Premiere - 'One Night and Several Wives' by Austin Collings

Premiere - 'One Night and Several Wives' by Austin Collings

Austin Collings is a brave man - in 2009 he acted as the conduit through which Mark E Smith communicated 20 years of band beef. The Radcliffe born author then penned his debut collection of short stories 'The Myth of Brilliant Summers'. To coincide with the release of Several Wives' new album 'Blonde, Arms Tight Black', Collings has written a prose piece. The album is a perfect piece of sombre chamber music, sounding like the soundtrack to an unwritten horror film. Nearing 50 minutes in length, Several Wives' debut is a prolonged haze of ghostly apparitions and weeping orchestras, reminiscent of Howard Shore, Bernard Hermann and Angelo Bandalamenti. 

One Night and Several Wives by Austin Collings

One night I remember seeing a firework spear through the sky and I
thought it would never stop moving. One night I lost my senses in a
wilderness of bricks and mortar. One night I kissed Hazel behind a
row of shops - chip shop, video shop, newsagent, laundrette - is that
a shop? One night somebody solemnly presented me with a blurred
copy of what looked like an X-ray. One night I listened to Several
Wives like a three year old and shadows of things emerged. One
night my best friend overdosed and fell into a sinister sleep where he
said he heard loud saxophones on repeat - God is a saxophonist is
what I deduced from that. One night Several Wives spoke to
me. One night I wanted to put everything straight - sort of. One
night I trundled along in a distracted state staring into the canal after
an argument with my older brother - I can still feel the pain. One
night no-one believed me. One night Several Wives appeared to ask
me if I had ever watched ants amongst the riverside grass? One night
I watched the current and said: "I love you"; One night I remember
my heart hammering in that slender vein that divides my forehead.
One night I saw Several Wives on several drugs and the small
audience seemed to be locked in entranced speechlessness. One
night I wandered into my own head and promptly lost the compass.
One night I started to tell her my true history. One night I saw
Several Wives stretching time into a series of meaningful minutes.
One night the weather turned bad. One night I stared into walls full
of cracks, festooned with green creeping plants, strange bushes
whose names no one knew, wild flowers growing out of a
tiny crevice, buses pouring poison but the flowers surviving, garnet
roses, pale lilacs. One night I heard Several Wives make an epic
weeping sound like the final cry of the final dinosaur. One night I
gave up telling her my true history because it sounded false. One
night days grow shorter. One night the house was dark. 

 

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