Crouch End 20th July 1969
After that the night of anger, tears, explanation, self defense, accusation,
tenderness, desperation, headache, fatigue, then the blurring of Isabel,
Peter clamping his hand on my chin asking me why I did not believe him,
my cry "Because you believe in IDEAS!", his hand across my face,
my stagger to the bed seeming to imitate all the fight scenes I've seen
in films, then Peter bending over me and myself struggling in both fear
and rebellion - I screamed to make him stop, and to say "Take that
you bastard" as my way of hitting back. His hand clamped over my mouth,
"... because I'm bourgeois." In the morning, I had a little purple
bruise around my eye; ever since that evening we've swung between watchful
concern to comfort one another and accusation and self defense, confusion
like that blurred moment of violence, probably as blurred for him as for
me, when I thought "Well this is very definite and very fatal, this
is a signal, something has happened," very coldly, with only a little
Last night I finally left, with Peter hurling the Sight and Sound
after me, hurt and angry. Today is the moon landing; I hadn't realized until
Now the telly and the continuing conversation with Peter in my head;
somewhere across London Peter's conversation with me, probably more anger
than hurt now, but still a conversation. What a dislocation of our lives
we've been - I felt, walking down Gower Street to find a cab, as if I were
suddenly lighter and healthier and had somehow come out of a long tunnel
that had become more and more narrow to the end, with that symbolic punch,
and then caved in.
The moon coverage: images, below them a black band with white subtitles,
time to touchdown, Andrin speaking, image of what looks like a large orderly
office or schoolroom, static and factual voices on the soundtrack, then
time measured to seconds, nothing random, the static a sound of tension,
crackles with a texture like tweed, height above moon 11 miles, Armstrong
speaking, white-shirted men moving calmly in the schoolroom, height above
moon 9 miles, 9 nautical miles, 5 minutes to main descent burn. The surface
of the moon as they see it coasting above it. Speed 4600 mph, 2 minutes
to braking burn, cloud cover over the moon, 8 minutes, Greg behind me sucking
his cheeks in with concentration, Huston "You sho' looking good,"
altimeter dropping fast, high gate, low gate, touchdown, flashing, white-shirted
men in the schoolroom making restrained gestures of joy.
Whitehall on a sunny morning. Whitehall is a street, not a building -
a very broad commercial avenue leading from Trafalgar Square past the Houses
of Parliament on the north bank of the Thames. It is hung with very large
British flags at the third floor level of the buildings - red, white and
blue. Below them goes the traffic: red double-decker buses, deep blue lorries,
square black taxis like patent leather boxes. Past the elegant white facades
shaded out with patterns of centuries of coal dust - there I was standing
in the midst of it all, waiting for a red bus to come along.
One afternoon Greg arrived on the motorcycle and said "Come explore."
So we went forth and west into a part of London neither of us knew, the
'City,' or the old formerly walled part of the city. The motorcycle! Sitting
behind Greg, I can't see the road, only the buildings flashing by on either
side, like a very rapid film cut very abruptly as we turn corners, pass
empty squares, flicker past diverging streets - all the glorious rooftops,
all extravagant, all different, all ridiculous, full of chimney pots, little
coy windows, gables, turrets and towers, ridgepole decorations, baroque
domes - suddenly there's St Paul's Cathedral, enormous and awesomely beautiful,
then, flick! It's gone by and on the right is the river, London Bridge!
And then past it the rows of identical warehouse cranes lined up precisely,
and then the magical towers of Tower Bridge - there's the Tower itself,
with tiny windows medieval prisoners stared onto the river from. We rode
across the bridge once, all flicker of ships, cables, towers, docks, cranes
- then we walked back across it looking at the muddy slimy water and the
docks going as far downriver as we could see.
Minehead, Somerset August 3, Sunday
We're sitting in a very large cafeteria with our egg an'chips dinner
plates stacked out of the way, Greg reading my book about English houses
and me trying to catch up this travelogue in my usual detailed and immediately
publishable style. I am constantly being distracted by the people passing
on the seaside promenade outside the big cafeteria window. Greg looked up
a minute ago to ask why I was looking sad. I'd been watching the families
passing by in little straggles. Minehead is a poor man's (working class)
resort, with its mucky rocky beach and grey cold Bristol Channel water;
the families are shabby, badly dressed even in their holiday clothes. Every
sort of distortion goes by - blue lumpy fat legs, noses like shiny sausages,
varicose veins. Parents are ugly; children are also ugly. Nearly everyone
looks stupid, vacant, browbeaten, minimized. It made me remember the farm
families in Grande Prairie, the people who came to the Auction Mart in rattling
pickups, the women in shortie coats and frizzy hair, the bent-shouldered
men, the spindly shy children. That made me remember how Father was ashamed
of our rustic clothes and rustic manners in public; I suppose he thought
we looked like these families?
