Category Archives: Diary

Notes from Croatia

The duvet of roses,
the helter of the skelter,
in the approximate sort of funfair
that is present in all places,

acclimatised eventually
and, like a flower, planted;

growing
on the stairs,
able to see daylight;
to be considered a sculpture
by the sleepers in the morning,

of the unbelievable blue sky,
the Spring under the mattress,
the kindness of the light
Summer quilt.

The lady, as I live and breath,
wears orange hair,
which stays as it is in the minute she awakes,
until it is variously styled by the breeze at the harbour.

She’s sitting in the doorway
for minutes
full of hours
in the company of a cat.

The gift that is cast,
as a Roman numeral ahead,
is an hour of time
here, in Croatia.

When the clock strikes with some
“Hello Kitty” theme-tune,
she dresses unexpectedly in a lime-green,
matador’s suit of lights,
and expects to milk more honey from the day
than I would be inclined to.

A day to greet the many strays
in Rovinj, port city of cats,
to step off land onto a boat
– we know its owner –
and go fishing.
By which I mean
to see the clear sea in all our clarity,

and to repeatedly mouth the word “fish”
in-between kisses.

the gleaming stones,
the aluminium dolphin.

To softly open a can of lemon beer.

Fire Engine

The red living room,
the quick green lizard on the armchair facing
the beach,
it opens onto the world.

A portrait of the Virgin Mary,
a bird that is happy and yellow,
rosy-cheeked in its cage,
chirps occasionally.

We’re soon on the sea,
in a pedalo resembling a fire-engine,
legs protruding from behind honeycomb rocks.

The radio plays “The Sidewinder Sleeps Tonite”.

Marmalade

A path of rocks
leads to the sea,
the jellyfish are as unknown
as we,
they are
the same colour as the donut filling,
they move as only jellyfish swim –
with marmalade donuts
floating beside them.

Night’s Dream

Not the sleepy-eyed, handsome priest
I imagined was on
the ten Kuna note.

Tired of Romans,
fatigued and nourished by
the milk of the sun,

who kissed his hand with kindness
who visited the yellow house
with the diamond window
to philosophise with a woman,
surrounded by sketches of fish,
that moved between blinks of his eyes –
the painted ones that swam behind the water,
in a tank.

As she floats on the sea,
her pet Croatian jellyfish,
her ever-changing
amphibious abode;

While he is afraid of things floating
in his pristine bathtub,
she takes to water,
another somewhere in Istria.

He has a fever,
and has had enough of politics.
He meets a man dressed as a lion,
who is tied to a tree.

As Samson between the columns,
the priest’s face from Dubrovnik,
and a tongue for seawater,
met the lion’s fur and mane.

Matko, the priest,
remained in his company
as the bird inside
the green dome of
the tree,
or the dog waiting
outside the supermarket
for his Master.

In the yellow room,
while behind the diamond-shaped window,
he and the woman
and the lion
continued to philosophise.

Untitled

the field of tall crucifixes painted by hand with
the red soil,
that can grow kiwis
cacti
tomatoes
easily here
olives

the hut of stone
the farmers I passed by at speed,
the bad bus driver
is efficient,
the network is confusing
to tourists.

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Poems from Estonia

After Visiting A Clown Playhouse

The best gift you can give a clown
is purpose.
Circus headquarters closed
after a stupid Soviet crackdown.
The religion of performers.
A tinsel-covered drum,
a patchwork piano.
Now a small quiet playhouse,
soon full of children.
The lowered lights,
rebuilding for grown-ups;
it takes time,
since they joined hands in
protest from Tallinn.

Thank You

With every new flavour
We are disallowed in England,
outside a pink building,
an onion-shaped roof.

Thinking thoughts that might taste
precisely of plum,
and specifically of plum ice-cream.

Not using the word we half-know
for “thank you”* (*”tan-nan”?)
But being grateful nonetheless
in English.

Perhaps An Art School

An unused art school,
though we are not sure –
labeled heads of pottery,
a desk busy with books.

