........................................................................................ - a weBlog by Snowy and me.

Tuesday, 30 June 2015

Signs Of Greater Age (35)

1-Learning that isms don't work,
they are out-of-scale solutions.
It does not matter which ism
or cause it is, whatever is true
and worth following about it
there is a lot more that proves
even more worth forgetting.

2-Finding the politics
of politicians your own age
and younger rather immature.
Whatever party they stand for
what they say proves a triumph
for presentation, over content.

A Turkish Proverb

Good people are like candles;
they burn themselves up to give others light.

Monday, 29 June 2015

Not On my Watch?

For most of Christian History
the view from faith was 'I believe
that the world will end.
I really want that ending,
complete with all the suffering
which that entails, but....
  ...I don't want to be the agent-
I want it to happen through
my descendants in faith
and the obedient angels'.

Perhaps suffering is inevitable,
and we all know how pain
creates its own consequences.
But it seems to be an egotism
beyond belief to naturalize self  growth
into a pain that diminishes another,
particularly whilst denying the obverse,
zero-sum-logic, of how if we chose
we could live well on less
and reduce the discomfort of others.

Sunday, 28 June 2015

More Light Than Heat

Most people prefer to be the sun
-there to lighten up everyone’s life,
but I'd like to be the moon,
to illumin the darkest hour
of whoever is around me.

Saturday, 27 June 2015

A Good Idea

He was condemned for it, and survived, so may you.....

The Man Who Heard The Future

'Noise benumbs our ears and I truly believe that a few years from now we shall detect no differences except between large intervals. We shall lose sight of the semitone, and arrive at no longer perceiving anything but the third, then the fourth, finally the fifth.  Rhythmic shock increasingly plays the predominant role and no longer the sensual delight in melody. At the rate at which we are going, before the end of the century we shall have a very scanty and barbaric music, combining a rudimentary melody with brutally stressed rhythms – marvellously suited to the ears of the music lovers of the year 2000!' -written in 1951 by Arthur Honegger

Friday, 26 June 2015

The Fear Of Predictions

The conversation that annoys me most
is being told 'You are at a crossroads'.
It is as if my teller knows better than I
what is about to happen to me,
and is being firmly opaque about the detail.

Such talk is a cliche beyond belief.
Some roads will give us choices,
but they will never be obvious
before they are presented
-there is no point in being told.
Only scenes from a past
sufficiently beyond dispute
are fine to be described so-
but there what takes hold
is the art of telling a story.

Thursday, 25 June 2015

Misbeggoten (1)

The older I get the more I hear
of how people survive childhoods
when their parents are tired and ill,
and their education is sold to all
as it were the best education going.
But what to do when hindsight proves
that the only learning on offer
mangles a child beyond repair?
When they become yet another twisted adult
through the toxic mix of cynicism and sentiment?

The more I hear the more I wonder
if there is any such thing as sanity, at all.

The Self Actualising Life Belt

I am not sure it throws itself at folks though....

Wednesday, 24 June 2015

Signs Of Greater Age (34)

1-Prefering grizzly detective fiction
over news headlines-when well written
the thrillers are more cheerful, truthful,
and more personal, than the news
allows real life to appear to be.

2-Being unable to remember
when you took no tablets every day
because your health was that good.
You Also conveniently forget
how your medications increased
in number, one at a time,
to get to be what they are today.

3-Finding it hard to comprehend
how public knowledge that once seemed
enlightening and vital in the past
which is still true today is now seen
as passe and boring for being around too long.      

Tuesday, 23 June 2015

Changing Reasons

Recently I helped a friend through a time of need.
His generosity to me had always gone as uncounted
as the times we have made each other laugh.
But under pressure to care for another
I could not share with close friends
what I was pulling myself through.
I stood. I served. Inside I quietly fell apart.
From the outside in I propped myself up
as I gave the support daily that I had to.

I said nothing about it until it was all over.
I understand how one silence follows another,
but I feel shrunk by how I froze inside
-which was how the silence first started.

Monday, 22 June 2015

The American Way Of Death And Dishonesty

White America has defended the right to own a gun
as an integral to citizenship well before their constitution
enshrined it so. But 239 years on from that enshrining
of the right of the individual to defend the state
with firearms for every single 'reasonable' homicide
-where a person has defended themselves with a gun
from attack there are 2 accidental deaths from similar,
but 34 deaths from attacks by those with guns
and a whopping 78 who use guns to commit suicide.
This would suggest that many more want to die
than live, for being a society of compulsive liars

Sunday, 21 June 2015

Clear As Mud

 This is the thing about enemies-they multiply and divide uncontrollably until we don't know who we are or who to trust.

