Living with the Truth Stranger than Fiction This Is Not About What You Think Milligan and Murphy Making Sense

Wednesday, 3 March 2010

Aggie and Shuggie 23

 trousers

Aggie:

Shuggie? As tha yoo?

Shuggie:

Aye, hen, smee.

Aggie:

Don’t turn tha lights oan. Summy us ur tryin t’get some shuteye.

Shuggie:

Soary, hen.

Aggie:

So whit time d’ye caw thas?

Shuggie:

Haff past tamorra? Ah don know. Late.

Aggie:

At’s haff past Ah’m gonna kick yer arse raight doon those stairs.

Shuggie:

Ah wis jist oot ferra wee bevvy wi Maggie’s boyfreen.

Aggie:

Duggie Scoatt?

Shuggie:

Tha very chappie.

Aggie:

Oh. An whit wis e sayin t’it?

Shuggie:

E wis shawin me refyoos af oor Jim’s books oan is noo netbook.

Aggie:

An whit’s a netbook when at’s at hame?

Shuggie:

Ah dunno. At's like yon Etch-a-Sketch oanly wi Interweb access.

Aggie:

An wur they guid refyoos?

Shuggie:

Aye, aye, y’know oor Jim aywis gets guid refyoos.

Aggie:

Did y’see tha wan frae Shearp Wurds?

Shuggie:

Naw, as tha anuffer wan?

Aggie:

Aye. An e’s goat three new poyems published tae, two in Aepple Valley Refyoo and wan in Snakeskin.

Shuggie:

Cun Ah no read at aw tha morra? Ah’m a wee bit skelly-eyed t’tell ye tha trooth.

Aggie:

Yerras pished as a fish tha’s tried t swally tha Clyde, tha’s whit yoo ur.

Shuggie:

Yer cud be raight thur, hen. [Starts to undress]

Aggie:

Hoy!

Shuggie:

Fer Goad’s sake. Whit noo?

Aggie:

Whur d’ye hink yoor goin?

Shuggie:

Ah’m ready fer ma scratcher, wumman, tha’s whur am goin.

Aggie:

No wi me yer rat-faced . . . Jaysus Sufferin! Did yoo jist fart?

Shuggie:

At wur no me.

Aggie:

Wull don look at me.

Shuggie:

At wuura tha dug.

Aggie:

How cun yoo staun thur wi yer troosers at haff-mast an lie t’me like that, Shuggie?

Shuggie:

Ah dunno, Ah jist opens ma gob an tripe pours oot.

Aggie:

Ye’ve been at tha onyun bajis agin, huvvun’t ye?

Shuggie:

Aye.

Aggie:

Wull, oot wi yoo.

Shuggie:

Oot whur?

Aggie:

Oota ma boodwar an oanty tha cooch wi yoo. Yer hoachin.

Shuggie:

But...

Aggie:

An take yer smelly butt wi ye.

Shuggie:

Ah suppose thur’s nae chance af a wee fryup?

Aggie:

Oot!

16 comments:

Ann Elle Altman said...

When I finally got the hang of the words written that way, it was a funny story. I didn't realize you wrote it on a regular basis.

ann

Jim Murdoch said...

Yes, Ann, I’ve been writing ‘Aggie and Shuggies’ since my first book came out. I just didn’t fancy putting up a post every time a new review went up pleading with people to buy the damn thing. So I devised these fake Glaswegian relatives to entertain people. And if they want to click on the links and read the reviews all good and well. This time I’ve three new poems on e-zines so I decided to plug them as well.

Sorlil said...

Congrats on the poems, I really like your 'father' ones, especially Visitation Rights.

Jim Murdoch said...

Thanks, Sorlil. It’s quite a nice wee e-zine, Apple Valley Review. I especially like the fact that you get the chance to include an author’s statement. (It’s right down the bottom after the bio if you missed it.)

Cat said...

Oh this was a good piece, the words took some work initially, but I loved the voice you gave this!

Jim Murdoch said...

And the thing is, Cat, the accent's not put on. That's how some of us talk here. I remember when my wife first came over here (she's from California) and I was having a conversation with a guy in a book shop, afterwards she asked me what we'd been talking about because she hadn't understood a word he'd said.

I hope you remembered to click on the links to read the review and the poems.

kww said...

Jim - I loved the poems in Apple Valley Review and I remember the posting you'd written about how we (readers) expect that poetry is autobiographical. The author's statement certainly made clear the fiction in the poems and the metaphorical truths as well. Good gosh you've written some good stuff there.

