Weekly Diary


June and I waited in the bow of ship partly submerged in sand; in the distance a Kraken was regrowing from the tip of its own tentacles. The little Vikings came with their long boats in their hands; I asked if they had got their own sand yet and we then walked to town to eat and play: we ate under a banyan tree (along with a group of quite plump people) and then played on the flat and gasping tongue of a dragon – luckily I had a drink in my bag and church bells rang as I opened the top. We all walked home in the footprints of a herd of small dinosaurs; I felt confident I could name my steps after the Kings and Queens on England but only impressed myself and the old man playing a grand piano with his teeth who was ambling along behind with the trailing edge of his coat on fire.


The last of my long days in the garden: June was back at work and left the house early as a sequence of numbers which she hoped will be repeated in reverse when she returned. I had dreamt that the lady at the bottom of the road had recited a spell and every living thing could now talk; unfortunately when I went outside everything was silent – and remained so even when I cut the grass. Maybe there is a world where the grass cuts humans; in which case I hope I find myself in a genteel compost heap, away from the bright green rabble. I laughed at my own jokes as a relatively small lump of earth floated overhead, I was pleased it already had a small tree growing in it. June came home in time to watch the christening of a new space crossbow; from this I will explore the universe.


Back in my studio and to celebrate I walked a new picture and then painted the dog. Cymbals clashed as little figures scrambled about in the space above my head (my head grew big and small and then shook itself like seaweed); I tried to restore some kind of order but then noticed thick black lines being drawn in what should be vacant space: I numbered and named as many as I could although, hopeless as I am, I then had to rub several out again. June came home temporarily and showed me words written on her sandwich; I countered by showing her a calendar with all the days rearranged. This will mean what will happen tomorrow already happened yesterday. She left again with bite marks in the bread – which, of course, made the message undecipherable.


I got up as June, now a bird of prey, flew from one outstretched arm to another. I went into my studio thinking it would save a lot of time if I only exhibited picture frames and then cradled words in my arms that had never been part of a story – I promised to write something for them but the plot escaped me. I had to go out briefly, passing a line of amorphous shapes who secretly hoped I would identify them even though the most meaningful things in this world are actually abstract. I returned to work just before June returned to the house with wings on her ankles that she had borrowed from Mercury – he said he was in no hurry to have them back. That evening the dog and I walked past the derelict house again – I like to pretend that people do actually live there but we just cannot see them.


A very early start to the day; I even got up before the alarm spoke (it speaks every day but I don’t always listen) and went to the bathroom with a plaster cast on my head – I would paint it with black and white squares later and then wait for a king or queen. I caught the bus moments before a young girl with a desert landscape on her chest; the other passengers sat like cactus waiting for the cool of the night to photosynthesise (counterintuitive I know). Sometime after this I met the chess master and we talked as we ate, I checked the colour of plants in his garden and then came home before he had called checkmate. I got off in town, which was suspended from a hot air balloon, and walked home under its slowly migrating shadow; once there I immediately proclaimed the shadow our house’s own.


I wanted to go to town early, but as always got distracted: this time by a small figure with paper wings repeatedly hitting my studio window; when I got close I found the wings were made from my old thesis (The First Mention Of  Parallel Worlds In The Writings Of Mesopotamia); I hoped it wasn’t lost, then persuaded myself it would still be found in another universe – as would I. I left the dog guarding the window and walked to town writing a play for people with fishing boat heads as I did so – the play was a comedy and no fish were caught (I personally believe the only fish we should catch are the railway plate kind – thankfully too far inland for conventional trawlers). I came back home in too much of a hurry, realising when I got in that I forgotten the main thing I went for.


June had to work, walking up the road with small fragments of the house following her – she was nearly overtaken by a sofa arm but she speeded up over the bridge as a train torpedoed underneath hitting a ship as it lay in the sheltered harbour (I had occasionally tied myself to its mast but had never managed to hear any music). I got up immediately after, fragments of my childhood trailing after me. The snatches of figures looked like broken ornaments: crystal glass objects that almost spoke in flashes of light. I had to go to town again to fill the void in my shopping bag from yesterday; while ascending the descending high street I saw people as attenuated filaments, pulled at both ends by unknown forces – unfortunately some are pulled so hard they snap!


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).
This entry was posted in Diary, Poetry, prose, Uncategorized, Writing and tagged , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Weekly Diary

  1. Brian Hughes says:

    I’ve just been watching Les Dawson and couldn’t help reading this week’s diary in his voice.

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