Treatise on Lined paper and Thomas Moore and something I once heard on the radio about aboriginal culture


Western culture sees art as some

separate thing from life..

i.e. we separate ourselves

into the seclusion of the

studio or the garret if you

are a poet and you make

art ABOUT life

but art tries to BE  life with

my Lined paper

as I move through the

world with its shopping

lists I want art to fall

onto that page as I


the lined paper is

what I move around


it does not demand a

separation from the


it is the now

I don’t have to do studies

on it then move to the

unlined paper; to the


the art is the life is the

lined paper

I heard on the radio once

that aboriginal culture

could not quite understand

why we separate music

from life

people play music while

moving about their life

‘they do not formally

Learn a  musical instrument

and Thomas Moore said:

“about spirituality, art

and the everyday sacred…

in Care of the Soul

‘… and thus in a small but significant way can make the everyday sacred.  This kind of spirituality, so ordinary and close to home, is especially nourishing to the soul.  Without this lowly incorporation of the sacred into life, religion can become so far removed from the human situation as to be irrelevant. “

Bakri ‘Id Hyderabad

when I was in Hyderabad..

 in the middle of the festival of Barkri ‘Id..

a festival where the Muslims celebrate Ibrahim’s willingness to sacrifice Ishmael..

but he doesn’t..

Allah intervenes and a goat is slaughtered
instead.. in Hyderabad..

there were goats everywhere

… 100 000 of them.. lining the street..

 seamlessly with people.. all over…

.. in/on laps just all over.. and it was

a beautiful visceral thing

humanity was seamless with the animal..

all aspects happened in front of your eyes..

the slaughter..

 the herding..

the boy leading

the goat.. sharing

a seat on an overloaded truck.. there was a goat…

not like here.. where the animals that serve us

for food.. don’t really exist

they are far away …

we see

them as neatly wrapped up things on supermarket shelves…

safely away

from our children.. we grow up



and it is not safe…

we need to know our animals again…

we are part them.. we are not

some separate thing .. …

and we need to share space and intimacy with them again..

so we can learn how to feel..


the writing

it often amazes me how I will write something completely..

well.. what seems to me.. to be completely

arbitrary.. only to discover a day or two later

that it is in fact a poem.. It reminds me that sitting down to write..

just to write.. when I may not have anything to say

is a form of acknowledging

the moment

that I am


acknowledging that all moments are like any other moments..

just beautiful and mysterious..

and just because the


thud of my

brain is

conjuring up dissonant thoughts does not

take away from the mystery in that moment..

and by picking up

a pen and writing

a little tap into that

beautiful gentle world is

opened up.


close too close

close too close I’m lying here in bed waiting

for not much at all… just a good

moment to grab my book and start

writing and escape for

the relentless to relent just a

break.. and then the new day

with the stiff neck still sitting

stiff on top of my shoulders

for the poetry waiting for that

strange structure which allows

the words to escape their cages

for a while.. that would be



© Copyright Sid Sledge Artist