It's turning dark, but people continue to pass, some of them back and
forth many times. Down the road is Billy Butlin's Holiday Camp.
This morning when we got up, our fern and pine forest was full of sunlight
and warm flies. We spent the day on more narrow country roads plunging down
into and up out of villages. One, that we had to open a sheep pasture gate
to find, was three houses big - Stoke Pero, with the tiny Stoke Pero parish
church and graveyard on the hillslope.
Across a brown and gold and green moor hill called Dunkery Beacon, with
view of all Exmoor and the sea, and along a road with English families on
canvas chairs on all sides wherever the road widened into someone's gate
and lane, we went to Exford. There we sat on the green and read the News
of the World and when it was time went to have a Plain Tea - scones,
thinly sliced bread and butter, muffins and cake and tea with a big dish
of jam - in a Tea Room with two opulent cats and a discreet rattle of china
cups and genteel conversation, a beautiful tea which made us warm and full
for another cold windy drive up and down more hills to Cleeve Abbey ruins.
On the night we first found Selworthy, we saw a gate and a path leading
upwards through the forest from the entrance to the village green - we followed
the path, one of Exmoor's famous 'walks,' we discovered, up through a beautiful
bit of forest, very dark and full of the sound of running water. Then it
came out into what turned out to be our first experience with real moorland
- a strange beautiful slope vividly colored in golds, yellow-greens and
the purple of heather. There were sheep everywhere in the knee-deep prickles
(gorse?) and we were immediately found and followed by huge sheep flies,
so that we had to walk with our heads wrapped in our jackets. The ground
was stony and covered with a kind of silky gold-brown grass growing out
of green tufts between the gorse, the heather, the tiny yellow flowers.
Our first moor - when we came down the hill again I was elated, because
it was my first long walk (and uphill!) without pain in my hip. (Two miles!)
We got back down, after discovering a road along the spine of the moor,
just as it began to grow dark - went back to the spruce forest and camped
just out of sight behind a huge clump of fern, on the damp woody red soil.
Next day, a heavily foggy day threatening to rain (it had rained all
night), we found the entrance in Minehead to the moor road we'd found the
evening before - we roared through running streaks of wet white cloud, nearly
blown off the road by a wind toward the sea - along the spine of the moor
with the sea falling away toward the north and the moor falling away toward
the cultivated valley in the south. (Nearby is Lorna Doone's valley.) All
around, the wet gorse and moor grass glistening, the goldbrown grass flowing
like a palomino's mane; the ride was thrilling and beautiful and cold. When
we came down into Minehead again I bought a pair of Wellington boots, rubber
farmer boots, very 'stout' and warm and impervious to gorse spines.
We stayed in our Selworthy forest for several days, making excursions
into the moor to remote villages, often passing through beautiful, wild
landscapes, high hilltops covered in flowing green and gold, muddy sheep,
flying heavy clouds. Many teas and breakfasts in the Minehead tea room.
Then one afternoon a late departure west again, along a hill road that nearly
slid into the sea, sometimes as steep as 3:1, with a sliding sun behind
cliff faces and thick yellow evening light transforming the road, a treacherous
glorious stretch, with the colored sky and a sea like grey silk-velvet on
the right, and green valleys suddenly diving down through the moor slopes
on the left, beautiful, the watered rich green cuts in the dry gold hilltop
moorland. Then a bed and breakfast, warmth on the third floor of a
high old house.
August 6, Wednesday
It's sometime after six o'clock and I'm sitting in a sheep pasture, back
against the stone wall, warmed by the sun straight ahead and reflected from
the ocean. This is part of the Cornwall coast which is on the edge of an
area of - according to our Esso map - Great Natural Beauty. Here the sheep
pasture with its stone and hedge wall seems to roll down to the edge of
the ocean, where stone cliffs fall almost straight down into the water.
