Saturday, 31 October 2015

Awakenings ( a poem for Samhein, Jane and Shaker Aamer)



 ( a poem for Samhein, Jane, and Shaker Aamer)

Today after waking early,
I noticed the trees of life,
natures guardians with deep roots,
watchers of time and presence,   
as I carry feelings of  love,
raptured  forms of ecstasy,
that are not illegal to possess.

I cross a bridge in Aberteifi,
no longer does its river,
entice me to plunge into its depths,
today a day  of celebration,
as the veil between the worlds of life and 
                                                     death lift.

I will travel soon. to see my beloved,
gentle soul, beautiful companion,
currently stuck in hospital in West Wales,
as I remember the dead,  still look after the living,
as precious petals cast away doubt,
on this spinning whirling day of divination.

As Hecate Queen of the witches,
walks with Persephone,
deep in the underworld,
above ground,
I drift in this world,
of light and air.

I walk with beauty,
she draws me close,
from afar,
two heartbeats ,
of companionship,
journeying  together,
side by side in unity.

And today I rejoice for another reason,
Shaker Aamer the last British resident,
of Guantanamo Bay  prison camp,
has been set free, home again where he belongs,
so today is also a good  day for justice and freedom,
a time of jubilation as innocent hearts smile,
hope exists on this  earth, so blessed be, blessed be,

Friday, 30 October 2015

The flow of magic.



( possibly  without access to computer tomorrow, so an old  post of celebration)

Happy Samhein/ Calan Gaeaf


As Octobers, splendour surrenders,
coalesces and dissolves,
and the veil lifts again  on the earth,
poets try to communicate,
the sliced magic of things once witnessed,
to breathe a little  life out of thougths which grow within.

Near the rivers edge, time moves  in slow motion,
bubbling invocations leave their notation,
as words slip and slide, on thresholds rotation,
planting seeds from beneath skin,
this night of divination, allows us to keep searching,
with seas of ink and love, to replenish the earth with feeling.

Minds flying full of cobbled webs and threads,
follow the hubble bubble of exchange,
scribbled echoes and dreamscapes cast free,
to tunnel  our breaths with light and shade,
verses shaking loose undercurrents of imagination,
tides sweeping letters adrift on seas of navigation.

Our arrows shoot far into the sky,
pierce the night and its shadows,
from bright gatherings, nourishment, 
                       gets  released into air,
resonating with human care,
keeps this grinning manic world,
spinning with the afterglow of reason.


Wednesday, 28 October 2015

One Hour of Yiddish Communist Music



Following  yesterday's post, some more music......  normal service might resume soon. Though tell me what is normal? Boycott consensual reality.
Let freedom ring.

Tuesday, 27 October 2015

One Hour of IWW Music



Some musical respite - One hour of music from the Wobblies, the Industrial Workers of the World (IWW). The Union for all workers,  who used music more  pervasively than any other labor group.
Their songs and messages still resonating deeply with us today.  
Solidarity forever, remember an injury to one is an injury to all.

Monday, 26 October 2015

We shall return - Return is a human right


                                               We shall return - Return  is a human right

                                               Artist :- Alberto Smith Seravia

The right of return is a universal right, that is binding under international law, enjoyed by every people regardless of where they come from.
The idea of universal rights is an ancient one, but one of its first international expressions is found in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) which was proclaimed by the United Nations in 1949 "as a common achievement for all people and all nations."
One  of the core rights set out in the UDHR is the right of return, Article 13 (b) of the UDHR states :- "Everyone has the right to leave any country including his own, and to return to his country , Palestinian refugees are entitled to this binding universal right in the same way that all other refugees are. There is a broad consensus that the right of return, along with the right of self-determination, is the foundation of the 66 year old struggle of the Palestinian people.
We must remember how the majority of the Palestinian people up to 750,000 were forcibly displaced and uprooted from their homes and lands in 1948 never to be allowed to return to their homes or communities that they were displaced from.
Today there are more than 7 million Palestinian refugees scattered across the world. Their right of return must be recognised in order for the ongoing conflict to be restored. The end of the occupation would certainly help achieve this, .Anything   less would be a denial of justice.
However the government of Israel opposes these moves  therefore making it impossible for peace to exist, Until Israel recognises this right and corrects the  ongoing injustice that has and is still being perpetrated against the Palestinian people, hope lies in pieces.



Sunday, 25 October 2015

Scattered thoughts in October


                                   
As the day drifts,
leaves scatter,
people too,
spreading little thoughts,
across the land.

The sky turns grey,
as wild geese fly home,
I remember that life is a journey,
with opportunities of return.

My heart can be heavy,
but dreams can awaken,
as I wear autumns clothes,
with  jumpers to warm,
offer some protection,
as nights grow colder.

Walking alone,
I have felt a lot of damage,
left me in the past, a little undone,
but there is magic in the air,
as I play with  words,
am now travelling forwards,
on the road to somewhere else,
searching for seasons new adventure.

Saturday, 24 October 2015

Why I choose to wear a white poppy.


                               for all those who have died fighting for the wealth of a few

First things first, people have the right to wear whichever Poppy they want to. Many wear both. But my personal inclinations, are put off by the red poppy, to  much association for me with the glorification of war, and all its bloodshed, a mere marketing brand, used as a tool to promote current wars,  but acknowledge that  many people choose to  wear them  to remember lives lost in conflict. 
But there are alternatives, to this mass imposed red flower, that acknowledges the many civilian lives too. It is called the white  poppy. To wear one is not to be unpatriotic or anti British, disloyal, it is I guess just a badge of pride. The White poppy not just on show for  one day. but bought and sold all year round, used to remember all victims of war, acknowledge  that over 85%  of casualties and deaths are civilian. This year alone has seen the rise in childrens deaths, with thousands of others made homeless.
We who choose to wear the white poppy do not claim that the lives of servicemen and women are of any less value than those of others. After all, all life is sacred.
But I acknowledge  too all those conscientious objectors who chose not to fight and kill and truly honour their choice. I refuse to accept the current narratives, refuse to join in with  jingoism but will continue to show my respect. The greatest tribute to those who have sacrificed  all is to carry on working for peace, remembering the victims.
Rememberance was intended to be a pledge that war must never happen again, not to be used  to glorify or sanitise war. On Sunday November 8 I will wear a white poppy with peaceful intent.