A table tennis table,
to play ping-pong without a ball.

The End of The Ice Age in Estonia

I can’t imagine what it would be like
to wake up in the morning
of a bad day in Tallinn.

When I’m on holiday I wonder
if there is such a thing?

Ham, cheese, “black bread”
for breakfast.
Estonian Coco-Pops.
Beats yesterday’s morning
chocolate cake and coffee,
for conventionality.

Irish Pub

In an Irish Pub in Estonia
plays a song,
♪”Far away from lovely Derry…”♫

The Estonian State Puppet Theatre

Even a member of
The Estonian Strong Man Team
parks his SUV outside
The State Puppet Theatre,
sits in the small room,
the curtains that raise themselves at the corners;
Sits a few rows back
reserving the nearest seats for children.
Behind the curtains,
the performers teaching
their little charges,
the steps to dance,
the lines to say.

Straw Theatre

The impermanent theatre
made of straw,
won’t be here next summer.

The technician with one motorbike glove
removes weeds growing around the stage.

The personnel of a company
reconvene their meeting outside –
the large group that descends,
a surprise to all.

One of the merrymaking workers was rude to us.
So I can’t think highly of what his company produces.

Bakery

Bakery
that looks as cosy as a home,
the warmth of bread and
Estonian pastries,
reflected in the
temperament of the old lady
who makes them.

Biscuits given jam shapes
of hearts,
custard fillings,
unfamiliar whirls of flavour,

windmill picture built into the wall
when the bakery and home
first emerged
fresh from the oven.

Harbour

Green harbour,
quiet with bathers
with nowhere to lay,
standing on the pebbles and stones
looking out at
cruiseships leaving port,

being calm with blue,
and the distant ancient town,
and, closer, a concrete
heavily graffitied building
that the locals have made clear;

which they love less.

Lady Collecting Daisies Outside The Museum

If the yellow lady with the red collar,
would ask me,
the wandering Estonian Avant-Gardist,
to paint something I have some skill to paint her,
like a flower or an eye,
a simple aeroplane picture,
of her collecting daisies
with our memories of MacDonald’s,
when she, from afar,
picked daisies together,
to sell or to keep in the house in a vase,
to make daisy chains,
or just to make time.

I would, for my part,
dispense with harsh
mathematic Cubism,
dark-eyed Expressionism
or Concepts, for a while.

I would sit in
the Grand Hall of the old Estonian Masters,
where colours are brighter and newer than any.

Someone would then instruct me to
remember a place in England,
after which I’d wonder “why?”,
and sway gently in a field of daisies.



Looking on the bus,
through space and people,
young and in love in
uncynical Estonia,

on the bus
waiting for the doors to open,
the young man on the lower step,
looking up with admiration
at his girlfriend,
together as sweet as
65 cent
“Südameke” cakes,

translating to everyone
as “heartthrob”,
and love.

Giant Bradley

Sunday 29th May was “Giant Bradley Day” in the town of Market Weighton in East Yorkshire, England.

The day is an annual celebration of the life of William Bradley, who at 7 feet 9 inches, is the tallest recorded British man who ever lived, and is popularly known as The Yorkshire Giant. According to Andrew Swalwell’s giantbradley.co.uk, “At birth William weighed 14lbs and at the age of 11 he weighed 11 stones. At 19 he weighed 27 stones and was 7ft 9ins in height. His stockings measured 3ft 9ins, his walking stick 5ft 10in and his shoes were 15ins long and 5.5ins wide.”

By chance, I happened to be in Market Weighton during the “Giant Bradley Day” celebrations and wrote the following, fanciful poetry-doodle while I was there.

Additional Citation:

William Bradley – The Yorkshire Giant (1787-1820) by Colin Westley.
Wikipedia – William Bradley (giant)

Continue reading Giant Bradley

Where to Start, If You Want to Start, and How to Start Again.


