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Drunk Walk

Drunk Walk

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Published by Triarchy Press
One of a collection of 17accounts recording A Year of Walking by drifter, mythogeographer and crabman Phil Smith. The full set and a collection of other resources live at www.mythogeography.com
One of a collection of 17accounts recording A Year of Walking by drifter, mythogeographer and crabman Phil Smith. The full set and a collection of other resources live at www.mythogeography.com

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Published by: Triarchy Press on Dec 08, 2009
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial


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Drunk Walk 
The Constitution of Wrights & Sites insists that alcohol beconsumed during business meetings. (I don’t think that’sstrictly true. This must be a reference to a secretconstitution.) It had been a meeting to lay out the basicshape for making a ‘generic’ Mis-Guide. On getting home Irealised I was in no fit state to go to bed and needed aconstitutional walk. At the bottom of Danes Road I pausedto decide which way to go – I was thinking graph-like, withthe dip down into town and its granular uncertainties, theunappealing rise towards Stoke Hill and the hard-to-escapeself-parodic matrices of suburban roads. I recalled aconversation with Stephen about the private road beyondTaddyforde Gate and how I’d never been down there. I setoff along the prison wall, the softness of the unfinishedcastle on my other side. Wild voices in a nearby streetspeeded my unsteady step. Stumbling past the Imperial andThornlea I approached the Gate under a dread tunnel of treeroof and ivy, mundane and grey when viewed from a car,on foot this passage this night glowed green and slippery,silvery fishes of light squirming about in it. The world was beginning to liquefy, becoming part of my extendedorganism. But I was having to keep a part of me sharp so Ididn’t mesh with a car. Nothing coming and I ran across thewet road and through the dried blood sandstone Gate inwhich it is said is buried the body of one of thoseconservative Kingdons (Iron Sam, maybe) who gaveClifford his middle name.
There was a shapely noticeboard on the right: “Our vandalnow entertains himself not by smashing the glass, butstealing the notices. There are some sad people about.”This was the only notice. Not stolen yet. The sheet of woodto which it was attached rippled with dampness. A wave passed through me. I stumbled down the incline. A turningto the right and I thought I saw a kind of dread placeovergrown, at the end of a cold/cosy road among a ruin of shrubs. A boat named Cho Cho San. A house called TheChalet. I struggled through the clutching stems and slippedin the mud, leaned against an ivy-scarred brick wall, likethe sucker-torn head of a Sperm Whale, the ground fallingvertically away 40 feet, a wire mesh fence wrappedsomewhere inside a low wall of vegetation, but I couldn’tquite see it, nor where exactly the ground gave way toemptiness. Be careful… On one side of me were the ruinsof garden furniture, a stock of maybe twenty long sticksleant against an out-building, a snap of cast iron guttering.I’m on a cluttered platform, beyond the fence of furze thereare long stems with heads full of seeds, and 40 feet belowis the railway, the level crossing and the ends of the platforms of St David’s Station; a burger van, doing quiettrade, is suddenly surrounded by two vanloads of police inyellow and black, fluorescent wasps clustering. Onceserved, they stand, clumped, not changing their spatialrelationships, for maybe half an hour, as I watch unseen – the women with their hair pulled back hard. The state atrest. A city acquiescent enough. Two trains cross – asleeper and a freight train. I lean against the wall and thedampness spins around, the seeds swirl, I finger the ivyscars but I can’t focus on them for very long. One copper 

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