Many woolly and dirty white sheep with their ears standing out perfectly
level with the tops of their heads are moving around us. A few stop and
stare, but most are indifferent and go on with their noisy feeding, making
a sound like chomping and tearing and snuffing, their sides shaking with
greed - and then there's the pasture, every blade of grass backlit by the
late evening light I like best, and the brilliant column of reflected light
on the water. On either side the land slopes down in round farmed hills
toward other sea cliffs. A village called --- built in the rust-lichened
field rock rubble style of the area. A church tower, square and crenellated
in the Norman style, on the far headland to the north, another pointed headland
with islands tumbled into the sea off it miles downward to the south. Stone
wall at our backs, then the road and the motorcycle and then more round
hills full of oats, sheep, brown cows and of course fences.
We camped outside Saint Ives, on wild scrub land to the south, in a lonely
stretch under a typical Cornish outcropping of old stones that look as though
they've been sculpted and arranged. Stayed there several days, but then
got so lonely that we moved down to a little pasture campsite behind a little
settlement of stone houses next to the sea. The farmer owner of the pasture
came to collect his two shillings, and squatted on his heels outside the
tent talking to us. William Berryman, the sixth William to farm on the site
and the father of a seventh. His own father and brother lived just up the
road. In another house, the only whitewashed one, a Canadian sculptor had
lived the year before. Another stone house which had belonged to an old
woman stood empty next to the walled pasture with its scatter of tents.
William Berryman soon invited us into his warm kitchen with its huge
stove. His wife, a pink and blond large plump woman who reads piles of books
from the traveling library, a tow-headed David, about nine, who wouldn't
go to bed as long as there were chocolate muffins and stories being passed
around downstairs, three other children packed away into beds upstairs.
Greg told wry Canadian stories, I told what Peace River Country stories
I could remember, William went on about Cornish tin mines and about famous
wrecks that had taken place just below his back fields on the very dangerous
We were invited back for the next night, and that time got the front
parlour, told more stories, looked at pictures, ate Cornish saffron cakes
and drank tea, while David sat curled up with round eyes on a chair in the
corner where he hoped he wouldn't be seen. The children have never been
to London; the dairy cows give William a decent unambitious livelihood;
Porthmeor is a farm with a name and ancient connections to Upper Porthmeor
just up the road. The stone houses are crude grey fieldstone, built exactly
like the field walls. The houses are hundreds of years old, the walls
are possibly a thousand. Each field has a name, each tiny fenced enclosure
- most of the names are in Cornish, a lost language. There are no trees.
Houses, walls, rock outcrops, all are the same, a beautiful desolate landscape
that I want to see and photograph again.
London 19 August
My plane leaves tomorrow (taking Peter with it) and I've sold my ticket
to a friend of Desser's.
What comes and goes and comes back most often these days is a sense of
readiness to do something. When I look at books in the BFI or the Westminster
Reference Library, I begin to have a sense of valid function - here's something
I can do, a short-term necessity, think out a course that will convince
Mr Ian Simpson of my authority - need for authority. Little anxious thoughts
about clothes and my shape, style, silly-femaleness, thoughts of young confident
art students and the attention or lack of attention shown by David or Leslie:
things which minimize me. I've no idea whether I'm naturally authoritative
or not; usually I think not. With Greg I am, so he thinks I am. Peter thought
I was; but how? Desser talks about my frightening people.
Exhilaration on Friday in the library because of a maverick book by Tarmo
Pasto, a Finn who talks about space-frame perception in art, the secret
of great and serenity-giving art. Makes us feel comfortable because we perceive
with our whole body (and we are entirely body) - ridiculous theory, but
why do I arbitrarily take to some sculpture, building, drawing, furniture
very strongly and completely refuse others? It has something to do with
balance and solidity, I know that. Vase shapes, pot shapes - what is it
about my little Japanese pot? All the stuff I listed on the page from Cornwall?
The certainty and safety on my encounters with some objects? Something I've
begun to lose but need desperately. The possibility of working in that certainty,
quite arbitrary certainty, makes me feel ready. Something is right, I'm
on to something. I mistrust the intellectual program in the visual arts,
detest surrealism and op and pop, love 'organic' shapes like rocks, am not
interested in transcendental aspirations but only on the feel of what's
to hand. That's something; it may be pigheaded and wrong, but it is a conviction
that has grown out of my childself as a continuous strong long muscle of
my self identity. Maybe it's good for something.
I'm like a committee in which the controlling vote, the heaviest shareholder,
is a six year old child who moreover does not speak any language shared
by the other adult voting members.
