Monday, September 22, 2014


When things get hectic, especially for extended periods, I forget to look up. If you're not going to look up, how on earth can you inspire on the holiday blue of the sky?

The photo was my first 'look up' after my chairing of a 'state of the media' event in the Fugard Theatre, at the Open Book Festival, on Saturday. It's a cold photo (taken just around the corner from the Fugard, while walking up Buitenkant street), and as many of mine are, absolutely devoid of people; there is, however, if you look carefully, one seagull whose name is Jonathan Livingstone. Lee introduced me to him far back in March 2012, in Mpumalanga of all places, far from the sea, but he'stravelled far and wide, with me.

In the screen of my tablet, as I type these words, I clearly see my unshaven face; my dark and bristling jaw, except for the grey on the chin, accentuates the lines around my eyes and makes me look older. Which means I look my real age.

Also in the screen I can see, less clearly though, the kitchen counter that's piled with dishes and the untidiness of just over two weeks. That I hate. Between leaving for Grahamstown on 5 September - then almost immediately to Joburg - and today, I've been in a life-bottleneck of note, not unlike the confluence of the buildings in the pic, where very varied strands of life (every one a different architectural style and period) converge and heighten blood pressure, stress levels.

Neverthless I swoop and swoon on the currents of the words-and-sentences-and-paragraphs of the writers and their work, from all across the word, that I flailed myself with over the last five days of the festival. And, like Jonathan, I squawk in joy and aliveness.  

To hell with the dishes, and the un-made bed, also my ragged jawline and the lines around the eyes, I'm drunk with words and writers and life. And the sky's a holiday blue. 

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