Tuesday 30 September 2008

Proportions and the Vitruvian Man

The proportions of the Vitruvian man are really fascinating me at the moment. When so much of my work is about personal balance and proportion (particularly with technology), I can't help thinking Leonardo might have got there six hundred years ago. Bearing in mind that technology is an extension of the body, what might a modern Twitter-enabled Vitruvian man look like? The improvisation plays with proportion (tried to keep it to fibonacci numbers)...

Wednesday 24 September 2008

Slipping into sleep

Another poem by Astrid on Sleep:

When the satiny oil penetrated the surface
a message was conveyed.
Unfathomable and subtle.
More than you and I had anticipated.

Sleep 1

No sleep

At night I have to watch you.
To loose one moment of alert and distinct
Awareness of your presence

Is the loss
The flower feels when the bee lifts off its petal, to seek another
Or maybe
A sister saying good bye to her brother, before a long journey
Or maybe
An entire planet when its sun becomes so luminous, it will never shine again.

In other words, my love, I am tired to the bone.
In other words, you are the world to me.

But then, this is the least important thing.

What really matters is your and my ability to
Consistently and very conscientiously
Brave that much happiness.

Wednesday 17 September 2008


This is a fantastic poem that Astrid sent today: a mind whirring on as the day passes.. thoughts and feelings passing through it... the edge of wanting attention. My music tries to capture the relentless whirring, while the melody clings to it like the thread of lived experience.

In the morning the birds sang remarkably well
into the not-yet-lived day.

A light promise of muchness and an
emerging thread of sweet nothingness.

It is mid-morning. I too often say: I love you. And am in two minds about it.
It is true. And the slow and steady current running
beneath this day, that is advancing now.
It is superfluous. And has an edge of wanting attention, when I can leave this stream,
this ocean of love entirely alone.

It is lunch time. The reflection of the sun in the canal blinds me.
Have you ever run along the canal with closed eyes?
Listen carefully, this is not London. It is Utopia Village,
where other runners smile at you and I run farther.

It is afternoon. Two spicy cookies and a cup of instant coffee.
A fleeting wink, as the clock trudges on.

Evening is approaching. Dusk coming down and hugging this city.
Levelling. Slowing time and movement.

Night has come. As you are not here, I will not be wasting any further words of mine.


The poem today to me represents the very deepest human struggle of two people coming to terms with the power each has, and in the course of which, coming to terms with themselves. The improvisation represents this struggle in the lyrical 'cello' melody. The one-ness of the two and the whole process is represented by the C-major triads in the upper register...

One or two chrysalises
I start to see the plan you have.
I had not planned this myself, you know.
Never thought of two, only the one and the many.
So, now that it is you and I, as you are attached to my side, my  
heart and brain,
I got momentarily lost.
The I got another.

You can not plan for what you never experienced before.
All is changed, very different – slow down, run away.
That is the familiar response to any change.

Can you fathom the space of a minuscule moment in time where this can  
be entertained,
when in truth this heart is doing somersaults and this brain can not  
contain the joy for this that is new.
Testing, trying, pushing with infinite delight.

The I got another.

Tuesday 16 September 2008


Astrid sent me a very sensual poem about words. I imagined words initially falling like petals on the body, touching different parts, different colours, getting different responses, but always contained within a regulating framework like a beating heart which holds this fragile moment together. Gradually things become more solid, freer to play with the regulation, freer to dance, secure in each others nature...
I will overwhelm you with words today.

Words of affection, wrapped around my tongue,
pushed deep into your mouth.
Words of endearment, slightly licking the corners of you upper lip,
trailing your cheek and reaching your ear.
Words of lust, moving slowly under you.

Hold on, so many more words I found to give to you.

These are words of thinking with you on matters far beyond ourselves.
These are words of emotional rationality which takes care of you and me.
These are words of vision of what love amongst equals can accomplish.

Words of laughter.
Words of sweetness.
Words of fairness.
Words of politeness.
Words of musing.
Words of nonsense.
Words of light.

