Democracy – The long and often bloody fight for freedom – The Peterloo Massacre.

Democracy – The long and often bloody fight for freedom – The Peterloo Massacre.

Peterloo massacre
You can only have real democracy when you have transparency, fair representation and a vote for every man and woman. That was far from the case two hundred years ago.
Women were denied the vote. Only landowners could vote. Some towns with only a handful of voters were electing two MPs. Two towns electing two MPs each had only 1 eligible voter. Half of the MPs in the House were elected by a mere 154 votes. Cities with hundreds of thousands were grossly underrepresented.
The economic and employment situation in the North was dire and people felt they had no recourse to justice. They had no vote and no representation.
At St. Peter’s field near Manchester between 60,000 and 80,000 gathered to hold a peaceful public meeting and protest. The establishment was rattled. They thought it might develop into a riot, ferment general unrest and lead to a revolution. They banned it. But the protesters still met.
The cavalry were called to charge. People were trampled and slashed with sabres. The crowd was eventually dispersed. They left 11 to 15 dead and over 600 to 700 badly injured – 168 of which were women. The first to be killed was a baby knocked out of his mother’s arms by a charging cavalryman. Witnesses claimed the cavalrymen slashed out indiscriminately at anyone they could. The area was sodden with blood.
It became known as the Peterloo massacre in ironic contrast to the recent battle of Waterloo.

It led to renewed impetus for justice and the Chartist Movement who fought for the right to vote.

Freedoms and rights are not freely given. They are paid for with lives and blood and can so easily be stripped away again.

Photography – The Dales – Pt. 6 – into the escarpment

Photography – The Dales – Pt. 6 – into the escarpment

We headed back down through the amazing eroded limestone and down into the valley.

Don’t forget to click on the photo in order to see it properly.

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Poetry – A Green Clock running out of time – A poem for the demise of nature

Poetry – A Green Clock running out of time – A poem for the demise of nature

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A Green Clock running out of time


In two hundred years the planet has changed dramatically. In my lifetime I have witnessed the changes.

The herds and flocks, the forests and shoals, are withering before a relentless onslaught. All the numbers are diminishing.

Stuck inside their rooms on their games, interacting through cyberspace, nobody notices or cares.

A billion years of wondrous chance creating splendour and breath-taking beauty is being dismantled in front of our eyes.

8 Billion people consume what took a billion years to create.


A Green Clock running out of time


A green clock winding down

From a roar to a murmur,

A shout to a whisper,

A green globe to a barren rock.


The last party on deck –

Laughter as the waves lap around

Morsels are swallowed,

And the last leaves fall.


One last winter with no spring

As seas stagnate

Air clogs with smoke

And land settles to brown.


Still we pretend everything is fine.

Concrete and plastic

Replace green leaf and fur,






A billion years is undone.


Opher 1.11.2016

Opher 31.10.2016

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Poetry – Life – Having the eyes to see!

Poetry – Life – Having the eyes to see!

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There are two trillion galaxies. Our galaxy contains a mere four hundred billion stars.

The Milky Way is 100,000 light years across. A really big galaxy can be 1500,000 light years across.

We might be the only life in the universe. The chances are that slim.

This planet might have the only eyes in existence to ever witness the wonder of the dance of stars.

The life of the planet Earth is a blink in eternity – the period of life a flicker – a human life hardly registering in the enormity of space and time.

When the last eyes are gone there will be nothing to register the most wondrous panorama.

I think we ought to make the best of it while we can. We’ll be a long time gone.



A dream in a moment of eternity

Possessing the eyes to see.

A brief blossoming

And then back

To the endless black.


Then reality

A splendour unseen

As galaxies spin

In a universe

With no

One-eye Jack.


Opher 31.10.2016

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In the UK:

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Quotes – Abbie Hoffman – A sixties Revolutionary

Quotes – Abbie Hoffman – A sixties Revolutionary

Abbie was quite a character. Back in the sixties revolution the Yippies set a tone of theatre, lunacy and revolution.
We thought we were establishing a new attitude and rejecting the warmongering, profit-driven society and replacing it with something kinder, more caring and compassionate – based on sharing and camaraderie. It was an ideal that did not last but there were some good friends made and good times. It was a time of peace, laughter, fun, thought, discovery and madness. Quite an adventure. I loved it.
The music was great, the friends brilliant and optimism ruled. What more could you want?
Another sixties would be a great idea but I fear the world has become far too cynical.
Revolution is not something fixed in ideology, nor is it something fashioned to a particular decade. It is a perpetual process embedded in the human spirit.
Adventure and change – a wish for something better!
You measure a democracy by the freedom it gives its dissidents, not the freedom it gives its assimilated conformists.
How true in this age of greed, selfishness and hatred.
Free speech means the right to shout ‘theatre’ in a crowded fire.
I believe in compulsory cannibalism. If people were forced to eat what they killed, there would be no more wars.
Avoid all needle drugs, the only dope worth shooting is Richard Nixon.
I can think of a few more! (But I’m not advocating shooting anyone!)
Sacred cows make the tastiest hamburger.
The first duty of a revolutionary is to get away with it.
To steal from a brother or sister is evil. To not steal from the institutions that are the pillars of the Pig Empire is equally immoral.
There is something evil about the greed and vandalism of the global corporations who would sell the future for a quick buck – and are!
The ’60s are gone, dope will never be as cheap, sex never as free, and the rock and roll never as great.
The only way to support a revolution is to make your own.
How true!! Let’s all make our own revolutions!

