Journal October 2022

MAY 2022


I want to share another poem written so long ago now I can’t quite work out when it was. I have not had many partners but I know I wrote this when I was single. For many solitude is a choice and I think this maybe why. I know I have never feared it since.

The Proposal

I proposed to myself the other day
I’d concluded it’s the only way
To be at one
To be complete
It could be fun
It would be neat
To share my lifelong joys and sorrows
With one who believes in my tomorrows
And I in me could be adept
I wonder then – should I accept?

It occurred to me though, just recently, that these same few words might not be about choosing to be single at all. They could so easily also be about any proposal, from constitutional reforms, what the right thing to do is with regard to criminals or climate change or human or any animal rights issues. There too the last line asks, do I want this? And the preceding one suggests we need not heed others who hold a diametrically opposed view. I think it better to know their arguments at least, but you also I think need to understand their reasons for objecting and, if they have thought that far, what they would propose instead. Doing that often helps me refine and define what I consider to be fair.

In many respects anti monarchist here in the UK are right, it should not be that one family that isn’t even a member of parliament to come up with laws, who are rich, privileged but don’t pay taxes nor vote should ever be allowed to be crowned and called Head of State. It goes against my own principles but it happens to work so well I currently do not want it to change because there are always exceptions to any rule. Whereas Margaret Thatcher was against sanctions to the apartheid in South Africa, I can well believe our Queen was for them because she is head of the Commonwealth too. She became a good friend of Nelson Mandela as he himself said so. And so forth.

I find that the problem with the media is it doesn’t just report facts, particularly tabloid newspapers. Many of us were alive when Princess Diana died and can recall quite vividly how they loathed and blamed the tabloids for hounding that lady throughout her life, yet their readers all seemed to have no self control about wanting to know about her. They demanded that they put the whole family on display including Diana’s grieving sons as if they were there as side show freaks for their entertainment. People like me remember it well. I ask you how would you feel if that happened to you and your loved ones?  Even now folk seek to increase rifts between that family instead of help them. Coming from a dysfunctional family myself I can tell you it isn’t easy and outside interference from complete strangers is never welcome more so if they have had no such misfortunes themselves.

And so it is with anyone famous, politicians, popstars, sports people, entertainers, entrepreneurs, you name it, as if it’s their right to do so because the famous have been successful in some way. You think the owners of such news streams aren’t also successful? Many tabloids and news streams are not there to give you facts at all, they are there to brainwash you into to believing what they want you to believe to to sell more crap to you. Think what advertisements they allow. With some of them they would have you believe all religious leaders are paedophiles or all police are, or all TV stars are or all politicians are and all social workers are bad because they couldn’t prevent a baby being beaten to death.

If I believed them half my family and certainly some ancestors are paedophiles. Thanks a bunch but I deal in evidence, they deal in sensationalism to sell you a high impact drama. And these horrendous things have always been with us, all that has changed is that we know they’re happening and that’s a good thing because now we can help genuine victims of crime and do things about preventing more. So please, if you are not directly involved, don’t respond at all. It’s unjust and unfair if you weren’t there otherwise expect the same in return if you ever find yourself falsely accused.

Here’s the acid test to see how prejudiced you are if you are on social media. The challenge is to change not only your profile picture to a photo to the opposite extreme, but to also change basic details too. Tweet exactly the same things and then see what the response to you is. So if you’re male switch to female, if white, change to black, if a feminist change to a transgender, if an adult change to a child, if with children change to one who has. If there has been no abuse in your family, if there has been no poverty, if there has been no militancy, if there has been no trauma victim and so on. I suspect no one will because the sad truth is too many of us don’t want to left go of our prejudices. Do we?

I am prejudiced too. Against gossips.

Ode to a gossip

Voices murmur, mutter chatter
A constant droning, groaning sound
What they speak of doesn’t matter
Keep on talking all day round.

Yet if a silence fell upon them
Would they strive to kill the pause?
Is it something forced upon them
To speak when there’s so little cause?