Under the Stars - EMI 2015 (cropped) (2)

I woke for a pee about 1 am. I heard an owl but it wasn’t the usual twit-ter-woo sound, it was more of a wit-wit without the woo. Bird noises reverberate in the night air, making the black seem infinite, endless. Everything appears intensified, though perhaps it is that my senses are more alert. Leaving for my walk at 4.45 am one of our neighbours came in to the hallway. He was carrying one of those polystyrene food containers. The smell was of re-heated baked beans. Oh, hello, he said, tottering. We both paused. Bye, then, I called out. It all felt a little strange. Where had he been? And perhaps he was thinking, Where is she going? Yesterday, at about the same time, two taxis drew up outside in the courtyard off-loading a family of bodies. The usual hush was broken as they giggled their way into houses.

I finally got round to listening to the repeat of Maya Angelou with Anthony Clare, In The Psychiatrist’s Chair. She was spellbinding. Her command of language, that slow way she had of delivering every word was mesmeric. But she was soaked in sadness. Drenched in it. And yet, there was always that courage of hope. Some people’s lives are fit-to-bursting.

My to-do list continues. Next is the film Terry Pratchett made about assisted dying.

I’ve got two alarm clocks on my bedside table. One works, the other is rather unreliable but I like its loud tick so I keep it.

A spider has drawn a line of light across the outside of my bedroom window.

I am writing myself clean. It is good to have a project. Does it really matter if it is any good? And what is good, or indeed, bad? I will write myself good. Yes. That’s it. That is it.


By Ellen Bell

Artist and writer currently living in Aberystwyth.