Monday, 29 April 2013

Take action and demand justice for the victims of Bangladesh building collapse

Over 200 people have now been killed in the collapse of a building in Bangladesh which housed garment factories making clothes for Primark, Matalan, Mango and other major brands.
Primark, Matalan and Mango addicted to profit , have been profiting  from the backs of workers in factories like these for years, and must now be made responsible for their criminal failure to ensure workplace safety and prevent disasters  like this happening in the future. They must be made to pay full compensation, including their lost earnings, to the families who have lost relatives and the workers injured in this crime of capitalism.
This tragedy has at least bought to the worlds attention, the people who feed the consumer habit for cheap and disposable clothes.
Once again it is the case of profits, consumption and capitalism over human lives and basic principles of humanity and fundamental human rights.

Take action now and demand an end to these avoidable tragedies

Also on May Day: Remember the Dhaker workers and all those killed by capitalism

Sunday, 28 April 2013

The Devil's Tree, Eglwys Rhos, near Llandudno

'At the corner of the first turning after passing the village of Llanrhos, on the left hand side, is a withered oak tree, called by the natives of those parts the Devil's Tree, and it was thought to be haunted, and therefore the young and timide were afraid to pass it of a dark night.
Its bad reputation was greatly increased by an occurence that happened there to Cadwaladr Williams, a shoemaker, who lived at Llansantffraid Glan Conway.
This shoemaker sometimes refreshed himself too freely before starting homewards from Llandudno, and he was in the habit of turning into the public house at Llanrhos to gain courage to pass the Devil's Tree.
One Saturday night instead of quietly passing this tree on the other side, he walked fearlesslly up to it, and defied the Evil One to appear if he was there. No sooner had he uttered the defiant wordsthan something fell from the tree, and lit upon his shoulders, and grasped poor Cadwaladr's neck with  a grip of iron. He fought with the incubus savagery to get rid of it, but all his exertions were in vain, and so he was obliged to proceed on jhis journey with this fearful thing clinging to him, which became heavier every step he took. At last, thouroughly exhausted, he came to Towyn, and more dead than alive, he reached a friend's door and knocked, and oh, what pleasure, before the door was opened the weight on his back had gone, but his friend knew who it was that Cadwaladr had carried from the Devil's Tree.'

From Welsh Folklore by Rev.Elias Owen, M.A., F.S.A., 1887

Saturday, 27 April 2013

Curriculam Vitae / Hidden

Curriculam Vitae

Can answer phones,
cold callers get greeted,
with hardcore punks explosive throb,
am a friend of tangled daydreams,
the soaring thrust of revolution,
the sounds of raging possibility,
the language of survival,
spirits that shatter division,
the sweetness of peace and unity,
the struggle for another world.
Can be found after sunset
under shadowy moonlight,
where I throw words together,
following an extemity called hope.


I avoid the attic,
it's where the answers lay forgotten,
it's in the garden,
where andrenaline kicks,
headfirst into the flames,
unbuckled brain,
spills out contents,
as highs and hungovers are mixed up.
Read books, play music,
with shaky hands,
perform delicate tricks,
turn the pages,
as tendrils hook,
listen to the rattling noise,
on a high moon tide.
Blinking, lie flat on my back,
on a hillside above green fields,
near out croppings of grey granite,
the steam bubbling merrily around,
follow dreams, deep and fathomless,
work for love, that shows no profit.


Thursday, 25 April 2013

Atos Healthcare : The Tory Capability Assessment Form

Meanwhile in all seriousness,  lets remind ourselves that Atos are paid £110m a year to carry out the assessments for the DWP and a further £60m of public money is being spent on administering appeals, because so many decisions have been contested. The British Medical Association has described the assessments as 'not fit for purpose',
Many people  have dropped down dead within three months of being told they are fit for work, in a humiliating and demeaning process that seems to be making sick people even sicker.
Lets not forget it was the Labour Party that first  introduced this process. A stressful and gruelling process as anyone who has gone through it will know. The scale of anxiety caused can  be very daunting.
Here's a link to the atos victims group, who tell us how it really is.


Fraudster Atos fined for supplying fake crip detectors for use in fitness for work tests

Wednesday, 24 April 2013

Samer Issawi : Victorious

Good news, in what is being considered a major victory against administrative detention, Samer Issawi has accepted an agreement negotiated by Israel and Palestinian officials to end his hunger strike. The Palestinian Prisoner Organisation  stated yesterday that Issawi will serve eight months for the alleged violations of his bail conditions, after which he will be free to return to Jerusalem.
His legendary hunger strike became a rallying cry for Palestinians who protested on his behalf, seeing  this 33 year old from Jerusalem as a symbol of their struggle. Samer had been on hunger strike for over 200 days, refusing food and recieving only infussions of water, vitamins and minerals, he was taken to hospital in recent weeks as his condition deteriorated.
By using peaceful resistance he has been able to force Israel to recognise Palestinians legitimate demands for freedom and dignity, which will open the door for other prisoners who have been arrested indefinitely.
The agreement has defused a tense situation, which  has seen weeks of street protests, that had also raised fears of an explosion of broader unrest if the prisoner had died.
He is expected to be released in December of this year.

With  his head held up high, his empty stomach defined and redefined the word  freedom, in his search for dignity.

Tuesday, 23 April 2013

Richie Havens ( 21/1/41 - 22/4/13) R.I.P - I was Educated By Myself/ Freedom

Ah he sang from  the soul, he sang from the heart, with  his soft tremulous distinctive voice and playing, he lifted us too, with his  forward thinking and his messages of peace and love.

 Richie Havens R.I.P.

I Was Educated By Myself - Richie Havens

I can't buy the lie and it don't matter
Even though I try to keep my health
It all seems the same such a silly game
Played by silly fools who don't even follow their own rules.