Someone called Meinhard Rüdenauer picked me up yesterday in the
Tate, a young, plump, completely unremarkable-looking man who says he's
a composer. We arranged to meet for the Contemporary Dance performance at
8 today. Our talk in the Matisse room yesterday, and even more our shiftless
evening today, sharpen the feelings of strangeness of meeting a new person
- because he is as aware as I am of the self conscious moments when I feel
my mouth setting itself into the unnatural self conscious position and then
sliding into another. The tension of image received and offered; or questioned;
my stares into space, my ridiculous final "Well"s, like sentences
by themselves, but pointless; his flurried accounts of his work, in which
his mouth moves so little that the words are mashed between his lips - his
pointed smile, with his teeth set edge to edge like Uncle Harvey's, his
sudden undermining shifts into humour, which collapse my little false structures.
His good humoured insistence on holding the back of my neck - my silly and
coy posturings and his ability to see past them to my sincerity. The straightforwardness
and honesty and modesty he has are endearing. "Ich bin ein Komponist"
yesterday, but said very modestly. His ballet about Kafka, in eight "Puncts".
He wanted to call it "K" but thinks that may be too vulgar. "Terrible
music, depressing." He begins to be unintelligible when he talks about
things that are related to his main interest but not central, about a television
show he did, and groups of artists he knows.
After a struggle on the step, I said "You aren't taking me seriously."
I had to shout it again - often we do not understand each other - "You
aren't taking me seriously!" He beautifully, unexpectedly, said, in
German, "You know, lately I don't know what I take seriously and what
I don't. I don't know myself. And so -" and there he became unintelligible
again. This as he was sitting on a step beside the bus stop, and I had just
pushed him away, because he had sat with his heavy arm across my shoulder
and his hand on my neck.
Marquis Rd, 18 September
In the mornings I telephone from the laundromat, wait for the bus beside
a factory as truck drivers wink at me (purple shirt, eye makeup, the high-heeled
boots), catch the red doubledeckers to cross the railway bridge and seep
into the central area down past King's Cross and the Saint Pancras station.
This morning I jumped off the bus opposite the Saint Pancras church caryatids
and bought a stall ticket for 20s, the Sunday dance matinee. South, past
Yeat's house on a cobbled mews, to Dillons University Bookstore, where I
pledged myself to stay in London by buying The Possessed to read
at breakfast. In the elaborate stationer's I bought a drawing pencil, and
a pencil sharpener, and finally, with a careless reckless throw of my today's
impulse to give myself presents, a thick, tough blue notebook with both
lined and unlined pages that are meant for carbons but ideal for all the
notes and sketches, learning, seeing, thinking, making I'm going to do in
this free year in London, maybe.
Finding Market Road, the new way home, I found a strange desolate stretch
of blue night-lit industrial landscape. On the right, an iron fence; behind
it a cobbled stretch of bare grass and weeds, with an unsupported brick
tower in the middle of it at the far side. On the left another iron fence
beyond the road, a railroad yard, a jagged row of roofs, the unpopulated
brick railway and factory area with another thin brick tower rising out
of it. Ink blue sky and clear stars, pink-grey bits of cloud floating like
settling cream around the near tower, which suddenly began to toll, invisible
bells belonging to no church, almost a de Chirico landscape. Then the serrated
horizon of York Way and my own street, my clean front door, my room waiting
impersonal and perfect, the books in my bag to unpack and thus dedicate,
this account to be written, wash up downstairs, with the geranium plant
on the wall, Grandmother's smell of concrete, the roof patches behind the
garden. Tomorrow morning a waking to Mrs O'Hare's tea and toast, some gay
exchange we always manage.
21 September, Sunday
The existence of my journal from when I was twelve is evidence of my
belief that I can make myself, and that what I am is strong enough and subtle
enough to become something whose evolution is interesting. At its earliest,
the journal was an angry assertion of my value, necessary because Father
denied it. It became an expression of love and energy, fascination with
boys, Janeen, the creek, fields, night, songs, times; delight in my own
cleverness with those early poems in the manner of LM Montgomery. Love,
delight, exuberance, successes that made me confident - I no longer wrote
out of unhappiness. The climax of the year in Sexsmith, letters and journal
often indistinguishable, except for the coyness and playfulness of the letters.
