(Cover Artwork by Loren Fetterman)
(Cover Artwork by Loren Fetterman)
The following verses were created using fragments of the writing submitted by the public. They are not connected necessarily and will be edited down even further, eventually becoming one narrative.
Verse 1 – Untitled – (Stef)
We all want love in a sea of sighs, whispering to the moon we saw you dancing too, fire fire burning bright, all it takes is two people rubbing together. How long can stars shine for a blind man? Always. And so I turned from you as ripe, young flesh passes through your fingertips like water off a ducks back; did you hear that? Shimmering, gliding in the night, they come into your room, in your mind they spill surprises unfurl their cinematic wings, take flight to haunt and guide us. They sow the seeds of contemplation, they are the box you can’t escape from “No” you say. I wonder if you actually are asleep, or if you are stealing the same moment I am. Let him fall and don’t deny the tragic, magic hour. A wound of such will stay unseen just like its consequence for every feelings been a thought beyond parole. Life’s boundary to discover a confidence destroyed. A fitful vision of love in bloom, at night this ghost slips in your room a secret laid bare at a terrible cost, let him fall just a little speck of might in a white hot fantasy. You can come off that horse now, riding it like pornography. A pound of flesh paid, is not ever enough. This Romantic shuddering now in a brighter place, the site of my earliest adolescent longings lies demolished, reduced to horizontality.
Verse 2 – Untitled – (Loren)
I breathe in unison with you. And we’d sleep through the night. I’d lie there with you in the dark depths and alone, I can’t dream without you being there. Why can’t I be alone? In the darkness, where our world stretches no further than to the tips of our duvet that’s draped over our bodies; echoes in a storm, a careful wave, dangerous, mysterious in the shadows of beginnings and ends. I knew it never could turn out the way we’d planned it. I allow my mind to follow the rhythm, I allow the colours behind my eyelids to begin to wash back and fourth like a gentle tide, in time with us. We could be floating now, on waters so still that the only movement on its surface is created by our chest rising and falling in time. Do you dream of me?
Verse 3 – Untitled – (Stef)
I want you to think about love. Cling tight to this little hope as it’s all there’s left to feel, a centre to the frenzy in an world of unending unreal. Frogs can fly when you don’t make them feel self-conscious about it. We’d not know what was true but dreaming the same dream I’m quick and bright, a flush, a dot of silver in the warm blue of the suns diffusion. Come night, we’ll dance to our tune among paper stars. Forever. A mystery invites investigation. For this lifetime leaves us apart but know this lifetime I love you. I want you to think about that.
Verse 4 – Untitled – (Loren)
I found myself mesmerised by words. Everywhere I looked there were words – on hoardings, buses, on packets in supermarkets, on people’s skin. I became confused about what I was reading and why. I no longer remember all of it, or what I had read during the night before. It no longer made sense either. The ingredients of a cornflake packet were as significant as a religious tract; a God for faith or false creation of man random thoughts suppressed to conform I saw the world through a changing light entranced to escapism a thunderous bass I hear a quiet beat in my mind, our bodies sway to it, the beat of our breath. I’m interrupted by a though of what is to come, and I fall out of time with you. The beat stops and our floating bodies sink beneath waves. Your music ended too soon and that was when I realised the word of God was just meaningless scribbles.
Verse 5 – Untitled – (Stef)
Walk away and tell me that’s not what you meant I can fill the silences with perfect words. She stayed until the Sunday and only went home then because her Mother found out where she was and sent the police after her. My parents weren’t particularly religious, but a girl my class told me that if I misbehaved Jesus would know, and said it with such conviction that it had to be true. Except by trying not to wonder, I’m wondering without allowing conclusion. It’s easier that way. But it means these thoughts can’t be filed away just yet, until a conclusion is allowed to complete them. The conclusion hurts. Knowing it will hurt is a conclusion in itself. To be honest I wasn’t that bothered about those things and seemed more interested in cartoons. Don’t cut off your face to spite someone else’s face.
