What’s inside


A-E  F-L  M-O  P-S 

The tall, the short and the more than many – How to begin to understand how big big numbers really are.
Ten Thousand Lives – About Ko Un, a Korean poet who decided to write one poem about every person he had ever met.
Thirty-seven ways of looking at a Dervish– All the things you can do with a Turkish verb.
Three Dogs in Cholula – Poem about the micro-events of Cholula, Mexico.
Too lazy to paint eyebrows – Pipa virtuoso Wu Man.
Tossing Salt Peanuts into the Air for Free– About Steve Coleman,  a great jazz musician, who also gives his music away.
Tough Questions – A short passage from Bill Bryson’s book “Notes from a Big Country” which makes me laugh every time I think about it.
Two glimpses of Icarus – William Carlos Williams and Auden’s takes on a painting by Brueghel.
Two moods of darkness – A poem about darkness and sleep
Two Richards – A Hard Day’s Discontent– Olivier doing Richard III and Peter Sellers doing Olivier doing Richard.
2012, stay in bed and save the planet – International Year of the Frog, Potato statistics, a proposal to make 2012 International Sleep Year
The Umbrellas of Colombo – A poem about the mysterious movements of umbrellas in Sri Lanka’s capital city.
Ulysses and the road home – Thought about the strange name of Alitalia’s in-flight magazine.
Undiscovered Amazon Tribes – If you pick a strange book on Amazon, it’s very likely that you will find that “People who bought this book also bought…” will come up with some surprising suggestions.
Uruku Tumi Gushiku – A song for getting up and doing things. Blues meets Okinawan.
Vinylia – The Artificial Language of Dervish – About the creation of a language with fascinating verb forms
Vinylia First Three Chapters – Where you can read the beginning of my novel, Vinylia
Volcanic Money – Indonesia’s bold 100 Rupiah note.
Walking near the Roman Forum – The past below the future falling on our heads (poem)
Wee Klinks 2 – arabmusique, lyrikline, Hugh Laurie’s Dylan impression, Bibliodyssey
Wee Klinks 3 – Decorative umbrellas, Django Bates, Oriental Architecture, Post-Modernist Generator
What does the Queen sing in the shower? – Halfpenny thought about an anthem for everyman.
The Whole Country Dances – About the North Korean music scene. Unforgettable songs like Nightingales Sing in Our Factory Compound, Song of Automation Full of Happiness, Coming to Remove Weeds from the Sky and many other of your favourites.
The Winter Starlings – Beauty and raining shit (poem)
Woollen Attitudes – Picture of an old advertisement for socks
Wordle Quiz – Can you re-assemble famous texts which have been jumbled?
Words Enacted – A lovely video about words
The World is Big – Our minds should be so too (poem)
Wislawa Szymborska – A word on statistics – If you have never read Wislawa Szymborska read this. This is the kind of poem you could stand up and read on the underground and everyone would listen.
Yaute-no-pec – A poem about buses and place names both falling to pieces.
Zagreb, the Balkan Bangkok – Discover Ivan Gundulic, the man behind Croatia’s main contribution to world civilisation: the necktie. All the ways to tie it. How to put one round an amphitheatre. And a surprising connection with a South-East Asian country.
Zeitoun, an iron fist descending – About “Zeitoun”, an outstanding book by Dave Eggers.
Zen and the Art of Taxation – How meditating on the US Tax Code can lead to enlightenment