The summer of 1981 comes like a scene change and I’m lying on my back in the middle of a montage, flat out on the concrete listening to that tape. The hot wind coming off the river is laden with moisture that beads on my upper lip, and crawls from my armpits all the way over my shoulders to my neck.

Continue reading “Murmur”

When Billy Corgan Had Hair

you were only ten years old when billy corgan had hair. & you
know, i can barely remember that time myself – it’s as if i was
never actually there oh but i was at selina’s in coogee where
billy corgan had lots of hair & he screamed & yodelled & shook
his mane of greasy sweaty hair (he had hair. & so did almost
everyone else who was there so what? so what if he had hair
or had no hair? at least i can say i was there at the time unlike
the many people who weren’t there when billy corgan had hair
the ones who couldn’t get tickets or hadn’t been born or were
too ashamed to go out because they had no hair & billy’s hair
made them wish they still had some (i kind of liked it you know
billy corgan’s hair it was almost demonic yes i guess that was
the whole point that nasal whine & frenetic guitar style of his
coupled with the long locks of hair well who wouldn’t want to
look like that on stage who wouldn’t shake those locks of hair
in the face of their fellow band mates mockingly showing the
crowd his hair as if to say I’m billy corgan & i’ve got hair! look
at billy corgan’s hair! (he had hair okay so you probably don’t
remember it at all & in fact maybe he never actually had hair
in the first place maybe the wig that britney put on had first
been worn by billy corgan in the nineteen-nineties just so he
could demonstrate the falsity of the rumours about how he
had no hair (couldn’t sing & was also crap at playing guitar –
personally i prefer to believe that his hair was once real (in
the same way that baby boomers like to believe that things
were better when they were younger (i don’t see that as a
trait that’s exclusive to them i mean look at billy corgan with
no hair today the exact inversion of his former self (the one
who had hair when billy corgan had hair we were all so much
younger than we have since become balder older & yes even
worse at playing guitar writing killer pop songs & maintaining
the rage i like the fact that he went from long locks directly
to chrome dome without pausing to comb over or pretend
that he wasn’t losing it i like the element there of flipping the
bird at his old age (see however my earlier comments casting
doubt on the authenticity of billy’s original hair perhaps we’ll
never know the full truth of the origins of billy corgan’s hair
but at least i can say i was there when it looked like he had
some & that’s not to denigrate anyone who wasn’t there (he
had hair this much is clear what i don’t understand is where
that hair went you know the way it disappeared so suddenly
quietly without a whimper & was it an arcane ceremony that
day when billy looked in the mirror & saw his receding starlife
& just went (damn! & grabbed the nearest razor blade & just
shaved it straight off (did he chuck those clumps of hair in a
bin or is there a wig somewhere made from billy corgan’s hair?
i’d like to find that wig one day & buy it just for you just so
you could say that (okay maybe you weren’t there when billy
had hair but so what (now you’re wearing it & we’re still here

The Fall Reunion

a lot of empty places at these tables here-ah
our drummer jumped off the brighton pier (ha
count me in with the beats mark e smith (ta
dah! screw my lightbulb honey brat sonically
sophisticated buy a round of drinks-ah sorry
your services no longer etc … squizzle! boss
says “random quote generator” live at which
trials? ah (gots me gigs in sheffield-ah (brits
in penzance costumes ringleader-ah (as tour
bus tourist reunions go this one’s the bits-ah
for services to etc (timelines like bronze age
villages filled with squizzle (pints are … free
at synthesiser auditions forthcoming US lucre
so i say i mean why are people grudgeful? ah …

Honey Power

over there where you’re laying down
down amongst the styrofoam cups &
album cover broken glass bra straps
honey power coming all over me me
& you with your oh fantastic english
got me high & left me there stranger
with a honey tongue warm between
the vinyl EPs wet beneath the stylus
rooms in which to shudder awake on
busy streets we mistook for england
first time & forever in a dark carpark
then i exited from the passenger side
smoking our enemies (drunk on power
honey pixel closer now hold my flower


he bites into the apple eats the bruises
soft & brown like sugary endings (rayon
bites the bruises cuts them clean out &
spits the skin onto the crusty pavement
sucks the bruises (swallows them whole
into the apple of his insides & scratches
& bruises yes just there soft like blisters
just beneath the green skin (leaves like
green canadian flags covered in bruises
fresh & rotten undermined & cleaned he
ate the bruises popped nectary blisters
felt the juice of bruises coming down his
chin (drop everything pavement colours
bruises left to rot (the mapled manholes