But oh, when the sunshine follows me around
Lifts my feet and takes me from the ground
High enough ro see the shelf
And know that I was educated by myself

I have seen the streets groaning, not battered
Though amongst us all, we kept our wealth
And though the rain goes pitter-patter,
it don't change the pain that we all felt

But oh, when the sunshine follows us around
Lifts our feet and takes us from the ground,
High enough for us to tell
That we were educated by ourselves

It's a simple dream, a common pattern
A universal scheme for us to sell
And though it's a long, long way between Mars and Saturn,
But right here on Earth, we know so well
That all we need is sunshine on the ground
And smiles and smiles from frown to frown
Just enough for us to yell
That we were educated by ourselves.


(Richie Havens at Woodstock)

Freedom, freedom
Freedom, freedom
Freedom, freedom

Sometimes I feel klike a motherless child
Sometimes I feel like a motherless child
Sometimes I feel like a mtherless child
A long way from home

Freedom, freedom
Freedom, freedom
Freedom, freedom
Freedom, freedom

Sometimes I feel like I'm almost gone
Sometimes I feel like I'm almost gone
Sometimes I feel like I'm almost gone
A long, long wayway from home

Clap your hands, clap your hands
Clap your hands, clap your hands
Clap your hands, clap your hands
Clap your hands, clap your hands
Hey, yeah

I got a telephone in my bosom
And I can call him up on my heart
I got a telephone in my bosom
And I can call him up from my heart

When I need my brother, brother
When I need my mother, mother

Monday, 22 April 2013

Happy Earth Day on Lenin's birthday

                          Earth Day,celebrated  today
                          on the occasion of Vladimir's birthday.
                          not sure why, never thought Lenins brand of thought
                          could be identified with modern ecology,
                          merely a conicidence of creation, and spin
                          not the rock though, across the fields, the smallest
                          minority on earth is still the individual,
                          earth first, the message for today
                          we'll strip and mine and plunder
                          the other planets later.

                          ' To rely upon conviction
                          devotion and other excellent,
                          spiritual qualities -  that is not to be
                          taken seriously in politics,
                          It is true that liberty is precious-
                          so precious that it must be retained,
                          authority poisons everybody who takes
                          authority on himself.'
                          Thanks for that comrade Illyich,
                          much prefer your words today,
                          than Peter Brabeck, from Nestle,
                          who has  just recently said,
                          'the idea that water is a human right,
                          is extreme.'

                          But sorry, comrade
                          today the earth is still divided,
                          the rich still steal more than they deserve           
                          I much  prefer  the words of Gerald Winstanley
                          the earth a common treasury, for all to share
                          as the hours pass, the earth still needs, feeding,
                          hope reflected in the tears,we and she sheds
                          waiting for another chance,in the silence between breathing,
                          The fabric of existence, woven
                          on latitudes and longtitudes of absence,
                          delivering ,a palpable beat of the heart
                          with each mornings blooming roar,
                          transmits its message,on the underside of leafs
                          feeding our sensations, driving our emotions
                          more than just a dream ,it's sensation is clear
                          spinning on it's wheel, on the precipice of catastrophe
                          with tears in eye,still try to celebrate what I hold dear.

Sunday, 21 April 2013

Thich Nhat Hanh (b.11/11/26) If You are a Poet

                              ' If you are a poet, you will see clearly that there is a cloud
                                floating in this sheet of paper. Without a cloud, there will
                                    be no rain, without rain, the trees cannot grow; and
                                     without trees, we cannot make paper. The cloud is
                                      essential for the paper to exist. If the cloud is not
                                          here, the sheet of paper cannot be here either.       

                                                    ( for my grandson
                                                     on his first birthday, 

Friday, 19 April 2013

What If We All Stopped Paying Taxes - Sharon Jones & the Dap Kings

I was talking to a friend of mine
Said he don't want no war no more
They're building bombs while are schools are falling
Tell me what in hell we're paying taxes for

What if we stopped paying taxes?
Now, what if we all stopped paying taxes?
Stop paying taxes y'all

Now tell  me who's gonna buy their bombs
Their tanks, their planes and all their guns
Well, tell me who's gonna pay for their wars
If we all get together and cut their funds

Listen peopl, listen to what I got to say
What if we all stopped paying taxes?
Now what if we all stopped paying taxes?
Stop paying taxes y'all

There's something on my mind and I think I've got to let it out

They may take nothing from us
That we aint ready ro give
How can we talk about the price of gas
When they're stealing our brothers and sisters right to live

What if we all stopped paying taxes?
Now, what if we all stopped paying taxes?
Stop paying taxes y'all

What if we all stopped paying taxes?
Now what if we all stopped paying taxes?
Sstop paying taxes y'all

Thursday, 18 April 2013


As Big Ben stood silent,it felt out of sync,
too many things are happening at the moment,
the spirit of meaness rustling in the breeze,
but if you like choreography, carry on regardless,
follow restrictions, orders metered out.
In the embers, no happy ending,
in the end what unites us, is what divides,
persistent barks that light tomorrows fuse,
and if you like surprises, look away,
                                        close your eyes,
because in serious times, uncertainty,
becomes jagged and dangerous.
The sky of our hearts,always glimmers,
beyond the cages,and the shackles ,
that are provided,
moving fast,in rythmic pulse,
beyond the ideologies of ruin,
waiting is a game the patient play,
some of us choking now,
don't have time to stand in line,
twitching behind our curtains,
our hearts sing,
listing our intentions,
unpeeling the spin of ugliness,
we write messages, that dream of escape,
on building blocks of longing.
Moving on, moving on,
invisible branches taking root,
past the slurry of memory,
we take back from yesterday,
what has been stolen,
resiliance swims against the odds.

Wednesday, 17 April 2013

Palestinian Prisoners Day

Today marks Palestinian Prisoners Day, a day that also serves to mark the ongoing perserverence of the Palestinian peoples relentless struggle for peace, justice, freedom and dignity. It is also used to
to illustrate the Israeli army's excessive and often lethal use of force against peaceful and unarmed demonstrators throughout the West Bank and Gaza .
One Palestinian prisoner Samer Isaawi  who I written about previously has been on hunger strike in an Israeli detention centre for 270 days, one of the longest hunger strikers in history. He has refused Israeli offers to be exiled to Gaza and other UN countries, firmly insisting that he will be either released to his home in Jerusalem or starve to death.

