Monday, March 24, 2008


ROME, and that's where I'm going this Thursday for five days. My sister has invited me to help her move to a new apartment and I will also be enjoying the company of my niece and her family, so there won't be much time left for memory-lane walking. I haven't been back to Rome for at least fifteen years and that was just overnight. The significant time before that, well, it's mentioned in recent chapters of my autobio - which reminds me, I must return to that, um, gapped project soon.



Sunday, March 23, 2008


It's in the moments when we are in love, from whatever inspiration - a person, a poem, a picture, a tree, a particular kind of light or sound - actually within love, surrounded by it, that's when we are resurrected. Those fragments of self which we don't need fall away like dead skin and in that moment, the moment we step inside love, we are complete, nothing missing. Without such moments, we are a little bit dead. Perhaps more than a little bit.

Whatever the facts may be in historical terms, or in religious, symbolic, mythological terms, to me that is the Resurrection message, as it applies to ordinary daily life. It's hopeful because the ability to enter love is one which every human being has and thus links us to every other human being. It's the one thing which makes us all the same and at the same time confirms our uniqueness. Every individual's experience of love is different yet we all speak the same language when we try to express it.

I'm in love with Ethiopian art.

The image is: Jesus Christ Transfigured, an early 19th Century Ethiopian scroll, from the book Ethiopian Magic Scrolls.


Friday, March 21, 2008


Whatever your religion, beliefs or non-beliefs, the fact is that somewhere on this planet today, at this moment and at every moment of every day, someone is being crucified by someone else. A man, a woman, a child, an old person. Suffering unimaginable physical and mental torture inflicted by others who know not what they do. Or who know, but do it anyway.

A good Friday to reflect on the ordinary reality of evil and on the extraordinary surreality of forgiveness.


Wednesday, March 19, 2008


I hate leaving long gaps of time between blog posts but I have this puritanical conviction that I should have something to say or to show before I blog and sometimes I have nothing to say. So time goes by and pretty soon a whole week has passed, or two weeks, and the gap becomes a crack, a canyon, a fault.

I'm wondering if the gap isn't merely fear? Well, fear is never merely. I'm wondering if maybe it's a habit with me, this fearful leaving of gaps. Because it's what I do on a regular basis.

Take the keyboard sitting in the other room, covered by an ethnic shawl to keep the dust off. I bought that keyboard at a sale - can it be fifteen years ago? Whenever. I was wildly excited and decided I would compose songs. I would start from scratch, re-learn how to read music (piano lessons aged about six but didn't touch an instrument since) and then I would do my own thing. So I enrolled in a beginners' keyboard evening class and was doing pretty well for about a year.

Then came the gap.

I practiced less and less because, I said, I didn't have time. I had a contract for a book and there wasn't time to practice, I said. So I dropped out of the class and I even stopped fooling around on my lovely keyboard. I covered it with an ethnic shawl. But I can't cover my guilt, fear. Fearguilt. Guiltfear. The gap has stretched so wide that it's almost an ocean.

All in the mind.


Thursday, March 13, 2008


An experiment in recording one voice on several tracks reciting and chanting (to the tune of row,row your boat) the alphabet while my digitally painted letters move along.


Sunday, March 09, 2008


Another version of the "Alternative Reality" video I posted on March 1st.


Friday, March 07, 2008

Wednesday, March 05, 2008


Thanks to Jean (tasting rhubarb ) for her comment which led me to make a strip from the movie of the painting of the story of the incident.


Monday, March 03, 2008

A Day at the Seaside

A brief trip into a rather surreal painting I did in 1997. I have my own secret story about it but it's up to you to put any interpretation you wish on it. The soundtrack is composed by me in Garage Band.


Saturday, March 01, 2008

A is for Alternative Reality

Video thumbnail. Click to play
Click to Play

It's a rather large file so please be patient while it downloads. Watch the little circle moving along the bar at the bottom of the screen. If there's a problem go to Blaugustine, as usual, or to this page on

I crawled on the floor on my stomach to get a worm's eyeview of the room, resting the camcorder on a thick book which I slid along the carpet. I then manipulated the video in iMovie to make it more abstract and graphic rather than photographic. Finally I made up the soundtrack on a virtual keyboard inside Garage Band. It's just an experiment but I like it. Next time I'll know how to make it flow more smoothly.

Dedicated to my dear, talented and lovely niece Indira for her birthday today.