I’ve written about The Dreaming before, so this is a bit of a repeat post, but I just had to include it on my ‘Albums that Made Me’ list.
I can’t overestimate the influence The Dreaming has had on my taste in music and, possibly, in shaping aspects of my personality. I must have been around six years-old when I started listening to it. My Dad was a Kate Bush fan and we always had her albums around the house.
The Dreaming is probably the album that first sparked something in me which could be called a sense of “taste” in music. I loved it, but I was also quite terrified by songs like ‘Get Out of My House‘. I was fascinated by the soundscape and the way Kate Bush manipulated her vocals on different tracks. I was slightly outraged that a woman could sound like that! In summary, it got me to start thinking about music.
I would play it in the kitchen and dance madly to ‘Night of the Swallow‘, ‘Sat in your lap‘ and ‘The Dreaming‘. That’s what I mainly remember. Dancing, dancing, dancing until I was exhausted. One time, I ran up and down the room so wildly, I winded myself on the kitchen sink.
As an adult, my favourite Kate Bush album is Hounds of Love, but I still have a very special place in my heart for The Dreaming.
I never take part in reading challenges, but I’ve decided to have a go at 20 Books of Summer this year, mainly because I really need to make a dent in my book pile before we move house in August. This seems like a good opportunity to make myself do it, so I’ve also set myself the rule of hard copy books only.
I’ve grabbed a random pile off my book shelf (apologies for the terrible photograph). Here we go:
- Mary Dorcey, Kindling
- Mary Oliver, Red Bird
- Ruth Ware, The Woman in Cabin 10
- Amy Bloom, White Houses
- Jo Shapcott, Her Book
- Daphne Marlett, The Gift
- Amistead Maupin, The Night Listener
- Christopher Isherwood, Mr Norris Changes Trains
- Alice Munro, The Moons of Jupiter
- Sarah Schulman, Maggie Terry
- Emma Donoghue, Frog Music
- Neil Gaimen, Fragile Things
- Jackie Kay, Fiere
- Neil McKenna, Fanny & Stella
- Vonda McIntyre, Dreamsnake
- Adrienne Rich, Dark Fields of the Republic
- Elizabeth Lynn, Watchtower
- Alastair Reynolds, Aurora Rising
- Sarah Schulman, The Cosmopolitans
- Theodora Goss, European Travel for Monstrous Gentlewomen
EDIT: I’m too old and cranky to force myself through books I’m not enjoying, so if I “nope” out of a book, I’ll replace it with another one of similar length.
The “Nope!” List
Roger Levy, The Rig (replaced with no. 20)
New single out now: Hurry on Home
Obligatory spring blossom photograph
Life has continued to be hectic and stressful. I have a lot going on at work. The mice returned and we had to get pest control in to deal with them. I felt bad about it, but nothing else worked. Then a couple of weeks ago, I had a terrible toothache. Apparently, the tooth is fractured and will need a crown. That’s gonna be expensive.
It wasn’t all bad though. There has been some nice weather. We visited the Leonardo da Vinci: A Life in Drawing Exhibition and it was pretty amazing to see the drawings close up. Then we saw Thea Gilmore live and that was excellent.
We saw Captain Marvel and I enjoyed it more than I thought I would. I’m not really into the Marvel universe, but this was a good time.
I read a few crime thrillers. The Crime Writer by Jill Dawson is a proper literary thriller (post coming). I enjoyed The Dry by Jane Harper, but didn’t think it quite lived up to all the hype. The Old You by Louise Voss is a twisty thriller that’s probably best read on a plane, or the beach.
The Ark by Patrick Tomlinson is quite a fun SF thriller and I really liked Una McCormack’s novella, The Undefeated. I’ve got a big pile of science fiction novels on the go at the moment.
I’m chipping away at The Collected Poems of Philip Larkin. He’s a brilliant poet, but I am finding all the self-loathing and mid-century sexism a bit hard work. Still, he did write my absolute favourite poem set in the month of May, ‘The Trees.
Of course we’re watching the superb Gentleman Jack.
We started on The Orville, the premise of which is basically Star Trek: The Next Generation if the crew were ordinary people. I am a little surprised by the high quality of the storytelling on what appears (on the surface at least) to be quite a silly show. It has me hooked.
Dyke camp could also be an oversized basketball vest that hangs low over the armpit and reveals sideboob, or a stacked heel that adds to your height. A dyke camp vision is greedy: it asks for more not in the sense of adding endless details like camp might, but in making things bigger, blowing things up. Dyke camp is simultaneously self-conscious of and delighted by its own visibility.
Dyke camp doesn’t care what others think. It is not particularly interested in being palatable for or even attended to by straight people. As with camp, it’s more like blaring the Batsignal. Dyke camp is showy gestures, a certain hunch of the shoulder, a crooked grin, a beckoning hand, exaggeration, over-amplification, studied disinterest in clothes and very keen interest in everything else. A walk that looks like a dance.
The Outline, Notes on Dyke Camp
Powerful interview, The Unbearable Weight of Fatphobia: A Conversation with Samantha Irby
But let’s be clear, this is about far more than just hurt feelings and humiliation. This kind of body terrorism means that fat people get denied jobs, housing, affordable and adequate healthcare, and various other services simply because other people don’t like our bodies […] Everywhere we turn, everywhere we go, we are reminded about how much people hate us and our bodies, and how much they think we should hate ourselves and our bodies, too. We are continually told, in one way or another, that we are not allowed to take up this space and that we will not be valuable unless we shrink. For many of us, this has been happening our entire lives, or for the vast majority of it. It’s deeply dehumanizing and demoralizing, but for a lot of fatphobic people, that’s exactly the point. They think we don’t deserve to have a good relationship with our bodies. They think we don’t deserve any other kind of existence. They often think we don’t deserve to exist at all.