Weekly Diary



June was sucked up by a passing tornado, landing on a hill where she sold things which she had wrapped in lights or unwrapped in darkness. She came home in the afternoon with a handful of monkeys that immediately escaped and built a shanty town on the roof. I heard the constant tapping of typewriters as I laid in bed and expect to read the complete works of Shakespeare in the very near future (as well as shorter pieces written by his sister who uses herbaceous border flowers instead of ink). I came in from the garden to find a man with Polymesmeric written on the front of his T-shirt. He stood at the door with his eyes firmly closed; I closed mine and we each pretended the other was not there. He left a short time later after not selling anything to June, me or himself.



The giant mouth that had replaced the roof looked unfed and the birds were dressed in army fatigues as I climbed out of the hair net I had spent the night in. The morning, having anthropomorphised on a whim, had started to talk to itself; I was reluctant to interrupt even though the spaceship gantry attached to the upper parts of my body was beginning to overheat. I walked like a sun filled shadow in the garden all morning before making a pair of wings from an oversized cornflake packet that had walked up the front path while I was scattering jet engine nozzles over the garden. I flew up to a rook’s nest in the cosmic galleon I have been constructing above the house. I am hoping to sail away sometime soon, powered solely by ethereal beings that look just like punctuation marks.



June went out again. leaving me to decorate the inside of my pupal case. I drew circles within squares just to annoy the triangular people who patrol the road (they would later demand I cut the hedge – even though it had a flock of archaeopteryx nesting inside). The house contents had become conscious after the lightning storm and all the pictures on the wall recognised each other. They would have recognised me too if June had not suddenly returned with a signed portrait of Henry the Fifth and a troupe of performing horse flies. In the real world a steam ship turned inside out and a vegetarian butcher came out of a red door wearing a green suit – I later emerged from a coloured door wearing black and white clothes and had a number of different daydreams simultaneously.



As usual I got up before June and had washed the bright pink paint off the sides of an African elephant before she had come downstairs: her head floating in a cup of cold coffee. I told her a clockwork rocket had landed in the garden and various items of clothing had climbed out: apparently the crew itself had not survived the journey (I knew I would remember this the next time I made the short trip to the Isle of Wight). I had dutifully collected them all up ready to fill the laundry basket; which was itself waiting for the expected arrival of a robotic octopus. June went to visit a house which always looked to me like an open umbrella, stopping for tea as the sun shone, while I worked in the sunken hull of torpedoed merchant ship, listening to the scratching sounds coming from the rusted metalwork.



I left home extremely early, although June had risen just before I did so and was cleaning the house using a fragment of sail that had originally come from the Mayflower and was later used by Gypsy Rose Lee in the final part of her act. I travelled to a land of pure sound – if I had remembered my sunglasses it would have been a land of pure light – and listened to the sun god as he shone out words. I came home later than usual, after pacing out the length of Fort Alamo in his garden and calling out to a firebird that flew overhead looking for a ballet to perform in. I thought of making a necklace out of a meteor trail and photographed my feet as the bus went over a bump in the road before climbing out of the turret of a Churchill tank and making myself a cup of Twentieth Century tea.



June got up much later than me, coming downstairs wearing stilts and holding a flamingo. The flamingo subsequently made us a both a drink (which I drunk using a straw modelled on a strand of porcupine DNA). The flamingo drove off in a pink Rolls Royce it had borrowed from Lady Penelope and I climbed the laces of a pair of size hundred and eight shoes instead of the stairs. The lady from next door had just gone down the road on a one person hovercraft, her baby playing a mouth organ and then swallowing and quickly spitting out a giraffe; which ambled away playing a burning guitar – I measured its redshift and composed a symphony using this (both the audience and the orchestra would be in the dark and the conductor would be illuminated by a single light).



I went downstairs using steps constructed from solidified light; I was going to patent the idea but they disappeared when June flicked the switch. I juggled with a pair of ichthyosaur skulls before breakfast and then painted my version of Leonardo’s Last Supper on a moa egg – actually it was the second to last supper but I didn’t want to prove to the world I couldn’t count. June went out alone: after swinging from the hall light with the Niagara Falls projected onto her handbag and then rolling down the road in a barrel. I worked on a beach in the early Triassic, waiting for the tourists to arrive waving flags of countries that don’t exist and then demanding ice creams plucked from a dust cloud inside the Crab Nebula – instead I pulled out a newly born star and foretold its life story.



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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