Then I began to yield to the necessity of including sadness, defeat - although
I will still not willing record my mundanity, my days when I wake knowing
I am not very marvelous. Now, as the latest development, I've begun
to include arguments. I've barely begun - although still in exceptional
circumstances - to have opinions. I've never really wanted to have opinions;
I'm suspicious of people who have opinions, worried, uneasy, sometimes jealous.
Even DH Lawrence is irritating, with all his opinions. I don't want to be
a critic, because being a critic is having opinions professionally, is being
a person who has opinions. Now - is it better, does it mean I'm becoming
a formed person, does it mean I've lost something and am becoming a robot?
- I sometimes have opinions. But not consistent opinions. I believe in self-formed
character, but I'm a behaviorist. I value the lyrical realist stream of
art, but distrust loving exploration of methods or principles in art. I
think of myself as intelligent, but am shamed and envious in intelligent
conversations. I believe myself to be unique and valuable, but stared in
fascination and envy at everyone at the ballet this afternoon. I believe
in the preservation of my strangeness and solitariness; at the same time
I'm not sure that the sort of preservation I can manage does not depend
exactly on what I do not want - pride, jealousy, intolerance, desperate
preservation of self definition through rejection of other people (like
Desser). When I make cheerful conversation with Mrs O'Hare in the mornings,
I decrease my solitude, I affirm her, I like her, I feel whole and generous
and full of energy. When I avoided the stupid conversations of Miss Davis
in the hospital I felt guilty, childish, uneasy, malicious, but right,
because she was dead, and it would have been a waste of time.
Maybe an energy criterion of morality - it is good to be and do what
I am and do when I am strongest, most exuberant, feel most myself. Easily
reduced to absurdity by examples of other people. But for myself it works
- because when I am healthiest and most full of energy I am most capable
of doing what I believe right? I'm not sure that's it. What I am at my best
is what I measure myself against; when I recover my state of grace I'm capable
of believing strongly in what at other times I'm uncertain about - eg whether
one should be self sufficiently alone.
Parliament Hill Fields, Saturday in November
I've been a long time waiting to finish this and mail it, mainly because
I've been so happy and disorganized. We've had a most beautiful beautiful
autumn, a hot brilliant October and now a misty wet November in which the
slowly slowly turning colours glow like stained glass all over this
beautifully overgrown area of London. It has been too beautiful to work
much, so I've had a little frenzy of happiness and energy and will begin
to work now that it's wetter and colder. There is of course a man mixed
up in this euphoria as well - both a cause and an effect of it.
The Slade School has suddenly had a vacancy and is taking me in as a
full-time regular MA-equivalent student. After one more year I'll be qualified
to teach in either British or Canadian universities. In Canada, as a beginning
lecturer, I'd be making about $9,000 per year, when I only need $2,000 to
live on - I know, it's incredible!
We, Ian and I, woke this morning to sun and snow. Had scrambled eggs
and toast and honey and good coffee, read the papers. Played the piano.
Listened to Schumann and Brahms on BBC. Necked a little. Perfect Sunday
contentment. Then I went out to see Prologue at the Film Festival.
When I came out night had fallen, everything was beautiful, orange and gold
reflections on the Thames, reaching almost across it. I took the bus instead
of the Underground - sat on the top so I could see the city looking so different.
Walked home across Hampstead Heath - orange sky with pale stars in it, the
city massed on the south, gnarled trees, people shouting with their toboggans
in the dark. Then from the top edge of the hill, Highgate Village lying
toward the north across a shining black pond, a hill covered with houses
and lights like sparklers, a church spire at the top, the sky deeper orange
on the horizon - like a magic village, enchanted into London out of a fairy
Iffley Road January 5 1970
I'm in Oxford, sitting in Olivia's bedroom in my sleeping bag, both heaters
on, electric and paraffin, the room beginning to warm. Beyond the frosted
window are Oxfordshire hills, a clear sky, snow, red morning light on hills,
bare trees, roofs, and the tangle of back gardens below. Don is in Canada
for Christmas, coming back tomorrow. I'm in Oxford to see her for a few
days clear of our men who distract us from each other when they're there.
On Sunday I took the 4 p.m. train - there's one every hour, this little
country is all packaged together by hundreds of trains constantly running
- in a state of wild-peaceful happiness that transformed everything I saw.
There had been a frost in the morning which had not yet melted - no snow.
Everything was beautiful - thrown-away window frames on the embankment frosted
on frosted grass, cottage roofs in white rectangles in the country, the
high delicate silver street lamps in Reading like stripped-down Lombardy
poplars in rows along the streets, towering above the buildings.
