The legendary giant of heavy rock has his back turned away from me

as he stands guard and watches over all the other photographic memories

in the room.

There is no false great works of art upon the walls of the house,

aside from those I have chosen to place against the half decorated structure.

When I was younger I had posters that scattered the three walled sides in my Bicester

bedroom and I was told that eventually I would grow

to having just the one perfectly wooden framed piece of art to stare at and draw

inspiration from.

I refused to believe I could ever be that pretentious or soul destroying artistically poor.

I loved art, I still do.

I have many different favourites, from the Death of Nelson to

Clarence Holbrook’s and his War Bride

which captures the soul of the perfect moment for some

who aspire to marriage but for whom the real rush is waiting to wave

their recently I do husband off to battle. The delicate nature of the white wedding

dress and the half hidden flowers and fully concealed, secret face

clutched tightly in rememberance of better days to come

haunts my imagination.

As does the work of Constable, Turner,   the beautiful  and my ancestor


It is though the posters, the drawings, the album sleeve artwork and the photographs

taken by loved ones, by those I admire, those I have lost

and by my own stubby fingers, nervous, not breathing until I press the button just right

and sweating at the disbelief of the black and white image

that no longer takes a week to process.


The walls of the only room in the house to be actually decorated fully

are covered in mementoes, of moments and people of whom I feel stare down at me

in disappointment, in shame, in hope and in love and I find that there

are only two that look upon me as equal.

From a bill poster from the play Boeing, Boeing in which three

Stewardess’ smile coyly in their pristine and starched uniforms

in which are pressed even tighter against the glass that covers their modesty,

to Steve Hackett’s signed picture of him smiling and wishing me a happy 41st

birthday and which is directly below the poster

for the tour which serves to remind me

of two great nights in Edinburgh in 2012.

There is a poster for The Alarm performing in my adopted home

hanging softly and which catches the breeze

when I open the window and only two well positioned pins

stop it from floating away when the storms hit hard against the

outside wall.

From Tori’s beguiling smile in which my heart beats hard for her approval

to a signed photograph of James Hetfield and Alan Alda, to the unsigned

black and white images of Tony Hancock smoking a cigarette

and Bert Trautman looking jolly but with the huge regret in his eyes as we sit and talk

of Manchester City and other despicable things.

Bobby Kennedy holding up the F.A. Cup, Nicky Weaver and Paul Dickov

celebrating the day we came back from the dead and Peter Barnes

in what should have been the start of a great era.

77th Street in which I met Carlos

and the girl I walked out on in the middle of a party.

Niagara Falls in the winter and the floating

Goliaths of white ice crashing in silent thunder onto the noiseless rocks below.

Michael Palin enjoying a joke about trains, my dad and I at a football match,

not the first one, not the last, not an important game at all, no physical reminder of

me meeting Tony Book or Ron Saunders and hearing my dad berate

the Villa manager for not signing the programme,

or of the day when I was sat miserable

at Moss Road as we plumbed the depths.

The Moor Green Juniors football team, decked out in green and black

stripes, I can name them all, we were kings of our own playground.

J. Adams’ artwork, one of only two pictures framed, my local for four years

till I stopped drinking in The Cambridge.

Inspiration all.


There is a couple of pictures to my side of Richard and I in wedding suits,

Gray, flattering, I had to do his tie before he said I do to his wife.

Pictures of my boys as boys and each one now as men and two of my God-daughters

beautiful, smiling, always remaining daughters.

The Cornish and Canadian flags, proudly flat, a picture of the Everyman Theatre

in which Roger Hodgson gets a starring role underneath my trilby hat.

A detailed map of New Jersey

and a street map of New York hanging respectfully above an exploding Tardis

bought for me by a woman I am proud to call a daughter,

in which used to hang a map of the world with pin points in

of a theory of the abandoned and sacrificed.

Mark Wilkinson and Paul McCartney  are intersected by the picture of a Womble

looking like its hero Bernard Cribbins

and I remember my teenage bedroom being just as perfectly decorated

twice over as Linda Lusardi, Johann Cruyff, Paul Power and Joe Corrigan

offered me hope for the future and the tall imposing figure

of the dead eyed Eddie using the Devil as a Puppet gave me chills

more easily dealt with than the memory of the first so called happy couple picture

on another unremarkable wall.

There is a space for a picture of Pooh and I but taken by a master

of lyrical expression after a gig in London, hair short, true smiles

an adoration of the man taking the picture the incentive.

There is a final space, unhinged, unused and blank which sits directly next

to my Graduation paper. It is not unloved, it doesn’t hide a dirty stain

in which Graham Gouldman should sit and sing

every time I look there, it doesn’t represent

loss or infinity, I have no picture of you and I hugging the blue wallpaper and the space

serves no purpose at all…yet.


Ian D. Hall 2014.