Starlight city nestling inland
Where Magic is humming
And Mystery glows
Interwoven between threaded crossed lines
At each end is a watcher
A tall figurine
Stop centrally now, take care with your step
Yes, just there, on that same pinprick where
Stand the Artists who painted
The wild silken road.
Peter Li-ping lives far from the Silk Road but it’s always with him.
The square is wild. Thousands upon thousands are moving, a restless, heaving mass of laughing humanity running under a darkened autumn sky. Red-yellow-blue neon arches over the West End, a domed canopy of electrifying energy. No jungle of a million years’ duration ever matched this complexity.
This is London Town.
Peter Li-ping is a city-dweller who feels both nervous and relaxed in the concrete jungle. Peter thinks that to feel only one thing whilst in London would be pretty weird.
This guy in the restaurant had actually drunk straight from his soup bowl, leaving a neat pea-green soup moustache. Rolling up his sleeves to attack the main course, he’d splattered food up to his elbows. Watching him in the mirror, I supposed I really should address his lack of manners.
Peter Li-ping has yet to see an attractive moustache. He feels, however, that they are better than tattoos because they can be shaved off. Except when someone tattoos a moustache on themselves, which is really weird.
We swim in a sea of words. That’s what language is. We swim at the surface, and in the depths. Ocean bed and water’s surface constrain us. But there are no islands: we must swim somewhere, always. It’s a wonder we don’t drown.
Still, not a bad way to go…
Peter Li-ping knows a lot of words but not always what to do with them.
“It’s just a precaution. In case things turn bad.” I said, waving the document.
“No. Marriage isn’t a business arrangement,” she said.
I flung the paper. “Okay, let’s dump the whole relationship!”
Eleven years later, no sign of divorce. Maybe one day I’ll admit she was right.
Peter Li-ping lives and works in the Northeast of England. He has a background in philosophy and computing. He hopes that he will eventually get someone (else) to publish his writing. He thanks Tim for being the first (and so far only) publisher to appreciate his stories.
Once upon a time, in a faraway land, lived a beautiful princess. She was bored.
She decided to write stories.
“Write what you know,” someone told her once.
“No one will ever read them,” she thought. Dragons, princes, talking frogs… Who would believe such madness?
She told them to children.
Peter Li-ping lives and works in the Northeast of England. He has a background in philosophy and computing and hopes that someone will one day want to publish his fiction.
“Do you want to talk to her?” he asks.
She’s maintained contact with him. Now she asks him about me.
“Sure,” I say, almost casual, taking the phone. We’ve been apart. (She’s always so busy.) Now something happened, I’m leaving soon.
Our voices are breaking. Time is against us. Emotion.
Peter Li-ping is an experienced college lecturer and manager. He currently lives and works in the Northeast of England and has aspirations to have his written work published.