Saturday, 20 June 2015

A Prediction

Confuse your suspicions with your enthusiasms
and you will end up with permanent mistrust.

Friday, 19 June 2015

The Gift Of Pride

From very early on in life
I learned how good second hand/
hand-me-down clothing could be.
Mother liked my school clothes
to come from thrift shops
rather than have to accept gifts
from condescending relatives,
or other charities where she knew
too much about what the gifts
had gone through to become hers
to get the last use out of them via me.

The best bargains were anonymous.
This is why, even today,
I like to give away what I have
whilst it has further life in it.
There is nothing meaner than a gift
that seems useful when it is given,
but on examination it proves worn
beyond all use to it's recipient
by the pride of its previous owner.

The recipient feels as used as the gift. 

Thursday, 18 June 2015

Hardship And Destiny

C.S. Lewis said “Hardship often prepares
an ordinary person for an extraordinary destiny.
Given the presence of more than 7,000,000,000
humans on this planet each unknowingly
and collectively making themselves
the ever higher apex in of a food chain
that is unsustainable, this does make the planet
we live off more extraordinary than we like to think.

Wednesday, 17 June 2015

A More Conscious Equality

Those who choose to not breed
do not seek so to be spiteful
towards family-as many claim.
Nor is their role to be 'eunuchs',
in some misunderstood Faith.
The main aim of not having children
is to promote maturity in relationships
through equality, by striving to be neither
parent nor child with people of the same gender.

Tuesday, 16 June 2015

When A Symbol Is More Than An Invention

'Homo sapiens is the species that invents symbols 
in which to invest passion and authority, 
then forgets that symbols are inventions.'
-Joyce Carol Oates

Monday, 15 June 2015

I Have Just Done My Early Christmas Shopping

The Electric Chair by Poynter Products, 1978.
Powered by a 9 volt battery, it would shock anyone who picked it up.

Sunday, 14 June 2015

The Grace In Our Mistakes

Why do atheists find Faith untenable?
One reason they refuse it house space
is the logic of Christian Forgiveness
where the hatred of sin in the Christian
weakens the redemptive love of the sinner
by their maker. Christians live
as if they controlled the world
when they can't control themselves.
Hatred is a heavy burden to carry.

Accepting the symptom whilst rejecting its cause
divides a person from what they do,
which leaves Christians going round in circles
as they vacillate between denial and acceptance
via hatred. This makes the love of the sinner
(or the love of anyone for that matter)
seem like an unwholesome insurance policy
which when called on for support
will not pay out for the detail in the small print.

We will only find an enduring forgiveness
when we discover the grace in our mistakes.

Saturday, 13 June 2015

Self Control

When other people get the edit
and give themselves the credit
for the person I seem to be
I will not recognize them, or me.
As needs be, I will deny myself.
Particularly when they lack intent
and they are merely 'making the best'
of a job they never wanted in the first place.

Friday, 12 June 2015

Thursday, 11 June 2015

When I Am Ill

my attitude and gratitude
-for help that I know I need-
always fight one another,
and reduce my ability
to be fair on other people.

Wednesday, 10 June 2015

Tuesday, 9 June 2015

Monday, 8 June 2015

Comfort Through Historical Misery

A friend and I used share jokes
about 'cupboard love as spirituality'.
It was the vice that Jehovah
abhorred most of all in his people
and yet it became the basis
on which he was worshiped.
Loyalty inspired by land ownership?
You bet! Even if it took 40 years
and many battles and divisions to do it.
Kingship which would lead to ruin?
That too! And if Jehovah did nothing
for his people then still his people
would worship him with their quid pro quos,
little realizing how much he loved them best
when they argued, and wanted, less.

Neither of us could bear to contemplate
all the blessings stolen, bartered and stymied,
throughout the length the Book Of Genesis.
Those lives were too miserable for comfort.

But those stories in endurance
made me realize that if we create
a good will now that can be shared
then we can live more fully by it.

Sunday, 7 June 2015

The Gift Lost In Transit

I took up painting less than ten years ago
and greatly enjoyed it. I had read art books
for decades and long been absorbed
by the way shape and colour, usually in oils,
blended to create memorable images.
When I started I was nearly self-taught
and I had the enthusiasm of a convert.
I felt renewed by how the process filled time.
I particularly like the paintings that 'failed',
-this left me more to do to finish them.
My hero in paint was alive in my lifetime
-Syd Barrett - a free-but-fragile-spirit
who's talent was never tied to money.
I even wrote about his brief period
as a popular writer/musician.
By accident I manage to sell one painting,
equaling the record of van Gogh-
the buyer asked my closest friend for it,
and some other pictures found homes
on the walls of friends houses,
whilst existing in versions online.

