Poetry – Tectonic Plates of Society

Tectonic Plates of Society


As the tectonic plates shift

The ground beneath us.

New mountains of behaviour

Push upwards as cultures clash.


Mountain ranges of compassion,

Volcanoes of cooperation,

Peaks of altruism,

Earthquakes of respect.


The old layers of populism,

The fossilised strata of greed,

The crushed remains of selfishness,

Are fractured, bent and buried.


As the old separation is replaced

By new togetherness,

And the old hostilities

Are suffocated with love.


Opher – 29.3.2020

Poetry – Living in a bubble


Living in a bubble


Living in a bubble

On top of a wave

About to crash

On a foreign beach.


Wondering my fate.

To be burst?

Or washed up?

To be blown


By an unfamiliar wind

Across new lands,

As yet uncharted,

And come to rest?


To shine in the sun

A myriad of hues,

Bringing great joy,

Or disintegrate in droplets?


Opher 28.3.2020

America – the craziness of competition!!

I am boggled by Trump and the craziness of competition!! It is obscene!!

Trump is stuck in some capitalist nightmare! He can only see money!

He is refusing to create a Federal response to the Corona virus emergency because he says it smacks of socialism. Hence we have the madness of different States competing with each other for scant resources instead of cooperating.

So New York is desperate for ventilators and protective clothing but has to compete with other States for these things. There is a bidding war. Some States are outbidding others and selfishly stocking up. The only people who prosper are the manufacturers who are receiving obscene prices for their goods while people die!!

Profiteering out of death and misery!! How can that be morally right??

Trump claims that this is alright and the capitalist way.

In Europe Germany is donating ventilators to Italy to help in the crisis. They are shipping stricken Italians to Germany to treat them in their hospitals. This is compassionate goodwill.

If your neighbour is sick you help them. You don’t walk by on the other side of the road! There is such hypocrisy in these supposedly Christian people who are profiting from death.

If there is one thing the world needs to learn from this crisis it is that people and nature matter more than money!!

Cooperation is preferable to competition!! Isn’t that what Jesus was saying?? How come it takes an atheist to point out this hypocrisy to greedy, selfish Christians??

What the world needs now is compassion, altruism and cooperation. Thank heavens there are so many caring people out there who are not seeing everything in dollar signs!!

Schizoid – my new Sci-fi novel

The sequel to Quantum Fever. Three hundred years have passed. The aliens are ruining the planet Terra and are on the brink of war. Children of the Primitives on planet Hope are rebelling. President Woud of The System is angered. The Consortium is stirring up trouble………

In the UK:

In the USA:

The Corona Diaries – Day 15

This is our fifteenth day in isolation. We went out for our usual hour walk. It is good to be able to walk miles down the country lanes, hardly passing a soul. A bit dour here, ominous clouds and a cold wind, but a nice walk. It is strange not seeing friends, no gigs, cinema or theatre – and no sport!! All a bit weird.

I’m still busy writing, reading and sorting photos. I’ve got enough to do but I’ve noticed my focus is not as good. I’m getting a little lethargic.

It’s nice to see royalty and the government getting down with the people!! I notice they get tested while my son doesn’t!

We are eating well – fresh salad from our organic growers and free-range eggs from the farms.

I’m watching the politics of this disease with interest. America is looking down the barrel of a catastrophe. So slow off the mark, so complacent. We weren’t much better. This has been predicted for years yet no contingency plans were brought in.

Lessons to be learnt.

Is this down to a trade-off between the economy and health? How many deaths are acceptable?

We now know that money can be found for the NHS and we can get the homeless off the streets if we want.

Things have changed forever.

Perhaps we will start valuing public servants a lot better and realise what they contribute to society??? Perhaps???

The irony is that the novel I started writing in January is about bacteria farming humans. It has become very topical!!

So here I am in my study. Elmore James is blaring out and I am writing.

Good luck to you all! Stay safe.

Today’s Music – Elmore James!!

I’ve decided to focus each day of my isolation on one particular artist.

Today’s featured artist is Elmore James.

Elmore always raised my spirits and gets me rockin’. When I used to run my ‘History Of Rock Music’ course I always started with a bit of Elmore!!

Have a Rockin’ day!! Stay safe!!

Ye Vagabonds – Supporting Roy Harper in Edinburgh at the Usher Hall

Ye Vagabonds – Supporting Roy Harper in Edinburgh at the Usher Hall

The Mac Gloinn brothers again performed their superb support in Edinburgh. They brought old Celtic songs to life with their great harmonies, interweaving their voices in a delicate beauty, while their own compositions fitted in seamlessly. The tones of their voices complemented each other so well. A joy to hear and a fitting start to the concert. At times they reminded me of the Incredible String Band – at other times they were quite unique. This blend of harmonies has a long tradition that goes way back into Celtic history and was resurrected in the early country and western of the 1930s-1960s in the USA. Brothers have that genetic link and upbringing that enable the nuances to develop so well. There are a host of them (Louvin, Delmore and Maddox to name a few). This was the area that the Everly Brothers tapped into on their album Songs Our Daddy Taught Us and I was interested to see that the Mc Gloinns had a cover of Barbara Allen (Barbara Ellen on their album). The stand out track for me was their own composition – Pomegranate. I look forward to seeing them again for a longer set in more intimate surrounds.


Following their set I nipped along to purchase a CD and have a brief chat. Brian and Diarmuid were doing good business. I obviously wasn’t alone in liking their sound. They were proving popular.

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I asked if they were touring and they told me that they were bringing out another CD soon and would likely be touring the UK in December or January. I told them to be sure to play York and Hull (musical heart of Britain).

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At the end of the concert, which was the end of the tour,  Roy brought them on stage. They had just been part of something momentous – the return of Britain’s greatest singer-songwriter!