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As the woods just up from my house welcomed me this afternoon,I reflected on days spent with my son ,firstly as a child,then when he was a teenager,and latterly,as a young man.To linger in thought ,to dwell in his memories,his life made acute by the Autumn leaves ,soaked as they were by fresh rain ,marinaded by the atmosphere.These memories,a sustaining friend in times of missing,why they sustain us,fortify us to remain 8n touch with our existence.

Walking,all be it for just an hour,rejuvenated me from my own Moro’s it’s,by own maudlin pre winter rectitude ,forming an outer coating of brightness as my gait increased along the woodland pathways.These lanes,known by my son,run by him,cycled by him,enabled me to commune with him .As I did,some music that we have shared with one another glued me to the forest in a more profound way almost.That stage in the walk allowed me to navigate my mood away from the forlorn,to the pleasant memory and the tide turned away from the black dog to a peace like state.It soothes me,drew me upwards to a mood Zenith where I might have stared a nadir like abyss had I not made myself venture outside,Those rains,my companion as a child in Cornwall,were forgotten with my waterproof coat,my legs doing their job ,getting me to my peaceful place ,by pleasant memories.

They say that as you grow older,the only thing you have left is your memories.But really,memories are such powerful vehicles to mood management and even mood changes .So,it’s not a bad life this walking with the dogs in the forest,

More memories to follow.

Thank you.



Harmony !

Different notes voting at the same time,

Opposing gaps at time,sometimes a chasm,

Voices of genders,ages,backgrounds and creeds,

Hell,we are not the same in our views,that much is true,

But ,we don’t have to go to war over opposing views,

We have a voice,be it,soprano,alto,tenor or bass,

Not using our voice would be a crying shame,

But not listening to the other voices is grating,a permanent dissonance,

In these times,we can be harmonious even in debate,even in disagreement,

So,as the weekend approaches,I look for harmony,I listen to my feminine Sopranos,and altos,and I listen to my counterpart bass singers,and fellow tenors,

Maybe,the basis of all harmony is the weaving of ideas,that fusion of the parts,

When it is,why that harmony is a wonderful thing,truly wonderful .

Thank you.


Fly on the wall !

Susan had dreamt of walking these corridors at the BBC for so long that she had to pinch herself to realise that she was actually there.Non of her peers had landed this plumb a job,and she knew it.Yes,it was literally starting at the bottom of an elite pile,but she didn’t mind that,she just mucked in ,wanting to d whatever she was asked to do,but with the goal in mind of producing and writing her own drama series one day .As the traditional route for would be writers was always going to be radio,she knew that her research work would be that of an information Do key as it were.

These were the days before the Web,before information could be gleaned from a computer ,and she had to rummage in the archive of the BBC and in the national Library for the information that the producer would invariably demand.Some were kindly to her,others not,but the requests were veiled in threats that if she didn’t perform,there would always be another eager young graduate desperate to take her place and Susan knew what was expected of her.It wasn’t a surprise and she didn’t feel that they were exploiting her in any way ,in fact,quite the opposite.Her degree in English literature suited the requirements of the job so much so,but the very place those corridors ,the old staircases,festooned with pictures of the Beebs heavyweights lifted her and she would walk the floors in delight and pride.She knew that went she went home,there would be the usual conversations with her mother of mine,the scent of nostalgia wafting in the air of her flat.She hadn’t met anyone whom her mum would rate as a star as yet,but she had seen Tony Blackburn and Kid Jensen from a distance.Granted,These protagonists wouldn’t be classed as top dollar stars,but she was going t tell her mum the evening when she got back tin her flat.It just the right thing to do and there would always be other occasions when the chances f meeting the real stars might vie her way.

Wether her caring mentality ,Born out through years of looking after mum ,but she just seemed to make the cast of each Radio play that was performed feel special and like stars,as she made sure they had everything they needed.To Susan,the green room was like a heavenly temple,a place to adorn your most precious guests and they were spoilt beyond limit.

As the new intake of actors for the flagship TV drama series,Play forToday onThursday evening,Susan was asked to act as a runner for the producers ,a gofer u could say.She was so excited to be asked,not really understanding that the seasoned members of staff were reticent to work these punishment no hours because they had husbands and families.To Susan,her work would be her passion,as she really only had Sally and Ben and they lived hundreds of miles away in the North.

