Weekly Diary


I walked June to work under a layer of crumpled cellophane; her shadow was touching the hem of her coat while mine was restringing its guitar. I walked back followed by a tune. I didn’t feel like going out into the garden even though a complete stranger had knocked on the back door and instructed me in the art of lighting antique oil lamps using only diagrams scratched into a small piece of smoked glass. I searched in vain some time later for the same piece of glass with the aim of examining the signature. June had said she wouldn’t be back until dark (remembering it got dark earlier tonight) so I had plenty of time to climb the always well lit stairs in my head – knowing full well that I would never reach the top.



I got up like a newly constructed champagne bottle sliding down the slipway – I hit the water but couldn’t see my name on the side of the ship, although reassuringly next door’s cat was wearing my initials instead of a bell. I had to carry a step ladder over a railway bridge, although the former (which is known to exist in at least eleven separate dimensions) was folded up into a ball – incidentally smoke was issuing from the chimney farthest away from me but totally absent from all those nearer. I imagined myself as a knight unthinkingly throwing a fading flower from the bridge as he passed over it (I also imagined a lady in army fatigues and walking on stilts like muddy candyfloss throwing it back – I saw the same lady some time later freeing a sacrificial ram from a thicket).



June slammed the early door, in my comic book world like a mouth shutting tight on a secret. I had moments earlier transcended prosaic reality and floated up through the ceiling as an amorphous purple blob. When I finally came down again the dog was busy making a model of a medieval siege tower out of used chop sticks and the cat was tying small pieces of a Romano-British tunic together to make a saw fish jaw (Genus Anoxypristis) for her mutant doll. I plan to write a story about the mutant doll world when I am able to remove the Homotherium mask from my face. June came back unexpectedly in the middle of the day and handed me a rock with lipstick marks on it; I thought it looked like an old man leaning in front of an altar and went to hide my Buddhist clothes in a hollowed out tree.



June had a day off work and carefully rolled up her pipistrelle bat ears and then covered them with a hat shaped like a twelve inch vinyl record. I meanwhile hollowed out a log and unsuccessfully attempted to fit the engine nacelle of a Boeing 777 into the washing machine. We went out for dinner, glancing as we did at the still wet washing exiting the house hand in hand. Alexander the Great and a sizeable portion of his Macedonian army went under the railway bridge as we went over it, our coat collars raised in a heavy drizzle. I had my dinner in a hole in the ground unlike June who watched hers spread like tumbleweed across the great plains. As a joke we both counted the number of phallic carpet tacks protruding from a piece of flooring near the gentlemen’s lavatory door.



Back to normal and I waxed the corkscrew moustache on a face that appeared through the small pink cushion I have been attempting to tame in the wild corner of our bedroom. After calling out bingo numbers like Tarzan calling to the animals I was carried downstairs by a cloud of small tortoiseshell butterflies. I painted a picture using my nose, which had been fashioned into a guillemot beak for this very purpose. I noticed that the childhood photograph hanging over the blacksmith’s bellows was growing its hair long (I feel my childhood hair was wavy like a Tsunami but this is probably sour grapes!) . While I reflected on this June served dinner on a mobile telephone and turned an acoustic guitar into a hutch for a family of albino ferrets.



I rose early and climbed through the hole in a needle (although I wish I hadn’t been moistened like a cotton thread first). The dressmaker went to work and I caught a bus which I fancifully likened to an American bison nonchalantly ambling up a Los Angeles boulevard. The mountains in my head were looking more purple than usual as I spoke to the great man about crocodiles in semi-detached house gutters. I came home balancing rain forests, stopping only once to watch a giant dragonfly land on a Wellingtonia – its swaying branches reminded me of rows of hands each trying to catch a single flower petal at it fluttered to the ground. By the time it had landed I had reached our door step which had been earlier painted to resemble lips.



June went to town wearing a hessian sack and carrying an apron full of coal. She started the trip with over a dozen separate lumps (at least one resembling a pug reading a newspaper) but apparently reached the town centre with only two in her hands and one behind her ear for later. I was left at home to draw red hearts on green leaves and walk Poppy alongside the striped pyjama railway track The postman drummed on the door with a flower garland; most of the mail was for for June although I did get an invite to a motor vehicle convention where I imagined everyone wearing automobile hats – I would have to be different though and dress as a traction engine. When June got back (with her shopping in a violin case) I made a chalk line on the floor and we both jumped over it.


About Gerald Shepherd

Gerald Shepherd is a painter, graphic artist, sculptor, digital/multimedia artist, photographer, writer, curator and arts administrator. He has also been involved with science art, performance art, conceptual art, installations and environments (as well as peripheral creative pursuits such as garden design).
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