These are excellent: Squalia, (as opposed to Qualia),
they could seem the status life details of a katabatic
descent towards Rock Bottom: a bed in a shed;
taking notes on receipts, Rizla papers, train tickets,
the backs of packets; wearing naff tracky bottoms
lifted from ASDA and splattered with white
emulsion paint from doing up the band’s house
like a badge of honour; eating discarded Danish pastries
from the Co-op supermarket bin at the fringes of
society. Still, Squalia could also be revamped with intensity.
For example, what is the street-name for Ecstasy
when the band detune the guitars all the way down?
F sharp minor is the answer and the name of a number
by the band. It being recorded through state-of-the-art,
binaural earphones, earphones I tell you, with
tiny mics implanted inside, on that very weird album on
which I said I would plug my senses in the mains,
may be the reason I now hear soooo many voices.
They may be Squalia re-defined as squatters,
people who pay no rent or electricity as I didn’t
back in the days of said band. I was kicked out
of the band for weird behaviour; for instance I came
home from the pub, intoxicated on a cocktail
of noxious toxins of deleterious self-derision and
launched into a speech in an imaginary language
no-one could understand, keeping it up for half
an hour, ad-libbing it, impromptu while rolling
around like in a neo-shamanic ritual on the ground.
Just when they thought they had lost me forever,
I went and had sex with the shed’s cold, concrete floor
on Ecstasy, and it wasn’t long before I was booted
out of my own band. The Flood we were called
and were a Cambridge-based jam band who only
recorded through binaural earphones. By the time
I got home to the north I was angry and walked
up the fell, ranting in the cassette tape wind. I
did not know who had phoned my mum, concerned,
and had her collect me. I still don’t, but no longer
care, for all I embarked on a program of meditation,
detox, dreamwork, reading and exercise, and
despite then being placed under an evil curse, got
a good degree as if I had wilfully walked away
from music to pursue poetry and become a graduate. -
I conceived of Lancaster University as a type of word-guitar
made by Fender whereupon the voices came to me.
They said among many other things that I should
“lose the book or the guitar” which is a very difficult
decision to make and one I still have not made absolutely.


John F.B. Tucker

If you have any thoughts about these poems,  John F.B. Tucker would be pleased to hear them