                                                 Samer Issawi

Palestinian Prisoner Day was founded to remind the world of the thousands of Palestinian political prisoners imprisoned in Israeli prisons or detention centers without charge or trial for extensive periods of time. The number of Palestinian detainess increases as Israeli occupying forces continue to wage campaigns of arbitrary arrests and detentions against thousands of Palestinian prisoners. Palestinian prisoners in Israeli jails continue to be subject to wide-ranging violations of their rights
and dignity.
There are5,000 Palestinian poluitical prisoners incarcenated in 27 Israeli prisons, jails, detention centres and interrogation centres.
The numbers of Palestinian women detained has also increased,which amounts to 14 with a Lisa Jarbouni bring the longest serving prisoner, so far held for 11 years out of her 20 year sentence. There are 235 child prisoners and 200 administrative detainess.
Investigations have revealed that prisoners are regularly subject to cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment, including poor detention conditions, in violation of Israel's obligations under international human rights and humanitarian law.
This is why I support the Palestinian prisoners, and continue  to support the international communities efforts to ensure the immediate and effective measures to ensure that Israel releases all unlawfully detaned prisoners, and ensures that conditions of arrest are consistent with international human rights and humanitarian law.

Palestinians Behind Bars: Prisoners Without Human Rights 

Thatcher's Prayer


Loathed by the people, loved by dicators, traitors, robbers of the poor and architects of apartheid. F**K Thatcher and anyone who remembers her fondly. She had a heart of stone, I thank her for nothing.

Tuesday, 16 April 2013

Culloden : Shoulder of Lamentation

On 16th April 1746, the Duke of Cumberland wiped up the rump of Bonnie Prince Charlie's army of Stuart hopefuls. Charles Edward Stuart was trying to win the British throne for his father James, son of James 11, and tried to capitalise on the understrength English army. He had made it as far south as Derby, but because of lack of support he was forced to turn round, and when defeat came he was back in the Highlands, at Culloden Moor near Inverness. The Battle of Culloden was the last full-scale land battle to be fought in Britain. It has since been remembered in many songs and verse.
It is also a place cited as one of the various origins of the Curse of Scotland, a tag given to the nine of diamonds
A memorial has been held on the Sunday nearest the 16th since the 1920's, on the cairn at the site of the Battle.
Many thousands were butchered as they ran, died in prison, executed or died in transport to the colonies Subsequently the culture and language of the Gaels was brutally suppressed, closely followed by  the Scottish clearances. So Culloden has become a site of pilgrimage and lamentation, functioning as a place to try and decode the Scottish identity and the Scottish nation. For the Scots  it has marked more than two centuries of tragedy and loss. It has become a landscape of loss and mourning. It speaks too of the larger Scottish diaspora, and has become a focus  for the collective  memory of the Scots.
Many Scots still shed a tear, for the noble sacrifice of the many Jacobite who fell.
In recent years the Scots soul has been rekindled and reawakenened, long may it soar.

Culloden (clip from 1964 docudrama , The Battle Of Culloden)

The Ghosts of Culloden - Isla Grant

Monday, 15 April 2013

Poem for the Hillsborough disaster by Carol Ann Duffy

The 96 Liverpool supporters who lost their lives at Hillsborough, 24 years ago were remembered in the anniversary memorial service yesterday. A memorial was unveiled at Old Haymarket and an antique clock was installed at Liverpool Town hall and set at 15.06 the time of the tragedy.
Families will gather at Anfield later today for an annual memorial service , a minutes silence will be held, with the names of the 96 fans who died read out, and a candle lit in memory of each victim.
The truth of what people have been saying for 24 years is finally emerging with the undeniable truth now recovered and revealed , and the fight for justice is reaching a conclusion.
Here is a touching poem by Carol Ann Duffy about the Hillsborough disater.

The Cathedral bell, tolled, could never tell;

nor the Liver Birds, mute in their stone spell;

or the Mersey, though seagulls waild, cursed, overhead,

in no language for the slandered dead...

not the raw, red throat of the Kop, keening,

or the cops' words censored of meaning;

not the clock, slow handclapping the coroner's deadline,

or the memo to Thatcher, or the tabloid headline...

but fathers told of their daughters; the names of sons

on the lips of their mothers like prayers; lost ones

honoured for bitter years by orphan, cousin, wife-

not a matter of footbal, but of life.

Over this great city, light after dark;

truth, the sweet silver song of the lark.

Sunday, 14 April 2013

Paul Eluard ( 14/12/1895 -26/11/52) - Poetic Evidence

Paul Eluard was the pseudonym of 'Eugene Grindel' a French poet who was one of the founders of the Surrealist movement. Initially connected to the Dada movement, he drifted away after a split  that had divided it into two different philosophies, that of Anarchism and Communism.
Just after the First World War he became acquainted with three other Surrealist poets; Andre Breton, Phillipe Soupault and Louis Aragon, as well as becomming friends with the Surrealist Painter Max Ernst. He was to have a long association with them until around 1938. Experimenting with rythym, automatic writing, dreams and reality, and new verbal techniques soon became an everyday motion, and the poems that he created in this time are considered to be among the best that emerged out of the Surrealist movement.
After losing his first wife Gala, a mysterious and intuitive women  to  first Max Ernst,  then subsequently to Salvador Dali, he spent a long time bereft in losing her love, however in 1934 he remarried Maria Benz ( Nusch) , an actress and model who was  friends of Man Ray and Picasso.
After the Spanish Civil War which deeply affected him, he abandoned his Surrealist experimentations and in 1942 joined the Communist Party, and his work from now on reflected his growing militancy, and his rejection of tyranny, dealing with the sufferings and brotherhood of man,and the political and social ideasof the previous century. He  began to regard poetry as a means towards radical change.During the Second World War he wrote verse that inspired and  raised the morale of  members of the French Resistance Movement.
After the war he continued to write on themes of Peace, self government and liberty. He married again to a Dominique Laure in 1951, who he had met at the Congress of Pea, Mexico, 1949. Sadly  a year later he died of a heart attack in Paris. His legacy is found in the beauty of his words, his voyage through great moments in history, his life of tumultuous emotion and passionate imagination. His later work manifests the delicacy that was apparent even in his most political poems of the war years.

