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

Monday, 29 February 2016

Sunday, 28 February 2016

If Only We Saw History As Tidal......

Much of the 'Atheism' that I accept,
because I accept the folk who profess it,
owes more than is admitted to people
trying to dump their pasts,
the stuff of their metaphorical back yards,
anywhere but home. Only to find said place
refills-with what they threw out, returned recycled
and in worse condition for being unrefreshed.

When folks try to present their lives as all-new
as if they have never been where they are now, 
we know that denial is close, just behind them.

Note To Self (1)

Because in the short term permanent looks the same as temporary...

Essay Ahoy; Review Of The Film 'Spotlight'

Every so often a subject absorbs me,
provoking me to write at length, great length.
Much longer than I would impose on the folks
who usually find me here. If you have the time
and the curiousity please find the latest essay here.  

Saturday, 27 February 2016

Frozen Warnings

The Martin Niemoller quote

First they came for the Socialists, and I did not speak out—
Because I was not a Socialist.

Then they came for the Trade Unionists, and I did not speak out—
Because I was not a Trade Unionist.
Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out—
Because I was not a Jew.
Then they came for me—and there was no one left to speak for me.
 
is rightly famous and often paraphrased in social media
to point towards who the latest dangerous demagogue is
for their presuming to speak for all through a biased media
which is distorts every message whilst drowning other voices.

But when Martin spoke his truth at the public meetings
he was invited to lead his warning came after WW2
and it was told to convict reticent Protestants of the silence
that had made them complicit whilst other groups perished.
It took him many years to appreciate the error in his ways.

The greater the cause, the later the warning is given.
Far too many a warnings are heard after the event. 

Friday, 26 February 2016

Two Philosophers In The Pub

Down at their local pub The Duck and Gun Dog,
linguist Roland Barthes and philosopher Slavoj Zizek
were sharing pints and misfortunes, hoping for flattery
from their being overheard by merely ordinary mortals.
Slavoj reached the peak of his discource with...
'Love feels like.. ..a great misfortune, a monstrous parasite,
a permanent state of emergency that ruins all small pleasures'.
After an aptly quiet reflection Roland took a long sip on his pint,
looked around their confused audience and replied to Slazoj
'Being in love is like being in Auschwitz'.
At the bar, in the background, more rounds were ordered.
An anonymous voice heavy with regret broke the tension
by shouting above the hubub 'Shall we all toast the dead?
They are all more alive than us lot! They are our future!'.
He suggestion was followed by a heavy silence,
broken by the ringing of the tocsin bell. Last orders.

Thursday, 25 February 2016

An Alphabet Of The Effects Of World Illiteracy

A is for A.I.D.S which still spreads like wildfire.
B is for Bloodshed, where grief breeds desire.
C is for Child brides, how tradition removes choice.
D is for Drug Abuse, how life loses it's voice.
E is for Ebola, which destroys life and tradition.
F is for Female Genital Mutilation which pleases men.
G is for Gender Inequality which breeds the loss of respect.
H is for homelessness, which inspires neglect.
I is for Infant Mortality which makes parents want more.
J is for Jail, where the young get sent and they lock the door.
K is for Kalashnikov-a reliably apalling invention. Encore!
L is for Life Expectancy-their hopes are shorter than yours.
M is for Malnutrition-where hope empties out intention.
N is for No Childhood,where child labour crushes invention.
O is for Overdose, proof to others of self neglect.
P is for Poverty, the dirt poor living rich in regret.
Q is for Quitting, leaving school early to work in the factory.
R is for Radicalisation, teenage fears rendered a reality.
S is for S.T.Ds, something many men carry, pass on, and deny.
T is for Trillion, as in $ promises for which the poor have to apply.
U is for Undermined, which describes the value of the vote.
V is for Voiceless-where elections make leaders seem remote.
W is for World Hunger, always looking for someone to feed on.
X is for X-rated, where the innocent are sexualised by porn.
Y is for Young Offenders, who consumately wish they'd never been born.
Z is for Zero, the number of options that some 800,000,000 humans have left
when all the above have done their work, and yet many affected by these things
remain far more cheerful than we would if we had suffered similar.

Wednesday, 24 February 2016

My Old Non-Life

I'll never understand why in the seventies and eighties
the people around me said that I fitted around them so well.
Was my obvious discomfort with myself really comparable with theirs?

Monday, 22 February 2016

Transports Of Delight

I have hitched lifts for nearly forty years.
I still find joy in the neighbourly driver
who's kindness gets me where I need to go.

The drivers I admire most
are those who are the least prerared.
My measure of this how much rubbish
there is in the foot well where I put my feet,
and how the driver has to move their mobile phone
which was on the seat and is still recharging.

The biggest surprise comes at the end of the lift,
as an easy conversation is drawn to an abrupt close.
The drivers who are most at ease pick up their phones
and before I can leave take an in-car selfie of the two of us.

I wonder, but don't worry, where the image might travel.
People are far too inattentive, and images on phones
are far too numerous, for what I leave to come back at me.

Sunday, 21 February 2016

The Democratic Cycle

In The West, rich in  'free speech', the 'reform' gag is replaced by being selectively deaf.

Saturday, 20 February 2016

Think Local, Act Global, Never Change

Every time I hear the latest corporate rebutals
as yet another 'too big to fail' system collapses,
and cheating employees are publicly sacrificed
for having secretly shorted the system to prop it up  
I remember the dysfunctional family who's infalability
was well understood through their oft repeated mantra;
'It's not me, it is them others'; where the 'it's'
denied all sense of there ever being a problem.

Thursday, 18 February 2016

Unknown Unknowns

Everyone knows that people lie.
Words like these eases the means
for folks to get their own way,
without being seen to.

