Like It’s Easy

I used to vote for Labour but I’m Tory now

For Tess is on my side so all is swell

Mother Earth incarnate with some great one-liners

She’ll fight my side and give the Euro hell

Used to be a socialist with common aim

But now I’ve seen the error of my ways

A right-wing party full of millionaires

I know they’ll care for me through all my days

Used to fight for workers and the rights of men

But now I trust in what the Tories spout

Fuck all the pensioners, the sick and the destitute

Fling all the foreigners out

Used to have a conscience but that’s over now

I’ve shifted sides to get a better deal

Man mind thyself is an awesome creed

Not rational, who cares, it’s what I feel

Won’t have need for hospital, I’m healthy, see

I’m never getting old so that’s okay

No family to care for and even if I did

I’d do it all myself for that’s my way

Theresa speaks my language now in trite soundbites

She’s closer to the cause I cannot name

Hallelujah, peace on earth, I’m Tory now

May god forgive my choice, I have no shame

 

He doesn’t. And neither do I.

 

If you’ve ever had a conscience or cared enough

Tell me why you now believe the right

Have they ever fought for you or your family

Have they ever even had you in their sight

Don’t tell me, like it’s easy

If you’ve ever thought of anyone but you

Vote for that party and take the pain

Society depends on what you do

Meanwhile…In Not So Sunny Scotia

In my absence here I have been reading and researching. I have been engaging with social media and clicking on links to papers and documents, to videos and newsreels. I have been trying to find out more about what is making this world tick in the particular manner it is currently ticking. Like a timebomb.

One of the things I enjoyed about studying history when I was at school was when I realised that nothing happens in isolation. My older brother was the one who helped me see this.

The night before an important history exam he offered to help me prepare by quizzing me. I failed. Miserably. If I remember correctly he asked me how the First World War started. I can’t remember my answer now.

I do remember he said, ‘No. You’re looking at this all wrong. You have to look at what was going on elsewhere. One place wasn’t operating in a vacuum to another. Think about it. While you’re up here studying, the rest of the family are doing other things. Some of those things will be unimportant to you. But some of them could be rocking your boat. What if mum is arguing with dad? What if ….’

And on he went, describing what other people may or may not be doing that may or may not be impacting on my life.

I got it.

I finally got it.

He then went on to describe a series of events happening around the world at the time leading up to the outbreak of WW1. I was hooked. Every story he told, he would say, ‘Meanwhile….’

Meanwhile.

I’ve had ‘meanwhile’ in my mind a lot this while back.

The USA is bitterly divided on who to elect for president. Why? What’s on offer and what’s coming out of the closet around each candidate? And how much of what is revealed is true? How trustworthy is the established media? Whose corner are they fighting and why? How much of alternative media can be trusted? What is the source of information, do they have an axe to grind and what might that be?

Meanwhile, Britain has decided to leave the European Union. The Tory party seem intent on going for the so-called ‘hard’ option despite all evidence that suggests it’s the wrong option. No access to the free market if it means having to accept uncontrolled borders. Why is the Tory Party so intent in going for the most difficult option? Why would the Tory Party – capitalists of the first order – attempt to embrace the centre ground and sacrifice the pound in the name of immigration? Why is the rhetoric emanating from that quarter embracing xenophobic speech and helping, by their rhetoric, to cultivate antagonism towards the immigrant population? How many of the decisions made by UKgov are independent of that ‘special relationship’ with the US?

Meanwhile, in Syria, atrocities are being carried out against children. Why? In whose interests is it to control that area and why?

Meanwhile, in Israel and Palestine, what was done to one is being done to others. Why? Apart from history, is there psychology at play? Abused becoming abusers? Why are we so divided on seeing the connections?

Meanwhile, back in not so sunny Scotland, Nicola Sturgeon has promised the possibility of a second independence referendum for Scotland. Why? Is she a power-hungry politician intent on breaking up the UK to the dissatisfaction of those who value its togetherness at all costs? Why are there still so many Scots still against it? It surely makes sense to support something which allows the Scottish people to determine their own course in the world. Why are some then still resistant to the independence that would allow their own voices to be heard by virtue of having a government that they actually voted for as opposed to always having the government that the rest of Britain votes for?

Meanwhile, 40million citizens in Russia are mobilized to prepare for nuclear war.

Meanwhile, Scotland is sitting on Trident. Rejected by Scotland. But housing it, nevertheless, because nowhere else on the British Isles is capable of accomodating it, apparently. And it would be too dangerous to house near a large city. Greater Glasgow (population just over 1million) is 39 miles from Faslane, the Trident nuclear base.

Meanwhile, the Scottish Government is doing everything it can to enhance renewable energy as the best way forward.

Meanwhile, oil, Syria.

