A sunset below the clouds with a line of ibis flying home to roost
A sunset below the clouds with a line of ibis flying home to roost
Ibis coming home to roost, Byron Bay. Image courtesy of the author

I am addicted to clouds. Odd for an Englishman but, perhaps, not so odd for an ex-Pom transplanted to this land of flat horizons and gigantic sky.

Looking at a cloud was almost impossible in my youth because when I looked up it was almost impossible to look at anything but clouds. Looking up at the more than fifty shades of grey that define English skies was pointless and depressing, so I didn’t.

I looked at the shades of grey in the people and in the paving stones instead.

Whenever I could I escaped from the city to Dartmoor and…

Audiophilia without the pain

Homepod speaker surrounded by ivy
Homepod speaker surrounded by ivy
Photo by Dan Smedley on Unsplash

I’m listening to an old Fleetwood Mac album that I have on vinyl. It sounds fantastic, but it’s not being played on my Thorens TD160 with a Nagaoka cartridge through a Musical Fidelity preamp driving a Quad 303 power amp which in turn drives Quad monitors and subwoofer.

It’s not being played on my classic 70s rimdrive Lenco deck or my Rega turntable either.

Nope, its coming at me from a lossless file through two HomePods that sit on either side of a lightly dented century old dressing table that I use as a writing desk.

A very good question!

It was certainly the case in the early years of the 20th Century that "sin of the Wilde kind" and variations of that phrase were used as euphemisms for queer sex.

It was also noticeable that early photos of young men often depicted them draped langorously over each other. That changed pretty quickly after the Wilde trial and his conviction...

from the lover you left behind

Image by the author.

The Meeting
You open the door and look up at me. Short and powerful with a shaved head, wearing a macho blue singlet — the kind Aussies call a “wife-beater”. You make a big impression.

I look around your flat as we continue our breathless flirty online conversation into the real world and I realise this is turning into an exceptionally intense attraction.

A student fashion designer? That dressmakers mannequin in the corner looks well-used.

You dip your eyes when I mention it, you’re shy! Now I’m lusting after you in a delightfully unexpected way.

“I make costumes for myself.”…

Photo by Mads Schmidt Rasmussen on Unsplash

Gaslight of the World.

What do you call this man?

He promises you the world and tells you he loves you with the greatest love ever. He says that he would die for you and help you overcome every problem that life could throw at you. He says he will never leave.

Sounds pretty good so far. There’s just one teensy little condition.

You have to love him back in exactly the way he tells you or he’ll tear you from your family, lock you away, burn you and torture you forever.

Those of us who have suffered domestic violence, coercive control and gaslighting…

Photo by Guillaume TECHER on Unsplash

A Review

Set for release Columbus Day this compilation of previously released singles made us look back in awe at the Olympian triumph of will embodied by Donnie and The Bugchasers.

This year could have been so different, Donnie and the Bugchasers were just another small group of autocrats with big ideas and a widely ridiculed cult following.

Then Sino-pop death-metal auteurs, Wuhan Collapse, ignited the global charts with their catchy tune ‘One for Me — Four for You’. Nobody could stop humming that earworm chorus, ‘let me breathe on you baby / I’ll take your breath away / three of your…

After a forty year sexual career I’m beginning to understand monogamy… After a fashion.

I was never any good at exclusivity in previous relationships. I thought it an unnatural state for anyone, let alone a gay man. I was usually upfront about my disdain for it with any romantic partners.

My successful relationships have all been open until now.

“Open” takes a little explanation. It’s not “cheating”, it’s not even “permitted cheating”. It’s about openness on several levels — communication, letting the other partner know what’s going on and setting mutually agreed ground rules for erotic encounters outside the relationship.

Jeff Poole

Burned out conservationist queer Australian with an English accent. Don’t ask, I might tell…

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