway, then turned. But I must finish shaving, he said. Shaving..? Actually, my first thought was...nobody shaves anymore! It was ridiculous thought but a measure of my anxiety. Nevertheless, I was relieved to have a few minutes to compose myself- only later did I realise that he was already perfectly shaven when he said it. And this was the pattern of our whole encounter. I would have random intuitions- like the shaving- but they would formulate themselves as abstract ideas- like..noone shaves! Luckily I had the tape recorder, or I could never have pieced it all together. So, question is, why did he say that? I've run the gamut of possibilities- some of them, I admit- rather paranoid, others more literary. But at the end of the day I think that he, like me, simply wanted time to compose himself. Saying that, just prior to sprinting up the stairs to the bathroom ( and he sprinted...!), he gestured to a picture on the wall at the end of the hallway. You may find this of interest...Immediately, I knew he was trying to distract me, or at least control the situation. Nevertheless, I took a note of the picture because it may have signified something and, if so, I had to know about it. It was a Chagall print, a signed limited edition of his picture Promenade. Now, I've thought long and hard about this and I have no intention of writing an essay, interpreting or deconstructing this picture, let alone analysing his reasons for drawing my attention to it. Some things just exist as they are. We are all of us victims of the present moment and not everything means something. So, again, I give him the benefit of the doubt. He was just being the generally insane, controlling man I knew him to be. Or maybe, maybe, he was just being sociable. That is conceivable, and something I may have to take into account. Nevertheless, I will post the picture  here because -

I will post it here because...I mean, who really knows, in the great whale of time, what is really the case? In five minutes I may decide that he was trying to say something about me, my life, or maybe only on my deathbed will the whole thing come together. Or maybe only at the very end of time will this moment have its fractional relevance. I just don't know. The therapist would, after all, talk about the...transpersonal. So there we go, here it is. At the end of the day, it's all evidence. It's part of the story I'm trying to tell, but no more. I'm tired, and it's late. Though I have to say, even before I arrived at his house, he really did not look well.


Friday 29 August 2014


Well why shouldn't I....? For seven years ( seven!), the therapist has been playing with us. Seven years of reading a story which has no end....! The one thing a story should promise is an ending, a last page so that finally you feel the hard cover of an end, but he's never done that. He carries on and on like a man who doesn't know he'll die. After all, how is a love sustained but for the death within it? In short, he never allows us the final intimation of our needs, does he? And yes, our needs are as great and hey, guess what, maybe even greater than his. Well someone has to remind him. There, I said it. He's been leading us up the garden for seven years and I've had enough. But why shouldn't I have some fun, too..? Why should I tell everything that happened that day in his house? Can't I play around a bit, like him? No, I won't. I won't, because I am better than him. But not tonight. I'm tired and it's been a long day.



So where is he, the therapist..? I have been asking myself this question for several weeks. So we get to hear about France, the grotte des demoiselles, and then nothing. Except the cable car, again and again the cable car. So where is he..? And what went so wrong at Axel's party..? Allow me to introduce myself. I have been working on and off for the therapist for several years. Mainly this has involved a few low level administrative tasks, some of them, frankly, meaningless. Othertimes I've done his shopping, or been a friend. But seeing as he has not posted for several weeks and not returned my calls I decided to take action. Had I missed him? Well, a little. But mainly I was curious. He'd been an important, if distant, person in my life. I couldn't just let him go. Now, it had always been assumed that we would meet in public, cafes or pubs, never at his home. After all these years, and all that I've done for him, it struck me that I'd never even seen the man at home. You can understand how I felt. What a shit...! I'd had this feeling many times but always forgave him. But I had a sense we were at the endgame here so I decided I would knock on his door, and whatever happened, would happen. To be honest, I was excited. But in a slightly fearful way, too. I knew I would have to take a tape recorder with me and record the whole encounter because otherwise I would never be able to grasp what really occured. I even wondered if I should take a knife. Sure, we had never been close, and over the years I'd got used to his manipulative behaviour. But of course, I always forgave him because he was kind and generous. Well, things weren't going too well for me at this time, so even if he was playing me, which he was, at least I knew I'd end with first edition Somerset Maugham, an obscene Grozs print, or a plateful of drinks. So sometimes I would wonder, who is using who here? But actually, my self esteem suffered, and that's the truth. Considering this, I hope you will understand that if things were coming to an end for the therapist ( and what do I even mean by...an end?), then while I may have had some concern for him, I was also excited. Well, as the therapist himself would say, Mmmmm...


Thursday 10 July 2014

I mean, really..Who's dangerous..? Just possibly, it's the innocent. They ruin everything. Whether they are Prime Ministers, skydivers, or just plain toddlers, they crash into the delicacy of a world they know nothing about. And yet, even my long years with Axel had not prepared me for my own innocence that night.

Oh reader, save my soul from the sword.

How was I to know...? How could I have known as I took the cable car into the deepest cave under France, under Europe, how could I have known what to expect? Even the dying man is forever dreaming. In the cable car I had imagined tea on the promenade with Helen, considered the pros and cons of hanging myself, thought of Thom and the homework I'd neglected, and, all the while, staring at my old Derby loafers I'd imagined calling Marco ( son of Stefan ), in Florence, regarding their accalimed line in ash grey loafers. So it was. Possibly even I, a therapist, need my defences. But if I'd known then what I know now, I'd have made a better time, made a better fist of it, at Axel's  party.