If there is a perfection
of the hidden self

then self hidden is perfect
and that it is hidden must be part of this perfection.

For self to be self
which is to come to its perfection 
self must yet be turned out into the world.

Wide Wanderer they call self, Wide-Traveller. 
It is said that the self will re-shod your horse. 

Leave it by the smithy overnight
no payment
just an appropriate gift.

Self to self giving. 
Self to self given over

the wandering, turning self out
from the hidden to the open 

road travelled to seek the activity of the perfect
tattered paths of the simply sought.

The perfection of the hidden self
which is hidden therefore perfect
cannot yet attain perfection anywhere but in the open.

The wreckage of destabilised tribes.
Stones in the dell.
These stubborn dreams still trip us up.

The self in the world is ever an imperfection;

the scruffy re-run
the back and forth vulnerable
made available, made safe, made and unmade.

On rabbits and hills.

The way through the head / the never before thought / way of thinking as one / mind body person / making new. // Get your self of knowing / as never known before / outside of the knowing and has known knowing all / at the root afresh / of who you are.

Thoughts about 18yr old Harehills and in the squat self. […] Opened the curtains and sat and a rabbit was here on the grass in front of the window, a perfect echo of the [rabbit shaped] cloud I saw yesterday evening. // The first [rabbit] just ran back in the opposite direction with a second. Meanwhile the mountains are in the process of being engulfed within a rolling bank of cloud, vanishing.
Hare hills; rabbit clouds. I remember a hare running down the middle of the road as I cycled along behind. An empty road somewhere in the Vale of York, the hare and I, and a single oak leaf stuck in the spokes of my front wheel going clickclickclickcclickclickclickclickclickclick.

The only other time a hare has run down the middle of the road in front of me was that time when I was coming down the very steep wooded hill on a bike heavily laden with panniers and a tent strapped on and a rucksack on my back. With this kit I was too heavy for the machine, which had spokes too loose and kept shedding its chain at the merest touch of a gear change. The brakes began to overheat, I zoomed past a couple mid-sandwich, their bites hovering around crumbs as I walloped by. At the bottom of the hill a slight rise over a small bridge lifted me from the tarmac. A startled hare shot out in front of me and ran down the middle of the road, I followed and, carefully, touched the brakes. Immediately all my luggage fell off and became entangled with wheels and gearing. I fell forward, clinging onto the handlebars. The handlebars were wrenched into the opposite orientation, and I was on my back on the road and the hare careered to left, disappearing into the woods.

I remember another time, rabbit on the road. Only this time it was not running. I was cycling, labouring up a hill, the landscape around me lightly wooded, some fields on the other side of hedges. I thought it strange that the rabbit did not run. Its head kept bobbing up and down, ears alert and then ears low. I slowly came closer, again I had heavy panniers and a rucksack and a tent, although this time the bicycle was more robust and better behaved. The rabbit moved its head but did not move, it did not run, and running is a thing rabbits normally do. I came alongside the creature and saw why it was not moving. Its rear half had been driven over. Most of the spine was smashed and the rear legs squashed completely. Only its front shoulder region and head was unscathed. In its alertness it knew its rabbit-like behaviour. The front paws made gentle scrabbling motions and it looked certainly at where it might go. I was then, and remain, a poorly educated city person, despite jaunts toward woodlands and hills. My first response was to mount a rescue. Call a vet! Get a farmer, a farmer who may have found my scruples hilarious. Just stamp on the thing if you’re so worried about its suffering… But I’m just a poorly educated city dweller who has no conception as to how an animal’s neck may be swiftly broken. The rabbit nodded and ducked and ineffectually wriggled. I dismounted and worried over its agony. In the end, bravely (I thought), I grabbed it by its front shoulders and hurried it into the hedge. At least here, I thought, it might die with some greenery. A small carnivore may put it out of its misery. Repulsed, I wiped my hands on grassy verge, remounted and rode away. This rabbit’s nervous, failing gestures, and its smashed flat rear end, still remain alive in my memory. That it was sunny with a decent breeze. That I cycled past many small inlets and harbours. That my tent broke apart as I set it up that evening. All of this remains.
·        What is this flame, / what is this flame / we call death? // Nothing that was dying is created.
·        “… and I have breathed out nothing that can die.”
·        What is this flame? / This is the passing of appearance. / That which is appearing may die. // Appearing others…
·        Appearing offers a great struggle / to its passing / often. // May we cease to be appearing and / still be, even in / this world.
·        Appearing appears so to / to struggle. // Who is it offering resistance to / the flame?
·        The falcon cannot / eat grass, and yet / there is the rabbit. / The falcon may / float in the sun / but it is rabbit / who translates the / sun, and this through / the language of / grass.
So we had two guinea pigs and a rabbit and one day I opened the hutch and Squeaky (a guinea pig) was dead and stiff and sort of propped like a board over the food bowl and Rabbit, was sitting on both Squeaky and the bowl. The other pig is called Princess Fluffy Bum. Ms Fluffy Bum is with us still.

