How are your Jollies?

Stealing a few hours, usually on a Saturday morning, for writing & revising The Dreamlife of Honey. Today it’s the jollies. How are your jollies?

From dentists in Turkey to the blowhards of Northern Poland, there are many travels. Dear readers & listeners & fellow travellers here are some journeys:

“Jollies” by Marcus Slease

The Art of Everyone

” I take the train to Barcelona. The train enters a tunnel. A baby coughs very lightly, an older man clears his throat. The tunnel, that’s where we all go, light or no light no one is to know. My amphibian throat gurgles, will the language spill out of me, it is a great accomplishment. The people to the right of me are joyously trilling their tongues, dancing their hands. I intertwine my fingers, rub the knuckles of my right hand into the palm of the left, elevate feet, try not to slouch into the seat. My right hand, usually a refrigerator, is warming up nicely, middle age but not only, you have to keep the blood circulating correctly. Out the window, a blur of trees and small mountains, good foliage.”

My story, “cosy,” just published at The Art of Everyone. Part of my novel in progress The Dreamlife of Honey.

MOON HERMIT

Back in the day, when the days were longer, and then shorter, much like today but faster, I began to write poetry under cover of full moon during my Mormon mission. Bloating/unbloating. This was the beginning of my behind-the-scenes spirituality. Now part of my behind-the-scenes novel-in-progress, The Dreamlife of Honey. The second in my nomadic surrealist trilogy.

Behold, here is a reading:

“Moon Hermit” by Marcus Slease

LOVE IS TO SPOON AS ROCK IS TO CHIP

After Turkey, and a stint of dog walking in Italy, he moves to London, falls in love, lands a gig as an adjunct professor at an American style university in London. He feels a sense of community with the avant garde poetry community and starts to write a novel from his experiences living in various countries. Feels the joy of NY school poetry. His brother, in Utah, dies suddenly from an overdose and he visits his family for the first time in over seven years.

An excerpt from the first of my nomadic surrealist novels, Never Mind the Beasts, available now from Dostoyevsky Wannabe.

from Never Mind the Beasts by Marcus Slease

The Best is yet to come

I’ve sunk myself deep into Norwegian and French, modern and postmodern, and my writing has grown a new tendril. The best is yet to come. I’ve moved away from words in music, the best is yet to come. I’ve grown naive and not-naive, the best is yet to come. I’ve sucked the marrow and plucked the daisies, the best is yet to come. I’ve baked the memories, stirred the sugar bombs, opened the hatch, de-wormed the cat, the best is yet to come. I’ve materialized my life with my language, the best is yet to come. Welcome to my hermit kingdom, the best is yet to come. What is the dreamlife of language, the best is yet to come.

Boiling two eggs, a simple procedure. The perfect boiled eggs, somewhere in the heavens.

What are you growing into?

I stole boxing gloves from K-Mart, it is not in the story. I masturbated to MiGs, it is not in the story. I scraped the edges of my sundae, it is not in the story. I read over my head in the library, it is not in the story. I was briefly in love with Duran Duran, it is not in the story. I identified, sometimes, with Boy George, it is not in the story. I identified, often, with E.T., it is not in the story. I beat myself with a stick, it is not in the story. My first smell in America was chlorine, it is not in the story. My father was a sly fisherman, it is not in the story. My mother was an argonaut, it is not in the story. I hid behind the wall, it is not in the story. I licked the creams, it is not in the story. I ate, sometimes, the tightly packed sausage, it is not in the story. I drank, often, the fruit of the vines, it is not in the story. I fear sterility, it is not in the story. I fear practice makes perfect, it is not in the story. I fear cold toes, it is not in the story. I fear hot coals, it is not in the story. I fear living too far, it is not in the story. I fear living too close, it is not in the story. In modern literature, I identify with the French (Michaux, Chevillard, Beckett), it is not in the story. In modern music the minimalist, it is not in the story. In modern clothing the mostly earthly, it is not in the story. The sentence is a gnasher, in the story. The words are primordial, in the story. The sounds are lubricants, in the story. An anti-novel, in the story. An anti-poetry, in the story. Me-not-me, in the story. A mismatch of everything, in the story.

Here is a reading of the story, just published by Lighthouse magazine in the U.K. Part of my ongoing novel in progress, The Dreamlife of Honey.

“Chisel” by Marcus Slease

SOUTH KOREA 2006

In 2006, after ten years of marriage and a looming divorce, he flew to South Korea. He created a good face for the job. A good face is the key.

Love? Yes please!

Doraji doraji doraji! I walk over the pass where balloon flowers bloom. Hey-ya, hey! An ya hey say yo! I walk over the pass where balloon flowers bloom. Hey-ha hey! An ya hey say yo! Reminds me of mother and twinkling boys. Hey-ya, hey! An ya hey say yo!

Here is an excerpt from Never Mind the Beasts, available now from Dostoyevsky Wannabe.

from Never Mind the Beasts by Marcus Slease. Image: Figuras fantásticas a caballo by Leonora Carrington

NOMADIC SURREALIST TRILOGY

I have finished the second novel of my nomadic surrealist trilogy. The first, Never Mind the Beasts, has the wide lens. The next two the zoom. First person genderless.

The second novel, Hermit Kingdom, is about a language teacher from Poland who migrates to Spain for a new life. Away from the expectations, history and complicated past of their home country, they try to live a simple life, walking in nature and eating healthy, scraping by teaching English as a foreign language, and trying to make sense of existence. Suddenly there is a new pandemic and they are stuck inside, alone and not alone. What is the white monkey? Why are they learning secret handshakes through a hole in a white blanket? Who are you really? Some people are told to find someone to complete themselves and also become somebody. Some people are told to find somebody but not become somebody. Some people are told to become somebody but not to find somebody. I am somebody first and can find anybody later, but when do you know when you are somebody enough to find anybody. What is the complete equation?

The third novel, still in progress, is called The Dreamlife of Honey. It is a shamanistic self help book, with many travels. It is full of bonobos.

And alas, the trilogy is coming into focus. But I am not sure if it will stop there. I am writing a cosmos.

THE DOCKLANDS

Don Whiskers and Pineapple live in the Docklands, East London, in a council flat. They visit the river for ancient histories. They take the Mega Bus in the Mega City and visit Amsterdam. They stay on a boat called The Gandalf. Back home, they stand on the balcony from the cheap seats and look at Morgan Stanley and HSBC with glowing red lights. They find shiny dinosaurs among the monuments to finance. The monuments are too removed from the human hand. Bring back the human hand. They use their human hands to collect clippings from plants and grow them with superfood. They want them to grow big and strong.

Here is a reading from the Docklands section of my debut novel Never Mind the Beasts, available now from Dostoyevsky Wannabe.

The Docklands by Marcus Slease