  • I wonder if you’d like to see my poetry. Try these, if you want:

Door [-] Handles

The iPod

Untitled

Those are my personal favourites, however some may find poems like Christmas and Bubble or even Bed-Time Story more accessable.

With the support of my friend Paul I did a few, I hope, fairly interesting works for The Orchid Room, his  collaborative poetry blog.  At The Orchid Room,  everyone wrote  stories concerning or related to happenings in an abandoned nightclub. One person would continue something from the narrative a previous writer started, and it carried on like that. It’s well worth reading the site, preferably from the earliest entries onwards. I don’t consider the works I did with the Orchid Room writers  my own. Rather, it is a wonderful, many peopled literary organism. However, writing those pieces was a mind-blowing experience, they are infused with a memorable collective spirit.

————

A little curio that I like, composed of found images –

A while back I produced Peter And The Hare’s Commemorative Montage Comicbook. It’s essentially a visual translation of my blog, and was conceived as a souvenir for myself and visitors. It marked a concluding chapter in the history of this site, which was not an “ending” but nevertheless felt something like that at the time. The Comicbook is now simultaneously entitled Peter and The Hare’s Commemorative Collage Piano Book, in a definitive version with more pages, and exists more to be enjoyed than understood.

It is available to download directly from Peter And The Hare here, for viewing with Adobe Reader.

Something About a Hacksaw, in Shanghai

I recently had the pleasure of helping out with this, for the awesome Shanghai based music site Layabozi. The site has been one of the links in my sidebar for a while. The variety of articles on Layabozi is great – it’s eclectic, open-minded, rich in mental and visual stimulation,  has no genre boundaries and is written by true music lovers, who take music seriously but still have a sense of humour.  They describe it better:

“Layabozi is a web magazine about music in Shanghai today, with a sprinkle of the extra-mural and a tart sassiness—without ever being cloying. We take our inspiration from the snack which is both exotic (to us) and down home, and from which we take our name: Spicy Duck Necks. We are led by an exuberant, but discerning, Chilean amateur flautist with a strikingly handsome, yet humble, American bass player in support. We strive to provide writing that nourishes while piquing the intellect, and knowledge of music all over Shanghai, from Classical to Nouveau, from the Shanghai Grand to the neighborhood Chinese Opera house.”

And there’s a cool article on there right now, by ed, about funky Afro-Peruvian Music! You don’t even know what that is, do you? so go find out!

Continue reading Something About a Hacksaw, in Shanghai

Peter and a Paintbrush: Original Acrylic Paintings for Sale

peters-paintings-029bestoffull These are some of my paintings. They are available to buy as prints at my online gallery on Photobox. There are prints and gift items available  to suit all.

If you would like, you can own them as compiled in my book, Peter And The Hare’s Fireside Companion.

With these  paintings I am continuing the journey I started with words. Each is naive, organic and dreamlike in aesthetic.  The kind of art I like. They look good in my house so I’m sure they might in yours.

ARTIST’S BIOGRAPHY:

Peter Buckley is a painter and writer from Leicester, England. His poetry has appeared in the online journals “Feathertale”, “Madelaine” and “The Orchid Room”. He has recently completed a post-graduate degree in Film Studies. He delights in strange music, long conversations, cute animals, adventure, magic and cappuccino.

These paintings are his latest endeavour, following his surrealist blog project, Peter and The Hare. He has now copy-and-pasted the title to bring you these works, in which he returns naively to a place where words, pictures and dreams combine, somehow.

PAINTING DESCRIPTIONS (Click on Titles)

…with the hare the buffalo and giraffe and remember we kissed at sunset. – Original Acrylic Painting on Canvas (10” x 8”/254mm x 203mm)

This is an original acrylic painting. It is painted on an unframed canvas.  It incorporates various animal figures drawn from imagination and memory. As a result, it has a naïve, innocent and dreamlike atmosphere. The red lips and warm colours lend a sense of romantic intrigue to a painting which is altogether highly mysterious.