Verse 6 – Untitled – (Loren)
A small purple ant, crawling from beneath your lower eyelid. A seedy looking as he sounded, gaunt and unhealthy looking but wearing what appeared to be expensive clothes. I explained what I wanted and he laughed. I’ve just the thing,” he said, withdrawing a small packet from his inside jacket pocket “this is a new drug, it’s called “Bot Mot”. The effects are a bit like speed and a bit like LSD it makes your brain process stuff faster and make new connections. My glittering friend was a restless one and didn’t stay in the same place from one night to the next. Why this alien/nation, do you really want to live in space, are you tired of the human race and are you sick of seeing my face? “You’re weird and you’re short, and yer Mam tells me you’re gay, but I knew your Da, and he was witty and so are you, you’re alright you a love, you are. Weird hair.” I am. I concentrate again on your breathing. A larger ant, its exterior a whitened pearl , finds its way out from within your nose and laughs hysterically at your face, which is now sporting no features but a large vertical slit down its middle. From the slit oozes a thick, green makeshift smoothie of numbers and matters. Don’t cut off your face. Open wide your meagre eager throat and let it slip inside. I opened, I beamed, I fed from a stranger whose touch was so intimately tender. I tried to catch what that smell provoked inside me. I wondered how and where it touches me. Missing what should come naturally, trying too hard to be aware. Trying to reconnect, re-balance my consciousness and my senses. We breath in waves. To allow our breaths to share the same space, to allow our fingers to touch without purpose, to allow ourselves to be warmed by the others body heat, to allow ourselves to feel the comfort of the touch of a finger tip, a breath, the movement of a foot, to feel each others heart beat. Every two steps I took I stopped to read something. The only way to better a society is to base things on what we, as individuals, truly believe, and not, contrary to instinct, what we are told to believe. Only by doing this, will we achieve honesty of opinion necessary for the real development in society. Challenge what you think and why. We can do all of this while we pretend to be asleep, I want you to think about love as if it never came. Space and silence. Silence and space. Alone again. Now when I look up and see my old friend, I know he was never my friend, he was just a dying planet, far, far away.
Verse 7 – Untitled – (Stef)
If worms merely rot flesh and suck senses then they have no power over me. Only my mortality melts as I decompose in no man’s land. For I have escaped all knowing eyes and tongues set in the mortar of high rise cages and flown north north east over enlightened short skirts across a crowded room. I turned to look at you. Our eyes lock, and in that very moment, I look so far into you, I see every memory of us flash through our eyes. And then it stops, Ice in my glass melts, I swear I felt something more than rum on my tongue; wrong. Sing, let the lies begin, imaginary memories to draw me in, drown my disappointment, you can’t see through another man’s eyelids. Yo yo back to me, I’ll breath you in. Through every pour, into every cell. Deep within. The sunlight is sucked from this existence, to another place where I’m not. This is our bed;where your light doesn’t have any open slats to squeeze through, and honestly I couldn’t change me for the world. Hurtling faster all around her heavy chunks of brick, they’ll crush your little glass heart if you don’t flinch or act quick. The ocean calls its song, deadly to the foolish, tender for the brave, who drown in the green allure of your kiss. A beautiful fluency in your secrets, a lake to drown, the great oak falls with no one around. I try to lick my lips, my tongue is dry and swollen. Confusion reigns only for a second longer while I pull all the evidence I have together to form a jigsaw of memories, a tale of last night. The moon always looked a tad jealous of my star. Never shared the same space of night sky. I would have to sleep at some point though my dreams would be open to interpretation.
Verse 8 – Untitled – (Loren)
I spread them out on the floor in front of me and scanned my eyes over Medusas as they lay before me like a carpet. Check yourself, you might have no business sleeping with virgins. I’ve run out of reasons to turn back, the time is right now, this dark night takes hold, tears strike the floor, why do my dreams feel like a war? Sacrifice your dreams to your sanctuary, your place within I’ve become your enemy, I feel your heart beating. I try to count the beats and read some message in them. I’m sure its harder and faster than it usually is. Are you scared? I am. Its OK. You’ll be OK. So will I. I have fought mutation by freezing maggots beneath the desert on the outskirts of sanity. The love she had for me was taken for granted She moves so gracefully and bleeds just like me. Within hours I knew all the plants of the earth, the secrets of the stars and every murderer that Hercule Poirot would ever reveal.
– END –
PS (The fight for sexual equality is not between men and women, it’s between people and dickheads.)
Thank you so much to everyone who has submitted writing thus far, we’ve had an incredible response, so much in fact that we’d have to have quadruple Stefanie’s surface area if we were going to fit it all on!
So, now begins the process of chopping it down into segments and sentences, fusing your thoughts and ideas into one giant narrative spoken by one voice, ready to be turned into the final design; a head to toe suit of language that will blood lined on 19th May at Cornerhouse.
This is how it began ::
Loren and Stef cut up the submissions into smaller chunks and start to splice them together.
Eight independent verses are created, four by Loren and four by Stefanie. Some are hopeful, some are idealistic, some are cruel, some are full of sorrow, they represent all fluctuating aspects of love.
This is only the first draft including all eight verses, it will still need to trimmed down!
There’s still much more to do…..
A woman waits for me—she contains all, nothing is
Yet all were lacking, if sex were lacking, or if the
moisture of the right man were lacking.
Sex contains all,
Bodies, Souls, meanings, proofs, purities, delicacies,
Songs, commands, health, pride, the maternal mystery,
the semitic milk,
All hopes, benefactions, bestowals,
All the passions, loves, beauties, delights of the
All the governments, judges, gods, follow’d persons of
These are contain’d in sex, as parts of itself, and jus-
tifications of itself.
