Clearing Up Secrets

Filed under: — site admin @ 9:37 am

Nicholas Langman seems to be the MI6 man in Athens whose name the Government doesn’t want the press to tell you: and here’s a link to
Ambassador to Uzbekistan Chris Murray’s telegrams about torture there
. Jack Straw knows nothing……. nothing……



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Derek Bailey

Filed under: — site admin @ 11:18 am

January 3rd. 2006. Here’s a copy of the New York Times obituary (thanks to Harry Gilonis)
and (January 6th. 2006) here is Harry’s account of the funeral.
Here is the obituary from The Times, the obituary from The Guardian; and here a note by Gavin Bryars.


Seasonal Parcel

Filed under: — site admin @ 7:51 am

Either open in the player to the right, or Direct download: seasonal.mp3
Back in 2006


A Basque to Remember

Filed under: — site admin @ 9:20 pm

Following a thread from Pinter’s speech.

On December 14th. Fr. Jon Cortina, S.J. died.

“On the night of November 16, 1989, twenty six members of the Salvadoran military—nineteen of whom were trained at the U.S. Army School of the Americas— raided the Jesuit residence at the UCA, pulled Fr. Cortina’s six Jesuit brothers and two women co-workers from their beds, and brutally murdered them in front of the rectory. At the time of this massacre, the Jesuits were considered dangerous to the repressive Salvadoran government because they defended the rights of the poor and relentlessly worked to liberate those whom the military systematically killed and oppressed.

Fr. Cortina survived the massacre of the Jesuits only because he was with the people in the rural areas of the province of Chalatenango on that night. As he drove back to San Salvador the next morning, he heard the news of the Jesuits on the radio, and with them, his own name listed among the dead. He abruptly stopped his truck, got out, and felt his chest to make sure that what he heard was not true. After pausing and realizing that his family was gone, Cortina recommitted himself to the poor to carry on the memory of his slain brothers.”

A friend who was in Central America at this time writes: “When I was up in Chalatenango in the 80s and early 90s, we would see him periodically. After he narrowly escaped being hacked to death at the UCA, the army was always looking for convenient ways to kill him. I used to love just watching him talk to people. He’d reach out and lightly touch a hand or a shoulder as he talked, joked, smoked. He had none of that cloying priestly fatherliness but rather invested his energy in the stuff that matters, like rebuilding infrastructure, driving people here and there, getting people out of prison, helping children find their families. Plus he was funny, and dear. I always wanted to see him again…….
This is the kind of line he could deliver absolutely straight.

“Soy fanático del Atletic de Bilbao por mandato divino. Es el único equipo perfecto que Dios ha creado, al resto lo llenó de extranjeros”

More than can be said for the present pope.


Harold Pinter

Filed under: — site admin @ 2:52 pm

When Harold Pinter was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature some days ago his recorded speech was reported in this country in such a way as to give the impression it was the vicious meanderings of a sick man. I read it, and don’t find much to disagree with. For those with a little patience

there’s a copy of it here
There is also a downloadable PDF file here.

Florence’s First Birthday

Filed under: — site admin @ 11:41 am

Click here for photographs



Filed under: — site admin @ 10:31 am

Since this rough idea has spread from the few people I showed it to there seems no reason to not have it public: the poem is still in progress. Click here or anywhere on the image below.

To have the sequence open in its own window, rather than having to scroll up and down in the browser window, click first here and then on the small cover image.



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From today (Thursday 8th) until Tuesday (13th) night I’ll be in the Limousin: so no communication.



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nature mort
Woodrow Wilson Democracy recorded 1913
We Didn’t Want To Fight: Stanley Kirkby recorded 1914
I Do Like To Be Beside The Seaside: Florrie Forde recorded 1909
Era Una Notte Che Pioveva: Italian Alpine Troops 1917
Beetles Aphex Twin Girl Boy E.P.
Wild Coffee: Dave Douglas Charms Of The Night Sky
Zitar: Erophey Dobrovolski (15 months) Kindermusik
Aba Daba Honeymoon: Collins and Harlan recorded 1914
Ornithology: Anthony Braxton
Yatzar: Electric Masada 50th Birthday Celebration Volume Four
Roses of Picardy: John McCormack recorded 1919
Woodrow Wilson: Address to Native Americans recorded 1913

Direct download: nature.mp3


Bristol Black Mountain Event

Filed under: — site admin @ 10:28 am

Click for a few pictures of the Black Mountain event at the Arnolfini Gallery, Bristol, on December 3rd.


NYU Graduate Students’ Strike

Filed under: — site admin @ 9:21 pm

Any readers in academic positions might care to sign this petition.



Filed under: — site admin @ 5:18 am

6a.m. and off to Bristol to this for a couple of days.


Something out of Nothing

Filed under: — site admin @ 8:57 am


ulli cristobal
Yesterday afternoon I was socially obliged to go down to London for the inauguration of the Poetry Archive at the British Library. I took advantage of the visit to call Ulli Freer, a poet friend who works at the library. We met, went for a drink, then returned to the building so I could meet a Chilean artist, Cristóbal Bianchi, who was bringing me a book, Lyrics, by Sergio Coddou. I know Sergio only from correspondence and had never met Cristóbal. We had a remarkably interesting hour. Cristóbal talked about his CasaGrande magazine project (the journal mutates to a different form each issue) and of his experiences bombing certain cities with poems. These events began when his group, on the anniversary of the bombing of the Presidential Palace by Pinochet/CIA which led to the Pinochet years, dropped hundreds of thousands of poems onto the building. The positive reaction of the people, at this reclaiming of place, led them on to similar projects over Guernica, and Dubrovnik; now they’re negociating with Coventry. Hearing “Dubrovnik” Ulli sparked. It turned out he’d been in the city that very day, had watched the poems float down, and still had one at home.
Eventually I had to leave them and go down to the event which seemed to consist of men in dark suits wearing labels and over-thin sharp-faced women speaking PR into cell-phones. I drank a few glasses of wine, spoke briefly to Richard and Andrew, the two pleasant people I’d dealt with, had my right cheek just missed by Elaine Feinstein’s lipstick, and left…. twenty minutes. Enough. Without the energy of Ulli and Cristóbal my sense of poetry would have been as glum and dull as usual. But I took out Sergio’s book on the train and through my rusty 35-years-unused Spanish it was fine. Saved by Latin America.

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