Tuesday, February 28

A scorn of shame

She's an ordinarly looking middle aged-woman, wearing conservative clothes and holding a carrier bag. She's shouting at the top of her voice as she walks along, the same phrase over and over, 'for those who want to harm us, a scorn of shame all upon them'. I repeat it in my own head to hold onto the words, over and over, and by the time I get to some paper I feel a little crazy myself.

Monday, February 27

Bracing himself

He walks quickly towards his front door with his hands in his pockets, suddenly letting out his lungfuls of breath with his lips pressed close together. He's either relieved to be home or bracing himself.

Sunday, February 26

Moving so slowly

The houses and the fence across the carpark are moving so slowly that they fool us into thinking they are static.

Saturday, February 25

A different life

I slow the car right down to look properly at the pastel clouds heaped up on the hills, a cross between marshmallows and candyfloss. In a different life I'd pull the car over and stay for an hour.

Friday, February 24

She puts her arm around her daughter's shoulder

She walks into the tea-shop with her teenage daughter and spots a young man she knows, he has a fat face and frizzy overgrown hair. I imagine she knew him when he was a boy. He's drinking his tea alone and she offers to sit with him. He tells her he's 'got himself into a mess', that he's 'felt suicidal for the past three and a half years', that he feels like his 'head is going to explode'. His whinnying laugh is inappropriately loud. She coos sympathetically and suggests social workers. After she leaves the shop she puts her arm around her daughter's shoulder and whispers reassuringly into her ear.

Thursday, February 23

Snowstorm heather

The actual snow is grey and blurred against the hot white jabs of the Snowstorm heather petals.

Wednesday, February 22

Summer bulbs

Too cold to plant the summer bulbs outside today. They wait patiently in their silver bucket and dream of ladybirds and the sound of ice-cream vans.

Tuesday, February 21

Salad

Sweet tasty tomatoes, avocado, bright lettuce and radishes, thinly sliced mushrooms, oil and lemon juice, a final sprinkling of the promise of Spring.

Monday, February 20

Cold rain

The top flowers of the hyacinth, called 'claws', are withering and turning beige. The sweet smell has a new note of rot. Outside it is raining cold rain.

Sunday, February 19

Outside, inside

Outside sweet drenching rain is being nudged sideways by the wind. Inside a woman's silvery voice cuts through the fuggy warmth of the room.

Saturday, February 18

Tilt

On a street corner a young black man is talking aggressively to his girlfriend - she is hanging her head and looking up at him like a shamed six year old. I want to put a finger under her chin and tilt it gently upwards.

Friday, February 17

Blackbird dance

He's standing in the middle of a puddle up to his orange ankles. He dips his head beak first into the water and arches upwards. A ripple of dog-like shaking starts in his neck and chest and moves outwards to the tips of his wings. The drops fly and glitter in the sunshine. He performs the same dance over and over, grinning like a fool.

Thursday, February 16

Moving from somewhere to somewhere else

A chip of white moving through the clouds at a constant speed is carrying strangers from somewhere to somewhere else. Closer to home the Aubergine seeds have pushed their folded white necks out of the dark.

Wednesday, February 15

City

A bus slams on its brakes as a young smartly-dressed woman with a white stick makes her way across the road. On the other side, a Big Issue seller with a lined face is smiling and chatting with three old ladies. Written across the back of his coat in black felt tip is 'working not begging'.

Tuesday, February 14

Bird

Such a loud song, once I've spotted his small brown shape he lets out another burst to convince me that it's him.

Monday, February 13

Young tabby

I say good morning in cat. She rushes over the road to arch her back under my hand, and when I'm ready to walk on she stands in my path.

Sunday, February 12

Shoe shop

The sign is a draped in front of the neat rows of shoes: 'SAVAGE SALE', as if scrawled in blood on a sheet. The straight-laced owner of Laced Up is showing us a glimpse of their shadow.

Saturday, February 11

Friday, February 10

Blue sky afternoon

the moon a circle of mottled white tissue paper cut with a scalpel

Thursday, February 9

Freudian slip

She says intimacy instead of impotency. He says that's what I'm afraid of.

Wednesday, February 8

Gift

There's no room in my garden for the free silver bucket of spring bulbs. I try to give them away, my friend suggests a window box or planting them in the lawn. I give them to myself.

Tuesday, February 7

V

In the crease of the dull-green valley a clump of dogwood holds up its blood-red branches like a glorious 'V'.

Monday, February 6

Aftermath

In the middle of the underpass a television has been beaten to death - scattered twisted metal innards around a pile of shattered glass. Out on the other side a family of ducks rest near the edge of the water with their beaks tucked under their wings as if nothing has happened.

Sunday, February 5

Saturday, February 4

In New Look

Young girls put on different clothes, trying to find out who they might be.

Friday, February 3

Slow-moving traffic

They are stripping the trees of their limbs and fingers with chain-saws.

Thursday, February 2

Alexander

'Alex-an-der... ALEX-AAAAN-DER!'. A seven year old boy calls to his friend in the playground, his voice breaking into a warble.