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Wednesday 25 April 2012
My Rueful Secret
It's been the worst of interviews,
the best of them,
an interview of halves -
how many halves, I can't be sure,
why would you ask?
I've scuppered several, damned if I've not,
seen chances down the drain,
watched as the doors were slowly closing on me,
thought: I'll never be
a grammar school boy with a tassel on my cap.
(For that at least, relief!)
Almost I'd heard
the great bolts on their oaken doors
shot home. But then:
What would you like to be when you leave school?
"An architect," I'd said...
and what was that? Squeak, grate, grind, rasping sounds
were opened just a bit?
Subtle change of atmosphere...
Let's say you are... you're asked
to plan a school like this. What will you put
to benefit us all,staff and pupils equally?
"Good heating, lighting, air conditioning..." And where
did that come from? And at that point
did I hear sounds of hinges opening?
Well, I was in - but in
with one enormous secret tucked inside my head.
I could not tell them, then or later, that
I had this plan
nursed this desire
fond dream - to build
what would have rivalled the as yet unbuilt
Museum of Bilbao
and the equally unthought of Sydney
My edifice I'd have
flout every rule that architects dream up.
Inverted pyramids to form inverted pyramids
all standing on their points
with from them flying arabesques of aluminium
anodised in rainbow colours.
Goodbye to boring calculations,
to hell with tensile strength, sheer strength
and ratios of weight to strength,
forget those co-efficients, out of date
and such a drag on such as me;
a building built against the odds;
no chance it might support itself -
except it would,
by some amazing formula
I'd not yet found.
How could I tell those staid
and academic gentlemen
that what I'd planned-
had I told all -
my true intent,
made what I'd said
a false pretence?