That evening,Susan grabbed a sandwich from the BBC canteen,as she raced back to the green room for tonight’s Play for today,a voice as smooth as silk,like a knife through butter cautioned :”Careful young lady”,it was the unmissable tempre of John Dunn,her mums second favourite.She dutifully slowed up dramatically,star struck,emotionally and physically paralysed for a few moments before her embarrassed person led her back to the green room.

That night she spoke to her mum and told her all about it,little knowing that her mum had been the fly in the wall all along.

Susan looks back on the old days!

Susan couldn’t quite forget on this day her past,her bumpy journey of intellectual discovery as it were.On the one hand,she had become like an Apollo spacecraft propelled to the glittering prizes of Oxbridge on the cusp of landing her first job as a BBC drama researcher,but still she longed for the bosom of her mum in the old flat,the crack of the Irish humour that defined her childhood.These people that she had rubbed shoulders with these years were ,like her,the future movers and shakers of British society,the captains of Industry the people that would make things happen.As she got ready for her first morning at White city,the home of BBC radio,she had the words of her mum ringing in her ears,”You might one day meet that nice Ray Moore,or Alan Freeman,and oh ,our Susan,heaven forbid,yoU might meet Terry,Oh Susan,think of that ,you meeting Terry Wogan”.As the words of her mother of mine rattled around inside her ,it was all she could do to hold back the tears as the memories of her mum came flooding back .She couldn’t help them,they were her water this morning.As she had a funny tummy,probably brought on by not listening to Sally and Ben about London water,she wiped her mascara away and looked at herself in the mirror,It was quite surreal,because she had set up her mirror in the same way as it had been when she had been home in the flat,Wether it had been conscious,but now that she was a women of the world,with her first proper Job,she had chosen to occupy her bedroom in a symbolic way ,but as a grown women.It acted as a security blanket for her ,a way to exist in her way,in her memories.

She pulled herself together,sipped her tea,made with too much sugarand milk really,but it had always been done like that for her mother of mine and she would continue the tradition.

Her flat was in Barnet ,a few stops always from the white city,but Ben had known the area,it was safe,and Sally had helped her get some furniture and things and it was good and the neighbours seemed fine,if a little too citified for her.She was early really,but so eager to please.As she left the flat,she turned the radio down,never switching it off ,as if to do that might mean that she would switch her memory off forever and she couldn’t ever do that.No one ,except Ben and Sally ever fully got that she truly had to keep her mother of mine alive.Everyone had moved in,on including Peter,her childhood sweetheart ,but she was determined to live her life the way she must.

Walking to the underground station,thoughts of who she might glimpse passed through her mind and she had kept one of her mums special notebooks to insert all the autographs of her mums idols,and it would be a memorial to her mum as well as a living testimony that when she wrote her first play ,people would know that she had an ancestry ,an Irish ancestry.

It was 7:15 in the morning,Ray Moore would be finishing up his show and Terry would be preparing for his .

To be continued.

Brian’s broken night.

It’s said that we often dream in sound bite pictures,that the images,devoid of gravity often show us falling into an abyss, of any light,any perspective:those were the thoughts ,jumbled and torn from the fuzzy mind of Brian that night.He couldn’t hope to make sense of it,only that ,as Jenny would often say,his mind Had to process it.He wished as he woke up that somehow the day might start off at Aunt Lucy’s again,but without his insistence of entering that loft,Then,or so he thought,he might have just soaked up the place in a different vein,treasuring the childhood memories that were so very dear to him.He realised that through it all,he had had so many wonderful ones of Cardinham ,the stillness ,coupled with the bleakness of it all,married his mind in these moments after his nightmare,way before any of the other patients had awoke,

As he sipped on his water,for one moment,there seemed a conscious silence,and that old Victorian hospital sheltered him from the goings on in the city outside ,and he was safe from intrusion,from thought even.As he allowed himself ,in that partial drowsing period of consciousness to enjoy these memories,he wished that his mind was less fragile,less sensitive to things,a oh how he wished that he might have been a less sensitive boy :then he might have escaped the taunts of the pupils who were hardened to city life,to survival,to aggression.Brian just wasn’t that that person,and like a cat not wanting to hunt for a rat of a mouse,he felt so very different,so very odd.It wasn’t like that here,and it wasn’t like that with Jenny,of at Aunt Lucy’s,but truly in most places,he felt like that .