Fortuitous words.

Words to illuminate and to evolve that
which is occurring between us.

Words of love.

Catching up...

This is Astrid's poem "A simple week"

monday: I hear the laughter at my determination not to miss you
tuesday: I spread my wings
wednesday: I drink and am merry
thursday: I create my future
friday: make haste, my love, as I get ready
saturday: secret and unspeakable things
sunday: peace

I've tried to capture each day as a different mood. Not sure the music quite works, but there are some moments...

Thursday 11 September 2008


These two improvisations were around Astrid's poem below:

Running out of time:
24 is a cruel number.
How can the entirety of no-time
burst forth into existence
and then be contained?

Please, give me the gift of a few more hours,
to breathe, love and create.

Running in no-time:

I arrive.

To me, this is about the struggle to cope with complexity. What should we do? Should we attenuate, shut our eyes and meditate? Do we do the reverse and amplify our own complexity? Or maybe both.. Maybe it's the balance, the skilful hand on the tiller that counts. Today has involved lots of Skyping, Twittering, Blogging, Word-processing (and lots of coffee!). Lots of personal amplification. I'm Reminded of Norbert Wiener's comment from about 1945: "We have changed the world. Now we have to change ourselves to survive in it."

Wednesday 10 September 2008


Astrid's Poem
In the beginning, before and after

This is like the lush moss on the stone.
It is like the stone.

This is like the ephemeral fragrance in the flacon.
It is like the flacon.

This is like the fresh wheat shoot on the field.
It is like the field.

This is like the hurling time.
It is eternity.

Spiritual Growth

Different camera angle tonight. Time for something spiritual.. "After the clearing the whitish path". Moments of spiritual growth are indeed 'clearings'; everyday complexity is attenuated; the eyes are shut; perception (awareness of what cannot be spoken about) is extended and enhanced; finally, there are new things to speak about... a piece of music... what does it do to you? tell me...

Something Mellow

I did this playing around with another camera (much better quality, and pretty good mic as well). It's nice to do a bit of mellow stuff. Feeling very mellow as well. Good presentation at ALT-C...

Monday 8 September 2008

Love is Sacred

There is only One. There is not two.
And two are making One.


It's Monday, and just had an incredible weekend which has left me utterly transformed. This is Friday's improvisation which was to another poem from Astrid. I didn't think it was a great improvisation (the poem's much better!), although it tried to capture the playful mood. Writing now on Monday, this seems like 'ancient history'. I feel a completely different person. To paraphrase Eliot (and Bateson) I'm finding myself knowing love as if for the first time... it's a fantastic discovery!
Calla Lily
Carefully walking, on the outermost ridge of the spathe,
this thought and that thought,
this feeling and that feeling,
gliding to the centre.

Friday 5 September 2008

Seeking, Finding and Improvisation (and another poem)

Wondering about Astrid's poem yesterday... "I am a finder" reminds me of Picasso's famous comment about his creativity: "I do not seek, I find". The mark on the paper, the act, comes first. What we find in it then is where things go from there. That's improvisation, and it's very different from 'planning' things. The closest thing to it is sex... which would be ridiculous if each sexual gesture was 'planned': it's a continual (mutual) process of finding. Each line here is a finding process...
"Wake up, wake up.
It is not sleep that I seek.
A luscious phrase for the inside of my kneecaps.
A pithy word for each vertebra of my spine.
A trendril murmur for the tip of my elbow.
I will not keep them, but their colour and hue
will have changed, by the time they are back with you."
Is there a relationship between the finding process and an intention? My intention with yesterday's improvisation was different to how it turned out.. Astrid's intention (she says) was different to how her poem turned out.. But maybe 'finding' is the intention...

Thursday 4 September 2008

Astrid's Poem

Listening without radio,
To the rustle of trees and sluggishly slurring server,
An entire symphony within,
full for no reason.
I am a finder.
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