Wednesday, 14 January 2009


Extract from David Peace, Nineteen Seventy Four:

Her mother was sleeping, her father was snoring, and I was on my knees on their toilet floor.
Kathryn opened the door and switched on the light and bought another piece of me.
It hurt and it burned as it all came up, but I didn't want it to ever stop. And, when it finally did, I stared a long time at the whisky and the ham, at the bits in the bog and the bits on the floor.
Kathryn put her hands on my shoulders.
I tried to place the voice in my head saying, you've actually got people feeling sorry for him, I never thought that was possible.
Kathryn moved her hands into my armpits.
I didn't want to ever stand again. And, when I finally did, I started to cry.
'Come on love,' she whispered.

I awoke three times in the night from the same dream.
Each time thinking, I'm safe now, I'm safe now, go back to sleep.
Each time the same dream: a woman on a terraced street, clutching a red cardigan tight around her, screaming ten years of noise into my face.
Each time a crow, or some such big black bird, came out of a sky a thousand shades of grey and clawed through her pretty blonde hair.
Each time chasing her down the street, after her eyes.
Each time frozen, waking cold, tears on the pillow.
Each time, Claire Kemplay smiling down from the dark ceiling.

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