:: Video Footage from the Live Event ::

I want you to think about love
This little hope that’s all there’s left to feel.
A mystery invites investigation,
A centre in a world of unending unreal.

I find myself mesmerized by words,
Words on buses, and packaging, and people’s skin.
I’m confused about what I was reading and why,
In meaningless scribbles there hides a religion.

 

I fill the silence with perfect words,
I’m wondering without allowing conclusion.
We don’t know what is true but let’s dream the same dream,
Of silver in the warm blue sun’s diffusion.

In the darkness, our little world
Stretches no further than the tips of our duvet.
Awake in the shadows of beginnings and ends,
Are you scared? I am. We’ll be okay.

Did you hear that?
At night this ghost slips into your room.
Ripe young flesh passes through your fingertips,
A fitful vision of love in bloom.

I turned to look at you
You’re weird and you’re short and yer Mam tells me you’re gay.
My glittering friend, tender stranger
A dying planet, far, far away.

A beautiful fluency flows in your secrets
I allow my mind to follow the rhythm.
Deadly to the foolish, tender to the brave,
I looked so deeply I breathed you in.

The effects are a bit like LSD,
You’re brain processes faster and makes new connections.
Romantic shuddering now in a brighter place,
Rotting my flesh and sucking my senses.

Beneath the desert on the outskirts of sanity,
Mortality melts as I decompose.
I have fought mutation by freezing maggots
In space and silence. In silence alone.

I scan my eyes over many Medusas
Before me like carpet spread out on the floor.
You might have no business sleeping with virgins.
Why do my dreams always feel like a war?

I’ve run out of reasons to ever turn back.
The time is right now, this dark night takes hold.
Within hours I knew the secrets of the stars
That haunt and guide us, from young to old.

My adolescent longing lies demolished,
Reduced to horizontality -
I wonder if they are really asleep,
Or confronting imagined morality.

A girl in my class once told me
With such conviction, it had to be true
That if I misbehaved then Jesus would know…
He interrupts – I fall out of time with you.

Surprises unfurl their cinematic wings
Confusion reigns, frogs can fly
When you don’t make them feel self conscious about it.
Challenge what you think and why.

I want you to think about love,
This little hope that’s all there’s left to feel.
Allow your fingers to touch without purpose,
A centre in a world of unending unreal.

- May 2013 -

Thanks to Jamie Alun Price for editing the video and Dave Petty at Cornerhouse for capturing it.

:: Conclusions ::

It’s been a long and amazing process. I learnt a lot about my self, my relationship to Loren and the responses of others. I’m almost completely healed, there will be no scarring and contrary to my fears my skin is soft and supple again.

It’s true, everything we endure makes us a stronger person with a thicker skin. Love can be painful but suffering is the rite of passage that leads to deeper understanding, of yourself and the nature of your love.
190513_3464

:: The Healing Process : Day 3/4 : Sunshine and Aloe Vera ::

:: Day 3/4 : Sunshine Heals All ::

Day 3 was the first day I went out swimming, firstly in the hotel pool which made my skin sting horrendously, then in the sea. The salty water burnt my skin and made it feel hard and leathery when it had dried. I remember thinking that I seemed to actually be morphing into a living book and had that moment of panic when I thought it might take a lot longer to heal than I’d thought. It felt at this point, after a couple of days in the sun, like I was growing a second skin and might never be soft and womanly again. I looked like a gladiator or some kind of sun baked Amazonian Warrioress, which was fine by me but I wasn’t sure how keen Loren would be in the long term.

At one point when I was swimming in the sea it felt like my whole face was turning into some giant sore welt because of the salt. It quickly subsided and of course the short term pain met it was doing its job and was the best thing for healing. I’d also been lathering myself with Aloe Vera gel through the day and Almond Oil before bed, or rather Loren had been doing a very diligent job of keeping me hydrated, so my skin calmed down a lot and the blood lining quickly became very subtle. The lines themselves became very thin delicate pinkish marks in areas of my body most exposed to the sun, in other parts like my thighs and legs the scabs were beginning to itch and come apart. My skin care routine was doing the trick nicely and I rediscovered my confidence in ignoring the unwanted attention of strangers. I had also managed to get some sleep now the intense throbbing had died down, which really helped me stopped being so hypersensitive. The mosquitoes naturally loved me.

I had of course anticipated people being curious, I just never expected some people to be so blatantly rude and the airport in Nottingham and the Thomson coach journey to our hotel were pretty relentlessly intrusive. I’ve never wanted to shut myself away for a bit of peace and head space as much as I did that night. I’ll never forget the experience, it was completely invaluable.

Now gradually people were beginning to think I had some kind of henna tattoo all over my skin and their responses were softening to gentle curiosity as opposed to shocked revulsion. I think some of them must have thought I had the most intellectual scabies on the planet.

This was my arsenal of skin products ::

products

This is what my skin was starting to look like ::

20130523_14130320130523_141336

263302_10152915379445160_1722174072_n

20130523_14165420130523_144247

923183_10152915377085160_847676704_n20130522_163026 (1)20130522_163003

:: The Healing Process : Day Two : Raw Nerves ::

:: Day 2 : Out In Public : Raw Nerves ::

These are the pictures we took at 2:00am in the morning after travelling for 20hrs to Greece after a day of being stuck in airports where people have nothing to do but stand in queues for hours on end and stare at each other. I had a pretty revelatory day as to how shallow and rude people can be when they don’t understand something. Despite me giving my broadest grin to anyone who made eye contact most people seemed unsettled by my presence. One woman, stood a metre away from me, declared to her boyfriend at the top of my voice that I was horrendous. I had to move away before I said something I regretted. Another woman was so busy trying to discreetly read my face she fell over the suitcase in front of her. That made me laugh. I spoke to a couple of really cool kids, they didn’t seem even in the slightest bit perturbed and I explained that it was Loren’s job to draw on people and we were just testing out a new piece of art. One of them even drew on her own face with a blue felt tip in solidarity much to her parents dismay. After so many hours travelling my resilience to criticism was running low. I was exhausted, empty and unusually permeable to the narrow minded of others (i.e. frustrated, tired and pissed off). The lighting isn’t great, but I’m sure you can read my mood at least in these pictures.

P1030068

P1030066