The following  piece was originally  given as a lecture at the New Bulington Galleries, 24th June, 1936.
Translated by George Reavey
H Read, Surrealism (Faber, 1936) pp171-176)

The time has come for poets to proclaim their right and duty to maintain that they are deeply involved in the life of other men, in communal life.
   On the high peaks!- yes, I know there have always been a few to try and delude us with that sort of nonsense; but. as they were not there, they have not been able to tell us that it was raining there, that it was dark and bitterly cold, that there one was still aware of man and his misery; that there one was still aware and had to be aware of vile stupidity, and still hear muddy laughter and the words of death. On the high peaks, as elsewhere, more than elsewhere perhaps, for him who sees, for the visionary, misery undoes and remakes incessantly a world, drab, vulgar, unbearable and impossible.
  No greatness exists for him that would grow. There is no model for him that seeks what he has never seen. We all belong to the same rank. Let us do away with the others.
  Employing contradictions purely as a means to equality, and unwilling to please and be self-satisfied, poetry has always applied itself, in spite of all sorts of persecutions, to refusing to serve other than its own ends, an undesirable fame and the various advantages bestowed upon conformity and prudence.
  And what of pure poetry? Poetry's absolute power will purify men, all men. 'Poetry must be made by all. Not by one.' So said Lautreamont. All the ivory towers will be demolished, all speech will be holy, and, having at last come into the reality which is his, man will need only to shut his eyes to see the gates of wonder opening.
 Bread is more useful than poetry. But love, in the full, human sense of the word, the passion of love is not more useful than poetry. Since man puts himself at the top of the scale of living things, he cannot deny the value to his feelings, however no-productive they may be. 'Man.' says Feuerbach, 'has the same senses as the animals, but in man sensation is not relative and suborinated to life's lower needs - it is an absolute being, having its own end and its own enjoyment.' This brings us back to necessity. Man has constantly to be aware of his supremacy over nature in order to guard himself against it and conquer it.
  In  his adolescense man is obsessed by the nostalgia of his childhood; in his maturity, by the nostalgia of his youth, in old age by the bitterness of having lived. The poet's images grow out of something to be forgotten and something to be remembered. Waerily he projects his prophecies into the past. Everything he creates vanishes with the man he was yesterday. Tomorrow holds out the promise of novelty. But there is no today in his present.
 Imagination lacks the imitative instinct. It is the spring and torrent which we do no re-ascend. Out of this living  sleep daylight is ver born and ever dying it returns there. It is a universe without association, a universe which is not part of a greater universe, a gogless universe, since it never lies, since it never confuses what will be with what has been. It is the truth, the whole truth, the wandering palace of the imagination. Truth is quickly told, unreflectively, plainly; and for it, sadness, rage, gravity and joy are but changes of the wether and seductions of the skies.

Salvador Dalis Portrait De Paul Eluard

  The poet is he who inspires more than he who is inspired. Poems always have great white margins, great margins of silence where eager memory consumes itself in order to re-create an ecstacy without a past. Their principal quality is, I nsist again, not to invoke, but to inspire. So many love poems without an immediate object will, one fine day, bring lovers together. One ponders over a poem as one does over a human being. Understanding, like desire, like hatred, is composed of the relatioship between the thing to be understood and the other things, either understood or not understood.
  It is hope or his despair which will determine for the watchful dreamer - for the poet - the workings of his imagination. Let him formulate the hope or despair and his relationship with the world will immediately change. For the poet everything is the object of sensations and consequentlly, of sentiments. Everything concrete becomes food for his imagination, and the motives of hope and despair, together with their sensations and sentiments, are resolved into concrete form.
  I have called my contribution to this volume 'Poetic Evidence'. For if words are often the medium of the poetry of which I speak, neither can any other form of expression be denied it.  Surrealism is a state of mind.
  For a long time degraded to the status of scribes, painters used to copy apples and become virtuosos. Their vanity, which is immense, has almost always urged them to settle down in front of a landscape, an object, an image, a text, as in front of a wall, in order to reproduce it. They did not hunger for themselves. But Surrealist painters, who are poets, always think of something else. The unprecedented is familiar to them, premeditation unknown. They are aware that the relationships between things fade as soon as they are established, to give place to other relationships just as fugitive. They know that no description is adequate, that nothing can be reproduced literally. They are all animated by the same striving to liberate the vision, to unite imagination and nature, to consider all possibilities a reality, to prove to us that no dualism exists between the imagination and reality, that everything the human spirit can concieve and create springs from the same vein, is made of the same matter as his flesh and blood, and the world around him. They know that communication is the only link between that which sees and that which is seen, the striving to understand and to relate - and, sometimes, that of determining and creating. To see is to understand, to judge, to deform, to forget or forget oneself, to be or to cease to be.
  Those who come here to laugh or to  give vent to their indignation, those who, when confronted with  Surrealist poesy, either written or painted, talk of snobbism in order to hide their lack of understanding, their fear or their hatred, are like those who tortured Galileo, burned Rousseau's books, defamed William Blake, condemned Baudelaire, Swinburne and Flaubert, declared that Goya or Courbet did not know how to paint, whistled down Wagner and Stravinsky, imprisoned Sade. They claim to be on the side of good sense, wisdom and order, the better to satisfy their ignoble appetites, exploit men, prevent them from liberating themselves - that they may the better degrade and destroy men by means of ignorance, poverty and war.