Without shame the man I like knows and avows the
deliciousness of his sex,
Without shame the woman I like knows and avows
Now I will dismiss myself from impassive women,
I will go stay with her who waits for me, and with
those women that are warm-blooded and suffi-
cient for me:
I see that they understand me, and do not deny me:
I see that they are worthy of me—I will be the robust
husband of those women.
They are not one jot less than I am,
They are tann’d in the face by shining suns and
Their flesh has the old divine suppleness and strength,
They know how to swim, row, ride, wrestle, shoot, run,
strike, retreat, advance, resist, defend them-
They are ultimate in their own right—they are calm,
clear, well-possess’d of themselves.
I draw you close to me, you women!
I cannot let you go, I would do you good,
I am for you, and you are for me, not only for our
own sake, but for others’ sakes;
Evelop’d in you sleep greater heroes and bards,
They refuse to awake at the touch of any man but me:
It is I, you women—I make my way,
I am stern, acrid, large, undissuadable—but I love you,
I do not hurt you any more than is necessary for you,
I pour the stuff to start sons and daughters fit for
These States—I press with slow rude muscle,
I brace myself effectually—I listen to no entreaties,
I dare not withdraw till I deposit what has so long
accumulated within me.
Through you I drain the pent-up rivers of myself,
In you I wrap a thousand onward years,
On you I graft the grafts of the best-beloved of me
The drops I distil upon you shall grow fierce and ath-
letic girls, new artists, musicians, and singers,
The babes I beget upon you are to beget babes in
I shall demand perfect men and women out of my
I shall expect them to interpenetrate with others, as I
and you interpenetrate now,
I shall count on the fruits of the gushing showers of
them, as I count on the fruits of the gushing
showers I give now,
I shall look for loving crops from the birth, life, death,
immortality, I plant so lovingly now.
My thoughts are like flags. When there is no wind they rest neatly. When the wind blows purposefully they fly outstretched, energetic but steady. When the wind blusters they furl and flap, uncertain of how to behave.
Simon Liddiard, Manchester, UK.
I cannot give myself to you completely, I must retain some part of who I was before. I wonder why? You are a part of me, I grew you in my belly. The same but seperate.
Vinca Power, Manchester, UK.
Every time I shed tears
In the last past years
When I pass through the hills
Oh what images return
Oh I yearn
For the roots of the woods
That origin of all my strong and strange moods
I lost something in the hills
I lost something in the hills
I grew up in declivities
Others grow up in cities
Where first love and soul takes rise
There were times in my life
When I felt mad and deprived
And only the slopes gave me hope
When I pass through the leg-high grass I shall die
Under the jasmin I shall die
And the elder tree
I need not try to prepare for a new coming day
Where is it that fills the deepness I feel
You will say I’m not Robin the Hood
But how could I hide from top to foot
That I lost something in the hills
I lost something in the hills
Oh I lost something in the hills
Now I lean on my window sill
And I cry, though it’s silly
And I’m dreaming of off and away
Oh I know further west these hills exist
Marked by apple trees marked by a straight brook
That leads me wherever I want it to
Well I lost something in the hills
I lost something in the hills
Oh I lost something in the hills
As if it had never came. Space and silence. Silence and space. Alone again. Hold me. Please. A touch that engulfed all of me. A touch that sent shivers through my harmony into blissful unity. So complex and simple I smiled, tentatively. I opened, I beamed, I fed from a stranger who’s touch was so intimately tender. I wish to thank you. For serenity. For humility. For a wholesome eternity, where I am no-longer separate and we are infinitely heavenly.
If worms merely rot flesh and suck senses then they have no power over me. Only my mortality melts as I decompose in no mans land. For I have escaped all knowing eyes and tongues set in the mortar of high rise cages and flown north north-east over enlightened caves. I have shared Medusas marble’s and fought mutation by freezing maggots beneath the desert on the outskirts of sanity. I have de-masked the mystery in dew drenched valleys drowning tours by unlearning ‘truths’ and encircling moon eclipsed silver streaked lips. I exposed their lies and bewitched myself. I have tunnelled beneath the Phoenix’s nest and turned the hourglass inside out to reach the eternal end where I may begin; deep in the Forest of No Regrets.
Joey Hateley ‘Gender Joker’ Manchester, UK
I saw the world through an innocent light
A child to be a father to please
Life’s boundary to discover a confidence destroyed
A god for faith or false creation of man
Random thoughts suppressed to conform
To be the individual but a number you must have
I saw the world through a jaded light
Be a cynic to be labelled a truth to console
A passing too soon a life not to witness
Not so true love betrayed by unquestioning trust
The wanting to provide estrangement to withhold
The pain of love so bitter and sweet
I saw the world through a changing light
Want to hear music and feel with all its might
A thunderous bass a smile it can not resist
Entranced to escapism a satisfaction to be found
Performance to embrace a whole new world to create
I will say goodbye to the world through a happy light
Roy Parkes, UK