Softness of light,the textures of paint,the reflections of lines,fascinated him and always had done.From a small boy,he would stare at a face in wonderment,wishing to sketch it,to profile it ,to find the dermis emotion of the person,it was his gift,but also ,it could be a burden that he carried around with him in artistic solitude,At art school,he had found kindred spirits in many ways,those who,like him ,pursued their passion through their installations.So many had left now to follow light in different geographies,but he couldn’t really leave Jenny ,not after mum had died.Maybe,just maybe,if he hadn’t had been so headstrong ,he might have waited for Jenny before he invaded the Aunt Lucy’s Pandora’s box,but now that it had opened,he couldn’t shut it up again.He thought back to his dream,how chaotic it all was,how dark,how it lacked colour.

It was no good though,he was not in the nightmare now,he was still,lying in his bed,and he knew that the Doctors would try to help him.The nurse would bring in food for him today as Jenny was busy at Great Ormond street and would come in later with further supplies.He started to think about his food books,and would ask Jenny if she could go to his flat in Battersea to bring one or two.Yes,that was what he would do along with his sketching .So,Brian,surrounded by mental anguish,turmoil almost,still had a measure of structure ,forethought,and a degree of calmness to think about his life.It was a contradiction to the untutored onlooker,it didn’t fit the description of Bedlam,but it was him,along with many many others at The Maudsley.His day would have meaning,it would have structure and a small degree of hope.

It might start with some breakfast fruit that the nurse would so kindly bring in for him,Such a simple thing,but sheer delight to Brian.

We all need structure and shapes,like the contours of our bodies that aBrian effortlessly understood ,the images from the galleries and museums of his home here that he had sketched since childhood.He gave up their dermis secrets,their underneath parts that all of us have as humans,but chose only to show to the sensitive .Brian found solace in that and we lay in contented muse as he awaited the start of a recovery day.

Thank you for reading this .

In between the words!

As the narratives of our lives are told in day to day interactions,the spaces in between the words are known by us and guessed at best by the others who are party to these interactions.We can’t really google “What did they mean by that”.Well,I say that ,I suppose that we could ,but it might not give a definitive answer and to come back to my previous phrase that it would be a guessing game that we might put a degree of credence too or not.

In music,the space in between the sounds can be defined by rests,whose exact objective meaning is a sign of silence.These rests vary in length ,and in relationship to the tempo ,pulse,and structure of the piece of music.Now,conversations arnt really like that because they require a different form of listening.Just as words have meanings ,so do the space in between the words too,It’s often said that me might choose our words carefully ,and we do that for a number of reasons.As the spoken word carries a meaning that isn’t on the surface subjective,we want to think about their affect on others.Perhaps a very obvious example lately has been the tirade of abuse that the prime minister of the UK has received because of the country leaving the EU.Some of the words spoken by supposedly educated people in the name of debate is nothing short of scandalous.

While it is true that our exchanges in life wouldn’t take on such a tone,we might do well to appreciate that failing to think before we speak has potential to offend our listener,or even cause then psychological harm.Yes,we all have varying degrees of sensitivity,but as we speak ,a sort of hearing antennae can help us to anticipate how are words are being received,wether they draw people or have a more neutral affect.

In between the words might seem an odd thing to write,but it really is an art to listen ,not just to what is said,but what isn’t said,the way that it is said too.It might seem like a lot of effort,but I’ve often thought that if we could have just hundred spoken words back that we have said to those we love,or are our friends,or work mates,we would grab them all immediately.Maybe I was a little too conservative in just wanting a hundred words back ,as a more liberal estimate might be in the thousands.As the older we get ,the more words are uttered without looking in between to their emotional meaning,their power,their real substance.

So,this is my muse for today and I hope that I have written something that is of interest.

Kernowsmith .

Strangers with hidden connections!

We share so much with the stranger:From the air that we breathe to the need to survive through our shared interest in the life we have.That life,with all its twists and turns captivates us ,drawing us to the conclusion that somehow ,somewhere,there is indeed a purpose to it all.What we perceive in our minds eye might appear to be totally unique to us but as we converse with the strangers,the people in our lives,our family,then we have to concede that we don’t differ too much as Homo sapiens.That said,some of us observe the world with a more artistic vent,a sensitivity that gets us into hot water with the more objective types who seek concrete solutions to each problem,constantly nurtured by a world view that might be described as narrow and conservative.