A time after this and I opened the cage and the rabbit fell out, flopping onto the grass. Once she would have immediately been up and off, making a break for freedom whilst been chased by an inarticulate raving dad and several children wracked upon their hilarity. No longer, no longer. She neither noticed that she had fallen nor ran. The hutch door hung open, Ms F. pushed back into shadow and stared at me, not moving, most certainly not escaping.

I scooped up the floppy animal and inspected her, and then I laid her down briefly once more, and I closely looked some more. She was still alive but breathing shallow and rapid. I got a kitchen towel, spread it on my lap, and sat down with Rabbit draped over my legs. Once, perhaps twice, she weakly kicked a back leg.

Slowly, slowly; the sun shone. I sat with our pet rabbit over my legs, her breathing getting weaker and weaker. Her mouth fell open so I could inspect her front incisors. I stroked her, I talked to her. Gently, slowly, over an hour or so, she ceased. 

When the rabbit was dead I called the children out of the house and together we dug a grave and buried it. I cried and my daughter was astonished.
·        [In the dream] I realise how flimsy / wire is all that keeps / them in plane. They / all leave. One / realises they have records on [indecipherable] / here – she turns / around and goes back / in order to find out / all about herself and / why she has been / contained. Woke up / with the word / Ensign.
·        “Anything in which there is no force is dead… For the Spirit [force] is the strengthener and the quickener.” [Hildergard.]
·        Dream of the mountain / a large empty mountain.
·        The mountain begins the book.
·        The hill stands / within a mountain / and the mountain stands within a range / the range stands / within a mountain / and here we have / our frame.
§  The volume of
§  clouds
§  stretched even
§  length and height
§  still conclude
§  in the enormity
§  of land below
And the volume
of land below
stretched and pushed
still conclude
in the enormity
of its roots below
§  the roots below
§  and the clouds
§  above and my
§  time smeared
§  volume between
§  even now
§  concludes
§  in the mereness
§  [meetings] meeking set against
§  the scales                  (meeking – training of horses)
§  timings  {meekness} we cannot
§  attain
§  journeys only already
§  made yet only
·        in the moment of
·        vision our imagination
·        absconding
·        from the tumult
·        of dimensions
·        if it should
·        be allowed.

Home becomes not home.

It is never to be recalled.
It is never safe.
Our home is the impossible, it is never the destination.

That great love, that want to act, that which once stood here in equanimity, this place where humbly all was possible.

The wall equally positioned, all around.

Home becomes memory.

Before our nakedness and this insufferable need
there is a desolation wherein no clothing and no satisfaction will ever be possible.

Memory becomes not memory.

Memory becomes refuge.

The world ending is ever capable of generating approximate desolations.

Refuge becomes not refuge.

Refuge becomes path.

The world ending ever generates new worlds, ever ending. The incomplete completion, the succour of devastation.

Path never ceases.

Path becomes home.

That wall equally around all.

Path becomes memory.

Path becomes refuge

Refuge dissolves into the possible.