Get your here :-

http://www.ppu.org.uk/whitepoppy/

http://stopwar.org.uk/shop/white-poppy-2

Friday, 23 October 2015

Britain accused of doing bidding for Chinese regime.


Britain has been accused of doing the bidding of the Chinese regime after UK police raided  the family of a Tiananmen Square survivor for standing in the road holding up protest banner in Central London. 
Chinese democracy activist Shao Jiang, 47 was arrested in the street outside Londons Mansion House where a reception was being held for visiting Chinese premier Xi Jinpig.  Shaos computers and mobile phone were seized as well. Shao helped organise the 1980 student protest in Tiananmen , managed to escape China, after being jailed for months, and moved to the UK where he now writes about China for Amnesty International. A totally over the top response by London's police doing the same now as oppressive forces in China.
Two pro Tibetan activists were also arrested at the same protest.
Britain's fawning warm reception has been criticised by human rights experts for ignoring Chinas history of violating individuals citizens rights. My thoughts are currently with struggling British steel workers about to be tossed on the scrap heap due to the impact of cheap Chinese imports, and how Britain is ignoring  Chinas human rights abuses , as human rights activists currently left languising in Chinese prisons while my Government pursues lucrative deals at the expense of humanity. China's continuing infringements of civil liberties will damage the interests of the whole world including the UK. Business as usual then as Britain carries on sucking up to totalitarian regimes.

Steve Bell's cartoon in the Guardian newspaper earlier this week.



Thursday, 22 October 2015

Child of the refuge


( after sadly catching the news the other night, so an amalgamation of reportage.)

                                  Aya is 8 years old,
                                  her home is in  detention,
                                  behind barbed wire and fences,
                                  in a no- man's land,  
                                  a landscape mired in abandonment.
     
                                  Aya is shivering with cold,
                                  her jacket was once white,
                                  now it is drenched with rain,    
                                  and covered in mud,
                                  her brother cries, he  wants the touch of his mother,
                                  her father is desperate as well,
                                  wants them both delivered to safety,
                                  this is not a place where dreams will flourish,
                                  there are no tents for shelter, just seas of misery,
                                  disturbed intersections, between what passes as 
                                                                              a frontier of freedom.     

                                  Aya exists  in this world of chaos,
                                  with her companions, the walking wounded,
                                  crumbling  through the night and day,
                                  as a news cameraman pans in and out,
                                  relays images back to safe European homes,
                                  to be easily digested,  in the comfort of sanctuary.

                                 Aya one fragment of many shattered journeys,
                                 the nagging pain of humanity's pulse,
                                 the drifting sadness  of frightened children, 
                                                                               terrified people,
                                 with broken hearts and broken homes,
                                 four thousand refugees stranded and abandoned,
                                 within yards of the European Union.
                                   
                                 Aya I am truly ashamed, 
                                 of the despair that follows your journey,
                                 wish I could point you in the direction of paradise,
                                 support your tiny soul, strengthen your arms,
                                 stop the  nagging persecution, detention, trauma,
                                 release  you from the tears of seperation, anxiety and grief,
                                 clasp your wishes,  send you protection, 
                                 allow you to  continue your journey,
                                 to a land of security and hope,
                                 anywhere from this grim wasteland,
                                 no place for an innocent child.  
                                   
                             
                                     



Wednesday, 21 October 2015

Aberfan - Lest we forget, this gross injustice



49 years ago a on Friday October 21, 1966 , approx 9.16 a.m shortly after school assembly many tons of collier rubbish (slag heaps) swept down the sides of a  Merthyr Mountain  above the town of Aberfan after several days of heavy rain, Liquified and pouring down  this black tidal wave would engulf everything in its path in this catastrophic tragedy.
Following  Monday's post about Tryweryn, another tragic memory from Wales's turbulent living history.
Aberfan was to many a result of a conflict of financial interests, which would see the death of 144 people, including a 115 innocent  children, many of whom were between the age of seven and ten along with, five of their teachers, in what is now known  today as one  of one of Wales worst mining disasters in it's history, not forgetting Senghennydd which I've written about previously when in 1913 over 400 were killed.
By the time the landslide stopped, it had demolished Pantglyn Junior School and 20 houses, severely damaging the Secondary School.




The sores and wounds of this disaster are now forever  stored in the memories  and feelings of the people of Wales because of the whole collective loss of a generation that was wiped out. So today again we  try not to forget  the children and adults who died, this human tragedy, that  many say could easily have been  prevented. The National Coal Board  (NCB) were repeatedly warned to move the slag heaps to a safer location, because they were also  close to natural underwater springs. Did the NCB have the decency to acknowledge their blame, to bow their head in shame, like hell no, but we were to  learn sadly far too late that the NCB was ostensibly a capitalist organisation more concerned with profit than lives.  A report by the government at the time said " Blame  for the disaster rests upon  the National Coal Board. The legal liabilities of the National Coal Board to pay compensation for the  personal injury ( fatal or otherwise) and  damage to property is incontestable and uncontested." The Government of the day was also extremely insensitive to the victims families, and people whould have to wait for years, for compensation.
So today we remember  the people of Aberfan, a community  that still profoundly affected by this disaster, one in three survivors still  suffering  from Post traumatic stress,  nearly 50 years after this tragic event took place.  People felt guilty that they were  left alive, they did not feel like survivors, cases of children not being allowed to play in the street, in case it upset other parents.
Let us  hope that lessons learnt from this incident can be learnt for tomorrow, and  remember that this bitter legacy still continues, what with continuing social and economic problems in the South Wales valleys still  being wrought  because of successive governments who have made lives a  continuing source of discomfort.  Combined with the failure of responsibility by the relevant authorities and the appalling behaviour of  some parties in the aftermath of the disaster.
Today, however there is very  little to remind visitors of  this tragic path, just an abstract memorial garden in the village and the childrens section in the graveyard.