  The genealogical tree painted upon one of the walls of the dining-room of the old house in the north of France, inhabited by the present counts de Sade, has only one blank leaf, that of Donatien Alphonse Franciois de Sade, who was imprisoned in turn by Louis XV, Louis XV1, the Convention and Napoleon. Interned for thirty years, he died in a madhouse, more lucid and pure than any of his contemporaries.
  In 1789, he who had indeed deserved the title of the'Divine Marquis' bestowed upon him in mockery, called upon the people from his cell in the Bastille to come to the rescue of the prisoners; in 1793, though devoted body and soul to the revolution, and a member of the Section des Piques, he protested against the death penalty, and reproved the crimes perpetrated without passion: he remained an aethiest when Robespierre introduced the new cult of the Supreme Being; he dared to pit hisgenius against that of the whole people just beginning to feel its new freedom. No sooner out of prison that he sent the First Consul the first copy of a pamphlet attacking him.
  Sade wished to give back to civilised man the force of his primtive insticts, he wished to liberate the amorous imagination from its fixations. He believed that in this way, and only in this way, would true equality be born.
 Since virtue is its own reward, he strove, in the name of all suffering, to abase and humiliate it; he strove to impose upon it the supreme law of unhappiness, that it might help all those it incites to build a world befitting man's immense stature.Christian morality, which, as we often have to admit to our despair and shame, is not yet done with, is no more than a mockery. All the appetites of the imaginative body revolts against it. How much longer must we clamour, struggle and weep before the figures of love become those of facility and freedom?
 Let us now listen to Sade and his profound unhappines: ' To love and to enjoy are two very different things: the proof is that we love daily without enjoyment, and more often still we enjoy without loving.' And he concludes: ' Moments of isolated enjoyment thus have their charms, that they may even possess them to a greater degree than other moments; yes, and ii it were not so many old men, so many dissemblers and people full of blemishes, enjoy themselves? They are sure of not being loved; they are certain that it is impossible to share their experience. But is their pleasure any the less for that?

Chateau de Vincennes de Dade prison

  And justifying those me who  introduce some singularity imto the things of love, Sade rises up against those who regard love as proper only to the perpetuation of their miserable race... ' Pedants, executioners, turnkeys, legislators, tonsured rabble, what will become of you when we shall have reached that point? What will become  of your laws, of your morality, of your religion, of your gallows, of your paradise, of your gods, of your hell, when it shall be demonstrated that such and such a flow of liquids, such a kind of fibre, such a degree of acidity in the blood or in the animal spirits, is sufficient to make a man the object of your penalties or your rewards?' 
  It is the perfect pessimism which gives his wors their sobering truth. Surrealist  poetry, the poetry of always, has never achieved more. These are sombre truths, and almost all the rest is false. And let us not be accused of contradictions when we say this! Let them not try to bring against us our revolutionary materialism! Let them not tell us that man must live first of all by bread! The maddest and the most solitary of the poets we love have perhaps put food in its proper place, but that place is the highest of all because it is both symbolical and total. For everything is re-absorbed in it.
  There is no portrait of the Maequis de Sade in existence. It is significant that there is none of Lautreament either. The faces of these two fantastic and revolutionary writers, the most desperately audacious that ever were, are lost in the  night of the ages.
  They both fought against all artifices, whether vulgar or subtle, against all traps laid for us by that false and importune reality which degrades man. To the formula: You are what you are,' they have added: ' You can be something else.'

The only known official portrait of the Marquis de Sade
painted by Charles Amadee Phillipe Van Loo
in 1761 when de Sade was 20 or 21

  Sade and Lautreamont who were solitary to the last degree, have revenged themselves by mastering the miserable world imposed upon them. In their hands they held earth, fire and water, the arid enjoyment of privation, and also weapons; and anger was in their eyes. They demolish, they impose, they outrage, they ravish. The doors of love and hate are open to let in violence. Inhuman, it will arose man, really arouse him and will not withhold from him, a mere accident on earth, the possibility of an end. Man will emerge from his hiding-places and, faced with the vain array of charms and disenchantments, he will be drunk with the poer of his ecstacy.
  He will then no longer be a stranger either to himself or to others. Surrealism, which is an instrument of knowledge, and therefore an instrument of knowledge, and therefore an instrument of conquest as well as of defence, strives to bring light man's profound consciousness. Surrealism strives to demonstrate that thought is common to all, it strives to reduce the differences existing between men, and, with this end in view, it refuses to serve an absurd order based upon inequality, deceit and cowardice.
  Let man discover himself, know himself, and he will at once feel himself capable of mastering all the treasures, material as well as spiritual, which he has accumulated throughout time, at the price of the most terrible sufferings, for the benefit of a small number of privileged persoms who are blind and deaf to everything that constitues human greatness.
  Today the solitude of poets is breaking down. They are now men among other men, they have brothers.
  There is a word which exalts me, a word I have never heard without a tremor, without feeling a great hope, the greatest of all, that of vanquishing the poer of the ruin and death afflicting men - the word is fraternisation.
  In February 1917, the Surrealist painter Max Ernst and I were at the front, hardly a mile away from each other. The German gunner, Max Ernst, was bombarding the trenches where I, a French infantryman, was on the look-out. Three years later, we were the best of friends, and ever since we have fought fiercely side by side for one, and the same cause, that of the total emancipation of man.

Max Ernst- At the Rendezvous of friends , 1922

seated  from left to right: Rene Crevel, Max Ernst, Dostolevsky,  Theodore Fraenkel, Jean Paulhan, Benjamim Peret, Johannes Baargeld, Robert Desnos.

Standing: Phillipa Soupalt, Jean Arp, Max Morise,
 Raphael, Paul Eluard, Louis Aragon, Andre Breton, Giorgio de Chirico, Gala Eluard.