The abysmal bleeds its own abyss. Between walls of nothing and nothingness of wall, the equal touch, an energetic vastness.

This is possibly our home. Ever ever does that great love need to act.

Our home is the impossible, a trembling memory, a tumbling path, an open refuge;
it is never safe,
it is never the destination,
it is never here to be recalled.

The ripping aside of structural memory
this is trauma

and traumatic furthermore is
this tearing away of memorial architecture

which is not the anguish of others

the living in this or that region has no safety
the impact is general
for it is our memory

and it is our region, where
shit bricks and the broken
the architecture collapsed 
on our nest

it falls.

Our archaic experience is now

now challenged
as are the migrant birds above
who cannot comprehend how

an entire island has vanished.

Entire islands vanish all the time.

All time is a string of vanishing islands
their trophy worn beauty

wearing thin.

Ownership is a drapery
and the deep is an act of the imagination
which cuts

a hole in the drapery.

I see through a hole the clouds. The enormous volume of these clouds, stretched height and length, give to the panorama an assurance of the land’s enormity.

John Constable, “A Cloud Study, Sunset,” ca. 1821.

And the volume of the land below, stretched and pushed, still conclude in the vastness of rock below. The visible land drapes across an invisible mantle.

The roots underneath and the clouds above and my time as a smeared volume running between. 
There is a mereness to the meeting. 
We can peek; these the meek scales, these the timings we cannot attain; these are journeys already made, the length which continues 

beyond and outside of the seen moment.

Our imagination is continually absconding from the tumult of dimensions, but vastness is the duty of imagining.

Here is the urban drapery.

Here is the studded surface of attentiveness.

The chemical and the electronic gather as the armed do muster in the feld and as castle formed the manor. The robes of the legendary are not long enough to cover our immodest awareness.

Often the shallows are as impenetrable as the deeps. 

Often the greatest depths will flit away without note, entirely insubstantial.

Often the surface of a building will stimulate one’s memory. Memory is another drapery.

The imaginable shallows are a drapery of heavy grief, sometimes lifted in order to flirt with the disowned and unseen depths.

Vastness is the calling, the horrified call. And response to the call devastates chronological time.

These devastation are moments of transition.

We are in transit.

We are devastated

therefore the drapery has been lifted ruffled cut

or otherwise


other-wise is 
and will be therefore 
the irruption in moment. 

Non-time in time and no-place in this place. Therefore the irruption of moment in moment is this

and this is forever transformative.


The Sumerian ideogram for a market,Y.

Y indicates that the market is a juncture of traffic routes.

The flows briefly congeal, arched over with many voices, conversations, bartering. Agora begins not in the architecture but in the act, the circulation of actions, a space opening onto its own potential to be a parting or a meeting, a meeting and a parting, both, coming together and falling away.

I was once on a beach.  An ecotone, the meeting. 

The disparate communities come together, mingle. 

Land, sky, and sea stir a chemical cadence, a conjugal tide; elements trace and retrace their greetings. The ground is shifting, pebbles audibly grind in an estuarine wash.

My footsteps happily zigged and zagged, trailing the curl of expiring froth. Fossils and flotsam below, clouds and gulls above. Stones, glass, plastic, weed, rope; pick up, put down, investigate and study.

Objects dream in my fingers. 

If I were to take any of it home, how then to order it? Can I let it speak in new shapes?

Detritus has its own language, an inherent dignity; existence will not be denied in this. This transitioned from one state to another, from form to form.  
I pick up, I put down; “what it is” speaks in its own manner, I listen. In listening, the meeting.

And then my step

The body of a seal, black, like a dumbbell with hands carefully pulled into the animal’s smooth side. Its head removed. My head swam with a new and violent re-ordering: How to make sense of this? I cannot pick this up (do not want to pick it up!) I cannot put it down. Its smell actively haunts me, the poltergeist of rot. Who hacked this creature apart, where was the skull? Or could it have been an accident? The cut, so clean… Only in my body is there some semblance of justice as gentle ambulation is transformed into an anger sped stomp, my mouth lurched around a taste that offers no delight.

