I keep hearing people moan about the oncoming gloomy weather, how miserable it’s going to be. There is such a thing as a self-fulfilling prophecy, you know.



There are very few, but a few, occasions in which The Moment trumps The Author, and so it is that, while e.g. invoking ghosts in graveyards, or engaged in youth-work, it would be a cosmically dreadful faux pas to pull pen and paper out of pocket and scribble down a particularly witty or thoughtful comment. Certain places are like that too: long-forgotten, I remember now the ghats in Varanasi, no I couldn’t write that down as it was happening, couldn’t record immediately those walls, truly great walls and the shadows on them at night and cult-bustle-sell fun all day, boatride sunrise, that seven/eight-year-old who knew some English and liked to practice it and every time I asked her a question above her ability she said “Ohhhhhhhhhhhkay,” haunted Varanasi, holy tough unsexy Varanasi, naked-ranter-in-the-road Varanasi, labyrinthine druggy V. the houses are faces! the houses are faces! sitar V. krishna krishna V. krishna V. dove V. walk V. holyman V. holyman, watch me kiss the filthy sacred Ganges because King Mob does it in “The Invisibles,” watch the ketamine bottles wobbly watch uh watch Varanasi its cows its aggro its forty-six degrees in the shade its walks and walks and beatnik-like like chemists its burningdead pyres down on those ghats at night the locals really didn’t want me there, they treated me like a tourist just because I was a tourist.


“I recall being approached at a cocktail party by a biologist who clapped me on the back and shouted, ‘Congratulations. You were the one that made it!’

“‘Made what?’ I replied.

“‘You were the sperm that won the race.’

“‘Get away from me with this locker-room jock talk,’ I replied. The selection of ovum and sperm is not an athletics contest. However wounding this may be to the male-scientist-ego, this most important step in the evolution of species is not a blind muscle-feat. As it happens I remember exactly that moment when I surged out of my father’s penis. I recall the pell-mell stampede of the macho-jocks pushing each other aside to rush up the fallopian tube. But I didn’t join the race. My sperm-navigation manual told me that this was an aesthetics-intelligence test. So I was in no hurry. I floated along and discovered to my delight that Mum’s recreational system was the most wondrous exciting environment! Cushy, velvet, pulsing with cellular information, surging with perfumed signals and chemical instructions. Tissue-temples and ovarian-architecture. And the incredible presence of a humming super-intelligence located at the end of the fallopian highway…”