   In 1925, at the time of the Moroccan war, Max Ernst upheld with me the warhchword of fraternisation of the French Communist Party. I affirm that he was then attending to a matter which concerned him, just as he had been obliged, in my sector in 1917, to attend to a matter which did not concern him. If only it had been possible for us, during the war, to meet and join hands, violently and spontaneously against our common enemy: THE INTERNATIONAL OF PROFIT.
  'O you are my bothers because I have enemies!' said Benjamin Peret.
   Even in the extremity of  dscouragement and pessimism, we have never been completely alone. In present- day society everything conspires at every step we take to humiliate us, to constrain us, to enchain us and to make us turn back and retreat. But we do not overlook the fact that this is so because we ourselves are the evil, the evil in the sense in which Engels meant it; that is so because, with our fellow men, we are conspiring in our turn to overthrow the bourgeoisie, and its ideal of goodness and beauty.
  That goodness and that beauty are in bondage to the ideas of property, famil, religion and country - all of which we repudiate. Poets worthy of the name refuse, like proletarians, to be exploited. True poetry is present in everything that does not conform to the morality which, to uphold its order and prestige, has nothing better to offer us than banks, barracks, prisons, churches, and brothels. True poetry present in everything that liberates man from that terrible ideal which has the face of death. It is present in the work of Sade, or Marx, or of Picasso, as well as in that of Rimbaud, Lautreamont or of Freud. It is present in the invention of the wireless, in the Tcheliouskin exploit, in the revolt of the Asturias, in the strikes of France, and Belgium. It may be present in chill necessity, that of knowing or of eating better, as well as in a predilection for the marvellous. It is over a hundred years since the poets have descended from the peaks upon which they believed themseklves to be established. They have gone out into the streets, they have insulted their masters, they have no gods any longer, they have dared to kiss beauty and love on the mouth, they have learned the songs of revolt sung by the unhappy masses and, without being disheartened, they try to teach them their own.
  They pay little heed to sarcasms and laughter, they are accustomed to these; but now they have the certainty of speaking in the name of all men. They are masters of their own coscience.'

Honest Justice

It is the burning law of men
From grapes they make wine
From coal they make fire
From kisses they make men

It is the unkind law of men
To keep themselves whole in spite
Of war and misery
In spite of the dangers of death

It is the gentle law of men
To change water into light
Dreams into reality
Enemies into brothers

A law old and new
A self-perfecting system
From the deopths of the child's heart
Up to the highest judgement

The same day for all

The sword we do not sink in the heart of the guilty's
We sink in the heart of the poor and innocent

The first eyes are of innocence
The second of poverty
We must know how to protect them

I will condemn love only
If I do not kill hate
And those who have inspired me with it

A small bird walks in the vast regions
Where the sun has wings

Her laughter was about me
About me she was naked

She was like a forest
Like a multitude of women
About me
Like an armour against wilderness
Like an armour against injustice
Injustice struck everywhere

Unique star inert star of thick sky which is the privation
   of light
Injustice struck the innocent the heroes and the madmen
Who shall one day  know how to rule

For  I heard them laugh
In their blood in their beauty
In misery and torture
Laugh of a laugh to come
Laughter at life and birth in Laughter.


On my schoolboy's notebooks
On my desk and on the trees
On sand on snow
I write your name

On all pages read
On all blank pages
Stone blood paper or asg
I write your name

On gilded images
On the weapons of warriors
On the crowns of kings
I write your name

On jungle and desert
On nests on gorse
On the echoe of my childhood
I write your name

On the wonders of nights
On the white bread of days
On bethrothed seasons
I write your name

On all my rage of azure
On the pool musty sun
On the lake lving moon
I write your name

On fields on the horizon
On the wings of birds
And on the mill of shadows
I write your name

On each puff of dawn
On the sea of ships
On the demented mountain
I write your name

On the foam of clouds
On the sweat of storm
On thick insipid rain
I write your name

On shimmerimng shapes
On bells of color
On physical truth
I write your name

On awakened pathways
On roads spread out
On overflowing squares
i write your name

On the lamp that is lit
On the lamp that butns out
On my reunited houses
I write your name

On the fruits cut on two
Of the mirror and my chamber
On my bed empty chamber
I write your name

Onn my dod greedy and tender
On his trained cars
On his awkward paw
I write your name

On the springboard of my door
On familiar objects
On the flood of blessed fire
I write your name

On all turned flesh
On the foreheads of my friends
On each hand outstretched
I write your name

On the window of surprises
On the attentive lips
Well above silence
I write your name

On my destroyed refugees
On my crumbled beacons
On the walls of my weariness
I write your name

On absence without desire
On naked solitude
On the steps of death
I write your name

On health returned
On the risk dissapeared
On hope without memory
I write your name

And by the power of a word
I start my life again
I was born to know you
To name you


The Last night


This murderous little world
Is oriented toward the innocent
Takes the bread from his mouth
Gives his house to the flames
Takes his coat and his shoes
Takes his time and his children

This murderous little world
Confounds the dead and living
Whitens the mud pardons traitors
And turns the world to noise

Thanksmidnight twelfe rifles
Restore peace to the innocent
And it is for the multitudes to bury
His bleeding fish his black sky
And it is for the multitudes to understand
The fraility of murderers.


The  would be a light push against the wall
It would be being able to shake this dust
It would be to be united.


They had skinned his hands from bent his back
They had dug a hole in his head
And to die he had to suffer
All his life.


Beauty created for the happy
Beauty you run a great risk
These hands crossed on your knees
Are the tools of an assasin

This mouth singing aloud
Serves as a beggar's bowl

And this cup of pure milk
Becomes the breast of a whore.


The poor picked their bread from the gutter
Their look covered light
No longer were they afraid at night
So weak their weakness made them smile
In the depths of their shadow they carried their body
They ssaw themselves only through their distress
They used only an intimate language
And I heard them speak gently prudently
Of an old hope as big as a hand

I heard them calculate
The multiplied dimensions of the autumn leaf
The melting of the wave on the breast of a calm sea
I heard them calculate
The multiplied dimension of the future force.


I was born behind a hideous facade
I have eaten I have laughed I have dreamed I have been
I have lived like a shadow
Yet I knew how to sing the sun
The entire sun which breathes
In every breast and in all eyes
The drop of candour which sparkles after tears.


We throw the faggot of shadows to the fire
We break the rusted locks of injustice
Men will come who will no longer fear themselves
For they are sure of all men
For the enemy with a man's face dissapears.

Poems Reprinted from
The Penguin Book of Socialist Verse
Edited by Alan Bold
Penguin, 1970

Saturday, 13 April 2013

Samer Issawi's 'hunger speech' to Israelis

                                                             Samer Issawi

Reprinted from Youth Against Settlements,
Hunger Speech by Samer Issawi

I am Samer Issawi on hunger strike for eight consecutive months, laying in one of your hospitals called Kaplan. On my body is a medical devise connected to a surveillance room operating 24 hours a day. My heartbeats are slow and quiet and may stop at any minute, and everybody, doctors, officials and intelligence officers are waiting for my swtback and my loss of life.