Has Leviathan suicided? What as of today has the sea decided? Is this the war of war against all – bellum omnium contra omnes? Such pessimistic savagery.

The war, some say, shall only be contained with cctv and a big stick. Surveillance and the common deployment of non-lethal weaponary are fine exampleres of how the war against all shall be waged.

There is still the meeting, there is still the shoreline and the market. There is still the grieving which is an allowing in of another form.

And my form also will move to another form. 

And if I were to continue listening, what else may be said?

iii. Statute Prerogative Regis, 17 Edward II (AD 1324) states that although the Crown has sovereign dominion over the sea around the British Isles, it has no general property in the fish and marine mammals in it except for cetaceans and sturgeon. These are ‘Royal Fish’ and belong to the Crown. An exception to this is if they become stranded or their bodies are washed ashore within the limits of a Manor, such as the Duchy of Cornwall, in which case title passes to the Lord of the Manor. The chief requirement of the Royal Prerogative nowadays is that stranded ‘Royal Fish’ are reported to the Receiver of Wreck who will then pass the information to the Natural History Museum, London and other relevant bodies. The Receiver of Wreck can be contacted via the local coastguard.
iv. In consultation with the Receiver of Wreck, local authorities may deal with the collection and disposal of carcasses of ‘Royal Fish’.

The happy graph 

shows all values meet.

The alert inquiry asks why is this complete and a pursuant mind delves for what is left out.

A furtherance of query restates the rout, values coalesce deeper than the sheet and look! there is little else.

The coincidence replete.

Transitional objects possess inertia. Energy is transferred through them. This energy is always in the journey toward and away and around and across.

A transitional true north is to be grasped as an intuitive whole, this including the fluid ontology being which surrounds “it”.

Simple compass removes the imperative for and potential of learning in relational complexity.

Fluid clustering of relational character and meaning is a manner to describe a far more complex environment than the traditional compass. True north is true AND.

Moments of learning. Learning relationships through journey deposit transitional objects.

The movement toward and away and around and across are relationships. Relating in sense, in stance, and in movement from the stance there are allowed moments of learning.

The in-between “be” becomes toward.

The toward begats a transitional object.

As the journey becomes cluster, in relating, so the relating journey excludes the object.

Itself cluster becomes journey. Itself cluster becomes… naming the movement and the quality of relating. The journey between nodes becomes the identifying quality (cluster of qualities). Journeying cluster becomes nodal explanation of itself.

There is an ache of a presence not properly attended to (and therefore the learning must be discovered in ghosts).

A few seeds hidden in my beard. Gravity measurements can predict river flooding. Kinetic memory in all things.

It is the inattentive reader who loses my subject, not I. Some word about it will always be found off in a corner and look! there is little else.

The coincidence replete.

Values coalesce deeper than on the sheet.

A furtherance of query restates the rout while a pursuant mind delves.

What is left out?

The alert inquiry asks why is this complete.

We are complete, but why? Look at this happy graph, it shows all values meet.

The gift of the geologist is to perceive that which cannot be seen.

An archaeologist becomes a geologist of the artefact

The artefactist becomes lost. They need geography. 

The needy geography of the present is a coagulum of geology and archeology and artefact.

Here there is an act; the action of manipulation, the manipulated object. 

The present tense therefore becomes a series. 

This series is object assertion, object deflection, object compression, object reassertion. 

To be present here is therefore more about being tense and less about presence. Another description of the series is a sequence of deformations between different gauges of tension.

If the artefactist gets lost this is most likely because their vital vents have become clogged with object deformations, object repetitions, and object lamentation.

The sad ceremony of things.

The miserable certainty of dissolves and resolves.

In misery, as in cholesterol, so the excessive present bequeaths a vanishing of all that is certain.

Certainty opens upon ventilation.

Certain geographies may only be ever fixed in the temporal annexation of dialogue (and therefore never truly fixed).

The artefact may be scattered and lost, scattered and found, and the found may be collected.

Here endeth and begins an inventory of my artifice as presented in Inventory.