Lest we forget, people before profit.

R.I.P the little angels that were lost forever.



shaker aamer - pj harvey


Repost of this song

PJ Harvey released this powerful song in 2013, to highlight the ongoing detention of last British resident held inside the US prison at Guantanamo Bay. Harvey recorded the track to help  maintain  pressure to help Shaker, whose family live in South London, to be released back to to Britain.
Saturday 24 October will be Shakers 5,000th day in Guantanamo.
First sent to the notorious camp in 2002, but subsequently cleared for release in 2007,  proving that the US authorities had no intention of bringing him  to trial for the last  7 years or so. This  Friday will  mark the end of the 30 day notice period to the US Congress that he is to be released and returned to his home , here in the UK.
On the following day Sunday 25th October, Shaker should be free and on his way home.
The US must keep their promise to Shaker and the world, a man who has endured all these years with much dignity and fortitude, 13 years imprisoned without any charge or trial, 13 years without ever getting to see his son. At present he is on hunger strike in protest at his  continual  detention and the appalling conditions in which he and his fellow detainees are held. In retaliation, he has been beaten, confined to a tiny cell and forced to spend long periods in solitary confinement. Many of his supporters are now also fasting for 24 hours in solidarity with him.
 Shaker must be freed and get the justice he deserves and the much needed treatment for his failing health,riddled with arthritis, combined with other medical problems, that no man should ever have to put up with.
There should  be no further delay to this injustice, time to bring Shaker home  immediately.
His eventual release will be a source of comfort and  joy to the many people  who have campaigned so hard for this moment to take place.

There will be a protest   outside Downing Street this coming Saturday  2-4 to highlight Shaker's case one more time.

Shaker Aamer

No water for three days
I cannot sleep, or stay awake.

Four months hunger strike.
Am I dead, or am I alive?

With metal tubes we are force fed.
I honestly wish I was dead.

Strapped  in the  restraining chair.
Shaker Aamer, your friend.

                                             In Camp 5, eleven years
                                             Never charged. Six years cleared.

They took away my one note pad,
and then refused to give it back.


I can't think straight, I write, then stop.
Your friend Shaker Aamer. Lost.

The guards just do what they're told,
the doctors just do what they're told.

Like an old car I'm rusting away.
Your friend, Shaker. Guantanamo Bay

                                    Don't forget -

                                                            
                                                             PJ Harvey 2013

Tuesday, 20 October 2015

Michael McClure (b.20/10/30) - ACTION PHILOSOPHY


Michael McClure, the fantastic poet playwright turns 63 today, so hats of. Best known for his participation in San Francisco famous Six Gallery Poetry reading where Allen Ginsberg first publicly read Howl and his friendship with the band  The Doors, he was to become a prominent figure in the Beat movement, writing poetry and plays. His 1965 production The Beard faced obscenity charges, but were subsequently dismissed.
His writing reflect his Bhuddist practice and his appreciation of the natural world using elements of typographical expression, with an exquisite sensibility. I like his work a lot, so thanks Michael, and happy birthday.

                                                             ACTION PHILOSOPHY

                               THAT GOVERNMENT IS BEST WHICH GOVERNS LEAST.
                                                 Let me be free of ligaments and tendencies
                                                             to change myself into a shape
                                                                 that's less than spirit.
                                                                LET ME BE A WOLF,
                                                                 a caterpillar, a salmon,
                                                                                 or
                                                                                an
                                                                          OTTER
                                                             sailing in the silver water
                                                                 beneath the rosy sky.
                                                               Were I a moth or condor
                                                                   you'd see me fly!
                                                    I love this meat of which I'm made!
                                                  I dive in it to find the simplest vital shape!

                                                           AH! HERE'S THE CHILD!!!
                                  
                                         WHAT'S LIBERTY WHEN ONE CLASS STARVES
                                                                       ANOTHER?

Monday, 19 October 2015

Cofiwch Dryweryn / Remember Tryweryn


This wednesday 21st October marks the 50th anniversary of the opening of the controversial resevoir in the Tryweryn valley to supply drinking water to the residents of the city of Liverpool, it will be marking a day of grave injustice.
The battle began in 1955 when the City of Liverpool were seeking a new water supply. In the summer of that year Liverpool'sWater Committe announced its intention to drown the valley of Dolaneg, where the shrine of Ann Griffiths, the Welsh saint and hymn writer, stands. This of course, provoked uproar.
Magnaminously Liverpool bowed to Welsh demands and said they would flood the Tryweryn valley instead. This proved to be a carefully planned scheme to hoodwink the Welsh into thinking they were dictating where a resevoir could be built.
In 1956, a private members bill was put before parliament seeking to create this folly. The bill was bought forth by Liverpool City Council, which  allowed them to by-pass the usual criteria for planning permission to the relevant  landowners in the area. It would involve disrupting railway lines and road links, and at the heart of it, the flooding of the village of Capel Celyn. This one of the last bastions of Welsh speaking settlements, which had its own school, the site of Wales first Sunday school post office, a chapel, cemetery  and a number of farms and homesteads, it was  a community in every sense of the word.
Feelings were naturally instantly aroused to fever pitch as the notion of the English drowning out the Welsh, made the symbolism of the creation of the resevoir even more potent. But to members of Liverpool council, the farms that they were drowning were no more than convenient stretches of land along a remote valley floor that could be put to a more convenient and productive use to supply its own citizens with water, but to many was just an arrogant misuse of power, a flooding used primarily as a way of boosting profits.


