House, Plus Environs

What hi, with bread on the side, a bread knife still sharp by the bread board. Crumbs, of course, appropriately and decoratively scattered, also on the side, some on the bread board, a kind of formation of a symbol or a clue, something that could point us towards. It has a sheen, this bread, a definite cover, shiny and hard, you could, if you leaned in close, see your face in it. The bread knife, sharp and ominous, is placed somehow, its position a kind of perfection. It too points. And disturbing somewhat, more clues, a tea cup and saucer, the tea cold and surfaced, half drunk, lipstick on the edge, the lip. Then a small tin, a small watercolour, bales of hay in a field somewhere caught full by the sun. Shadows on the side. Missing throughout: a burning cigarette or, at least, a stub with its museumed, tell-tale, length of ash.

Thus the kitch. Where The Poet, as he insists I call him, spends at least a good half of his day. Surprisingly, as I say, to note that amid all the significant kitch detritus there resides nothing that could point to his status as a poet or, rather, The Poet, that is, to wit: nothing in the way of pens, paper, quills, stationery and similar bundles etc. No dictionaries nor reference books. Nothing to indicate the full life of vital life that The Poet quite clearly inhabits at some point in his travels, given his dexterity and skilfulness in relaying the rich, writerly life that fair burns the pages of his slender tomes, soaring them into a rich, full life as vital and as urgent as his own. In fact, he says at one point, he hopes his death in this house will be a death in the kitch for where else better to die than inside the obviousness – the obvious – richness and fullness of my killer kitchen, replete with gadgets and formulations, that help me to serve up writerly dishes beyond the kill of other good men if, indeed, any such good men do, in fact, still exist and I doubt they do. His opinion on the war: We shouldn’t have gone in and we should have tried Bush and Blair as war criminals, not Saddam, who of course was disgusting but let us never forget who put him there in the first place and who the real mass murderers are.

Just fucking eat it! he suddenly shouts to his teenage daughter, Marie Celeste, who has spent the past twenty minutes turning over the contents of a small ready-to-eat salad bowl with the wrong end of a plastic ready-to-use fork. She is sat, as all of his family sit, at the far end of the kitch, away from the rich, full life that The Poet inhabits there at the ripe end of the kitch. It is, he says, if you’ll forgive the pun, poetic justice, this familial arrangement. Anyway, he says, she’s a compulsive salad tosser that one.

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About Paul Saxton

More information about Paul Saxton here: www.paulsaxton.co.uk Follow me on Twitter: @paulsaxton
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2 Responses to House, Plus Environs

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