Poetry – Roaming free

Roaming free

Once we roamed free

Over plains and sea,

Using our wits

Our skills and our knowledge

To take what we needed

To hunt and to forage.

Now swamped by numbers,

Our cruelty and greed,

We create our own downfall

Through the folly of deeds.

Opher 24.6.2019

I still yearn after that life of a hunter gatherer. I know it was harsh, uncomfortable and dangerous. We tend to glamorise and gloss the hardships. It was dangerous. Few grew old. But it seems real to me.

I fear that we are swamping the world with our numbers and sowing the seeds of our own demise out of greed.

Changing the country for the better.

While the country prospers, only a small minority benefit. It was always thus. The wealthy control the system. Under the Tories it is worse than under Labour. Labour are the lesser of two evils.

How do we change it??

Proportional representation would be a step forward.

Enforcing a proper graduated, fair tax system would help.

Controlling the media so we get unbiased news is crucial.

Having a much higher basic living wage.

Having a national bank to promote innovation and entrepeneurism.

Overhauling the education system to get people to think.

Creating a fairer social with far less inequality.

Then there’s poverty, racism and the environment to factor in.

I do not believe it is beyond the wit of mankind to create a far superior model for society, one which eradicates poverty and racism, is fair and just, not belligerent, protects nature and allows individual freedom.

We just have to move away from this greed, elitism and media propaganda.

Poetry – We are all refugees

We are all refugees

We are all refugees,

Mutated chimpanzees,

Wandering afar

In search of better lands.

Exploring the earth in small bands.

Adventurous or fearful,

Curious or desperate,

Our reasons are disparate.

Tracking the herds

Through the seasons,

We all have our reasons.

Fleeing war or poverty

Desperate for a new start;

We appeal to you with all our heart.

We’ve left our homes

And all we own,

Our friends and family,

And throw ourselves on your mercy.

Once, maybe long ago, you were just like me –

A refugee.

Setting out on a fraught journey,

Seeking something better

For your family.

You settled here,

Worked hard and made it your home.

Now you want to be left alone.

But we have undertaken this flight

Out of necessity,

Seeking liberty and safety.

Look kindly on us and what we could be

For you were once just like me – a refugee.

Opher 22.6.2019

Nobody really owns the land. We are all passing though. We borrow it for a while.

None of us have a right to the land.

All of us, at some point in time, migrated out of Africa. Perhaps in search of better lives? Perhaps fleeing violence or starvation? Perhaps just curious and adventurous?

Long ago in the past we settled and set up home.

Now there are millions displaced by the ugliness of war or starvation, seeking escape, seeking a better life.

Do we drive them away? Do we ignore their desperation? Do we become tribal and harden our hearts? Do we address the causes of the problem – the climate changes, the wars, the poverty? Or do we lend a helping hand?

The Tension between Individual Freedom and Social Responsibility.

It is an interesting debate that goes to the heart of the division in the world. Weighing up the degree of personal freedom against the good of everyone and the planet.

I think there are some question we should think about.

Should a man have complete freedom? If he is inclined to kill and rape? If he is inclined to torture animals? If he is inclined to explode his own nuclear device wherever he wants? If he wants to drive the wrong way on the motorway against the flow of traffic? If he wants to beat his wife? If he wants to forcibly indoctrinate his children? If he wants to shoot endangered wild animals? If he wants to dump huge amounts of toxic waste in the river? If he wants to refuse to wear a mask in the supermarket? If he wants to play his music at full volume at 3.00 am? If he wants to impose his religion on others against their will? If he wants to discriminate against people because of their colour? If he wants to call people of colour or women by derogatory names? If he wants to verbally abuse people? If he likes punching people? If he likes to wear his hair long, or short, or colour it? If he wants tattoos all over his face? If he refuses to wear a suit? If he wants to take money or goods off people at gunpoint? If he wants to drive at 120 MPH down Mainstreet? If he doesn’t want to work but expects to be supported? If he wants to wear brown shoes instead of black? If he wants to use any drugs of his choice? If he wants completely uncensored literature? If he thinks sex is OK in the supermarket? If he thinks that pornography is OK to look at on public transport? If he thinks abortions should be banned and imposes that view? If……. if……. if……….

Does he have a right to do what he wants?

Does he have a responsibility to fit in with society?

I think this is what it at the heart of Trumpists and Democrats, of Brexiteers and Remainers.