                                
                                  Capel Celyn 

  It would be fiercely opposed, such was the passion aroused, on November 21, 1956, the people who had supposedly given Liverpool permission - in fact the entire community of Capel Celyn including their children, marched with banners  through the streets of Liverpool  protesting against the plan. It would  also see a number of individuals being compelled to take direct action against the plan, between 1962 and 1963 there were attempts to sabotage the building of the resevoir,  in acts of desperation, since previous passive demonstrations had failed. On Saturday September 22nd 1962, two men were arrested attempting to destroy the site, and then on February 10th 1963 an explosion took place at the site. It  remains to this day, the greatest symbol of the struggle of the Welsh language, a way of life destroyed on the whims of Conservative Government without consultation by Welsh authorities, its people, or  the support from Welsh M.Ps, who were to wage an 8 year battle against it. Opposition to the scheme received the backing of the vast majority of the Welsh people, with the backing of trade unionists, and cultural and religious groups.
Control over its own water became and has remained an inflammatory issue here in Wales. The political parties were to be united in their opposition to the scheme because it was considered such an affront  to the people of Wales, because such valuable resources were being stolen away from the country. The agricultural value of the land  was rich compared to some land  that could have been considered. A feeling of great sadness because a community was being shattered and families who had lived in the area for generations were being forced to lose their homes.






Shortly after the flooding a piece of graffiti appeared on a piece of wall, just outside  the village of Llanrhysted, on the way to Aberystwyth. The graffiti read "Cofiwch Drwyweryn " "Remember Tryweryn" it is still to be seen, many years later.
When  on Thursday, October 21st, 1965, the Lord Mayor of Liverpool  came to open Tryweryn dam ( built at a cost of £20 million) where every house and tree had dissapeared, to be met by a vast crowd of protesters,  in 19 October 2005 Liverpool City Council finally issued an apology, but many thought it was just a worthless political gesture that had arrived far too late.
I hope that we have by now learnt the tragic lessons of Tryweryn and the reverberations that are still felt to this day. The place names like bells still ring out- Hafod Fadog, Y Ganedd Lyd, Cae Fado, Y Gelli, Pen Y Bryn Mawr, Gwerndelw, Tyncerrig, Maesydail. These bells now ring underwater and are heard by no one. An evocative image, forever stitched in time, which remembers the bells of Cantre'r Gwaelod and the loss associated with inundation. It would also feed the flames of a resurgent nationalism, re-igniting the imagination, peoples identity and defence of the language? Y iath, and would pave the way for devolution, and the strengthening and protection of the Welsh Language alongside the growth of Cymdeithas Y Iaith /The Welsh Language Society. Some would argue though  that the Welsh nation is still being fobbed off, since the assembly that has been granted to them, has no  real political power.



There is now a memorial on the side  of the lake and a memorial garden and the grave stones  from Capel Cemetry have been moved here.
At the end of the day it was not just a stretch of land that was flooded against the people of Wales's will, but a whole community of people, a culture and a language because of colonial arrogance and misuse of power. Tryweryn remains as a byword for shame and a grave injustice. Years later it would inspire the Manic Street Preachers to ask " Where are we going"?" in their song " Ready for Drowning, " and the following much anthologised poem by R.S Thomas.
A tragic story that we must continue to share. Reminding us of our history and our land, and how it has been exploited to serve the interests of others.



R.S Thomas -  Resevoirs

There are places in Wales I don't go:
Resevoirs  that are the subconscious
Of a people, troubled far dwon
with gravestones, chapels, villages even:
The serenity of their expression
Revolts me,  it is a pose
for strangers, a watercolour's appeal
To the mass, instead  of the poem's
Harsher conditions. There are the hills
Too; gardens under the scum
Of the forests, and the smashed faces
Of the farms with the stone trickle
Of their tears down the hills' side.

Where can I go,  then, from  the smell
Of decay, from the putrefying of a dead
Nation? I have walked the shore
For an hour and seen the English
Scavenging among the remains
Of our culture, covering the sand
Like the tide and, with the roughness
Of the tide, elbowing our language
Into the grave that we have dug for it.




Huw Jones - Dwr ( inspired by Tryweryn)


Capel Celyn - The drowning of a village



Cofiwch Dryweryn/Remember Tryweryn



Sunday, 18 October 2015

Stung


( following poem in response to actual event yesterday)

Autumn morning, playing in garden
taking time out ,mooching about,
cutting down brambles, trimming the lawn.
In the undergrowth, resting in fallen fruit,
a lone wasp waited, in flight carried poison,
in pursuit, heading in my direction,
released a direct hit above my eye,
stuck its stinger beneath my skin.
Now I sit, swollen and throbbing,
mother nature, I've already thanked
for leaving me, with this nasty surprise,
at least I have a few remedies stored
some love and affection, some healing balms
the wasp simply flew off, somewhere else 
to face the  imminent threat of death.

Saturday, 17 October 2015

Human Rights Explained



This incredible 2-minute animation by http://www.rightsinfo.org  will tell you everything you need to know about your human rights and why they matter.

