Qustion 5 for day five of Twindaddy‘s musical challenge asks if there is a song that becomes caught in your mind. For me it’s not a whole song. Three lines of a song heard many, many years ago shift in and out of my mind on a fairly frequent basis. I never know what comes next and never bothered about finding out. It never troubled me.
All I knew was that the words were from a Genesis album one of my older brothers owned when I was about 12. As is the way, when you have older siblings, their musical tastes are often absorbed and become your own. I found this to be true of so many different artistes that they listened to. Later, I would find it to be true of my older husband! And now even with my kids. It makes for quite mixed musical tastes.
This particular song comes from the album, ‘Selling England by the Pound’ and the song is entitled, ‘Dancing with the Moonlit Knight’. I couldn’t have told you that until a couple of days ago. And the only album that sprung to mind for me when I thought of Genesis was ‘A Trick of the Tail’. But, by that time, Phil Collins had taken over as lead vocalist while Peter Gabriel was still lead in the 1973 release of ‘Selling England by the Pound’.
When I researched the repeating lyrics I found myself further researching the meaning behind them. And this poem evolved. It seems to me that Peter Gabriel’s song was more than just an indictment on the seventies but a prophetic vision of the future.
Ghosts of future, past encased in music,
spectral lyrics hint of prophecy,
reflections of a present found too wanting,
poor changes wrought for human dignity.
Genesis to revelations’ future,
selling nations, dollar, yen and pound,
drowning Thames, all rivers, countries flounder,
while money makes the world go spinning round.
Mediaeval music moving forward,
imagery writ by angel hand,
Gabriel’s voice, moving many mountains,
consumption, credit, death of earthly lands.
‘ “Can you tell me where my country lies,”said the unifaun to his true love’s eyes.
So I ‘do’ poetry and fantasy and sensuality. A little eroticism goes a long way for me too. I ‘do’ family and politics. And pretty much anything that comes up my humph if the truth be told. And I’m partial to the truth. Even though it hurts sometimes.
There’s something of a crisis occurring on this little planet of ours. And all the sex and romance in the world can’t nullify its presence.
Stuff that puts matters of shagging and candlelit dinners into the shadows. Stuff that affects us all. And our kids.
There’s a power battle going on. Yup. Let’s call it evil and good. Devil versus God. Call it what you will. Well, no. For the sake of argument and clarity let’s call it what it is.
It is the battle between selfishness and the well-being of humans as a species.
Have I got that quite right? Let me think. Certain individuals acting individually or corporately to further their own ends here ensuring a world of humanity destined to servitude and alienation from self-determination and continuity of a thinking and free species?
Would that be about right?
Now, I’m no expert on anything. Other than, possibly, the method and manner of primary education and child development. I studied that shit. Well, I passed papers on it. And I’ve practised it for around thirty years. So, something of an expert I’d hazard.
Also, I have to admit, family members (who shall remain nameless) have accused me of having more brains than common sense. I’ve had to own up to that a fair few times I have to admit. Embarrassing moments when, well, never mind when. ‘Nuff said.
So I get that I’m no guru. Nor wizard of any description. I’m not even up on some of the current news happenings because they depress the hell out of me.
But I do know a few things.
I recognise common sense when I see it. I do think. I’m not always right. Although don’t tell my weans and man that.
But there’s an awful lot of stuff coming together for me at the moment.
Oh, first let me warn some people that this could get political.
Sorry, scratch that. It is political. It’s also spiritual. It’s also practical. It has its roots in humanity and a god I believe and trust in. A god who gave us the free will to get on with it. The capacity to think. And a source of love that is endless and self-generating once harnessed.
Now, I know that Cole would maybe have issues with the god part but she’s so cool she’ll allow it. Each to their own as it were. She’s so cool ice freezes further in her presence before melting under her persuasive and reasoned arguments. And the heat of her passion for right. She epitomises for me an upbringing of stellar quality, so obviously surrounded by love and logic that reaches out to embrace humanity and clarify some misguided notions. She wants a better world. Speaks for a better educated populace that is capable of reasoning and value judgements that go beyond myths and legends. Even while she loves and knows the myths that created much of what we believe. How cool is that?
Now I separate here with her on the presence of omnipotent forces. But I also feel that my faith and hers are so similar in essence.