As Brian sat in his hospital bed,he became aware of the events that had led up to his confinement here in his retreat for the troubled mind.Wether he actually got the extent of his latest trauma was debatable,but he surely knew from the pained expressions on the faces of the nurses that what had happened today wasn’t the best of situations to put it mildly.He couldn’t quite trace it all in terms that made any sense ,and while he didn’t foresee the future in any way other than his immediate situation,he did at least want to have a sketch of his life as far as he saw it.That word sketch meant more to him than most ,because he had been a life long sketcher of events ,objects and just of things that took his artistic attentions away from the banal,the routine ,into a nether world of colour,of shapes,of mists ,of water,of fire,of beauty and magic.Why,he had always had a love of the mystical,furnished by an appreciation of the mythical arts that affected him profoundly.

Just then,a nurse came to his bedside and asked if he required anything to read or if he might want to sit out now.He didn’t really process exactly what she said,but her face had a light in it,not damaged by the dense darkness of misery and suffering that many adopted as a way of coping in this environment,He seemed to be drawn to her voice too,her quiet attachment,that willingness to just do more than just the minimum.Brian asked if he could have some paper and a pencil.His request was acted upon immediately by the diligent nurse ,so much so that she said that they had artists materials in the therapy room that she could get for him.As Brian knew that this would put her out a fair bit,he opted for just having a few sheets of drawing paper and a couple of pencils.He sketched from memory the interior of Aunt Lucy’s cottage but with the vision of adapting it into a retreat for families who had illness or emotional problems in their life,His idea was to provide a safe place for say one family or at a push two,to come to enjoy a weekend away from treatment and just walk and draw and paint.He had this idea when we had been at Jenny’s ,he even remembered sketching something vague before the darkness came.He knew from the times that he had spent here that relapses happen and sometimes they just come back and back.He truly wanted to make sense of his life,his trauma,but the only two things that he knew about was art and Food.He knew that he had wanted to talk to Jenny about it,but following this,he wondered if she would ever take him seriously ever again.He knew she loved him,that she always would,but he also knew that she would always be the stronger one ,the one that held things together and he would be the fragile,pathetic crazy brother who had periods when he was truly mad.

Brian drew the shapes of Cardinham with the dexterity of a Turner or Constable and as he did,his nurse peered over him in absolute admiration of his talent.She just wondered how someone with this talent could be so able and yet oh so fragile.It was a quandary indeed,a constant in her life and she thought of her mother and her demons of the mind and how she loved to dance but how she had had a breakdown following the birth of her second child,Our nurse had known suffering more so than Brian could imagine but somehow that spark of life hadn’t been extinguished.

As Brian and the nurse had,until this afternoon,been complete strangers,but they had a sharing ,a dovetail of shared breathe,of humanity,of compassion,of care.Our nurse wasn’t aware of Brian’s dreams,of his pulses for change,but ,in the brief moments of observation,she knew that he was far more than a man with mental illness.Wether strangers are aware or not,they truly have far more in common than meets the eye.Granted their will always be obstacles to understanding,prejudice being the foremost with mental illness.

Over my life,I have met many wonderful people who have either been apart of my family,or those I came across as a teacher and musician,or just in the course of my life.Just as many truly suffered at times,they also had so many positives that contributed to their life and the lives of others that they touched.This ,to me,is the real joy that can come from looking beyond mental illness to the person that lies beneath.Too many times ,folk have been consigned to permanent stranger tag,that ,don’t come near them,give them a wide berth.That default in society is now changing ,with charities like Mind ,Sane,and others really doing so much to break down barriers to inclusion to those blighted by mental disease.

Of course,with our friends Brian and Jenny,their journey started in the late 1970s,when Britain truly was a different place to live and where prejudice was a very real and prevalent issue for so many.As I explore the lives of Brian and Jenny in further chapters,it is my hope that a light can be shed through their experiences and by the things that have yet to happen,we might understand further their journey and how they came to be where they were.

Thank you for reading this .


Jenny arrives at the Maudsley.

Jenny had received the call about her brother just after 2 on that day.It wasn’t so much of a surprise,as he had had a number of admissions to the Maudsley over the years,but had recently been going through a more stable time of it,with his life his life having more direction as such.