Poetry – The Land of the Free

The Land of the Free

In the land of the free one is forced to agree

You choose your side – split nationwide

One side for love – one side for hate

One side for help – one side for wait!

With or against – no compromise!

Rabbles and mobs – victims and spies!

Somewhere between the venomous words

A small voice has slipped between the vowels.

Children have become the bargaining chips

In a global game of roulette.

The same old winners spin the wheel

And claw in the rewards.

The same old robber barons

Have shed their armour and put on disguise.

They run the show without need of a sword

Just a media full of lies.

Opher 16.6.2018

The world has become divided as we lurch towards another wave of fascism. A new batch of populist leaders have been drumming up division, ratcheting up hatred and preying on the fears of many. The mass migrations have enabled them to harness the fruits of Islamophobia.

Behind this charade the same old establishment reaps the rewards and gain power and wealth. They are laughing all the way to the bank.

Instead of dealing with the roots of the problem they are happy to gain from the symptoms.

Poetry – I’m a Free Man

I’m a Free Man

I’m a free man

But I’m no John Wayne

The freedom I have

Is in the depths of my brain;

I’m not subjected to anyone’s fears.

I’ve no allegiance to all that

Least of all my own cares.

I’ve realised that compromise

Is the name of the game.

I don’t need fortune

Notoriety or fame.

I’ll speak my mind

To any woman or man

Whether enemy, king

Politician or fan.

I’ll think what I like

And weigh everything up –

Listen and ruminate

While I fill up my cup.

I value freedom and justice

Not the bully and greed;

Tolerance and empathy

Is the base of my creed.

I want good education

And a fair society.

Regulation and accountability

Could just be the key.

Opher 26.12.2017

For me freedom is not having the right to throw your weight around and do whatever you like. It is about having the right to think for yourself, not be brainwashed by parents or society and to have the right to express your thoughts, to criticise and point the finger.

I do a lot of that.

Too many people think that freedom is anarchy. It isn’t. Freedom requires control and responsibility. It requires being aware of the sensitivities of others and not abusing them. But it also means that in order to be responsible one has to stand up against the idiot people – the fascists and fundamentalists who would take away our freedoms – the bullies and the belligerent.

Freedom requires being true to oneself, considerate of others and possessing the strength to challenge those who need opposing.

I am a free man.

I want a society that gives me my freedom and curbs the nastiness of the nasty. Freedom is a compromise. We need some degree of regulation. We need laws and we need control of those laws. We need a say and we need to be able to make changes.

Poetry – A World of Plenty

A World of Plenty

In a world of plenty

There’s only enough for some.

The rest will have to wait

For the next kingdom to come.

But there isn’t a next kingdom.

They made that one up

To keep people in their place

And shore the system up.

Everybody plays the game

To keep the system going.

Where it will all end up

There is no way of knowing.

They tread the peasants down

To keep them in their place.

Maintaining this unequal order

Is imposed upon the whole race.

Opher – 28.3.2021

The hierarchy is maintained for the benefit of those at the top and the detriment of most people. People only get what they are prepared to fight for. Without unions and social struggle those at the bottom live in destitution.

The wealthy elite run a system for the benefit of the wealthy elite. They use their wealth and power to buy privilege, to lobby and rule.

Money makes money.

The club runs the world.

Unfairness rules!

A Human Rights Roundup – Protest and inequality around the world in 20 pictures (The Guardian roundup)

All over the world people are fighting for rights, freedoms and justice against coups, tyranny and gross inequality.

‘Reclaim These Streets’ and rubber duck rallies: human rights roundup – in pictures | Global development | The Guardian

Poetry – What we want

What we want

What we want

Is not hard to say

It is merely hard to do.

We want the world

To stay green,

Full of animals

That are free

And skies that are blue.

We want the water clear

And trees to wave

In the breeze;

Tigers and rhinos

Running through the long grass

As they used to do.

It’s not too much to want

In a world so big

Is it?

Opher 14.4.2016

What we want

It seems that I want the impossible. I want the world.

I want life to flourish.

I want the wild creatures free and running through the wilderness.

I want the space for every type of life to flourish.

There’s room enough.

I’m not alone.

Lots of us want the same thing.

I am told it is too much to ask for.

People are more important.

No they are not.

I do not believe they are.

The ants and bees are as important. There should be room for the chimpanzees.

I do not believe it is impossible.

If we have the intelligence we can manage our numbers, manage the land, and leave room enough foe everything.