poet. writer. imposter.
Brittle (For Greg) the weather knew and howled a gale cancelling it plans for an Indian summer raging at the trees that shed their sallows at its stuttered breath - the trees knew and - naked - brushed the window, tapping a skeletal code that i did not want to decipher... but, following the willows keening, the brittle air offered a brumal slide and I knew... Star Ariel had been reborn
It appears to be a poem about the weather and, in part it is. I was watching the squirrels feeding on my balcony. Happily munching away on the nuts I’d placed for them – and I looked round to see what the time was.
It was 2:23. When I looked back, the weather had completely changed. It was only a matter of seconds between turning to the clock and turning back, but in that time it had gone from a warm, balmy autumn day to a black sky with strong winds (that took all the leaves off my willow tree!) and rain beating down hard on the window. And the now very startled squirrels looked like drowned rats, which I suppose they were.
The next day, I received word that Greg had died at 2:22; a minute before the weather changed and I imagined the aether, in grief, spreading the news. The aether became the wind, the window caused the tree to tap my window to let me know. I’m not the worlds most spiritual person (anymore) and see this as nothing more than a coincidence, but a coincidence that demanded poetry.
As for Ariel, well he was a spirit with command of the arts (among other things). So was Greg. I didn’t want to do a ‘woe is me’ type poem, because it’s not about me. But I felt his passing should be marked. My friendship with Greg was relatively short and I met him not realising he was of The Delays, so it wasn’t bogged down in ‘fan worship,’ I’d kind of lost touch with The Delays after the first album as I buggered off to University and didn’t have access to a TV.
I don’t make friends easily, well I don’t keep them easily, the agoraphobia tends to see people off as I find crowded places difficult. I don’t drink (well about two pints in a particularly reckless year) and I have a complete phobia of other peoples houses. I know. Finding a friend like Greg who had been through a lot of the same experiences, enjoyed many of the same things, wrote poetry, prose, music, painted and enjoyed an early morning coffee was something of a revelation. I think I learned more from him in the few years I knew him than I did at Art School.
People like Greg don’t die. They leave so much of themselves behind – and inspire so many people to make music, draw, paint, write – that immortality is pretty much assured. I like to see him now as an Ariel-like figure, inspiring and enabling people to create. Star Ariel.