divine madness

February 6, 2018

Possession and madness comes from the Muses. This takes hold upon a gentle and pure soul, arouses it and inspires it to songs and other poetry, and thus by adorning countless deeds of the ancients educates later generations. But he who without the divine madness comes to the doors of the Muses, confident that he will be a good poet by art, meets with no success, and the poetry of the sane man vanishes into nothingness before that of the inspired madmen.

Phaedrus (245a)

the noise that colours make

January 20, 2017


Perhaps he was mad. In the seventh grade he had done a science project on this worry. It was the year he began to wonder about the noise that colours make. Roses came roaring across the garden at him. He lay on his bed at night listening to the silver light of stars crashing against the window screen. Most of those he interviewed for the science project had to admit they did not hear the cries of the roses being burned alive in the noonday sun.

Anne Carson
Autobiography of Red

How do you know I’m mad?

December 11, 2016


“But I don’t want to go among mad people,” Alice remarked.

“Oh, you can’t help that,” said the Cat: “we’re all mad here. I’m mad. You’re mad.”

“How do you know I’m mad?” said Alice.

“You must be,” said the Cat, “or you wouldn’t have come here.”

Lewis Carroll
Alice in Wonderland


Diary 8th November

Mine are the memories of a lost amnesiac…

I see myself as the space between what I’d like to be and what others have made of me. So it is that, intoxicated by my madness, I go searching for reality in a world full of incomprehensible illusions – like a simple fool.

I think I must like to serve, however. I’m slave to the past, to the future – and slave to the two women in my life, also…


You know birds born in a cage believe flight to be an illusion. Yeah, see, you can learn something new every single day – providing you pay attention.

D’you know where the caged birds sing…?


Let’s Keep It This Way

I like it this way:
you not knowing anything about me,
you touching me like each
inch teaches you something new.
Let’s keep it like this:
you as the secret and
me as a stranger, a ghost,
the silence in your
parked car that leaves you choked.
I want my name to be the one
that gets caught
in the back of your throat.

Lora Mathis


I know people so damn poor all they have is money…


There is in every madman a misunderstood genius whose idea, shining in his head, frightened people, and for whom delirium was the only solution to the strangulation that life had prepared for him.

Antonin Artaud
Van Gogh le suicidé de la société
(Van Gogh, the Man Suicided by Society)

love and horror

May 12, 2016

Balcomb Greene - Woman and Man By the Sea

It was not love, although her rich beauty was a madness to him; nor horror, even while he fancied her spirit to be imbued with the same baneful essence that seemed to pervade her physical frame; but a wild offspring of both love and horror that had each parent in it, and burned like one and shivered like the other. Giovanni knew not what to dread; still less did he know what to hope; yet hope and dread kept a continual warfare in his breast, alternately vanquishing one another and starting up afresh to renew the contest. Blessed are all simple emotions, be they dark or bright! It is the lurid intermixture of the two that produces the illuminating blaze of the infernal regions.

Nathaniel Hawthorne
Rappaccini’s Daughter

The Blue Cloak

March 19, 2016

Haunted by Tiffany Carter

She knows the early signs –
when he starts to notice
how many dead flies
there are at the window;
when he leaves
the morning paper unread
by his breakfast tray,
and catches the later,
less busy, train.

She is on her guard then.
Switches off the TV
when he comes in,
keeps her conversation simple.
She cancels dinner parties,
makes excuses to friends.
Puts pillowcases on the spare bed.

Sometimes it passes quickly.
He will come out into the garden
and sit, watching her planting seeds
or bending to pull dandelions
up from the root. They will talk –
about the weather, or a film
he’d like to see – and she
will let her eyes take in
the softening contours of his face.

More often, she loses track
as the weeks pass.
Keeps to the edges
of the house, the radio
turned down low.
She may even
a foreign holiday,
hide the car
in the garage,
leave the curtains drawn.

Jessica Penrose

(Jessica Penrose, a former lawyer, is now writer, arts project manager and trainer)

crocodile Valentine

an age of madness

January 14, 2016


Of course, in an age of madness, to expect to be untouched by madness is a form of madness. But the pursuit of sanity can be a form of madness, too.

Saul Bellow
Henderson, the Rain King

The Old Madness

October 12, 2015

Madness_Mamuka Kikalishvili

I shall miss the old madness, this
distortion of perspective as you
(if indeed it’s you) loom larger
than you should, elbow and crowd
the frame, which is, I think, shrinking,
although I have a sense of expansion,
as if I’d inhaled everything in sight
and breathed it out, fresh minted, new.

And while I hope to be accepted back
into the ranks of the disappointed
and sane, I’ll retain some respect
for this delusion, its manic grip,
its insistence I’m awake in this dream
of another moon-fazed day.