I chose to write to you: intellectuals, writers, lawyers and journalist associations, and civil society activists. I invite you to visit me, to see a skeleton tied to his hospital bed, and around him three exhausted jailers. Sometimes they have their appetizing food and drinks around me.
The jailers watch my suffering, my loss of weight and my gradual melting. They often look at thei watches, asking themselves in surprise; how does this damaged body have an excess of time to live after its time?


I'm looking for an intellectual who is through shadowboxing, or talking to his face in mirrors. I want him to stare into my face and observe my coma, to wipe the gunpowder off his  pen, and from his mind the sound of bullets, he will then see my features carved deep in his eyes, I'll see him and he'll see me, I'jj see him nervous about the questions of the future, and he'll see me, a ghost that stays with him and doesn't leave.

You may receive instructions to write a romantic story about me, and you could do that easily after removing my humanity from me, you will watch a creature with nothing but a ribcage, breathing and choking with hunger, losing consciousness oncein a while.

And, after your cold silence, Mine will be a literary or media story that you add to your curricula, and when your students grow up they will believe that the Palestinian dies of hunger in front of Gilad's Israel sword, and you would then rejoice in this funerary ritual and your cultural and moral superiority.


I am Samer Issawi the young "Arboush" man according to your military terms, the Jerusalemite, whom you arrested without charge, except for leaving Jerusalem to the suburbs of Jerusalem. I, whom will be tried twice for a charge without charge, because it is the military that rules in your country, and the intelligence apparatus that decides, and all other componements of Israeli society ever have to do is sit in a trench and hide in the fort that keeps what is called a purity of identity - to avoid the explosion of my suspicious bones.

I have not heard one of you interfere to stop the loud wail of death, as if everyone of you has turned into gravediggers, and everyone wears his military suit: the judge, the writer, the intellectual, the journalist, the merchant, the academic, and the poet. And I cannot believe that a whole society was turned into guards over my death and my life, or guardians over settlers whose chase after my dreams and my trees.


I will die satisfied. I do not accept to be deported out of my homeland. I do not accept your courts and your arbitrary rule. If you had passed over in Easter to my country and destroyed it in the names of God of an ancient time, you will not Passover to my elegant soul which has declared disobedience. It has healed and flew and celebrated all the time that you lack. Maybe then you will understand that awareness of freedom is stronger than the awareness of deatrh.
Do not listen to those generals and those dusty myths, for the defeated will not remain defeated, and the victor will not remain a victor. History isn't only measured by battles, massacres and prisons, but by peace with the Other and the self.


Listen to my voice, the voice of our time and yours! Liberate yourselves of the excess of greedy power! Do not remain prisoners of miliary camps and the iron doors that have shut your minds! I am not waiting for a jailer to release me, I'm waitng for you to be released from my memory.

Friday, 12 April 2013

Bedroom Tax Song: You Cannae Have A Spare Rom in a Pokey Cooncil Flat.

A song about the Bedroom Tax, written for the demos that have occurred all over the UK, . and te Glasgow one in particular.
Set to the tune of the 1960's folk song "The Jeely Palce Song", by Scottish singer songwriter Adam McNaughton.


I'm a welfare state wean, we ive on the bottom flair
But we're not allowed to live there any mair.
They say we've got too many rooms, in our social rented flat
We've an eight by ten foot boxroom where you cannae swing a cat.


Oh ye canna have a spare room in a pokey cooncil flat
Ian Duncan Smith and Co have put an end tae that
They say 'live in a smaller house', they say that is their plan
When the odds against you finding one are ninety-nine to one

Noo ma auties in a wheelchair, but these Tories dinna care
They say they have a deficit, she got to pay her share
£60 a month they'll take, then leave her tae her fate
Whilst gieing millionaires a tax cut, cause they say they're due a

Noo that Buckingham Palace looks a pretty roomy gaff
And the ludger there gets benefits at rates that make me laugh
A civil list, plus perks, worth nearly ninety million pounds
With her other dozen mansions lying empty a year round

Noon those MPs doon in Westminster must think we're dense
Wi their second home apartments, where the public pays their rent
They're even get a food allowance, two hubdred quid a week
But they're claiming we're the scroungers, is their arse up in their

So we've formed a Federation  amd we're gonna have our say
The Bedroom Tax it has to go, and we aint gonna pay
We're gonna march to George's square to demand our civil rights
Like nae mair Tories and that Liberal shite.

Thursday, 11 April 2013

Au Caberet du Ciel, Paris, 1927 - Man Ray


Can't seem to avoid a certain somebody, showering down from nearly every newspaper I look at, every tiny bit of news I see, so heres's something completely different.
The cabaret scene shown was intended for reproduction in Varietes, a Belgian publication dedicated to Surrealism. Depicted are among the leading thinkers, writers and artists who reflected the Surrealist spirit in their work.
These include, standing:
Hans Arp, JJean Caupenne, Georges Sadoul, Andre Breton, Pierre Unik, Yves Tanguy, Cora, Andre Thirion ( shown from behind, facing Cora), Rene Crevel, Suzanne Musard, and Frederic Megret (shown with cigarette).
Seated at the front of the table are Elsa Triolet, Louis Aragon, Camille Goemans and Madame Goemans.

More on a Surrealist thread coming Sunday.

Tuesday, 9 April 2013

Dier Yassin Remembered.