The ending because that dialogue is not quite present. The beginning because endless.

Our streets will end; not so the pathways we take therein, not so the steps which seek beyond a path.

Therein is the beyond of present.


An account, as it were, of its end and passing away before it beginning and middle had been told.

An account, as it were, of the meditating artefact which lays between subject and object.

To lay thus is not a passive task; the relationship between subject artefact and object demands roots. These roots may be imagined as the base activities of labour (or craft), rules, and community.

To thus learn in this relationship is to be in the relationship. The awareness actively moves between subject, object, artefact, and in amongst the crafted (crafting) roots; either that or it ceases to be awareness.

Models, actors, singers; famous personages, the rich, the powerful and the successful: mourn for them. Look at what daily damage is inflicted upon their shining visages!


The defacement of models, actors, etc, by adding spectacles, scars, facial hair, boils, by blacking out teeth and shoving chewed up gum into their happy, caring, seductive eyes. On bill posters, in magazines; in bus stops, the underground, slowly dismembered in the doctor’s waiting room… Is not this defacement precisely an attack upon perfection? First and foremost; pure resentment: “I do not see why she, why he, why these people should be thus, thus and thus… How dare they smile down at me like that when I am not thus, thus and thus?”
It is all desire, all envy, and they all deserve everything they get. Except that no one ever admits to vandalism, this insignificant rebellion. Which is the more shaming? The compulsion to gouge, scar, smear and despoil, or having to admit to this compulsion?
Or are we effacing perfect parents? Does this manifestation of unconscious drives lead straight to iconoclasm? No one should bow down before idols. An attack on this mundane model (of reality) is offered up through the forcing of fissures into surface. Fissures through which the ‘reality’ of dental disaster, tissue stress, and optical ineptitude may be seen. No one bows down before bad breath. And so, to the vandal, the visceral pleasure of acting out resentment; the simple, unbound joy of being at one with fate, time, decay – triumphant, for a moment, over the vanity of perfection.

Original first published in Inventory: losing, finding, collecting. Vol.2 No.1 1997

Haptic radio
There is a place I walk by every day: the common reasons one walks by a place every day. In this repetition, like so many forms of repetition, I found my attention growing and I marvelled – then this level of attention faltered. After which it might have stopped, who knows? I was looking elsewhere.
Every day I passed this place, it was a hole in the pavement covered with a sheet of plywood, the plywood weighted down by two sandbags. The whole structure of sandbags, wood, and hole had been thoroughly soaked by heavy rain. An ever vigilant pedestrian, I avoided it as a hole. The void noted, the walking re-routed. However, two hours ago I passed this construct and all my wonder re-awoke. One of the sandbags is missing.
“The enemy’s hiding places are set in the wall of the lobby like serviette holders. They are numbered. When I take a stroll in the lobby I am sometimes prompted by a little imp to open one of these pigeonholes. [….] From number 99 […] I heard nothing but the sound of limitless expectation; an indescribable sound, which, if one had to try comparing with something one knew, has a slight similarity perhaps with the sound of the blood coursing round the veins as heard by a solitary person when alone in the silence….” [Unica Zurn. The House of Illnesses.]
9KHz. Thunderstorm detection. [Tim Baker, Noisegate #2.]
There was a hired function room in a hotel that I walked into only to leave, at day end. There are reasons for hired rooms and reasons for hired function rooms. There are reasons for leaving. In this particular scenario I found myself to be one of the few people not carrying or using a mobile telephone. I became abject. The grip telecommunications have on a user’s life. To be gripped by, to be carrying, users… But I was unconnected and therefore obviously an amateur, and microwaved conversations lacerated my body. My body without secret, nothing but.
A product was evangelized, I was commissioned in its promotion. The reason for staying, the reason for leaving. Teams would ride into town buoyed up on messages beamed around the nation from the radio: Have you ever tried the taste...
890 MHz – 905 MHz & 935 MHz – 960 MHz. Cell phones.
Once there were two lovers, exiles. He had been imprisoned as an undesirable alien, she would spend time in mental institutions. Once there was a couple and he tied her up. Both endured poverty. And there was solitude. Hans made an elaborate female companion, this we know. (Oskar Kokoschka once needed one too.)