I have the right

I have the right to my own opinions
to state what I believe to be the truth,
I believe in freedom of thought
I believe in freedom of speech,
I have the right to be free from bondage
to be free from chains and mental slavery,
to choose what I want to be, where I need to go
because this is my right to be free.
I have the right to speak out
this is my choice, this is my conscience,
this is my right to freedom of expression
this right allows me to speak out against oppression,
this right allows me to stand against trangression, 
                                           aggression, exploitation
this right acknowledges that all born equal and free,
everyone a unique individualistic form 
that all have a right to life and liberty,
with dignity and pride, with the security of protection
that allows us to cry, to love and laugh,
but remember that when justice is forgotten 
the alternative path, will  trample down thought, 
decency and justice, respect, and all that has been given
so  keep on fighting for human rights,
for today and all our tomorrows.

Friday, 16 October 2015

Reality check!


If this  individual was carrying a knife,why did they need  10 men to shoot her?
If Jerusalem was united, why does it's mayor call only on Jews to carry guns to protect themselves?
What should Palestinians carry? Potatoes?
If Israel feels unsafe among Palestinians, why build colonial settlements on stolen Palestinian 
land?
11,000 Palestinians have been  forced out of East Jerusalem by deliberate Israeli policy.,
Are new checkpoints and concrete blocks at the entrance of neighborhoods in East Jerusalem, not acts of provocation?  
How many innocent lives have been effected by tear gas, rubber bullets and live ammunition? 
Should we not be alarmed about Israel's  policy of extrajudicial killing aimed solely at Palestinians?
Why is the collective punishment reserved  exclusively for family members of Palestinian, but never against those in settlements?
800,000 illegal israeli settlers use more water than the entire Palestinian population of 3 million.
Israel has demolished 15,000 Palestinian homes.
70.7% of the entire forest area in the West Bank has been destroyed to build settlements.
100% of illegal settlements in the West Bank and East Jerusalem are illegal under international law.
Why are families not allowed to rebuild destroyed homes?
As Israeli aggression against Palestinians continues  the need for solidarity intensifies too.
Does my empathy for victims, not simply make me human?
Can their ever be peace when their is occupation?





Thursday, 15 October 2015

75 years ago: World Premiere of Charlie Chaplin's Great Dictator in New York


This was not just a film,  this was  a message from Charlie Chaplin's deep humanity. His final speech ever so relevant  to the times that we are living in today than it was all those years ago. . One of the  most inspirational speeches in recorded history.
This from a man who was ridiculed and demonised for simply telling the truth in his pure authenticity.
The world still needs to stand still and listen.

An earlier tribute  of mine to this great man can be found here :-

http://teifidancer-teifidancer.blogspot.co.uk/2012/02/charlie-chaplin-b1641889-251277-citizen.html 

Wednesday, 14 October 2015

A New World in our hearts ( a poem)


We are building a new world in our hearts,
red and black flags united against the system,
with courage to demand nothing for us alone,
but everything for everyone else,
following a map towards tomorrow,
developing our own journeys,
both individually and collectively,
as we travel.

We don't want to rule others,
and we will not be ruled,
we have no masters, our thoughts are free,
we have removed the chains that bind us,
demanding the impossible, 
disintegrating capitalism,
creating the world we want.

They try to reject us,
degrade us, belittle us,
shame us and ignore us,
because together we are strong,
in unity we are fearless,
as we try to eradicate their consensus,
we will grow wiser, kinder and more content.

At the moment, our insides ache,
filled with emotions of love and rage,
carrying us away from webs of deceit,
the daily delusionary shackles of greed,
living only now to feed our need,
among widening circles that reach
                              out across the world,
believing in hope,
and the messages that we share,
we fill our pockets with resistance,
keep on building  new worlds in our hearts.




Tuesday, 13 October 2015

United Nations to look at UK's deadly disability cuts.


The UK has become the first country in the world to be placed under investigation by the United Nations for violating the human rights of people with disabilities amid fears that thousands may have died as a consequence of controversial welfare reforms and austerity driven cuts to benefits and care budgets.
They are expected  to arrive  in the country within days to begin gathering their evidence. Figures  released by the DWP ( the Department for work and persecution) in August 2015 revealed  that 2,380 people died between  2011 and 2014 shortly after having their benefits stopped. A further 7,200 people also died after having their benefits reduced and being dumped  in groups to apparently help them prepare for a return to work. Leaving many without the means for daily living and the means to survive.
This at a time when austerity has no moral legitimacy or indeed any other kind of basis for validity.The Tory's using the most vulnerable  people in society for  political and ideological gain, leading to suicides, hardship and much suffering.The work and capability assessments have been notorious for providing unreliable assessments of peoples fitness to work and failing to treat disabled people with respect.  Disability rights campaigners have long argued that disabled peoples quality of life has declined immensely under welfare reform and government cuts to services.
We currently have a right wing authoritarian government running amok, and destroying peoples lives, they must be challenged and be reminded of our basic human principles. We are all equally  precious, each life has equal  worth. But the Tory's want to tear these notions apart, surely a society that is not founded on these basic principles of decency, dignity and mutual respect is not worth tuppence.  
As I remember the Governments victims I hope this investigation will lead to the government being held for account and that Ian Duncan Smith finally apologises for what has taken place under his administration. 
Time for the persecution to stop.



                                Disabled protestors and activists on the streets of Manchester 
                                at the time of the Tory party conference

Monday, 12 October 2015

Respite


In the evening
I try to resist,
the strain of life
I have become world weary,
tired of the daily news
and the hard truths,
that leave me overwrought.

So skip pass the headlines
throw newspapers in the bin,
turn of the T.V, uncork a bottle of wine
open back door, to let moonshine in,
allow my thoughts to step outside
to stop them from being consumed 
                             from deep within.

I roll myself a cigarette
peppered with magic herbs,
go outside where the air is clear
find myself alone again,
but with hope, peace and love
my spirit sparkles in the night.

I notice, the changes in the sky,
clouds sweetly rolling on by,
inhaling  deep aromatic smoke into lung,
on the stereo indoors, the release of singing tongues,
my arms and legs, a little drunk, sway and dance
this is my truth, my night vision stance. 

