Lost behind the screen


Almost midsummer. It is still light outside. Not that warm, but warm enough for Naoise not to want to wear a top in bed. He is bare chested sleeping beside me. He is sucking his thumb, holding his snuffly, red cheeked and completely relaxed. Sometimes the breathing becomes a snore or the rhythm becomes deeper. I wonder what he is dreaming about.

Syd is still unwell. He has just gone to sleep complaining of aches and pains all over. I still feel unwell. Nose running constantly and a permanent headache has inhabited my forehead.

I can hear Syd snoozing.

Last night both boys shared my bed. Naoise was squashed to the side of the wall. I had to move him and place myself in the middle for I feared that he would get hurt by Syd smothering him with his body. Syd is getting very big and heavy, he occupies the space of an adult yet he is a child. Man Boy, oh Man Boy how I adore you, but I will be glad of a better rest tonight with only my little boy to hug.

I wonder what Syd is dreaming about.

I was questioned today by a friend as to why Naoise is the focus of this blog. I don’t really see it like that, I guess he is more visible but thats because Syd really objects to being visually included in this space. Naoise is more willing to contribute, but he too has reservations about the process of being subject. Perhaps it is just an age thing. The youngest requires more mothering more maintenance. Well that isn’t exactly true, yes a teenager can dress themselves, cook for themselves, take themselves to school, work independently but they still need love and nurture and attention. They still need a parent to get annoyed with. They still need reassurance and guidance and structure, They need a timetable and a promise to keep by.


Am I lost behind a screen? Can I see this project ? What is me and what is art? Have you stopped asking because you just read ? Do you think this is all of me? Am I lost behind a screen ? Light pouring in, eyes aching with the pull of the light, the screen as skin, a boundary. Is the screen porous ? Like skin it is a membrane, a protective surface, it holds things in, contains me and my thoughts. Has my body and mind become dispersed within these sentences. Where am I ?

I am sitting in bed with one small boy sleeping beside me and one man boy sleeping next door in his bottom bunk. The man is out walking the hills getting some air, escaping. I want to escape, I want to walk, and run, and climb and jump, but I cannot. I have no energy at all. I save and preserve what little I have. I move slowly like a sloth. I try to keep to what it is that I need to do. I try not to get distracted.

The tarmac is skin. The tarmac is hard and black and pitted. You run on the tarmac, kick a ball, imagine a universe, pretend to be a dinosaur, make plans to marry your girl friend, scooter in circles, smile and wave. Sometimes you fall on the tarmac or bump your head. You come home with a bruise or a scratch that wasn’t there before. You catch freckles in the sun when I cannot see you, when I cannot be with you. I am away at home, at the studio or out on the hill. I am doing jobs. Domestic jobs. Art jobs. Admin jobs. Pointless tasks. I am existing in a weird in-between world whilst you are at school .

I wait for you to come out of school and I love it when you come out of school, all bundled up with coat and bag and drawings clasped in your hand. A face that points and recognises me. MUM. MUM. Always the same. Greet me, give me your stuff, go off and find your scooter, fly off to scooter with friends in the playground above or below.

Today you scootered and scootered. You pulled up himalayan balsam with your friend and squished it under your feet. Then to the willow scrub. I was tired and sat down on the ground beside the dog. We sat together me and the dog being patient and tired and wishing we were at home. Naoise played and played in the willow scrub and I waited, and waited for you to comply.

Shame. Body. Watching. Watching and the pleasure of watching and adoring my sons. Watching the light fall on their skin. Looking closely. Intimate. Looking. Looking at each hair growing. Seeing. Knowing. Holding close. Kissing. Kissing their necks and cheeks and hugging.

Carrying Naoise home. Carrying Naoise home together with a scooter and bag and coat. Feeling pain. Pain from the weight of child and stuff.

The Screen. The Tarmac. The Skin.

Shame, what shame ? What did she me when she said I should feel no shame ?

Do I feel shame? Is this collective shame? Shame from the outside in? Society shame? Mother Shame. Artist Shame. Shame to use intimate thoughts. To tell. To speak . To voice an opinion. To wait. To be patient. Always waiting. I am at the end of a long list of needs. I am. I try to push myself to the beginning of the que but its impossible. There are always needs, demands, wants and frustrations to iron out. Not always my frustrations. the others. Testosterone. Need more Oestrogen to calm things down. Peace. Peace is needed. Calm and peace and quiet.

Wait. Wait.

Thinking of the words of Waiting by Faith Wilding 




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