Hans owned a camera. There is a family portrait; Unica, the doll, and he. He scowls at us, the viewer, smokes a cigarette. She imagines he her double, her other sexed self. Perhaps there is some semblance; do lovers’ faces over time not only reflect each other but come to resemble one another?

Unica’s image has none of Hans’s self possession. Her stare skims the doll’s convulsed anatomy and, with pursed lips, she intently studies something we cannot see.

They were perhaps too much alone, together, for much of the time. Surrealists of greater fame, whose product shifted more easily, are seen on the beach. Heterosexual couples coupling up with heterosexual couples, sun, wine, good company: why not? Easy to take a photograph in a situation like this; one of the party can slip out of frame without any anxiety that they might vanish forever. They will reappear later that day as one or other of their companions takes their turn behind the lens.

No ease, no grace, no bonhomie for the documentation of this coupling, which is anyway a ménage a trois. If this is play it is a game not to be played in public although that is different from having the game made public: Hans and Unica and doll. Space, body, voyeur. If the elements are basic, what follows is maddeningly fluid, not quite graspable. Secrets become hidden in the obvious. Unica obsessively turns sentences inside out. (“The old, dangerous fever of the anagrams has her in its grip.[…] once again she shuts herself off completely from her surroundings.” [The Man of Jasmine])

The obvious is hidden in secrets. He creates new orifices, new breasts, turns flesh into ambiguity, landscape, and food. Her double becomes object, his toy. (“The body resembles a sentence which seems to invite us to dismember it into component letters, so that it will reveal in an endless row of anagrams the reality it contains.” [Hans Bellmer. The Anatomy of the Image.])

There is a portrait of Unica, a drawing by Hans. Her face is imposed on/flows from her arse and legs, and in this doubling one eye is taken over by her furled, moist vagina. A vaguely phallic column of ectoplasm rises behind the legs and in this there is Hans’s eye. It is the exact same eye that we see in the above mentioned photograph.

Unica and Hans feel the body to be constantly shifting into something else. She creates anagrams. He creates the doll, a poly-perverse toy that begs one to imagine infinite permutation. Unica ended her life by leaping through an open window.
There is a thing missing – that missing thing is permanent – there is a thing not said – gap – absence – there is no thing – it’s always. Imagine such things that I cannot see, touch, hear or smell.
If you would, put your hands on the radio now…
49.82 MHz – 49.9 MHz. Children’s walkie talkies – Baby Alarms – Toys.
Woke up on the bus. I had fallen asleep on the bus. I did not know where I was.
470 MHz – 854 MHz. Television and studio talkback.
Sarah and Angus are on television. This couple are both young artists but the programme is about Sarah. They sit before each other on a low window sill. Brilliant light spills across them – but no defenestration here – the window is shut. He says little, they drink wine. She is in shorts and tee shirt and she slaps her legs. “This,” she says, “this is what I believe in.” Later, he dances around in an ape outfit, fake fur and the mask of a gorilla. Gradually the sleeves slide off, then the pants slip down to reveal his naked human butt.
I got drunk and later awoke on a bus, I know not where. By dawn I was curled up on a park bench, shivering, alternating between gawping at the sky and then watching fox life amongst the shrubbery. An hour or so passed. I walked and acquired blisters on both feet, after which I got on the first tube train at the first station I found (to this day I cannot work out where). A sweaty, ecstatic mess; I clung to my seat, teeth chattering, eyeballs rolling back in my skull. The people travelling beside me were on their way to work.

This is nothing new.

A dumbness, a plain dogged stupidity is sometimes needed if one is to move through a city. There is no ease otherwise. You are in a pit, at the bottom of a chasm. We submit to a protocol of confusion and disorientation quite as if we really were entering a labyrinth. This submission to a ritual terror is undertaken only in the expectation of being turned around, around and around, to step out into sunlight a creature reborn, death conquered, new life before us.
Such is the unspoken presumption. Naturally enough one discovers this presuming is often wrong. We allow ourselves the folly and scoff that there is no Minotaur in this labyrinth, only plenty of cattle.