Meanwhile, new sources of oil discovered off the west coast of Scotland.

Meanwhile, some still believe that Scotland’s last referendum on independence was rigged. You think for a minute you’re walking out of here? We need your tax receipts.

Meanwhile….

It goes on.

The one thing that I am sure of in this muddle of information is that we are being manipulated. All of us.

How is it possible that so much of mainstream media sings from the same hymn sheet while there is evidence to the contrary?

How is it possible that so much anti-immigrant speech is being allowed? Not only being allowed, but being poured forth, in some quarters, like an avalanche of putrid vomit.

How did Hitler rise to power? Why were so many susceptible to his particular brand of fascist rhetoric?

How did World War 2 begin? What was going on elsewhere around the world that culminated in yet another war to disprove that the first would be the war to end all wars?

What is all the fighting about?

Is it fear of ‘the other’? Is it notions of a Caliphate? Is it protectionism of borders?  Is it humanitarian? Is it oil?

Is it, in fact, about who controls the means of providing their citizens with the sources of energy that allow us to switch on that TV? To run that car? To have the life that we deserve? At all costs?

Meanwhile, here in Scotland, a nation of just over 5million, some of us have a dream. The dream is that when we gain independence – and we will, eventually – we will pursue policies that reject nuclear weapons wholesale, embrace renewable energy as the means of safeguarding our planet while still allowing us to function in the world. We reject xenophobia, reject homophobia, reject austerity that hurts the poorest in the country. The poorest whose voices are not heard and yet must pay the cost of failure of fiscal policies and the austerity needed to balance the books. Whose fiscal policies? Whose interests are they representing? Where did all that revenue go to? Who benefited?

We reject the sectarianism that is still rife in this country of ours. A sectarianism that divides the population into Catholics and Protestants. Into two colours of two football teams. Into ‘yoons’ and ‘cybernats’. We reject the idea, repeated by mainstream media and successive UK governments that we are ‘too stupid, too small, too poor’. Despite evidence to the contrary. Evidence deliberately hidden by successive UK governments.

Natural resources are gifted throughout this world of ours. There isn’t a place on this planet that could not be self-sufficient in safe energy if the will were there, by those who wield the power, to invest in research and production. Why is there no will? In whose short term interests is it to safeguard the status quo? Where there is the will there is a way. I believe that.

But the will is lacking. Why? That is the billion dollar question. The Rockefeller Foundation renounced fossil fuels in favour of pursuing renewables just prior to the Paris Climate Talks last year. From what I’ve read of the Rockefellers that sets alarm bells ringing. Has the agency, founded on snake oil, become so altruistic that its main concern now is to preserve the planet? Or just some of it?

Scotland has already shown that it is possible to produce energy through many different, safer means. Research and investment into wind, into tidal. Feckin’ kites for god’s sake! This country – rich in oil – wants another way. The research needs developing. But the finances available to further that aim have been cut by UKgov.

For yes, we receive pocket money from Westminster. Scotland may be an oil rich nation but the revenue from these many years of production has gone south. Privatised and misused. Successive UK governments – regardless of party politics – have used the revenue to give tax breaks to the rich or develop selected areas of England. All other countries can fend for themselves and then take the blame when what is allocated does not – cannot – counter policies made elsewhere for the benefit of some.

I recognise that large swathes of England have been neglected at the expense of a select few. I’m as heart sorry for them as I am for us. Wales. Northern Ireland. For Scotland.

I recognise that money rules the world.

I recognise that those whose sole pursuit is money and power don’t give a damn about anyone else but their own interests.

I recognise that people are considered collateral damage by those who wield power.

I recognise it. And I reject it.

I will fight for Scotland’s independence till the day I die. Not because we do actually contribute more to UK’s coffers than they advertise and we want to keep that to help our nation in the way we see fit. Valid though that reason is, it is, for me, not the main one.

It is because we are ignored.

It is because our values and aspirations are ignored and deemed unimportant.

It is because we are deemed expendable. It is because UKgov allows and encourages, advertises, an erroneous image of Scotland to sustain their power base.

It is because successive UK governments have allowed and promoted the notion that we are a nation of scroungers.

And they have not done that for no reason.

Double negatives aside, how does one conquer?

Divide.

Divide countries in a union – any union – by the language and information you use. Manipulation.

Blame ‘the other’ for failings in economic policies. Manipulation.

Control the media. Manipulation.

Lie. Manipulation.

 

Yes, this is my conspiracy theory.

But what is a conspiracy but what we are NOT told?

And we are not told plenty.

So I will continue to search. I shall continue to seek answers to why it is, apparently, imperative that wars are carried out in the name of one thing while ulterior motives are present.

