Eight Days A Week 1998 : Word Attack - Dinesh Allirajah : Writer Poet : Based in Liverpool

Ongoing collaboration with the poet Stan Lafleur in September 1998 Eight Days A Week festival of Liverpool artists in its sister city, Cologne. We kept in touch and attempted to float the idea of a Lit-Bridge, linking writers in the cities by e-mail. These discussions led to a visit in September 2000, when we again performed together. Giving Away Soap’s inclusion here is less to do with the Rhine, which is the common muse for the Brigade, and more with a shared interest Stan and I have in Cuba. The story, much edited from this quite raw proof, appears in A Manner Of Speaking.

Example of work by Dinesh Allirajah :Child 2....

"I used to see solitary woollen mittens, or dummies or tiny hats with Velcro chin straps, damp and skid-marked in gutters, rimmed with mud and boot prints. I thought they must be motifs of tragedy, silent voices in morning assembly. Now I realise that the discarding of each item has at some time been a stab at freedom, a victory over cloying confinement.

It was a beautiful Autumn day, and if you needed a coda to substantiate the slogan, you'd have to say that everybody noticed the weather that day, or at least we were all sniffing the sky. I used to think language couldn't buckle under the weight of what it had to convey. Now I know it takes a year of communication to muster anything so inadequate as a word.

I used to think true horror resided in what was banal and that anxiety was a trusted shield. Now, though, I left work early and caught a bus from town, I met my family on a street corner, and knew that these were acts that would make any day a good day. Along the way I sniffed the sky and could state with confidence that this was a beautiful Autumn day. I remembered how I used to think war was the end of everything, our ultimate defeat."

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