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Loads of things on the go in the studio to pick at in turn. When an idea occurs to me, I can just do it! Freedom!

But I did feel after the weekend, that I wasn’t getting anywhere.

I’d done another bra drawing, a really big one (drawing, not bra).

I’d pieced and layered up some more fabric for goodness know what purpose, but it might end up as a mask of some sort, or perhaps a blindfold. It’s not huge, but it is densely stitched and time consuming.

I finished a song. If I get a half-decent recording, I’ll put it onto soundcloud. The song is a thing I worry about. You may have read here before, I am not a musician. The Songwriting Circle drew me in, and it’s great! But I’m a fish out of water. I flounder quite often. I stumble over my words because I don’t have the knowledge or vocabulary to explain myself. But they put up with me. I am bowled over by their ability to hear structure, detail, nuance, in one hearing of a new song.

The culmination of the term is a performance. Other people have, it seems to me, ten songs each to choose from, all of them sound bloody brilliant! They go away with their instruments and they practice and it sounds wonderful. I have no instrument except my croaky voice (and a plethora of household percussion). So I go away and sing along in the car to a very rough recording. I will have one evening to practice with my collaborative guitarist. He has such a distinctive style of playing I feel very privileged he is accompanying me. Performance then? I am sh*t scared! I will let you know how it goes. Unless it is so excruciatingly embarrassing I can’t bear to.

The collaboration with Bo bumbles along, poking its nose in here and there, sometimes unbidden. A part of my brain seemed to be thinking this work was a separate thing. Another part of my brain knows it is the key to more. So the brain needed spring cleaning.

I pinned a large bit of paper to the wall, and got out the coloured pens. I wrote out all the ideas that were pinned up, in my sketchbook, and floating about in my head. Some were finished items, some were old ideas, some new half-baked bits and pieces. As I wrote them up, links started to form between them.

What I now have is some semblance of coherence in the body(ies) of work here.

The songs and the bras are connected. There are links between the bras and the protection issues I’m looking at with Bo. The layered fabric on the garments lends strength and protection from harm, infection and the influence of others. The bras and the songs are all about the influences of others. The textiles are layered up, the sounds are layered up, and the drawings, smooth, on tracing or layout paper, are layered and show through, influencing each other. The crumpled drawings on tracing paper seem more fragile, and once crumpled cannot be smooth again, I tried, even with an iron, the crumples remain, a testament to their past. They are not made weaker by the crumples, merely scarred.

So if I get crumpled, singing to a live audience, I’m hoping I won’t be weakened by the experience.

Numb

I don’t feel that anger

I don’t feel that pain

Sometimes a numbness

From my heart to my brain

I’m having trouble sleeping

Can’t get you out of my thoughts

This can’t go anywhere

It’s coming to nought

You asked where my spark was

I said I was tired

Really I was deep in thought

What I said was a lie

I don’t feel any jealousy

I don’t feel any hate

I don’t feel guilty

But have a sense of my fate

An old memory I found at the back of the drawer

It just made me feel like we’d all been here before

You asked where my spark was

I said I was tired

Really I was deep in thought

What I said was a lie


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