“…there’s something heroic about the body…the body exists.” [konrad bayer. the philosopher’s stone.]

“Space is basically incomprehensible, an absence of things, a nothingness that obliterates order.” [Robert Morris. Collected writings.]
1450 MHz – 2000 MHz. Space and Microwave, Global Positioning System.
There is a radio station. It portions a daily broadcast into slots. Each slot is marketed differently. This radio station gives its early evening slot to a disc jockey. In his allotted space he is able to air his views, some records, and to select for broadcast individuals who phone in to the station. Those chosen are often people just home from school or work, people on their way home, people cooking tea or waiting for tea – getting ready for the night ahead. Those who do call the station will be submitted to various tests.
Name five … beginning with the letter … in … seconds.
Guess the number of CDs piled up inside the car. (You win the car if you are correct. You have opportunity to see the car, and the CDs, at the following events…)
Tee shirts, mugs, and tickets fly out to pacify have-a-go-heroes. Losers are allowed to shout eager hellos over the airwaves.

How many people ever hear their dedications? Of those that do, imagine how many are actually in the room with the caller or in the room next door, egging on their friend, work mate or relative in this their brush with shame.

There is one caller who is beyond the normal taunts and teases of the dj’s wit. No embarrassment for this man. He is systematically destroying his house, one item per night, live on radio. This is not the usual barter wherein a member of the audience, exposing themselves to the barbs of the dj, receives in return mnemonic tokens of a moment spent outside normal space. Instead we witness a transaction in which destruction has found an uncertain equilibrium. The individual is destroying his own property in a dare to outstrip everyday existence – whatever that may be. The dj can be heard,as if stepping back from the microphone, an astonishing ceding of power, so as to allow this piece of exploitation theatre to crash, thud and clunk across the night. The full act goes something like this:
1. Mutual bawling of greetings.
2. Statements concerning mental status. “You’re mad you are!” “You’re a nutter!” Madness twisted around and around. Is this a compliment or insult? And is feigned lunacy contemptible and the genuine article to be admired or vice versa? Or is it both ways but different in the mouths of different speakers?
3. The dj will wrest back some control of the situation by recapping on what has been destroyed so far.
A chair. A cabinet. A window. An electronic keyboard. Crockery. The television. A microwave oven. A radio…
Nobody even flinches. Neither participant are willing or able to admit to irony, doubt, symbolism.
Escalation and the mute comedy of disbelief are the sole effect welcomed here.
4. The object is destroyed. This usually consists of miscellaneous thumping, a few random bursts of electric drill, sawing sounds, thump, crash. The rattling of the telephone handset on whatever surface it is lain makes the most noise. Sound effects so appalling they could never have come out of a studio. Over a period of time the caller has begun to try and improvise a commentary. He fails by all common standards at conveying excitement, clarity, or simple description and this of course makes the spectacle more terrible, which is why the dj or the dj’s producer is counting on the listener being drawn, as we are drawn to car crashes.
3 MHz & 173 MHz. Hearing aids.
To be beyond ape. To cure, to scale, to breach. The whole point of intelligence is to be something that is not. The octopuses will communicate in patterned skins, the wings of insects will sing, and starlings will imitate car alarms while at the bottom of the oceans whole colonies of shrimp will live, thrive and die without ever having known oxygen.
The water logged sandbag was found after walking for a further fifteen minutes along the street. It had been hurled at the paving slab as if someone intended to smash through to the earth below. Only this sack, this torso, this dead weight had not cracked the floor on which we walk. It had split; its grimy plastic weave torn apart by the force of hitting ground. Pedestrians and cyclists trailed through the red sand making a florid paste of these terracotta coloured guts, a damp carnage smeared along the pavement and scrawled onto a black tarmac road.

Original first published in Inventory: losing, finding, collecting. Vol.3 No.1 1998