Rene Magritte Quotes.

Rene Magritte Quotes.

Rene Magritte is my favourite artist. I love the paradoxes. He was such a conservative looking man who painted the most extraordinary bizarre works of art
Surrealism is an exploration of the subconscious. Nobody did it better.
Everything we see hides another thing, we always want to see what is hidden by what we see.
If the dream is a translation of waking life, waking life is also a translation of the dream.
We live a dream.
The mind loves the unknown. It loves images whose meaning is unknown, since the meaning of the mind itself is unknown.
Nothing is ever really known if reality is suspect.
Art evokes the mystery without which the world would not exist.
Life and the universe, death and love – it’s all a mystery.

A bit of levity, fun and jokes.

A bit of levity, fun and jokes

More great funnies from Raili! These certainly made me laugh!

soulgifts – Telling Tales


He’s a cheat

My husband is a liar and a cheat.  He has cheated on me from the beginning and when I confront him, he denies everything.  What’s worse, everyone knows he cheats on me. It’s so humiliating.  Also, since he lost his job 14 years ago, he hasn’t even looked for a new one.  All he does all day is smoke cigars, play golf, cruise around and shoot ball with his buddies, while I work so hard to pay our bills.  Since our daughter went away to college and then got married, he doesn’t even pretend to like me, and hints that I may be a lesbian.  What should I do?



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Woody Guthrie Quotes – A man who was a unique individual.

Woody Guthrie Quotes – A man who was a unique individual.

Woody is one of my heroes. He stood for fairness and justice. He stood against racism and supported the poor and exploited. Woody exemplified the Protest song that gave rise to Bob Dylan and the sixties rebellion against the establishment.

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Some men rob you with a six-gun — others rob you with a fountain pen.

The bankers and the politicians who support them have robbed the whole world. The people who hold power and pull the strings, who control the inequality and war in order to create profit, rob everyone. The system is corrupt. For someone to earn in 45 minutes more than an average man can earn from all the hard work of a full year is simply wrong.

The world is filled with people who are no longer needed — and who try to make slaves of all of us — and they have their music and we have ours.

Those people who hold the power have created a system that takes from the bottom and gives to the top. The inequality is obscene. There has to be more fairness and justice.

The best way to get to know any bunch of people is to go and listen to their music.

Music is a universal language. It transcends words.

There’s several ways of saying what’s on your mind. And in states and counties where it ain’t too healthy to talk too loud, speak your mind, or even vote like you want to, folks have found other ways of getting the word around. One of the mainest ways is by singing.

Woody sung his truth – about justice and freedom – on picket lines – to the unions and people being exploited.

I hate a song that makes you think that you are not any good. I hate a song that makes you think that you are just born to lose. Bound to lose. No good to nobody. No good for nothing. Because you are too old or too young or too fat or too slim too ugly or too this or too that.

We are all human and should be treated with compassion. Racism, sexism and inequality need addressing.

Love is the only medicine I believe in.

He sound like Jose Mujica the Uruguayan President who said that the only good addiction is love.

A folk song is what’s wrong and how to fix it or it could be
who’s hungry and where their mouth is or
who’s out of work and where the job is or
who’s broke and where the money is or
who’s carrying a gun and where the peace is.

These are the songs we need more of. We need songs about real issues – there’s enough soppy love songs.

You can’t write a good song about a whorehouse unless you’ve been in one.

Woody had not only been in the whorehouses, he’d been on the road, he’d been down and out. He knew what it was like.

The words are the important thing. Don’t worry about tunes. Take a tune, sing high when they sing low, sing fast when they sing slow, and you’ve got a new tune.

The words are the important thing.

Poetry – Space



Once there was enough space

Now we’re in competition

The planet is too small

Seems there’s no room for us all.


We cannot make it bigger

So we have to learn to use less

And leave sufficient

For those

We share this haven with.

There is room enough

For us all prosper

If we could only learn

To respect and share.


Opher – 4.1.2020



Everywhere I look there are too many people taking too much. Nature is being screwed back into a tighter and tighter corner.

8 billion is too many.

We are not alone. We share this precious jewel with many millions of other species. It’s time we started treating them with the respect they deserve. Our arrogance will be our downfall.

Poetry – Just the Truth – One Day

Just the Truth – One Day


One day there will just be truth –

No countries, races or power.

One day there will be equality,

Sharing – and no need to cower.

There will be no need for armies

As the world resounds with peace.

No need for conservation areas

As all wildlife will increase.


One day humanity will wake up

Limit its numbers and be responsible.

One day we’ll jettison arrogance,

Greed and power, and become sensible.

One day the day will come

When humanity will be one.


You can deny it

But all things are possible.

If they can be conceived

They just have to be believed.


Opher – 5.1.2020



I like to think that human beings have great qualities as well as obnoxious ones.

The idealists may be naïve but if they ruled the world it would be a beautiful place.

I like to believe that there are more of us who are good than are nasty.

I like to believe that logic will prevail.

I like to believe.