But six months ago I had to move,
and leave behind the spaces
I had set up to paint in. Until recently
I did not have had time to paint.
But every time I have set up and tried
in the new space I feel like a child
faced with a meal who is just not hungry,
and does not know why....    

Saturday, 6 June 2015

Positive Negativity

Many people I know hate hospitals
and yet have had to stay in them
in exceptional circumstances.
The first measure of them getting better
is their ability to complain when the care
imposed on them is nearer carelessness,
than they care to think, and food is terrible.
The second measure of improvement
is their ability to refuse help and services
that are no help to them, and the best
comes when they devise their own cures,
the better to heal on their own terms.

Friday, 5 June 2015

Absent Messages

The media often ask
'when Artificial Intelligence will arrive?'
And 'How they will we know it is here?'
But this question has already run past us 
-when television was a new mass medium
many parents assumed it had intelligence
-because it spoke to them in a language
they they thought they understood.
Many made it the child-minder-at-the-press-of-a-button.
Another labour saving gadget to give them ease
through disengagement. And it was sort-of free
(via an annual license fee paid by all to the BBC).
Most vitally it saved parents the awkwardness
of asking relatives they privately disliked depending on
to look after their children, and give them free time,
particularly when they knew that their relatives time
was just of just as much of value to them.

Parents only began to complain
when children went on the blink,
from overuse of this distant, absent, minder
-by which time it was too late.
What parents unthinkingly mistook
for artificial intelligence reflected
their own well nurtured lack of thought.

Thursday, 4 June 2015

Domestic Heresies (4)

'Expectations are dangerous
when they are both high and unformed'-
'We Need To Talk About Kevin' Lionel Shriver

Wednesday, 3 June 2015

The Freedom To Be Ill

Work makes us free,
and work makes us ill.
This sickening freedom
is ours to accept or refuse
-within certain limits.

Whatever we choose,
have foisted upon us,
or most likely accept
with reluctant passivity, we suffer.

To make a virtue of our pain
we turn it into a breezy willfulness.
The greater our freedom from pain
the greater the load on others,
the less we feel our own burden.

Tuesday, 2 June 2015

A Well Phrased Question

Whatever we want to be when we give up, 
growing up will make it more likely.

Monday, 1 June 2015

The Domestic Explanation Of The Trickle-Down Effect

Every week a man gets a wage packet and hides it from his wife who hides the fact from the children how he hides his wages from her. Every week he gives her just enough to keep his house in his estimation. She never knows how much he earns and can never find out. That is a secret hatched between the factory, him, and his work mates, a secret which the latter two parties like to forget daily on the way to the pub-the only entertainment fit for the detached Alpha Male.

But she knows that however much she looks after the house (which is in his name alone) and the children (who to himself he disowns, though he acknowledges them to her so she won't be openly offended) what he needs to deny is how household prices will always go up. This extorts her to make the money stretch further and heightens the art the poor have of concealing their ordinary and everyday poverty from themselves. In the long term this makes thrift surreal and genuine relief from poverty impossible-the covering up becomes more important than the intended effect of respite, even though respite would remove the need to cover up. As long as he gets his steak every Saturday as his treat with which to torment the family by feeding it to the cat when the the steak is cold, because he has had too much to drink that day* then all is well in the household and shall be forever. That poverty concealed is poverty maintained, and mothers conceal far more than they ever reveal about poverty by burying win/lose logic buried in unlistenable cliches about the past** is beside the point.

Amplify this story and you get to know how governments worldwide say they deal with their poorer citizenry and end up giving themselves more rights over their citizens than their citizens have over them. This makes poverty cheap to create and easy to maintain. This can be maintained as long the government are brazen enough and those they create poor enough that they cannot leave to where life might be better.

*My father did this every Saturday night for 25 years, always insisting that he was offered steak and always drinking too much because the the pub stayed open long enough at lunch time for him to come home feeling ill enough to take up a prime place in the house to rest in. His being ill made everyone very quiet and created quite an atmosphere.

**My mothers most personal subject of conversation was how she suffered for me when she was a teenager in WW2. The 'for me' bit was a classic guilt trip and like much false patriotism it worked very well. She suffered whilst men were dying in action in their thousands daily and vast landscapes were rendered sterile through bombing, and with much less complaint than she used. What she suffered was being given clothes by friends of her parents to get around the clothing ration, after which her parents friends' children would then point out to her the previous ownership of the clothing. She implied that her suffering was patriotic which to her meant that we had to do what she wanted. I now view it as how peer pressure becomes bullying amid relative poverty so far back from the front line that the only evidence that there was a war on was rationing.