Wild flowers at ODG (5)

A patch of green. A small square of wildness, of weeds outside the gallery. Flora opened last night. The place was packed. It’s a strong show, an intelligent show. A celebration of flowers. Wear something floral, she said. I’ve always found private views uncomfortable. The art seems secondary somehow. I’m too impatient for all that standing around. Like at cocktail parties, fingers fondling wine glasses and all that incessant small talk. Sometimes one hears a gem but mostly it is nothing. A noise of nothing. The place was packed. That’s good, isn’t it? The highlight? Meeting Tom the artist. He was so chuffed about the review. It was a small thing. I loved writing it. It felt right and honest. He was touched. That’s good, isn’t it? And the other? The other highlight? Seeing them. My friends just there, across the room. What a surprise. They’d come all that way, just for me. What a delight. What a joy.


She’d just been brought back from being wheeled around the park. They were helping her out of the wheelchair when we arrived. She was screeching in pain. Then she stopped and turned to you, saying in Norwegian – I know you, you’re that film star, aren’t you? You didn’t understand. I translated and then she said it in English. She was still a beauty – ravishing. You were charming, as always. And then upstairs you charmed another.

It will be alright. It is always alright. There is no bogeyman. Just life, just life. I think about my little white room. Jenny Diski has one. What is it about white? My room is like a cloud, a misty space with no dark corners. Look closely and there are words. I think about my little room in the gallery. All shut up on a Sunday. Who goes in there now?

By Ellen Bell

Artist and writer currently living in Aberystwyth.