Like Beth, a woman of thought and feeling, I share their desire and hope for a better world to leave our children. For a better world that we can live in right here and now. Beth is so on the mark with common sense and intellect. So practical. And articulate. She’d sure as hell make a better job of this post than me.
Both Beth and Cole have written extensively on education and the demerits of its current state in each of their countries. I’ve written a bit about it myself.
Aspirationally, every culture once sought to educate their children to the point, at least, of literacy and numeracy. Teachers engaged in this as a priority. Some took rather strange routes to achieving this aim I grant you and not all of them laudable.
But, in literacy especially, and in exposure to thoughts written and recorded from the beginnings of time we learn about our world. In the humanities we reach and delve into the commonality of human experience and seek our place in becoming explorers of a brave new world.
Unless, of course, education is dumbed down. Unless, of course, it benefits some higher authority to produce semi-literate individuals whose driving force is survival and fear. Or articulate beings but whose motivations are other than communal growth and welfare. Where is the brave new world and the hope of all our futures? Where are the original thinkers of a new dawn as each generation must prove to be?
Where is the action?
Currently, governments the world over are being manipulated and, more likely, controlled by bodies that do not represent the people they were elected to represent.
Yeah, yeah, conspiracy, blah.
Well if I’m paranoid it’s only because I can tell when some big bastard is following me. I hear them breathing, I sense their presence, I see their footprints when I look behind me. I know when I’m about to be shafted. The signs are there. Let’s face it, it’s not really ‘about to be’. We are currently being screwed by entities that exist to serve self. These entities, however, are no demons wrought from mythology. Rather, they are the personification of the greed and selfishness inherent in us all if we choose not to control those instincts for a more valid and worthwhile national and global state of affairs.
Now I don’t know about you but when I succumb to pleasures of the flesh I say if, I say when, I say who, I say yes. Or no. Even in the lawfully binding contract of marriage I have authority over my own person.
I want to view the family as the epitome of government.
OK not all families operate under the same rules. But the common factor usually, or ideally, is a desire to further the individual membership while retaining a sense of the whole and working together towards an advancement of individual talents and worth, while not destroying the fabric of the whole support system.
It doesn’t always work. More’s the pity.
But, in whatever form the family takes, where there is love and a desire to cultivate that love through education and acknowledgement of its intrinsic, unique and constituent parts there is hope. Hope that new and brave ideas germinate and take root. Hope that the world continues. That it recognises that humanity is but a blip on the planet and, without intervention on all our parts, the world may continue but we may not. Not in any sense worthy of recording in history.
Gawd, I’ve gone off on one.
This is so not what where this post was leading.
Let’s see if I can break the habits of a lifetime.
Literally and metaphorically.
Is it just me or has anyone else spotted the obvious?
On this gorgeous big planet of ours there is a renewable source of energy in every country. Every single one. Name one where the sun doesn’t shine. Or wind doesn’t blow. Or waters don’t flow. Even if we only have one out of three we have the capacity to generate power repeatedly.
We in Scotland would have to depend more on the water and wind option. But I’m good with that. Might as well get some benefit from the crap weather.
Tell me. Is there a place on earth where some renewable form of energy does not exist?
Might the ability and will to generate it be the answer to some of the conflicts that abound worldwide?
Yes there will always be greedy bastards who want to make more from whatever sources they can conjure up, manufacture trouble where peace could exist. Carve out of the earth cash and chaos where order and sustenance could prevail.
But that’s kind of where education comes in. If we know. If we care. If we have the will.
I knew I’d get there in the end.
Just always takes a bit of time with me.
And I know. Before anyone says it. It has been mentioned by family members (who shall still remain nameless) that I could personally supply the grid with enough air to supply the needs of Scotland for generations to come. But I’m kinda good with that too.
Now, Cliff Richards kind of says what I’m saying and you’ve got to have a laugh in the midst of all the serious stuff. So, If you can take his words seriously while doubling up at the costume and dance routine so much the better. Who knew, Steve, that the Eurovision Song Contest would feature in one of my posts? Not me, that’s for sure. But more power to it if, occasionally, we get classics like this!
Please take the time if you can to check out the links mentioned. You won’t be sorry. The world needs people of this calibre. I’m proud to follow their thoughts and journey.