Index Card Thoughts


The Sunday Poem on Heart of Balance

First, there is the forgetting; The un-
folding of the fracturing. Forgett-
ing what love really is; forgetting of
the joy and bliss; forgetting of the precious
pulse. What is this forgetting that
covers all the land? Is it The Snow
Queen come to curse us with Heart’s Ice?
Then, there is betrayal, that ebb
and flow of choice. Go this way or go that
way? Follow the green and hairy man:
(A strangely seductive gardener?) Tunnel
or the rockface? Path or winding
stream? That faint sound of ethereal hymns,
murmuring of wind and broken wings?
The clotted market with its rising din?
Choices in the moment; choices
that return on wings of vengeance, loss,
and oozing wounds upon the morning’s rise.
A hideous monster has been spawned, upon
your soul’s dugs suckling; drawing you in
to circles new, and other shapes unknown,
Dis-membered, dis-connected. Then…
Discovery! Cup breaks, shakes, shivers
and cracks! Re-named. Plucked in a crawling instant!
A new gestalt of lurching gracelessness.
Graceless out of Plato’s piss-washed cave
you lurch, and blink, a reptile on a stage.
Re-membering that thing a shadow makes.
You only have one cloak to wear today;
Let it be a cloak of ash, to wrap-
around the newly suffering skin-
tatooed with grief that cannot be revealed.
Begone then! And return when you are healed!
(The good folk cannot stand your endless tears.)
You follow the less-travelled track.
Re-member/ Re-gain/ Re-turn! But all the other
fools have gone and it’s too late! Poor,
lost child. So here you are; a single fool,
so brightless and despairing. This
cracked mirror affronts our eyes! We do
not like its shape or size! We think it weaves
a weird disguise. We think it tells us lies!
Spinning in that flaring light, the web
that holds us all; a match-strike sparks out in
the night- Forgive! Forgive it all! It is
the way of alchemy, the journey of
the hero. The Soul’s truth and the wisdom
road: Feels like a transformation!
So…fall then on your sword each day.
Be carried home upon your shield.
Children’s tears shall wash your wounds
And the harsh Gods will wonder.
The blood will cry out of your caves.
The good folk will wonder:
Some will say, forget, others
say, re-member. ‘Lost
Light-bringer!’ they’ll say: ‘Re-member!’


Musings upon The Monarch.

A musing upon Monarchy.

I've avoided most of the 'jubilee' (is that spelling right?)  I am no monarchist.  As a born Scot with Irish Catholic roots, that would be impossible.  I came to consciousness with the knowledge that my ancestors were an oppressed community of Peasant-warrior poets under the heel of the English Crown for millennia, they having taken over almost seamlessly from the Roman Heel, though I have always been intrigued by that period from circa 350 BCE to The Battle of Hastings in 1066 BCE known, I surmise inaccurately, as 'The Dark Ages.'
Anyway this elderly lady with her scarves and handbags and corgis always strikes me as slightly bemused by her surroundings.  She has of course discovered that the 'mystery' of royalty is best preserved by silence.  Most other celebrities could learn something from that.
So in respect of her as a being, I have very little to say.  Alan Bennett beautifully deconstructed a possible character for her as a close reader and she has been portrayed by Judi Dench and the impeccable Helen Mirren as a highly intelligent and ironic woman with a wry insight.  I very much doubt that but I'm sure they are all lovely people in Buckingham Palace, though there was a display of darkness following the death of Diana.  A manifestation of a family of spiteful and cruel toffs committing unwittingly, a marketing disaster.  The country grieved them into a u-turn and it's been marketing heaven from then on.  Not too difficult-it mainly comprises getting members of the Royal Family to say nothing or as little as possible.  The Queen is a mistress of this strategy, Prince Charles it's least competent practitioner.
No my problems are not with the personalities but with the structure.  My issues are with the very existence of Royalty as an institution.
Firstly the hereditary principle.  The idea of anyone rising inevitably to a position of power and influence as a result of the accident of their birth is absurd.  Not only because it abuses the concept of achievement through merit and talent which is a morally obvious process.  But because it almost inevitably restricts the gene pool of DNA necessary to produce smart human beings by creating a restricted elite which marries into itself over many generations.  Consider how many Shakespeare's have been born and died on this planet since the bard's death who in their lifetimes never learned to read or write.
Hereditary structures also create power elites where the children of members will access priviledged educational environments designed to guarantee access to Oxbridge Universities and to subsequent careers in Finance and Politics and the Law and Medicine particularly.
A narrow elite providing career politicians and financiers with little or no experience with quick access to leadership roles is one of the principle causes of what we may refer to as 'The Banking Crisis' or 'The Double-Dip Recession.'  It is also the cause of 'The War on Terror' and 'The War on Drugs.'  The crisis of 'The Euro'.  It was the cause of the illegal Invasion of Iraq and the subsequent war crimes committed there by the governments of the United States and the United Kingdom.  It was the reason why rendition and torture is actively supported by those supposedly liberal democracies.
For the reason for all those things is the heartbreaking lack of competence, talent and skill in leadership among the elites.
The hereditary principle based on tribalism is the cause of much of the geo-political problems in the continent of Africa.  It was at the root of the Ruwandan Massacre.  It is at the centre of the Congolese living nightmare.
At the top of the hereditary tree sits Royalty.  Royalty therefore is the living embodiment of inequality.  Vast power vastly corrupts.

