Wednesday, 9 February 2022

sumþyng lyk a mowse

dreem u and a telling came upon I
Nd of ay it was
a ryder am ay þru rivers of ur dreems
þo ay no not mi wey nor urs
informayson can not ryde þru tyme
þer r tayls too many Nd soles too few
þe sonderpayn of tyme the wal of cloks
in mi fison þe sunne had noe fase
nor the moone
nor wos þe urth krakd nor rithed þe ded but slept
Nd ay saw þer gryt amys binyth a blu ski
sux blu it was aye hav seen onli in ayebals Nd jems
Nd in mi memris of ur dreems
the hole wurlds ski a jem, or maybi an aye
but under it blud and red urþ
Nd men hakyng men in forms few
won blakke won yelo as pus but bryt as son
yu wer þer ho reeds this
yet saw not ay nor nefer wud till tymes turn
wen ay becum yu and yu remember ay
yt is al a grayt remembering
or ay þynk u dyd ther
Nd n ur dying dreem saw mi
a fison ov mi as ay a fison of u saw
a telling in mi telling and a telling þerof
feer me not þo ay seem teribil
aye am onli as aye must bi to ryd mi rod
as u wer as al ar
hu am aye hu ryts þis
wer in the weel was aye mad
aye no not
yet as u di beniþ þys gem ski as u reed mi lethers on þi pot as u reed the ink þay wil be
i wil tel to u a sekrit
ay am sumþyng lyk a mowse
sleep ay in mi palis of bryt ston
a frosen þyng
kurled Nd waytyng
slept ay long whyl mi serf ants kut the ston
wakanyng to voyses of jyants Nd to lyt
ay am þer king Nd they serf mi wel þo no mi not
lissen u ar þer aye heer u wel þo u heer mi not
sush plans u weev mi kynning
tyme ys r pryd Nd r kurs boþ


Pottery Shard, Red-Shift Period
Fons ignotus
Redacta in dolorem annihilationis
Vermin Cogitatio, non referri vel transcribi.


  1. As a non-native english speaker, this was a hard one to read :)

    1. dont worry, its not easy for us natives either haha

  2. At first I was PISSED OFF about having to read fake letters, but as I got to deciphering I began to enjoy it a lot - it feels densely meaningful, a bit like trying to get through Finnegans Wake.

    I think I've got that the language itself is compressed - blueshifted, and the Red-shift & black and yellow men hacking each other all together seem like an alchemical reference - three-quarters of the steps to creating the philosopher's stone (rubedo nigredo citrinitas). Going to spend a long while yet reading it again and again.

    This is something special. Thanks for writing it.

  3. Not been reading Riddley Walker have you?

    I couldn't help but think of

    1. I actually read Feesum Endjinn before Riddly Walker but probably they both had an influence.

    2. Can also recommend The Wake by Paul Kingsnorth for some great pseudo-Anglo-Saxon.

  4. i definitely ryd it in this guy's old timey voice