I am an outsider, looking far out
an observer in the shadows of time,
my mind is scattered and in fragments
dispersing in thousands of pieces,
until the morning turns, comes round again
and news arrives of people standing up screaming,
the modern world turning once more in abyss
I give up my journey and rejoin the fight.






Sunday, 11 October 2015

Palestinian lives do not seem to matter to the BBC

                       
                         14 Palestinians killed in 2 days and  above is how the BBC report it.

Currently the British government is carrying  out the biggest attack on our movement yet. But I will continue to stand by the BDS campaign as I always have.
I will not condone the disproportionate reporting of the BBC either or the brutal murder of Palestinian citizens by Israels IDF. Everyday Israel forces shoot Palestinians often with video evidence of them breaking international laws, and the BBC news covers the situation always with the amount of Israeli deaths. Anyone who does not look behind the reports would draw the opinion that the Palestinians were at fault entirely.
Palestinian deaths are mentioned as a passing comment.  It seems that the life of a Palestinian simply has no value. The illegal occupation of Palestine by Israel merely presented as  a 'conflict' or even a 'war.' In the coverage of the situation the BBC often fails to convey the reality of the situation. The result is we are often presented with a completely false picture, that there are two sides fighting each other, but one presented as victims and the other side to be disproportianately to be blamed.
Today alone Israel has injured 66 Palestinians with live ammunition  during confrontations with Israeli army in Ramallah, Nablus and Tulkrum,  are they trying to provoke another intifada, it seems so,http://english.wafa.ps/index.php?action=detail&id=29536.  Also accrding to Keneth Roth of Human rights watch ' indiscriminate or deliberate firing on observers and demonstrators who pose no imminent threat violates the international standards that bind Israeli security forces :-https://www.hrw.org/news/2015/10/11/israel/palestine-human-rights-watch-investigator-shot
We should be angry and speak out when the BBC and David Cameron remain silent, to the never ending brutal murder of children and the people  of Palestine.
So I will continue to support the representatives of Palestinians civil society,  call for broad boycotts and implement  divestment initiatives against Israel similar to those applied to South Africa in the apartheid era, until a form of justice is served, that forces to comply with international law,  respect fundamental human rights and thus end its occupation and oppression of the Palestinian people. There will sadly be no peace until the occupation ends.

You can make a complaint to the BBC here if you wish :-

http://www.bbc.co.uk/complaints/


Assata Shakur ( b:- 16/7/1947) - " Love is a contraband in hell."


Shakur was a  civil rights activist and member of the Black Panther Party and the Black Liberation Army, an underground nationalist-Marxist organisation of the 1970's, and also an accomplished poet - she was convicted of killing a New Jersey State Trooper. Many believe she was innocent. 
Described by Angela Davis as ' a compassionate human being with an unwavering commitment to justice.'
She escaped from prison in 1979,and fled to Cuba, where since 1984 she has been granted political asylum. She has remained a political refugee ever since.

"Love is a contraband in hell"

Love is a contraband in Hell,
cause love is acid
that eats away away bars. But you, me, and tomorrow
hold hands and make vows
that struggle will multiply.
The hacksaw  has two blades.
We are pregnant with freedom.
We are a conspiracy.
It is our duty to fight for freedom
It is our duty to win.
We must love each other and support each other.
We have nothing to lose but our chains.

Saturday, 10 October 2015

Fascist Mosley gets knocked down.


On this day in 1937, fascist leader Oswald Mosley was due to speak on some vacant land by Queen's drive in Liverpool. but instead of what he was expecting, is greeted by a crowd of more than 800, many of them hostile, and vehemently anti-fascist. He is greeted by a volley of bricks and stones.With hundreds of missiles thrown. The streets of Liverpool clearly  did not want to give him  a welcome.
After giving a fascist salute, and before he had uttered  a word he is hit by a stone on the temple and.
is knocked unconscious. His minions flee and scarper, and Mosley was to spend a week recovering from concession at Walton hospital.

 From 1937 onwards the appeal of the fascist blackshirts thankfully waned and Mosley was eventually detained in prison  in 1940, for the duration of the war.
Liverpool  had an honoured tradition in the fight against fascism. Around 130 local men, among them the late  Trade Union leader Jack Jones, had joined the International Brigades in Spain, in their fight against the fascist  forces of  General Franco.
But we should always be on our guard, and when they try to gather, as they still do, trying to spread their filth on our streets. We will meet them with resistance and force, and continue to knock the fascists down.
They shall never pass.Nazi scum never given a welcome. No pasaron.


Anti-fascist mural from the 1930's


Friday, 9 October 2015

Tunnels of Life


( In memory of Liz, writer, who people are saying goodbye today R.I.P )

Walking side by side
the comfort of friendship and companionship,
passes through our waking breaths
releasing the gift of laughter and kindness,
love and comradeship, sharing possibilities
the spark of imagination, dreams, magic and joy.

As tears are now shed
words arrive to pick people up,
whispering and soothing our cry's
carried on the tips of leaves, and trees,
to remember all the happy times
that life still has much in store.

Above us shine the constellations of the universe
near to the shining bright moon aglow,
when stars sail across the sky
weaving among shifting patterns of time,
peace in the sky, blooming in eternity
souls flying high, on journeys return.

A singular voice, is carried now
on embers of autumnal gold,
taking wing like a bird
a voice of vision, never to be forgotten,
in time we will continue to talk
read her stories, share her tales
we will be able to bring her back at will.


Thursday, 8 October 2015

Lost ( a poem for National Poetry Day)


( poem for National Poetry Day, written in 10 minutes, Llyfrgell Aberteifi/Cardigan... 14.51

Poetry lives
in order to be free, 
precious and unguarded
but sadly is often not noticed,
as people walk on by
not even looking,
so simply ignored.