Secondly I am appalled by the manner in which Royalty lends itself to a militaristic jingoism.  To an orgy of flag-waving nationalism.  Look at this...

This is the only home we have.  This one small ball in the infinitude of space.  Possibly the only home of life in our Universe.  Possibly an accidental miracle.  Does it not in it's beauty make a mockery of all the fools in their uniforms and jingling medals?  Does it not in it's gorgeous diversity mock those who would plunder and rape it so they may buy big houses and seven cars.  Royalty festoons itself with gold, all manner of precious and rare metals, and huge and impossible houses known as 'Palaces.'  Royalty officiates at the nexus of the State and Big Pharma/Agro/Military/Industrial/Political/Hyper-Capitalist Machines that turn ordinary human lives into Human Capital to be used up for it's own purposes or cast aside into poverty and ignored.  Utility as a Pathology.  Royalty is the mechanism by which the Hyper Capitalist Machine invests itself with something approaching respectability.  Royalty provides the Emperor's Clothes.

Talking about Utility brings me to my third point:  If we all actually are 'in this together' can we afford to fund the luxurious lifestyles that Royalty appears to demand.  We are talking here about a group of essentially non-productive people payed vast sums of public money to do...nothing.  Well not nothing exactly but things like travel, eating, opening things, cutting ribbons, disrupting schools and hospitals with state visits, ensuring the growth of a vast state and personal security industry.  People paid for being hereditary celebrities.  An industry awarding members of its own club peerages, titles, trinkets and baubles for all those who cherish such things.  In the Storm of Austerity can it be afforded? Should it be?  Is it not some kind of offence to the sick, homeless, hopeless and lost?  Is it not welfarism for a tiny elite?  Is it not the essence of forelock tugging and cringe making senseless ceremony?  Is it not really when it all comes down to it an almost sado masochistic uniform fetish posing as something...positive?

Fourth and final point is the abuse of these people from the moment they are born being flung into the horror of the media without making any conscious choice about it.  Is it right that children's destiny's should be so manipulated by the system that they will be thrown into a life without privacy or for what passes as normality?  I say no!  Royalty is an anachronism that needs to be consigned to the museum of history, a historical yarn spun by an idiot.  We should be looking back anthropologically upon it's strange customs and considering how quaint it all was back then! Forelocks should be grown by teenagers as acts of rebellion against their knee-locked elders.  The curtsey should become a criminal offence.  Everyone in a sane society puts their own toothpaste on the brush.  All adult humans without physical or mental impairment should wipe their own arses.

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