Saturday, May 23rd, 2009
A poem I wrote while waiting for my friend in Dundee’s Overgate shopping mall.
A rather large girl and her friend walked by, inspiring me to verse.
It’s not anti-fat, it’s anti Lycra and skin-tight jeans.
You’re a great big yellow idol
To the north of Gregg’s and O2,
And you made me lose my appetite
When you lumbered in to view.
I wonder what you’re thinking
When you dress yourself each day.
You clearly do not worry
What others have to say.
You waddle by oblivious
To your sin against good taste,
As you dig in to your pasty
Letting nothing go to waste.
It’s not so much the rolls of fat
Like some gross lemon jelly;
It’s the way the cloth rides up your side
Showing off your fearsome belly.
And I see you have a skinny friend
Who’s no oil painting either.
But she stands a chance of pulling guys
With a slug like you beside her.
As you pass your ass strains at the seams
Of your skin-tight denim trousers,
And I wonder if you really think
That your taste in fashion wows us.
May he who invented Lycra
Burn forever in hell’s fires
For the crimes it’s since committed
On girls’ fat round spare tyres.
Sunday, May 3rd, 2009
An old girlfriend of mine used to perform Poulenc’s “Trois Mouvements Perpetuels” on the piano and I wrote this to see if I could mimic its style. It’s one of my first compositions, dating from around 1992/93 (I’m self-taught so forgive me!) Originally it was intended to be performed by a wind quartet and sound like it had come straight out of a French art house movie. The version here is for pizzicato strings.
The title, “Decisions, Decisions” comes from a long email exchange I had with a student about five or six years ago.
She kept changing her mind about her dissertation topic and kept coming back to the same idea, which is really how this piece works. Up until then it had the title “Happy Dance” which I’d always meant to translate into French or something to make it sound a bit more pretentious (“Danse Heureuse” I suppose).
Incidentally, Poulenc is a strange composer – his music is very rhythmic and uses odd intervals, timings and discords, but it’s often very exciting and beautiful. Listen to the Domine Deus from his “Gloria” for example:
The whole piece is worth a listen if you can get hold of a good recording. I took part in a performance of that piece at York University conducted by the composer John Rutter. Blimey, he was a bad tempered guy that day… Went right off him.
Saturday, May 2nd, 2009
Great track from the 1969 album An Electric Storm http://tiny.cc/3RsEp