Now,as she instructed the ward staff that she would be out for a few hours and that she might pop back to check on the children,she walk out into the street towards Russell Square.Passing the British Museum ,she thought of the times that her brother would almost live there as a child drawing ancient objects that fasc8nated him.She always marvelled at his innate ability to capture the spirit of these objects,and how he could make them live again wth seemingly just a few lines of his pencil.Oh how she wished that he were well but it wasn’t to be.As she hailed a taxi across the river she didn’t quite know what she would be confronted with on her arrival,just that the Doctor said that it had been quite a bad self inflicted episode and that his medication would have to be looked at afresh.He had always tolerated the chemicals that had been pumped into him well enough,but you never fully knew the affects of very strong medicines as she knew only too well with the drugs that she administed for the children on her ward.

Her driver was in quite a jovial mood and somehow she found his talk ,or as the local cab drivers called it,banter,made the journey more palatable.Jenny wasn’t a snob,far from it,and she liked the talk about how congested the city had become,and his moans about Ken Livingstone and the GLC and the usual jokes at the politicians expense.

As they neared the hospital,the driver suddenly changed his tone from one of light hearted ness to quite a concerned tone.”Now ,you take care,and just so as you know,my dear wife was in the Maudsley on and off for quite a few years,and they was the bees knees to her and me and I won’t pry but if your husband is in there,they will sort him out,Mark my words.Jenny smiled,said thank you,and paid the fare with a generous tip.

As she walked up to the entrance,she felt a rumbling in her tummy ,a feeling,partly of dread and also fear.This had been an episode that might have ended his life as he had cut a main artery.He had been patched up at Guys first before being transferred here and she knew that he had owed his life to Clarissa his neighbour who called the ambulance.Checking with the receptionist,she was allowed to wait in the visitors room because it was outside of visiting hours and she would have to wait to see the duty Doctor.As she sat in the room,she realised that the only food that she had had today was the lovely breakfast that Brian had prepared for her,As she looked back on this morning,she mused that life can indeed change in a heartbeat,It wasn’t that things could ever be predicted,but she had got to hoping for Brian that he might find a sort of peace if he moved down to Cornwall in Aunt Lucy’s cottage,but that seemed all up 8n the air now,

Looking at the walls of the room,there was a picture of John Ogden,Brian’s favourite pianist playing for the patients.He was such a giant of a man,and Brian loved the way that this gentle giant played so delicately.Brian had met him a few times because they had both had stays at the hospital at the same time,and Brian was very taken with the great musician.For what seemed ages,Jenny looked at those faces in the blown up photograph,wondering where they all were now.She hoped that some could be like the cab drivers wife and beagle to live a reasonable life ,away from the hospital.Many she knew would be almost permanent residents here .Oh boy,she thought,her brother wasn’t an old man,in fact he was still quite young,handsome,and to all intents and purposes,healthy.That was the cruel cruel blows that mental illness inflicted on its sufferers.She knew that her training hard wired her to be positive,but it was an entirely different matter when your own family was involved.

Her waiting somehow had a purpose to it she knew,but as the minutes went into sections of minutes ,then into half hours ,until,the clock struck 6,signalling that she had been in her seat for over an hour:Just as she was thinking that she might fall asleep,the door opened ,with a quite unassuming man saying her name and inviting her into his office,She knew from this invite that this wouldn’t be straight forward.His words were measured,his tone distinct,but his care for her brother was just wonderful.She could see from him that he wanted to help Brian get over this latest ,to use his word,”hiccup”.Even though she knew that he was being ultra positive,she clung on to his words ,almost like you would to a buoy that had been thrown to you to stop you drowning.He spoke for absolutely turn 10 minutes,all the time reassuring Jenny that he was in the best hands and that they would stabilise him in the next few days,and then begin to see if they could help him recover from the trauma that he had suffered.He asked Jenny if she could pinpoint anything in particular that could have led to this episode and Jenny related how they had had a family death,and she wondered if Brian had taken this badly.”Could have,could have,and especially if the circumstances have been troublesome to him”.Jenny refrained from giving any more details,as she didn’t want to be stopped from visiting him.As the doctor left,she thanked him and with that look,that unseen language that medical expel have when they know that this won’t be the last time that they talk he led her to Brian’s bedside.

Jenny was always Oh s strong,resilient,an emotional Tomboy in their relationship.Just seeing him was such a huge relief.As she spied him ,he saw her too and as he did ,he uttered:”Jen,I’m so glad your here,the bloody food is awful,can you pop out and get us something”.She looked at him as if to say “Thank god you didn’t succeed”.There was a kiosk opposite where they made sandwiches that weren’t of cardboard and they had fruit too,so Jenny purchased at least 4 sandwiches and all the fruit that she could in the hope that it would satisfy her brothers appetite.His medication ,along with his exercise regime ,meant that he consumed loads of food,but he also burned the calories too.