Like a big issue seller
wearing an invisibility cloak,
words written in life's  frenzy
in times emotion,can be rejected,
left behind, stuck on a page
lonely and lost.

Sometimes clumsy
after  sipping too many wines,
just takes a chance
thinking about yesterday
and the days to come,
words escape to express feeling
contained within.

Searching for meaning
waiting to be set free,
with shaking fingertips
imperfect thoughts,
half formed released,
because there is
no other way.

As the winds outside
continue to blow,
words unregulated
arrive random and unexplained,
the sound of a heart beating
a lonely cry.

Mind continues to explore
the silence that has no room to contain,
wandering full  of love and spirit,
will continue to spread
a wild virus of precious intent.
making it all up as I think,
refusing to be abandoned.








Wednesday, 7 October 2015

Happy Birthday Joe Hill (7/10/1879 - 19/11/15) - The Man who never died


Today, October 7, 1879, Joe Hill was born,  a Swedish immigrant, songwriter and organiser with the Industrial Workers of the World. Born as Joel Hagglund   in Gevalia, Sweden , I make no apologies in writing about him again here, this was a man who became a myth. A myth on which many people across the globe  continue to pin their hopes and dreams. Moving across America in search of work,   leading an itinerant life, he ended up in New York, and together with people from the same background, people yearning for a new way of life,  inspired by its revolutionary spirit he was to become a Wobbly  and became a member of the Industrial Workers of the World.
Throughout his day he was actively involved in many of the labor battles of the day, fighting in Mexico, with partisans against the dictator Ricardo Flores Magon  and  used his voice as a songwriter and cartoonist for the IWW, many of whose songs still sung today, including 'There is Power in the Union,' his memory still enduring and being kept alive. His songs  and tunes  urged workers to quit thinking of themselves as a dispirited crowd of immigrants, but through  solidarity and organisation. People of all nationalities and differing languages would come together and sing Joe Hill's tunes  together. Even if  jailed for their protests, the workers would carry on singing his words until their release.
In 1914 Joe Hill  was accused of the murder of a Salt Lake Grocer and former policeman. He was suspected because he had suffered a gunshot wound on the same night. At his trial though  not one witness was able to identify him as one of the murderers  but he was convicted  and sentenced to death anyway, The IWW argued that  he had been framed and recent  evidence unearthed, seems to back up this view, that he had been engaged in conflict somewhere else, while engaged in a fight over his love. Following an usuccessful appeal and an international campaign calling for clemncy, Joe Hill was executed by firing squad on November 19th, 1915. Just prior to his execution, he had written  to Bill Haywood the IWW leader, saying 'Goodbye Bill, I die like a true blue rebel. Don't waste any time in mourning. 'Organize!"  This  is still used as a motto by the IWW to this day (Don't mourn organise).His last  actual words were 'Fire!.' Most of his ashes  would be sent to IWW branches around the world, and  many believe his spirit now lives on through the works and deeds of the IWW, this man and his myth still continuing to inspire, in movements  that reflect his call for social justice.
An estimated 30,000 people attended Hill's funeral and  he has since been immortalised in poetry and song,from Pete Seeger, Paul Robeson to many others. Today his name still used as a rallying cry, as we remember this insurgent rebel folk hero.
Without memory of the past , there can be no hope for the future.

Paul Robeson - Joe Hill


Outrageous a Tory got egged


Bit late with this one I know, but been kind of busy. A Tory walks the streets of Manchester, where the Tory's are currently not welcome, and is seen laughing and waving a picture of Margaret Thatcher, a clearly divisive figure to the anti-austerity protestors who have this week gathered in Manchester. Provoking  and  antagonising, clearly taking the piss , at all those who had gathered, and then some people are outraged when he receives an  egging!
I'm outraged too, that  the people who are now stealing tax credits from hard working families, making people rely on food banks in order to survive, cutting benefits for pensioners, sanctioning the unemployed, the sick and vulnerable and making life unbearable for disabled people,  spreading daily the cruelty of poverty are allowed to walk free around the streets with such arrogance.
Egg throwing is a continuing long, proud tradition of British protest. Eggs are usually used because they are cheap, and easy to detonate, and leave a lot of mess.
I want to shake the hand of the individual who threw the egg. Not that Im actually advocating that you should throw anything at anyone. Wish though it had been David Cameron who was left with egg on his face.



' He's just a Tory boy from a privileged family, egged in the mush for laughing loud at poverty.'

Tuesday, 6 October 2015

Cabinet of millionaires ( A Poem)


The cabinet of millionaires, dining now on the misery they cause,
filling their guts with the carcasses of the people,
the richest parasites in Britain, gathered in one place,
guarded and protected in their ivory towers,
eating from silver spoons, gorging from golden troughs.

Negating and abusing with denigration and labels,
calling their undeserving victims layabouts and scroungers,
rejects and lazy bastards, this all from a self serving elite,
drunk on political power, running wild and amok,
spreading pain, and broken promises, for own personal gain.

The cabinet of millionaires spit venom on its citizens of hunger,
plutocrats gaining from capital and corporate shares,
bankrolled by big business and multinational strength,
in the spirit of their ideology, continue to plunder all that we possess,
making the underclass below their feet weep, as obscenity is spread,
but the people outside have grown weary and tired, and have had enough.

As they trot around their conference centre,
time now to subvert their authority, 
after all the poor have nothing left to lose,
apart from their poverty and chains, and self respect,
so together lets take back what's been stolen from the tory piggy bank,
singing bread and roses, people not profit,
chanting in unison, Tory's out,
one more time, oink, oink, oink.

Monday, 5 October 2015

Why has Saudi Arabia been welcomed into the UN's Human Rights Council ?