What gets lost in the mellee
of half truths that cover the liar
is the hidden depreciation
of what the liar is lying about.


Wednesday, 17 February 2016

Tuesday, 16 February 2016

Understanding vs Education

The more 'educated' I became
the better I got at grading my fading sanity,
until on my way to the grave
hope became a mere formality.   

Self Assessment

When you find what to compare me with I am sure the comparison with me will flatter it .

Monday, 15 February 2016

Weather Report

If only more beards fell from the skies....

Micro-Dystopias

I don't believe in memes,
I simply don't accept the theory,
but where I find evidence
of how insincerity runs the world
I will make an exception.

Sunday, 14 February 2016

Acceptance vs Compromise

I am glad Facebook has accepted me,
in spite of my being middle aged and male.
I am even gladder to take my time
in choosing who to call a friend,
though the choice is shrinking.
I am grateful for those who accept me.

But I think I must like being surprised
at my own niavety, as other people itch
whilst exercising their right to bitch
whilst making targets, through posts,
on subjects they affect to disdain.

I still prefer being singular and positive.

Saturday, 13 February 2016

Pick Any Two

Any more and it stretches the relationship, maybe to breaking point....

Friday, 12 February 2016

The Wages Of Hope Are Disappointment

The time when the word 'maladjusted'
most aptly described me in school
was when the class was taught maths.

I knew how to do sums.
I'd learnt my times tables by rote,
out loud in infants school. Aged 7.
I could add, subtract and multiply, fine
-as long as the numbers were abstract.
But the older I got the more often maths
was applied to something called 'real life'
-which was the very thing that divided me.....

I was tasked to do a sum based on wages
and deductions and my mind froze.
My bones knew about work, wages and taxes-
they all caused worry and created a stress
where we were glad when domestic violence
was merely occasional. Where it happened
it was a respite for some, whilst for others
it reinforced a cowering dependence with no exit.
Because of this my parents house was silent
on all matters pertainign to sex, poltics, religion,
or money. Nobody ever talked about wages. 

The pressure to live cheaply brought more pressure,
to live more even more cheaply. Under pressure
we censored all discussion about why we lived that way.
My father kept this rule by keeping the figures
on his pay slip to himself. Mother colluded in this
by accepting what he chose to give. His earnings
were one of our many of very well kept secrets.

I know now that I should have said to the teacher
'I can't do your sum because my family does not discuss money,
you will have to write to my Dad and ask him what the answer
to this sum is since it is about wages. Only he in the family knows about them.
The questions I am permitted to answer have to have no relation to real life.'.

Or I could have asked the teacher the following....
'Where in this sum is the man's drinking money?'
and 'If drink costs X per pint then how much cash
will he have to spend with his mates in the pub,
for them to remain suffuciently sober enough to get home
without falling over, but still drunk enough to threaten
and beat up their wives when they arrive?
How much alcohol will they all need to keep in their system
to collectively forget/deny their actions the following day?'.

But this was maths, not real life.
Questions about substances could only be asked about in Science.
And all talk of money was to meant to teach us grattitude at being kept.

Thursday, 11 February 2016

Hoarders

fear both famine and feast,
because each
tests their ability
to withstand shared enjoyment.

Wednesday, 10 February 2016

Tuesday, 9 February 2016

The Price Of Vice

Since personal vice is unavoidable
my prescription for a better life
is to choose vices that remain fun,
particularly where the activity is unclean.

If dirt is inevitable in life
we have to find the vitality
in 'being dirty'.

More than that make sure the vice
of your choice won't make you secretive
or put you in a debt which accumulates.
This will divide you in your relationships.

Your vice will take up more time than you,
and those you share it with, thought it would.
As anyone on a computer knows, attention spans
and time will always stretch and decieve us
-particularly when finding absorption through fun.

Where you can, be aware of your own absurdity
when engaged in this activity-it will help you
choose better when to give your vice a rest.
It has to renew itself for when you enjoy it next.

And fnally where you have responcibilities
for, or over, dependents please be sure
that price of your vice does not put them in debt,
as-unaware of your secrecy towards yourself-
they try to be open, seeking their own vices and desires.

Monday, 8 February 2016

Just War?

The only war that could be ethical
would be one that stopped all wars-forever.
To be right it would have to leave intact all life
that remained, with no further effect on anything,
or on anyone. So far no such war has been fought.

Every war ever known
has recycled old enmities
by creating new reasons for war.

Sunday, 7 February 2016

Close, Closer, Closed

Only the most closed of societies
find it vital to spy on freer societies,
because they presume that life abroad
is as secretive and ritualised
as their governments have made
life at home for the average citizen.

Friday, 5 February 2016

Putting The 'Us' Into 'Must'

History is the coersive narrative
which infects the present through the past.
The biggest mystery it leaves unsolved
is the efforts the earth would have to make
for history to outlive our carelessness.

  

Thursday, 4 February 2016

I Crossed My Heart

and hoped to live,
feeling no need to ask
whether my actions
were based in faith, or not.....

Wednesday, 3 February 2016

Good Business?

Every lawyer knows that Revenge
is best served not just when cold,
but when it is presented as case law
through which to divide the people
who have been persuaded to see
the law as the solution to their problems.

Lawyers know that law solves nothing outside of itself......

Tuesday, 2 February 2016

I Can Only Agree With Her....

'Bigamy is having one husband too many,
monogamy is the same'-author Erica Jong

Long Words 'R' Us

I have dyspraxia
and I am ambidextrous.
That makes me dysfunctional
with not just one hand, but two.....

Monday, 1 February 2016