GOODNIGHT CLEO

cleopatra 1658 guido cagnacci‘The Death of Cleopatra’ by Guido Cagnacci – 1658

The air was still. The day was cold and bleak. From the chimney stack, all along either side of the rooftop there was a static murmuration of starlings looking a bit worried. I gave up counting when I got to sixty.

In town, what’s left of the roof of what was once a posh hotel until it got burnt out years ago, maybe the same number of pigeons, maybe more. I had to look up the collective noun for pigeons. I wish I hadn’t because they’ve got loads. None of them very imaginative. Then again, pigeons don’t major in creativity. I settled for just the two. A bunch of pigeons flying is a ‘flight’; a bunch of pigeons hanging out together is called a ‘flock’. Why double up?

There’s a reason for everything that happens. In the case of the murmuration of static starlings and the flock of pigeons hanging out doing nothing much except looking worried, it was because the sky immediately above the rooftops was a sea mist so dense the sun had got bored and given up on trying to burn it off.

Seagulls? None to be seen anywhere. I guessed they’d all flown across The Channel to France where the skies were blue. Good thinking.

Later, in the music shop, the owner didn’t leave me in peace when I was road-testing a guitar. He kept talking on and on and on. I kept trying to play the guitar. I lost the will when he said apropos nothing that he could restring a guitar blindfolded. I gave up on road-testing his guitars.

On the way out of the shop his wife at the till where I wasn’t spending any money called me over and told me that her husband was a liar and couldn’t restring a guitar blindfolded. I’d already guessed that. Only a genius could do that.

Outside I got to thinking why do blindfolds exist when anyone, if they really wanted to, could just shut their eyes and get the same effect. It gets annoying when people put things inside my head that I didn’t want to know in the first place.

Back home instead of starting work I had to check out on Google exactly why blindfolds exist. What I learnt was that they’re used as sleep masks; when playing ‘pin the tail on the donkey’; kidnapping victims; executions, sex games and some other odd things. I wish I hadn’t checked it out as all those things could be achieved by just closing your eyes and I knew that in the first place. Another ten minutes of my life I won’t get back.

Time for some music. A new composition. The first time I’ve created music using my new Fender Vintage American Telecaster. It’s called ‘Goodnight Cleopatra’. I can only compose guitar genre instrumental stuff when I have a picture in my head. On this occasion it was Cleo around the time she let a poisonous asp have a bite of her to end it all. I tried to reflect in music what would have been her mindset variations at the time. I’m liking the build. I hope you enjoy;

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