I will continue to question why US and UK still sell weapons then cry foul when they are used. Why regimes are undermined then controlled. Why lives are unimportant in pursuit of something else. Anything else. Whether that be religion, oil, land or power for power’s sake.

Our world is a fucked up mess and we are all culpable. Every last one of us. We let our governments play by standards and rules that we are not privy to. We let them build the weapons of the future to maintain supremacy.

We let them.

Is Nicola different?

 

I don’t know.

I think she is.

I believe she is.

Her actions suggest she is.

 

But, no matter, it is not the SNP that drives the voice of independence.

I am not a member of the SNP.

I am not a member of any political party.

Been there, seen that, done it. Scottish Labour. The northern branch of Westminster. I did not leave them. They left me. They left all working class people in pursuit of something else. Something now indistinct from what the Tories stand for.

I abhor party politics.

They’ve proven time and again they do not work.

Except for themselves.

 

SNP? They, for me, are a vehicle that will give the people of Scotland the independence they need to change our corner of this globe and, hopefully, the wider world.

If I were to be a member of any political party I’d be Green.

It is the natural choice for someone who wants to protect our planet in oh, so many ways, from the worst excesses of ourselves.

Oh, one of the things that my brother and I disagreed on way back then.

Him: If I have to die I want everyone I know to go with me. I don’t want to think that everyone’s here while I’m not.

Me: Oh, God, no, when I die I want to think that there are people here I know and love keeping the story going.

 

I feel I should apologise for this post. Not the content, per se. But the hurried together, rather manic way in which it has been written. But, you know what, I’m not going to.

I will not apologise for being worried, for caring about people all over the planet, for wanting my children to have a future. For all children to have a future, no matter their race, creed or colour.

 

I also wanted to take the time to go back and insert references/links to what I have been finding. But, I’m not going to. I’m not going back. I’m going forward. The information is out there. The reasons are there. Find them. If there is one thing that the internet was surely invented for was to help save us from ourselves.

 

Meanwhile…

It’s Friday. I’m on holiday from school for a week. Thank heavens. What a week!

May your god or none go with you.

May you know peace wherever you are. May you know peace in your heart.

We’re just this tiny blue dot.

Meanwhile, elsewhere in space….

Hope Sings And Dances

Hope_1

(source)

Hope springs eternal in the fields where freedom grows

Gushes forth forever and, with liberty, it flows

It dances and it frolics while it buds and builds anew

Pleasures in the pastures where the words are strong and true

It glories in a garden that will always foster fair

Edifying, magnifying, everyone who’s there

It weaves and wanders wondrously, pervading every dream

Paves the way with petals that are always what they seem

It does not lie to have its way, though despairing may accuse

For it’s allied with the future and a world it won’t abuse

Hope springs and dances for the right to live again

In the hearts of all who seek it and feel its longing pain

Hope smiles and witnesses, will not abandon you

But dances still because of life and dreams it won’t eschew

Remember, in that garden, there is room for all who see

That winter cedes to spring that blooms each and every year

We nurture it and take it with us everywhere we go

And tag the dancers, one and all, so hope its seeds may sow

With hope that never dies a death, for eternally it springs

We build a world that starts, right here, where hope will dance and sing

Give hope a voice that reaches far and fills the hills and glens

A voice that touches one and all, transforms their lives and then

Let hope be in the notes of every song it can conceive

From island homes to city streets for, with hope, we may believe

So when hope asks for permission, for it never will impose

Let all who hear the voice of hope sing all the songs hope knows

Thoughts on ‘The Book Thief’

He came and stole the words she loved and hated,

In his pocket, while he gathered up the souls,

Confounded, over- under- estimation,

Humans with their fatal faulted goals.


Concentrating Nazis, all those people,

Compliant, in vicissitudes, they blamed,

As Death patrolled a world of colour flaming,

Where only very few were ever named.


The nameless marched and shuffled, sockets sunken,

Scarce of bread, more scarce of liberty,

Scapegoats for moustached aspirations,

Pillar-scourged by Christ’s humanity.


Muslims now, where Jews, or maybe black folk,

Gays perhaps or aborigines,

Red-skinned, each condemned in one stroke,

Pointed fingers back at you and me.


Death patrolled and wondered while he captured

Souls before they fell, he held them tight,

Whatever had they done and why the rapture

Of others he would meet one day or night.


Munchen times, the Dachaus and the ghettoes,

Golan Heights, Great Plains, upon our streets,

Look no further for the scythe or saviour,

Everyone we meet and how we greet.


Sickle thoughts while reading and to living,

One rush of air we’re gone, he passes on,

Steals our words, our actions, as deposits

Comes and goes, collects and moves along.