The painting has calming, organic effect, assisted by the kind of deep and vivid tones of green that have been fascinating me of late. The paint takes its natural course down the side of the canvas, providing a revealing insight into the process of creation. This is not a print.

•Unique Original Artwork
•Width: 10 inches (approx.)
•Height: 8 inches (approx.)
•Media: Acrylic
•Surface: Canvas
•Vividly Presented with Green, Brown, Deep Red, and Subtle Yellow.
•Finished Professionally with Artist’s Gloss Spray Varnish
•Despatched Promptly and to a High Standard.

peter's paintings 003bestoffull

The King – Original Acrylic Painting on Canvas (16” x 12”) SOLD!

This is an original acrylic painting. It is painted on an unframed stretched canvas. It is predominately green and incorporates eye, leaf and crown motifs. I like it for its calming, organic effect that is counterbalanced subtly by the influence of a black pattern, suggestive of barbed wire.

To me, “The King” has a narrative aspect that speaks of ambition, and the burdens of power. As such, it might be ideally suited for display in the throne room, or office. It is a painting of an abstract inclination. The paint takes its natural course down the side of the canvas, providing a revealing insight into the process of creation. This is not a print.

•Unique Original Artwork
•Width: 16 inches (approx.)
•Height: 12 inches (approx.)
•Media: Acrylic
•Surface: Canvas
•Vividly Presented with Green, Cream, Black, Blue, Yellow and Red.
•Finished Professionally with Artist’s Gloss Spray Varnish
•Despatched Promptly and to a High Standard

Science Fiction 1 (Or, ”YOUR DAMNABLE FUTURE”) – Original Acrylic Painting on Box Canvas (8” x 10” Depth 1.5”)

This original acrylic painting predicts, with near complete inaccuracy, the very shape and texture of your red and grey future. It is painted on a box canvas.

It is painted with the only colours your evolved eyes will perceive.

You will not use touch screens, for you will exchange your fingers for someone else’s – an anonymous presence who will dress you in green LEDs and cling wrap.

There will be no geography, and a lot of poor and destitute cartographers will wander the land like vagabonds. Your top ten “Desert Island Discs” will play on a desert island. As you detect the feint whirring of a cassette tape, you will never be alone again.

This painting is a hope-filled vision of the certain doom that awaits us all. Sadly, it features no robots; but is the first in a proposed series of science fiction inspired paintings.

I made a conscious effort to create something alien, aesthetically pleasing but also potentially disconcerting. The painting is texturally eclectic, due to the energy and verve with which it was created. I “flicked” paint over the canvas, which is known to produce a highly kinetic effect. The deceptive simplicity of the painting’s colour scheme, and the extremity of the angles it employs, make for a striking and bold image.

This – spaceship, perhaps? – is a harbinger, or a sign…of what? Joking aside, I’m inclined to be optimistic about what the strange silver-blue artefact might mean to the inhabitants of my grey Earth.

The paint takes its natural course down the side of the canvas, providing a revealing insight into the process of creation. This is not a print.

•Unique Original Artwork
•Width: 8 inches (approx.)
•Height: 10 inches (approx.)
•Depth: 1.5 inches (approx.)
•Media: Acrylic
•Surface: Box Canvas
•Vividly Presented with a Texturally Eclectic Spectrum of Intense Greys, Reds and Greens.
•Finished Professionally with Artist’s Gloss Spray Varnish
•Despatched Promptly and to a High Standard.

See The Full Gallery Here!

Works change so check back often to see what’s new!

Get a Free Book of Hungarian Poetry if You’re Flying Lufthansa Today

get a book,
there’s nothing cleaner, freer or cheaper
than a perfect-bound book,
and you with your little ipod,

flicking through the pages,
as a squirrel wearing a tie

might read hungarian poetry,
as i think he might.

there’s goulash in your future,
by which i mean
many delights,

and what a shame i’m not hungarian,
what a shame you’re not on this flight.


Music: Ülök egy rózsaszínû kádban by Metro