Saudi Arabia  a country with appalling notorious woeful reputation  for human rights abuses has been welcomed to the UN Human rights council, facilitated in part by our own PM, David Cameron, has himself looked at curtailing many of our own personal freedoms, indeed he has already eroded many. I think I see a pattern emerging.
Saudi Arabia continues to try convict and imprison political dissidents and human rights activists solely on account of their  peaceful activities. Still subjecting hundreds of people to unfair trials and arbitrary detentions. People  daily being curtailed carrying   out  their beliefs. Saudi Arabian judges routinely sentence detainees to floggings with hundreds of lashings, the use of torture an every day occurrence. Women's rights  hardly in existence at all.
It is a mockery of humanity, when  a country that carries out  cruel inhuman punishments, that shackles its media, who in the last 20 years  has had over 2,000  people executed can be welcomed  by the UN in this way.  last year alone 175 people executed, for crimes that were hardly capitol offences. Saudi Arabia executes more people than any other country except China and Iran.
But the fact  that Saudi Arabia sits on the  world's largest  reserves of oil, could have been a contributing factor.
This decision by the UN  mocks the pain off dissidents currently languishing in Saudi Jails.

Sunday, 4 October 2015

They Shall Not Pass - The Battle for Cable Street.


On this day  on October 4, 1936, Oswald Mosley's British Union of Fascists attempted to march through East London. They were met by over 100,000 local residents and workers who fought with the fascists and the police  in order to protect their community, which forced the march to be abandoned.
During this time Britain was facing very serious economic problems. Mosley's  fascists held nasty anti-semitic views and tried to blame Jews for the cause of the country's problems. 
Thet were not to be welcomed, instead at Gardners' Court they were met by thousands of protestors, waving banners with slogans such as 'They shall not Pass'( no pasaron, famous republican slogan from the Spanish Civil War) , 'No Nazis here' and 'East End Unite.'
Uniformed policemen on horseback were employed to allow Mosley's  march to pass through. However anti-fascists blocked the route by barricading the street with rows of domestic furniture and the police were attacked with eggs, rotten fruit and the contents of peoples chamber pots.Local kids rolled marbles under police horses hooves. A mighty battle ensued, leaving many arrested and injured. Eighty years ago today it saw thousands of people, united, from many walks of life, local Jews, communists, socialists, anarchists and Irish groups standing firm  as one in the battle against fascism, who worked together to prevent Oswald Mosley's fascists from marching through a Jewish area in London.
The end result was the fascists did not get to march and they did not pass, and were left in humiliation so today we look back on this living history in celebration and pride. We should never forget. We might like to think those days are behind us, but anti-semitism, racism and intolerance against Muslims is on the rise. The far-right are growing throughout Europe. After seventy nine year we must remain vigilant to this. We should never forget events like the battle of Cable Street. Teach your kids about it.




video Ghosts of Cable Street, set to the music of Men they couldn't hang



Tories not welcome in Manchester, and are definitely not welcomed here.


Tens of thousands of demonstrators are descending on Manchester this weekend to protest outside the Conservative Party Conference - and feeling are  justifiably running high, since  the Tory's cruel  policies are leaving a lot of ordinary people in desperate poverty and misery, so  people are resisting and standing against austerity  and public spending cuts.
Too many people are now suffering under their discredited ideology of austerity. Two thirds of leading UK economists say they blame George Osborne's austerity policies to be damaging to the economy.
Austerity is not necessary,  there is another way, a better way. The ideology of austerity must  be exposed for the life destroying lie that it is. It is  just an ideological obsession being used by the Tories and their friends in the media to pick on easy targets that cannot fight back,   to scapegoat and pick on the poor, the vulnerable, the unemployed,  to distract us from the real wreckers of our society the bankers and the corporate world, as they continue to try and suck the last vestiges of hope from us all.
The Tories are  currently obsessed  with the concept  of shrinking our welfare state, privatising services and  reducing the public sector to virtually nothing. Attacking our human and Trade Union Rights, combined with their unrelenting attack on those who desperately need the support of the welfare state, we must remember those who have been  treated with brutality, incompetance and indifference, with many sadly having losit their lives.
So now is the time to fight back, not just in Manchester, but across the country, we simply cannot afford more years of Tory misrule, if we do not, we will lose everything, so we must  keep up the pressure, standing in solidarity in order to defeat the  government. We must start building alternatives, to their supposedly comfortable capitalist consensus, send out clear messages, saying no to austerity,  outside parliament, in our communities, in our workplaces.
They have gatecrashed into power, and are simply not welcome anymore.
It is time now to kick the Tories out of power.


Newtown Neurotics - Kick out the Tories.



Saturday, 3 October 2015

Don't bomb Syria, it's the last thing they need at moment..


Grateful Syrians have spoken of their relief that so many friendly bombs are now blasting them towards peace. A few weeks ago it was Assad bombing them from the air and ISIS, shooting them from the ground. Now the Americans and Russians have joined in too.
The Syrian civil war has already left more than 240,000 people dead and created millions of refugees. We should not make matters on the ground even worse, just to show a largely futile show of force. 
Tell your MP to stand against any further military escalation in Syria. Another destructive  bombing campaign, will do no good at all. It will only lead to more death and destruction, leading to the death of innocent civilians, which will only serve to increase resentment, leading possibly to more acts of terrorism, and will not make Britain a safer place. The UK will be dragged into a deeper complex cynical game played  out in Syria by foreign powers and the Assad regime. We need to start helping the victims of wars that our governments so enthusiastically pursue, building roads to peace, and try fostering a more humane policy towards refugees.
Please tell your MP to stand against any further military escalation in Syria and prevent another disastrous intervention.

http://act.stopwar.org.uk/lobby/stopbombingsyria