Tea, tracks and translations

Had a nasty bug last week which set me back by a few days. And the scarey deadline looms. Have decided to go for one piece and not feel pressured to produce more to ‘showcase’ on March 2. This isn’t the time of year for stuff to be coming out of the soil. Only snowdrops and I don’t do snowdrops. Black tulips more like it. Or tulips red as the beginning  of Blue Velvet. I’m still at the research stage.

So here I am drinking tea to give myself an articifial kickstart. The tea has to be green tea with honey. This is my Monday drink. Monday’s the day I get home from dropping the children, sit at the computer and get on with it. Today I made the mistake of having a couple of wonderful dark chocolates laced with coffee  to accompany the tea. Now I feel anxious and sick. I never learn. Stick to green tea and honey and calming carbs. Anyway, tea ususally helps me to focus. I managed to edit the biog for The Parson to 50 words not including the name, which now goes like this:

Rap, The Son aka ‘The Pastor’: Rhythm’s the spirit and Poetry’s the godfather. African ancestry, spitting in my hands free, born and bred and battling in Canterbury. I’ve got an ology in the trilogy: imagery, tautology, and etymology. Fired by The Roots and The King James Bible, in the hip hop academy, an Old Skool disciple.

So I have a character and I’ve been on Spotify listening to Ice Cube, KRS-ONE, The Roots, Public Enemy. You name it. To get into character and voice. Also for sheer pleasure. ‘Cos the Parson’s so-called tale is sooooooo dry. It’s like reading a text book for an exam. At least it’s clearly written and obsessed with categories and subcategories of sin which makes it easier to take notes. But I have to punctuate it with hardcore hip hop (that would make the Parson turn in his grave) to stay sane. And awake. And I’m ashamed to say, I’m reading it in translation. It was just too tall a task to read the ‘myrie tale in prose’ in Middle English at this stage. I read Chaucer for rhymes, for irony, for fun. The only good bit in the Parson’s tale so far is when he’s describing bling. He goes into so much detail I think he doth protest too much. Infinite detail on ostentatious and/or revealing clothes. I’d recommend it. Impossible to be 100% boring when outlining sin. 

Has anyone out there actually read it in the original …for pleasure?

I’ve decided to make it into a ‘tale’ but I can’t see it being very merry. Suits me to end the book on a dark note. It worked with my last two.

I’ve really started with the greatest challenge. This is madness. This is ‘being Canterbury Laureate and feeling under pressure to create something Canterbury oriented’. I keep telling myself pressure is a good thing, pressure is a good thing, pressure is a good thing…


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