The poems are so alive. There are some fathers and some sons out there - perhaps millions - for which these are a perfect, and perhaps sad, fit. I mean it's nice to know your dad - even if you get clipped once in awhile. I think. As long as it's only once in awhile.

Anyway.

The author's notes are almost poetry as well - found poetry - if I remember another of your postings well enough.

Poetry is fiction.
I am not that son.

My father never scored. . .
. . . my performances

kww said...

Oh - and I'm still trying to work out the one in Snakeskin.

Kass said...

Etch-a-Sketch with interweb access! Good one.

Jim Murdoch said...

Glad you like the two father poems, Koe. I wonder how the poems would work if we replaced ‘father’ with ‘mother’, would they work the same? I think they would. And although I think more women might relate to the poems then I don’t think it would exclude all men. Mothers can be just as much of an influence on their sons – if not more so – than their fathers. It’s just I grew up with a dominant father and so find dominant mothers a bit hard to understand.

As for the poem in Snakeskin, it’s really something of nothing. The euphemism we use here in the west for ejaculation is ‘to cum’. I read, or heard, somewhere that in the east that’s not the euphemism of choice. They say, “I’ve gone” which puts a whole new perspective on the experience. The second expression that’s always puzzled me is the word ‘deflower’ for taking someone’s virginity. Why? There are no flowers involved. Lastly, the Star Trek quote is there just to underline how alien the experience of sex is, the very first time anyway. It doesn’t mean the speaker is Oriental (although she could well be) but it does mean she’s lost her virginity to whoever she’s addressing.

And, Kass, what can I say? It does!

kww said...

Jim - I went back and read both poems. Visitation Rights, I think, would work with either a mother or a father. That last line is still haunting. Using 'wake' in both its meanings is so impactful in this. Especially as the last word in the poem. Every time I read it, it seems to get sadder - I guess because more time passes from the death of the father and the death of the son gets closer.
It's interesting to me that you ask this question - about changing the character from father to mother. I wouldn't have considered it. I guess because, although I've written very few poems, the characters (when there are characters) are so set in my mind. But, I agree, Visitation Rights works as well with mother as well as father.

Marks - I like it better, I think, as a father poem. In that, a man going to the psychotherapist to talk about dad's score-keeping seems - okay - but going there to talk about mom and how tough she was seems. Well, you know, not okay. But I am assuming that the narrator is a man in this too - and as you state poetry is fiction and the narrator is never stated.

Thanks for all of the food for thought and the explanation of 'Poem without a Flower.'

Jim Murdoch said...

Thanks for coming back to me on this, Koe. The problem you and I both have is we are who we are. There are plenty of men for whom their mother is without a doubt the most dominant of their parents (Samuel Beckett and Alan Bennett both jump to my mind). You're right, of course, that the gender of the narrator isn't mentioned and so I'd be interested to hear how females read the poems.

Elisabeth said...

You're right, Jim, I did overlook this Aggie and Shuggie episode. Thanks for alerting me to it.

Again I read it out loud and it works well for me. It reminds me of how I have to read Dutch out loud to make sense of it. the words on the page come to life when I hear them otherwise they seem like an odd conglomeration of letters.

I recommend this approach to others. Read it out loud and you will hear the conversation between this glorious irreligious couple.

'Yerras pished as a fish tha’s tried t swally tha Clyde, tha’s whit yoo ur.'

I love these lines, Jim, and your poems, all three of them. I've already read 'Marks' before, the one addressed to a psychotherapist.

I find it fascinating that your book gets a mark too from the reviewer.

It's a terrific review. I don't see why it needs to be quantified. There's room for numbers in my mind but not when they apply to things like people, poems, art, books and films. Such reviews are subjective and uncertain. A numerical score implies certainty.

That's the lament in your Marks poem and in a way it comes across in both the Visitation and the Japanese flower poem.

All of this is wonderful work, Jim. I love the perspective it offers on your world, from many different angles, the imaginary and the autobiographical. I enjoyed it immensely. Thanks.

Jim Murdoch said...

Thanks, Lis. The “fish” line is original. I was looking for an equivalent to “drunk as a skunk” to be honest. As for marking reviews, as you know I don’t bother with a star rating on my site. I don’t think you can distil a book down to a number. I suppose I could give a series of stars for, say, readability, page-turnability, memorableness, that kind of thing, but, as you say, it is so subjective. It’s like in the review for Little Hands Clapping when I say that’s it’s not a great book but you’ll find yourself saying, “That was a great book,” when you’ve finished it.

Dave King said...

Superb, as ever - as you've prob ably gathered, I'm catching up again!

Jim Murdoch said...

At your leisure, Dave, at your leisure.

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