Banked eternally, all of our choices,

No choice for death, he does as he is told,

A Book Thief gifts her love, compassion,

Death carries secrets all should be foretold.

The Book Thief

 

 

Pick Your No’s

So, this past week, the weather here has been dire. Headlights on at three o’clock. All sorts of shit plummeting from skies the colour of mink. Kids in all day in the classroom in case they keel over from water exposure. Add in a full moon. High winds. Mental. Truly, it’s a thing. Kids and weather. And full moons.

My own youngest came into my sanctuary a few minutes ago – now gone 8p.m.- begging to go outside with the girl across the road. To play! Ffs!

I said yes.

It’s dark o’clock, thunder just rumbled, I can hear them squealing. Having a ball, apparently.

Nope. I don’t get it either.

But kids and weather. It’s really a thing.

I know. Been teaching for nigh on thirty years. Seven of my own. And, guaranteed, if it’s a sunny day, they want to shelter from the heat, play Minecraft and get on your mammaries. Underfoot for the hell of it.

Snow. Wind. Rain. Let me at it!

She’s just come back in – this second – ruddy-cheeked, happy as a pig in the proverbial, high as a kite. But not nearly as high as if I’d said no.

Sometimes no is the wrong word. I know. Take it from me. Pick your no moments.

 

 

 

In Passing

ghost02 (1)

(source to be attibuted once known)

She understood that ghosts who passed in hallways

Must haunt alone,

So with intent she went,

Gliding down long corridors so lonesome,

Shrilling to who’d listen of lives spent.

Misunderstood, by sound, she shrieked of lost loves,

Of winsome days

She thought would never end,

She banshee’d to the ears of any,

Bewailed the curse of death that none can mend.

On and on she floated length and breadth there,

Restricted by no walls,

She couldn’t see

That life went on around her while she wailed it.

Of other ghost departed? He was free.

Free to sit in lounge chair by a fire,

Warming toes long cold

But pleasured yet

In memories he mulled, eternal leisure,

Reliving with fresh relish, no regrets.

New residents abiding could not fathom

Chill in air, untranslated weeping,

While heat ensued from room where no logs burned,

Restive and relaxed, by turns, they reckoned

That house was haunted, but they learned

To stay among the ghosts, whose grim reminders,

Chilled and warmed

The lives that they still led,

Kept to loving chambers warmly favoured

Veered from vestigial, the more than six feet dead.

Alas, poor love, she never got the memo,

Rarely entered heated rooms

While still alive,

Someone should have saved her ‘ere her passing,

Some ghost or breathing entity of life.

If you meet this spectre in life passing

Be sure to point the way

To other rooms,

Some there are appointed of all life’s warmth,

Pass it on, in death as in life groomed.

No idea where this came from. Summer sunshine? I knew I would be back to rhyming before the day was out. Apparently, I can’t resist. Nor little stories in my mind as they pop in. Ah, well. Back to the sunshine. And life. 🙂

 

Life Choices

You have a choice to make, my son,

though choices may be stark,

to sleep the depths of virtual life

where no man makes his mark,

or wake each day to risen dawn

and shine, renewed by light

a choice, my son, though only one,

face the day or night.

You have a choice to make, my girl,

though choices may be few,

to languish lost in lethargy

where life is drained from you,

or risk the day, the challenges,

partake as one who dares

a choice, my girl, advising you,

live as one who cares.

You have a choice to make, my friend,

to urge the breath in you,

as death creeps slowly while you live,

one choice, or maybe two,

to be alive though life may dole

the hardships deigned to doom,

there’s light outside, my friend, your choice,

to give the rays more room.

I’ve had choices all the way,

many choices yet,

none undone, for chosen way

must live with all regret,

choices lived, forgotten,

while choices lost remain,

chances, choices never used,

to live or to abstain.

Traffic Jam

I keep missing comments and fond familiar voices,

Apologies to all concerned,

In time-restricted choices.

Another week of trafficking in all their dirty tricks

Should see me back to normal,

Far removed from politics,

At least on board to reading other stuff but guff,

Honest to god, now passed my chin,

Nearly had enough.

Some light romance, some music, a video or two,

Some photographs, a few more jokes,

Anything would do.

One more week, well, less in fact, then, bugger, I’ve reports,

Twenty-six, my darling kids,

Progress, tricks, endeavour for six-year old cohort.

Pretty soon, as time will tell, I’ll get to browse again,

Until then, apologies

For bypassing bloggy friends.

Halfway

This started off as one thing and ended as quite another. I’m afraid I have politics on the brain  – even when I’m trying to be romantic!

Halfway to our destination,

Chances still to meet,

Ticket ride from separation,

Journey at our feet.

Risk of worth to end frustration,

Ready for the heat,

Central hope of consummation,

Halfway to replete.