It grew darker, a pink sky, a thin fog coming in low to the ground, the
Oxfordshire hills appearing, silver canals with a thin coating of ice, our
faces reflected on the inside of the train windows as it grew darker outside,
the man across from me looking as happy as I was, sitting re-reading a long
airmail letter someone had written in tiny square letters with drawings
in the margins. My head was full of Ian, my whole body was shining.
It takes a little over an hour to go to Oxford - the hour is always a
daydream - I bring a book and sit with it on my lap unlooked at as I glimmer
out the window smiling vaguely outside, broadly inside.
Oxford - little country town station, a doubledecker bus that drops you
in the midst of the colleges, the spires, walls, windows, spikes, peaks,
points, towers, gateways, of the Oxford colleges which are built to look
like castles and manor houses.
Olivia has just arrived, complaining inventively about trains and dogs
and grandmothers and grandfathers and dreading her job and drinking tea.
Sunday January 11
People when they love each other and want to make a unity in order to
deal with the world more rather than less honestly should believe in each
other's perception and conception because it is trusted as an extension
of their own. But whose thinking have I ever trusted? Greg's in detail and
in taste, but not in scope - he's too passionless and too unambitious. Peter's
generally, but not where it concerned me - also in some ways I don't trust
his assumptions or his objectivity - he wanted too badly at that moment
to rescue his life. Frank's I did as long as it stayed within very close
limits; when he went outside them he chilled me with his ignorance and prejudice.
Father's not at all. Olivia's sometimes to a surprising extent but sometimes
not at all: her perception delights me and then her descriptions confuse
me. Patricia's within the boundaries of her chosen limits, but her limits
are womanly and optimistic, she just wants to live well and kindly. Ian's
- I don't trust it because it doesn't have my aims. Don's - and this is
the sad, private, 'maybe' that I'd like to be rid of - by now I'd really
like to be rid of it, honestly and finally - I think I believe that Don
at his best has the same vague (therefore powerful?) aims I have and the
ability to seek them up to and beyond my limits. I'm not sure - perhaps
I'd find him too cautious, too cagey, too wary to think with me in complete
good faith, perhaps he'd keep reservations with me as he does with O; but
maybe, maybe he'd trust me as an equal and generously genuinely come
with me, chase me, to our own frontiers so that we as one-in-two could be
more than our two separate selves separately pursued. Because only that
justifies giving up the lonely pursuit of ourselves separately? BUT is
there any pursuit of myself, unless I'm challenged?
In the middle of February, England's begun to bloom, crocuses and snowdrops
on the lawns, tiny blossoms in St James Park at the warm edge of the duck
pond. On Monday I'm moving. It's a room just downhill from Makepeace Avenue
- new address is: Flat 7 Heath Lodge, 4 St Alban's Road, London NW5.
Sunday, 23 February
In the other two bedrooms on this floor are Paddy and Roy, both South
African emigrées, black and battered (Paddy) and white and sad (Roy).
Paddy's very quiet, we see little of him. Roy is a charming enigma: he doesn't
work, only walks on the Heath, cooks, reads, listens to records, talks.
He's very intelligent, intense, courteous - his house is full of books about
religion, politics, philosophy, poetry, art. He gets up early, goes to bed
late, seldom brings friends here, gets up in the morning looking exhausted
and opaque as though he's been wrestling with angels. When we talk to him
for a while his eyes clear. He talks about his childhood, about dreams,
about things moving outside the window. He knows how to use silence powerfully,
and when he does talk half of it is poetry. I think he has some experience
with psychotic breakdown - he's the sort of person who lives right on the
edge of normal structured existence. Sometimes he looks tormented, at other
times he smiles his sense of harmony toward you.
Wednesday 5 March
I ride up and down so unaccountably. Yesterday in the afternoon I was
physically elated so that I ran up Kentish Town's broken escalator.
After Ian sawed at me last night with his eyes shining hostility like a
tiger's I was eroded to the thickness of tissue paper, limp and crushed.
How could we live, what do I want? A heath with friends around it that
visit but who never visit me? To be all alone? To cultivate glamorous tangential
friendships that exist as possibilities only? To be both alone and
with, breathing out of one into another? I'm uneasy with this journal now,
Ian's reading it puts it against me, evidence for his side, and it's too
explicit, stumbling, simple minded; and I'm self conscious.