7am. In the glow of the computer screen I’m writing an article for The Times and it’s
shaping up nice. It reminds me to upload
onto Global Poetry System a website inspired by my residency at Southbank Centre. At 9am I
take off to Southbank Centre, about 40 mins
via public transport, 30 by bike, three
days by car. At 11.30am I meet Rachel
Holmes and Martin
Colthorpe, the literature team. They have turned out to be quite the hermetic
team, contrastingly complimentary of
each other. We finish at 1pm.
At 2.30pm in the
Riverside Rooms I meet Cornelia
Graebner from Lancaster university, in town to visit the British Museum. We first
met in Holland. Cornelia is the editor
for whom I am writing a 3,000 word article finished earlier this week. At 4.15pm I meet Trish
Edwards who implements the digital strategy for the Southbank
Centre. I want to know how to transfer this blog to
the literature blog. We talk about GPS.
Tonight is the Artsadmin Christmas Party. I have been with Artsadmin for about 2 years. It is where my projects are managed
and has been a gratifying mutually beneficial working relationship. If you
were to ask me how I achieve the myriad of responsibilities the answer is that
I am surrounded by experienced good people.
Artsadmin is thirty today. It’s their party so I leave Southbank at 6pm for Toynbee Studios on commercial
st, east London. A poem I wrote called
“i Test” has been placed upon the
sloping ceiling as you walk inside.
It has been photographed and included as one of the artworks published
in a 30th Anniversary book published today in celebration . It’s also in The
There’s hundreds of people here. I’m at home amongst artists. Always have been always will be. I spend the first part of the evening blowing
thistle fluff into the air in a spookily lit rehearsal room called The
Court then downstairs for the drinks and
the food and good conversation. I hadn’t eaten all day so food was good.
Later in the evening artist Graeme Miller walked
onto the stage and in his hand a large bell. He tried to ring it and get our attention
but the tongue of the bell had gone missing. He looked at the
bell and then at us, at the bell again and at us again. His tongue had gone too. He spurted out a word “Bell”. Then looked at
the bell again. “Gone” Somehow he had
lost his capacity to string a sentence together. This continued for twenty
minutes in a seemingly unconnected stream of consciousness and rhyme. It is the
best speech I had heard all year.
At some point he resolved on the word Artsadmin. The audience cheered. He repeated
“Artsadmin” and raised his right hand in the air. The one with the bell
in its hand. He thrust his arm down and the bell rang solidly.
“Arts admin” he shouted. And rang the bell again. As he did this someone else in the crowd rang
a bell and then another and another (where did all these beautiful bells come
from) until the whole hall echoed with
the unified clanging clatter of…
well… peeling Christmas bells.
As this happened the fireworks (not candles) upon the gigantic 30th
anniversary cake threw Fountains of hissing
golden sparks to the ceiling. The
bells continued ringing causing a mexican wave of goosepimples to ripple through the crowd and through me.