Something occurred to Jenny as she walked back to the hospital and that was the sheer time recovery from a severe mental breakdown took.His Doctor intimated as such today,but as Brian was well aware,something wasn’t right ,in fact,it was broke,it just was.No amount of positivity would change the recovery process and you just had to give it time,and Jenny was so so pleased that she still had him,still had him going on about the food,the drink,the rough towels,the bedding.She dis don’t care about the moans,she just cared profoundly that he was still with her.

Later that night,a child in her care passed away,and although she had witnessed the passing of such brief lives,she felt the pain of the parents,and it generated a sense of just how lucky she was that she still had her brother.Yes,to many ,he was quite fragile,broken almost,but to her he was oh so talented,and he had the best of hearts,and would walk on hot coals for his sister and she knew he loved her.

That might ,as she returned home ,the scene of the breakfast things and the dishes from this morning awaited her.As she put her coat down in the table,she looked at some sketches .At once,she recognised the hand of her brother,As she did,she saw that the sketches were of Aunt Lucy’s and the cottage was drawn to perfection .As part of the detail,Brian had written his idea that he was going to show her,his big idea.

As she took it all in,she knew that she would do everything in her power to help make Brian’s idea a reality,but first ,he had to get better,just get to the point of being able to come home and that was everything to her tonight,everything.

Brian has pain.

Brian ,fresh from germinating his idea about Aunt Lucy’s cottage,hurried from Jenny’s home to his flat in Battersea.He had lived there for a while now and with the support of his mum while she was alive ,and now Jenny,he had bought it outright as it suited him for its size and its proximity to the river that he loved.Even in his darkest days,he always found something good about the goings on around the river with its trade and constant marine craft going through its channels.

Now that he seemingly had “a country dwelling ” all of his own,he wondered if he would stay in his flat .His friends had either moved to more scenic and inspiring places to pursue their art,while he had remained i the same place for decades now,quite the city recluse,the bohemian lonerHe knew that his fragile mind tended to play havoc with relationships ,leading to constant breakups and disharmony seemed to be his calling card.Sometimes,he thought that the only constant in his life was Jenny and she had her limitations because of the demands of being a Consultant ,and a children’s cancer one at that meant that there were limits to what she could do for him.

The revelations in the loft of aunt Lucy seemed to be taking its toll on Brian,leaving him exhausted one minute,and ready to co query the world the next.He seemed to oscillate from one extreme to the next ,never really being able to exist on an even keel .He knew that the private therapy treatment that Jenny was paying for had helped in some way,but following his urgent train journey back from Cornwall ,armed with the press cuttings and family secrets that he had thought he had discovered,he now found himself in this dark place where he lacked direction ,unable to navigate,to see a way clear,

Normally,his flat was a bolt hole ,a refuge,a place where he lived and worked and where his studio had sort of grown with him over the years.Now,even though he had two places to live as such,it all seemed to be outside of him,as if it were somehow fraudulently obtained,Yes,he knew that his mum and Jenny had always loved out for him,always picked up the broken glass shards of his life ,but somehow now,he felt that they had done all this at the expense of something tragic.They had both carried with them his aunts tragic life ,lived it with her,but had excluded him.Far from being the man of the family,he felt like an emotional eunuch,divorced from the whole,from the reality that truly had been their life.As he again reflected on the life of aunt Lucy ,he played over the tale of certain holidays,pictures of darkness amidst the light that was always portrayed and he didn’t seem to know how to process the dark,Now,like a profound vision of horror,he could picture just why the atmosphere was like it was at Cardinham,,it just began to make sense,

Not a couple of hours ago,Brian had been dreaming of wonderful things that could be achieved at Aunt Lucy’s cottage:Now,in this time space,he allowed the potential darkness of its social history to dictate the tremor of desperation that he felt about it,Just how would he ever Inject light into a place that was the scene of a murder?As he thought about it,the press cuttings became like the shards of glass ,only this time they penetrated his femoral artery,emotionally causing him to bleed to death,

Regaining consciousness,Brian looked at the wall of the Maudsley hospital ,the familiar place to him the last few years,but this admission had been traumatic to say the least.Nurses attended his every need,with Doctors appearing at regular intervals to check if the medication was having the desired affect.Brian became passive,genial,a far cry from the frantic,almost wild animal type person that greeted the emergency services following Clarissa’s ,his neighbour and fellow artist,intervention.He thought if his mum,missing her,wanting her to come to his side but knowing that she wouldn’t.He asked the nurse if his sister had been informed of his admission and told that she had and would be in to see him later that evening,