Today  the Palestnian people mark the 65th year since Jewish militia murdered over 100 Palestinian villagers.
What happened in Deir Yassin prepared the ground for the ethnic cleansing of 70% of the Palestinian people. The same ethnic cleansing that occurred then is unfortunately going on today. In 1948 they used direct massacres, but today they use airstrikes in Gaza and shoot innocent young Palestinians in the West Bank.
For Palestinians and their supporters, the massacre is a symbol. It is remembered as the pivotal onset of the 1948 Nabka; Deir Yassin is the "other shoe that fell," sparking over 750,000 to flee from their homes out of a fear that they too would be massacred.
Early in the morning Commanders of the Irgun (headed by Menachim Begin) and the Stern Gang attacked Deir Yassin a village with aboyt 750 Palestinian residents.
The village  lay outside of the area assigned by the United Nations to the 'Jewish State'. It had a peaceful reputation. A year later the settlement  Kafar Shaul was founded on this site. In the 1980's the remains of Dier Yassin wwere bulldozed to make room for new settlements. The streets of these new neighbourhoods were named after members of the Irgun family.

Dier Yassin Remembered

Darkness recedes ( After Maggie)

Dark rippled,
heavy as lead,
tried to burn and sting,
crushed opposition,
taught us sadness,
that sometimes,
we need some hate,
to help us stay alive.

Memories moulded,
disturbing thoughts,
tainted many lifes,
stole dreams,
stretched understanding,
to limits unknown,
with pierced living breath,
and careful sharp precision.

A mother, daughter, yes!
who instead of flowers ,
planted seeds of agony and fear,
resiliant too, with cold calculation,
That is why yesterday, instead of tears,
many cheered in jubilation,
as this mean spirited medussa,
walked her final steps towards,
the flames of hell.

As darkness recedes,
let their be light.

Monday, 8 April 2013

The Witch is dead

Woke up earlier feeling a bit depressed, had an atos form to fill out, but then I noticed an unusual amount of people smiling in the street. What was going on I asked, haven't you heard the news Margaret Thatcher has died. What , suddenly it felt like the first time I had taken ecstacy, a rush of emotion that I had not felt for ages.
Some people would say that I should not be rejoicing in her death, nothing compares to the sadness that many people have felt that she was ever alive.
I deplore the way the mainstream media  is treating the life and legacy of Margaret Thatcher. To many people in this country, Thatcher was one of the most divisive figures to have emerged. She created misery and suffering for millions, while selling of  that which belonged to the people. Her legacy being carried on by the Con Dems vicious cruel policies. Her legacy continues in nasty economic policies, that have made the rich richer and the poor, poorer, with the slashing in this present time of essential services and the dismantling of the welfare state. Her legacy forever rotten to the core, friends of dictators etc etc.
Across the country there will be many people dancing and celebrating her demise. I have already drunk a toast.

Maggie Thatcher may be dead but the rest of her Nasty Party and corrupt Government are very much alive. Please sign this, on behalf of those people who have been hardest hit by their deliberate destructive policies.

These songs and this post is dedicated to all those who were blighted by her,and those who stood up against her in angry defiance.

Pete Wylie - The day that Thatcher dies

John McCullough - I will dance on your grave Mrs Thatcher

earlier post

Margaret Thatcher may be dead but the rest of her Nasty Party  very much alive. 

Sunday, 7 April 2013

Times's Police

I used to believe,
that libraries gave us power,
knowledge for free,
allowed us to share,
create and shape.

Across Britain, in sanctuaries harbour,
their trying to restrict access to internet,
to a daily fix of one hour,
some of us already hooked,
are feeling the sensation of withdrawal.

Not a lot of time, to gather thought,
for the unemployed to seek work,
to gather thought, dissect issues,
ease conscience, play silly games,
share urgent breath to the world.

Yesterday, I watched people
feverishly typing, as though
it was the last thing they would do,
some had the look of panic,
the pang of despair.

I went into the streets,with pockets full,
of restless ideas and conviction,
others carried papers, left unfilled,
took home thoughts stuffed with delicate emotion.

The power of communication,
needs patience, no rushed urgency,
allows us time, to pause for air,
freedom a universal language,
a form of magic,
floats through every living tongue.

Wires connect, whether we like it or not,
one of the better things to have emerged,
                                       from globalisation.
When speech gets cut, urgency grows wild,
in the desert without water, shards of purpose,
                                          do not simply die.
Hope flys without wings, holding all together.

Answers please by e.mail,
I'll try to reply soon,
in the heights of passion,
and  wild lofty abandon.

Thursday, 4 April 2013

Make Conservatives History

In a London nursing home, an old priest lay dying.
For years he had faithfully served the people of the nation's capital.
No motioned for his nurse to come near. Yes, Father? said the nurse.
I would really like to see David Cameron and Nick Clegg before I die, whispered the priest.
I'll see what I can do, Father, replied the nurse.
The nurse sent the requst to No 10 and waited for a response.
Soon the word arrived, David and Nick would be delighted to visit the priest.
As they went to the hospital, David commented to Nick, I don't know why the old priest wants to see us, but it certainly will help our images.
Nick agreed that it was the right thing to do at this time.
When they arrived at the priest's room, the priest took David's hand in his right hand, and the Nick's hand in his left.
There was silence and a look of serenity on the old priest's face.
The old priest slowly said: I have always tried to pattern my life after our Lord and Saviour, 
Jesus Christ.
Amen, said David, Amen. said Nick.
The old priest continued, Jesus died between two lying bastards, and I would like to do the same....

Tuesday, 2 April 2013

OK Duncan Smith, here is your £53

OK Duncan Smith, here is your £53

I've deducted
£15 for your electricity and gas. You are on a pre-payment card and it costs
£3 towards your TV License
£3 towards tour travel costs to sign once a fortnight
£14 as you are now a social housing tenant you have two bedrooms. Don't give me that nonsence about your wife being unwell
£2 Council Tax contribution as you live in England

That leaves you £16 a week to live on, barely enough for a daily pint of milk
and a copy of that vile newspaper that published you this morning.

OK, let's forget the milk and the paper. I'm going to take another £5 for
phone charges as the DWP are on a premim rate number and £5 off
towards that crisis loan you took out to pay to get your boiler repaired.
That's £6 a week to survive on.

Think you can still do it? Try doing it every bastard week.

No 'just saying, no 'best wishes' and Seren is too fucking cross to comment.

You can rot in hell

(with thanks to Don Atreides)

Ian Duncan Smith to live on £53 a week