December 5, 2017 §
Of course I cannot travel to Berlin in the New Year. Especially when the one I love is behind me in London. Alone, alone, alone. Always alone. I have always been alone, and I always shall be. And yet travelling can mark the end of one period of your life, and when you come back you can find everything feels different, and you feel very liberated from them. Maybe after going to Berlin I will feel I can start again and turn over a new page, which I will not do just by staying the whole time in London, trapped in the same routine, silently morosely standing in the back corner of the ——–, longing for —– and never even going over to talk to her. This year has been ALL about —–. That would be a good title! ALL ABOUT —–.
November 30, 2017 §
I wake up alone and how do I feel about that? Fine. There is no one I want to be with. I am so happy to be alone and free. I feel pain gripping my chest, though, in the middle of a cricket dream, I’m the captain of a Test team and not feeling up to it. The pressure is enormous. Richie Benaud and Geoff Boycott are out on the boundary and taking catches and we all rush to congratulate them. I feel stressed because I have got to go back to the flat early in order to force myself to get to the Rebels & Martyrs at the National Gallery, and I have become so used to not going out, not doing anything. I have retreated so deep into my own little world, almost a hibernation, and liking it. Those drunken addictive years to strippers & whores seem so far away. It is so nice to be curled up small & protected. But always I fear everything being torn down, invaded, ripped away from me. As always I expect the great flood any moment and having to gather all my things together on a raft and starting all over again.
November 23, 2017 §
Who would I want to be with now? No one. I am happy to be in bed alone. And yet I am very lonely. I feel cosmically alone. Again in the Calcutta—Monkeys From the Ritz to the Rubble on the jukebox—there was a sexy little brown bob thing sitting opposite me as I sat in the box seat, black top, black miniskirt, showing a lot of thigh. It was sexually exciting. I only had two. It is never the same when I have got my bag with me and I am travelling home. I am sure I will stay longer Friday. How lovely to go to Brussels for four days and just do NOTHING. I like to go to places where I can do nothing. Just sit in the Pullman getting drunk while watching the girls pass. Just sit up on O’Reilly’s balcony watching the girls pass. Just sit in the window of Café Belge watching the girls pass. Maybe the Radisson SAS, too. It is true, this money I am saving I must use it to pay off the £6,000 debt because in October the Virgin interest is going to cripple me. And yet, I read of university students leaving with £12,000 debts and I think mine is not so bad, when I have got a secure (?) job I really like.
November 11, 2017 §
Maybe I will die like Ernest Dowson through drink and self-neglect. Maybe I will be killed by my enemies like Lorca and Kaspar Hauser. I am a Lost Boy, like Peter Pan. Falling in love with a succession of Young Mothers. I was discussing philosophy with a Russian Esmeralda once, and when I told her I liked Nietzsche best, she recoiled, “Oh Nietzsche! I hate Nietzsche!” Why? “Because he hated women!” As Nietzsche said, women make the highs higher, and the lows more frequent. My only contact with women is with whores and sex dancers. That is the world I live in—like a Van Gogh, or a Ravel, this is quite normal. Conventional relationships are no more possible or even conceivable for me than they were for Van Gogh or Ravel, or Nietzsche. “You see, an artist has to be very careful when he wants to marry someone, because an artist never realizes his capacity for making his companion miserable. He’s obsessed by his creative work and by the problems it poses. He lives a bit like a daydreamer and it’s no joke for the woman he lives with. One always has to think of that when one wants to get married.” (Ravel to Manuel Rosenthal). So of course we Lost Boys must rely on the Esmeralda, and the sex dancer. The world of drink and opium, of stocking & suspender & feather boa! The Hour of the Flesh! As Flaubert said, “the sight of a whore is profoundly thrilling to a man”. A good woman could never save me, because I would just withdraw, withdraw, retreat back away from her, into my inner world, of words, of transcendence, of detachment, the unreal life. I can only be alone.
January 22, 2017 §
It is true, though, that I love those long train journeys across Europe. Just to spend some days alone with my thoughts and my pen and paper. Perhaps I can enjoy one last Grand Tour of all my favourite places, before I retire from it. Oh but then a year later I will want one more Grand Tour just for old time’s sake, and it will never really end. I don’t know if I can really give up the solitary travelling. It does fulfill some need I have for solitariness. Like Helmut Kohl once a year would take himself off to a health spa. Last year I travelled to Europe four times and spent a total of 12 nights away from home, away from ——. 12 nights to myself out of 365 is not much is it? Perhaps I should allow myself just one Grand Tour a year, and in that tour go to all my places in one go. That is the glory of the Inter Rail Pass. If you are bored in one place, just jump on a train and leave sooner than you planned. If you stop off in another place not planning to stay, but find something amazing to detain you, just hang around longer than planned. That is why going on holiday by plane and just flying from A to B then back home to A again is so boring. Yes, let me allow myself one Grand Tour a year. Then I can just dip into northern Italy for a day or two, just dip into Switzerland and the Alps for a day or two. Get little tasters of those places I have always wanted to go to but will probably never have the time or money to ever really explore as much as I want. If I allow myself one Grand Tour a year, I will be free to go to as many beaches and clear blue seas as —— wants the rest of the year, to try to erase my guilt and shame at leaving her alone! See! I have already talked myself back into travelling alone!
January 6, 2017 §
When you go through life alone you are skinless and defenceless, and all and sundry can land blows on you. When you have someone you care for, their love protects you against everything; only they themselves can hurt you then. I have noticed, however, that whenever you split up, or seem about to split up, your enemies re-emerge from the woodwork and full upon you with savage glee, the savage envy of the dunces, like the Russians on Napoleon’s army on the way back from Moscow. The enemies, subdued and cowed by your love for your partner, are just waiting their chance to fall upon you again; like a virus lying dormant in your body, just waiting for the moment when fighting some other virus has left you momentarily weakened and vulnerable. I feel I have an intimate understanding of enemies; I have moved bemused and surprised through their futile attempts to throw themselves at me and destroy me over the years. They did not know who they had taken on. They bit off a bit more than they could chew. They threw themselves at me like Foreman at Ali. Like moths against a lighthouse. And could not understand why their blows just kept bouncing off. They grew increasingly enraged, and increasingly frustrated, and increasingly frenzied, and just smashed themselves to insensibility more and more. Meanwhile, I played them as one must always play one’s enemies: like a piano. I flaunted myself in their faces more and more. I provoked and provoked and provoked. They could not understand the secret source of my Nile; what kept me going. Their jealousy fuelled me. Their electricity brought me to life like Frankenstein’s monster in a most terrible thunder and lightning storm. Nietzsche I think termed it the great separation; only after the great war has been unleashed upon you can then occur the great separation which at last gives you the space you need to achieve great things. But then you fall in love, and one slightly cold response from your beloved can destroy you in a second. It is this your long-forgotten enemies are lying in wait for; this moment to come out of the woodwork, to crawl out of the pond, and fall upon you again, when you are low. I once sat on a park bench in a state of absolutely abject misery while in Australia, Brisbane I believe. I watched a wasp attacking an ant. As the minutes passed by more and more ants came streaming to attack the wasp, until the wasp was completely overwhelmed, subsumed, murdered by these ants, who then proceeded to drag the wasp away with them. I have never forgotten that.