Pages

Monday, December 31, 2007

~ a time of seething

After a period of stability, say four days or longer, a tension begins to form in the air - like a charge of static electricity that will continue to build unless it is released. The simplest release involves drugs, a sudden abandonment of discipline that results in a slow build back to stability.


I sense her thoughts, whispering, cycling in her head. It is the only recourse she knows. The only thing she can imagine that will free her of the horror of the day-to-day, from her entrapment here, in this ordinary house - albeit for merely a day, and despite the peripheral damage on family and friends.

It’s a vicious circle, driven partly by her and, as things go, partly by me ...

Of course, I am making a serious effort to repair our world, even as it is being destroyed. I am alert for Spore incursions. I have total and permanent charge of finances. I try to organise my time so that no one will complain…

Yet I have so little energy. The Spasmo-Nemigron holds me steady as it eats my soul - deliberately, slowly, as if with a cocktail fork. I can feel the Slammerkin larvae making a chaos of my liver, and slowly I droop under long and wasting exposure to the winds of Quinquagisma…

I do what I can, but I have to do it at my own pace, to my own logic – otherwise, I know I will slash back and make the whole thing worse.

Yet her frustration must find an outlet – and for want of something better, I have become that outlet. When I spend a day cleaning and organising, I am criticised for not playing with Polly. When I spend the day with Polly, I am criticised for not cleaning. I fall foul, regardless of what I do.

It’s worse in those first hours after noon, when the Spasmo-Dromoran curdles her fluids, makes her dangerous to be near.

I’ve always been sensitive to personal criticism – but never deaf to it. And it’s worse when that criticism comes off a casually poisonous tongue. I cannot respond, for that would force an escalation. She is sensitive, a raw nerve and, were I to return fire, she would simply collapse. I’m told she’s been like this since a child, bursting into tears at the mildest of scoldings. At this late stage, I see that she is one of the worst cases of depression I have known.

But my reaction is perhaps the deadliest factor. l seethe. It’s a physical thing. I feel it in my blood, in my temples, a shuddering weakness in my sides. If it is bad enough, I take valium. Worse, it lingers, sometimes for days, and my only answer is to try to act normally, politely, until the causes are forgotten.

But lately these seething episodes have been compounding, one upon the other, and I am tasting bitterness on my tongue…



I spent the afternoon with Lynne and Polly, lounging around the pool at Bruce’s place, watching his two year old daughter – Madelaine – swim like a pearl diver. It was the perfect antidote to the nerve-racking morning during which I wrote the above paragraphs. Bruce keeps a reliably excellent bar. I tried some agwa, a marginally legal liqueur made from coca leaf. It’s okay, but yesterday I stuck to the chartreuse…

There’s been a lot of talk about the past lately. Last year, a specialty label in the US put forward the idea of re-releasing the Beargarden album All that Fall. Now, after much delay, the compilation of a bonus album, a re-mastering from the vinyl by the redoubtable Simon Polinski, it’s near ready.

At the time, for me, it was a grave disappointment. We were saddled with a couple of old school producers who seemed intent on sucking the blood from our music. The project went massively over-budget with the help of shadowy entries for cocaine and Japanese food [something I only learned of years later], and the whole thing – the fights, the tension, the firing of bass-players – became the straw that broke the camel’s back. I was so naïve at the time; I let something that I’d spent years working towards be swept out from under my feet.

A few months later the band was gone. Virgin Records abandoned the project [despite their massive investment] and All That Fall was quietly released on our manager’s private label, Chase. For a long time after that, I took no pleasure in music, [despite singing in a band called Index which disintegrated as quickly as it formed]. I went overseas for a while and then became a writer …

So it’s strange revisiting that time. I listened to the material this morning, free of all those emotional associations. It sounds surprisingly good. Very eighties, of course, but worth making available again …

We’re talking about compiling an Ears album next and that I would get behind …

*

When we arrived home, the pall had risen from the house. Everything felt clear. The woman I live with was smiling and apparently at peace with herself …

Stumble Upon Toolbar DiggIt!

2 comments:

Matt said...

Hey Sam . . . that'd be fantastic if you were to re-release some Ears and Beargarden stuff.
I'm only really familiar with your theatre work and tragically ignorant of your music (except for the odd clip on YouTube). Online and store searches have thus far failed to yield fruit.
I would love to hear some of it!

Sam Sejavka said...

I don't know when Beagarden's coming out, but it can't be too far away.

I might do separate artwork for the bonus CD. We're using the original title for All That Fall, which would be "The Word That Refers To The Word That Refers To Walt Disney". At the time that was the only way we could call our album 'Walt Disney' and not be sued for copyright infringement. It lives on though in that space between the label and the last track, where it was scratched by Pink Light at the pressing plant...

Maybe Pink Light can remind me what that area's called?