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So your relationship ends and what do you do? Instead of enjoying your freedom, you rush straight into another one, observes Laurence Inman. And that applies even if you're an ex-Beatle who should have got hitched to Jane Asher anyway.

I feel really sorry for both Paul McCartney and Heather Mills.

Theirs is a story with a very significant moral for our times: no matter how rich, talented, loved, confident and nice you are (and, not knowing either of them, I mean both) you are never automatically protected from your own folly, or haste, or self-deception in matters involving personal relationships.

And as I hinted in my piece a few weeks ago (23.8.07) if anything is going to bring these unfortunate personal traits bubbling and gasping to the surface then it is the whole process of choosing our life-partners.

And if anything could be better calculated to bring out the pettiness, vindictiveness and sheer nastiness lurking in the rancid drain of our personalities, then it's the whole dreadful process of separating ourselves from them and starting again.

And if anything is more likely to drag us back to beyond Square One, in fact to Square Minus Ten, then it's hurtling into a second disaster too soon after the first one, before you've had a chance to be an adolescent again for a year or two.

You can be as rich and famous as you like, but it will not be enough to stop you deliberately walking to the railway station and buying a one-way ticket to Self-Destruction Falls, Nebraska, once, twice or even five times.

Anyway, my ulterior motive for mentioning all this is that I once wrote what more than one person has called 'a not as bad as the other one you showed me" poem on the subject, called Asunder.

I am including it in my next self-produced booklet. (I am at present in the phase which will be known to my future biographers as 'pre-publication.')

I will also be reading it at MAC on November 22nd, when I will be the headline turn at Poetry Bites.


Revolver. The Beatles. Dylan. Blood on the Tracks.

Michael Tippett. Fantasia Concertante on a Theme of Corelli.


Tchaikovsky. Fourth Symphony. Tchaikovsky. Piano Concerto No. 1.

Carpenters. Greatest Hits.


James Joyce. Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man.

e.e.cummings. Collected Poems.

Mine, I think.

Wuthering Heights. Jane Eyre.

Mine as well ? Sure ?

The Godfather Part One. The Godfather Part Two.

I'm having them.

The Godfather Part Three.

You, you. Go on.

The afternoon we spent in East Coker

In the summer of 1976, in that pub....

Who was it with us ? Do you remember ?

Well' I'll have that one then.

But look,

The night I drank eleven pints and told

Your mother that her political opinions

Were the most wilfully stupid I'd ever heard –

Will you have that ?

The sudden certainty that any particular instant,

No matter how dead or hollow, will end up

Being yearned for back.....and the knowledge

That there's no such thing as love, no thing,

No state-of-being, no confine of feeling;

It was just something we happen to have said.

I'll keep that if you like.

But the rest, you can have. The effort

We undoubtedly made to live, gone in a mist,

The friends, coming, going, re-grouping,

All of it, the acting and coming and going.

Breathing and sleeping, lines of days and years,

The whole of the Twentieth Century, just to be sure.

Take that. Take it all.

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