Brian would ,as always,need a long period of time to stabilise himself,with treatment being ordered by statute as mental health was administered to the presumed mad in a very regimented and prescribed way at that time,He knew that he must have sessions with the staff here to boost the ECT regime of treatment that normally followed such an extreme episode such as this,

His only real advocate,Jenny,would make sure that he was safe,and would ensure that any damage or blood caused by the slashing of his wrists would be cleared up as she always had done,Like a child who had wet the bed often,the comfort of knowing that it would be alright was a constant savour to him .

Meanwhile across the river,Jenny had put the phone down after having spoken to a doctor in a hospital in Exeter regarding a child that needed urgent care at Great Ormond street.She thought about her brothers wanting to cook for the fragile family this morning,his excitement about an idea for the future,and then ,after making sure that she was indeed alone,she’d many tears for her brother,She had known what his condition could mean,but he had never deliberately become so ill.As she made her way over to the Maudsley,her heart thumped inside of her as she contemplated the sight that might confront her,Even though she had been hardened in seeing so many children die in her care,This was oh so different.It was her brother,her baby brother whom she teased,looked,and had made fun of as his big sister,But she desperately loved him ,wanted him to be well again.

It might Rain.

It might rain all day,yes,that is what I mean without a break,a pause,a gap in the downpour.These weather bods with their tracking devices like their predict when it might stop,or if ” high pressure” might appear,leading to the disappearance of the downpour.Now,with weather maps at their fingertips,they feed us,the awaiting eager beaver common weather watchers with news of when the Rain might stop.If it doesn’t,and it rains for the entire day,those would be intrepid explorers among us might seek to wrap up in our weather gear ,bravely those elements and capture the live sounds that exist .

Right now,the sounds of the rain drops descending offer a constant all of their own,a strange comfort really for me at least.Oftentimes in my muses,I have harked back to the days of my childhood in Cornwall,a time of freedoms in many ways,but also of challenges and turmoils.Sometimes in Cornwall,like parts of Wales and Scotland as well as the ermerald Isle,it literally rains for days,saturating the ground.That saturation has its own trade off with a lush green sheen in the vegetation,a glow almost ,with every raindrop that rests on a branch or leaf giving off its own magical magnet spell,

As much as rain portrays to me a visual sign of patterns descending from the sky,there are also the sound patterns,the pulses,the vibes if you like that occupy a special effect in the atmosphere.Those patterns don’t appear as endless annoying repetitions,like some manufactured music from a bored studios producer bereft of original ideas,no,these patterns ,like a duet with bird song ,act as a mental harness to lock in my attention.Our location during a downpour is a matter of sheltering almost from these drops,but there is also the sounds of the drops against the roof slates that co June up a symphony almost of tones that have always soothed me.

Another memory of my childhood,is in observing the sound of the rain drops from a shallow cave at Towan,or Tolcarne,Lusty and Porth,where the patterns perform gymnastics on my hearts ,almost triplets on a high hat,or a roll on the snare.

I make no pretence of having the genius of our dearly departed Chopin who,witnessing the rain at Malaga,composed the raindrop prelude while seriously ill and not having much time to live .It is my favourite prelude,and one that I learnt way too young and immature to appreciate its magnitude,but now it is in my musical mind on most days of my life and it is now playing in the forefront of my tonal headspace.

We live in a time when climate change becomes a paramount thing,and the way we have resided on this earth is in question because of the neglect of us ,or should I say,certain sections of the industrial world who are hell bent on polluting it.As the raindrops descends ,the cleansing of the Earth ,while a tad romantic in my part,is still a thought that interests me in its execution.As a child,I never got tired of the rain and maybe flicking through those Chopin preludes as a child,I was drawn to its title and even though my first attempts at playing the piece were very fragmentary,disjointed,in fact,the opposite of the flowing raindrops,it still allowed me to make inroads into the piece to allow for the development of a performance in later times.

Since my starting this particular muse,the rain has continued to descend to drench,to cleanse,to create sounds,to duet with the odd bird ,to just exist in its own time,at its own pace .

This existing with the elements is a good thing and the awareness of them stimulates the artist in all of us.

Thank you .