Poetry – There is a Mystic

There is a Mystic

There is a mystic

In the sun and sea;

A mystic

In a grain of sand.

There is a mystery

In the rock and tree

And in the grasping

Of a hand.

Opher 22.3.2016

There is a Mystic

I am an antitheist. I believe that there is not only no god but that religion is all about power, is man-made and creates more harm than good.

Having said that I recognise that there is a strange connection at work.

I feel attracted to the beauty of rocks, trees, gorges, sea, lakes and sunsets. I am not alone in experiencing these feelings. Our ancestors worshipped these things before they invented gods. There is a majesty about them.

I can lie on my back and peer up into the night sky and experience awe as I whirl with the stars.

I can peer up at the moon and feel some lightening of my thoughts.

It is no wonder that primitive people, without the knowledge that science has brought, would experience these feelings and imagine the power of moon, sun, rocks and trees as possessing the spirits of gods.

I hope we have put this type of superstition behind us.

But Physics has shown us that there is more strangeness in the quantum world than we ever could have imagined.

I believe there is a lot more for us to discover. We are at the very beginning.

I do not have other words to describe the power that resides in these things. There is a mystic at work.

I cannot find words to express the delight in contacting a human being, or an animal. There is wonder, awe and mystery. There is warmth and communion beyond mere friendship. There is something I will call mystic.

Poetry – Sail Sweetly

Sail Sweetly

Sail sweetly through your dreams, my love,

Encased in the warmth of my embrace –

Surrounded in a golden cocoon

Of splendid caresses;

Safe within the refuge

Of my thoughts.

For the sweetness

That we shared

Has encircled us

In radiance sublime.

Opher 13.1.2016

Sail Sweetly

Love is what makes life splendid.

Perhaps it is hormonal? – Nothing but the flooding of the brain with neurochemicals? Perhaps it is merely a biological device to ensure pair-bonding, breeding and the care and upbringing of children? Perhaps we have no choice?

But then I am a romantic. I believe in love and friendship.

I feel that the feeling of being in love makes the whole world a better place.

Love is real.

There is nothing better than love.

The trouble with love is that it changes. That first madness of all-consuming passion gives way to less turbulent waters. Many leave the tranquillity of those calmer seas in search of the stormier tides – they become serial lovers. Yet I cannot help feeling sorry for them as they rush in search of their daily jag. They are missing the depth, the continuity and security of lasting love – it means more.

The beauty of love is that it is elevating, it makes one greater. There is a melding of minds, a growth of possibility.

Love creates the drive to nurture and protect. Lovers are immersed in each other and adrift from the world. They live in their own universe, safe within each other’s arms.

Poetry – To be British

To be British

Within the heart of all of us

There beats a spirit

Of dissention,

A dash of adventure,

A rash of compassion,

And a desire for discovery.

That spirit is real –

To fight for fair play –

The willingness to stand

For tolerance,


And the rights of man.

Opher 11.12.2015

To be British

I am not a patriot. I despise nationalism. I do not wish to fight or die for my country.

I am a man. I love my freedom and the philosophy by which I live – the right of all men and women to be free and live in a spirit of harmony, love and equality.

That is a cause worth fighting for.

I am a pacifist and a citizen of the world.

I believe in the rights of all living creatures and their right to live undisturbed by man.

I love nature.

I am never short of a cause.

But last night I was mining a vein of emotion as to what it was to be British and whether I had any pride in that label.

I felt a sense of affinity with the spirit that has typified my countrymen in the past. I believe it is there in my culture. It is not be chance that we have created so many adventurers, explorers and dissenters. We have had our men and women willing to stand in the face of torture and death and proclaim their truth. We have had our citizens who have opposed evil in all its forms, stood against religious tyranny, unjust wars, social injustice, misogyny, racism, intolerance and the rule of the strong and mighty.

They have reached out to those that were different and shown the hand of empathy and compassion. That is Britishness for me.

Poetry – Choices of life

Choices of life

If I really wanted I could walk out of here right now and make my way to anywhere on this planet – or I could go to bed and sleep. I can go to work or choose to play. I can move to a house in Rio.

I can walk out of this life and choose another – if I really wanted.

Yet for the most part we settle into the routine and follow the same habits. Our religious beliefs are fashioned by where we are born as are our political views. Ours lives are dictated by wealth, geography and education. It flows over us and we are caught in the currents.

Yet I am haunted by the deaths of friends and relatives and the accidents we have been in. If my Dad had not accepted that first cigarette he would not have died at the age of fifty eight from lung cancer. If I had been a minute later or sooner; if I had stopped to tie a shoelace, I would not have had a speeding car career into me.

The result of our choices are beyond all understanding. If I had stopped to tie that lace I might have been killed instead of surviving.

There is no way of telling what the consequences could be.

We live a life of choices and it is arbitrary.

Choices of life

Life is a series of choices –

Some are made for us,

Some are habit

And some necessity,

But all are open to us if we want.

Life is all possibility

But we narrow it down

For one reason

Or another

Because we feel we have to.

Life is a habit

That is only broken

When the extraordinary


And we are thrown.

In the midst of life

Comes death.

Always strangely unexpected,

Always unexpected

And all the habits are blown away.

Life is a series of choices

That are all a mystery,

That we can never pierce,

Or work out

Which is for the best.

Life presents the impossible

Choices to decide

Without revealing

A single clue

For the outcome of the results.

Life is the enigma –

One more minute in bed

And all the

Million possibilities

Slot together differently.

But without much thought

We make the choices

In the darkness

Of blind chance

And that is the life we make.

Opher 14.9.2015

Poetry – I don’t promise you forever

I don’t promise you forever

All this romantic talk of forever is just a farce. We haven’t got forever; not even a mere hundred years.

Love is an emotion, an endorphin rush, a surge of brain chemistry. It comes out of attraction and serves a purpose. That purpose is to match our genes and produce children that transcend us or to create a bond with someone that is deep enough to see us through life’s hurdles.

I don’t hold with this romantic talk.

I’ll love you while the endorphins last and then we’ll see if we can still get along on friendship, trust, habit and mutual respect.

On the other hand I might just tell you that it’s forever. That sometimes helps.

I don’t promise you forever

I won’t promise you forever

That is much too long.

After the first billion years

We might not get along.

I won’t be loving you

When the stars all blink out.

You wouldn’t like it then

With just hydrogen about.

No, I’ll love you for a while

And then I’ll stop.

Even a thousand years

Would be over the top.

I won’t even promise you

A measly hundred more.

Long before then

I’d be heading out the door.

Ten more might reasonably

See us through.

I have a feeling that

Will just about do.

So I’ll love you while

The feelings last.

Probably until the end

And we’re both in the past.

Opher 11.9.2015

Poetry – Pushing the Edges

Pushing the Edges

Always pushing these edges further

Trying to see deeper and round the corner,

Wanting more.

Not wishing to be safe within the

Limits imposed on us by those who seek

To close the door.

Striving to create something better,

That always lurks around the bend,

We’re looking for.

Not settling for more of the same

But wanting change that is enough

To make us sure.

Life is never ordinary

Though most would make it so;

It burns from the core

Opher 23.8.2015

Pushing the Edges

Ever since I was young I have been an outsider. I don’t fit in. I cannot be content mowing the grass and washing the car. I need broader horizons and crazier people. I view this mad society not with mere suspicion but utter contempt.

I hate the twee-ness of ordinary life with its superficiality. I detest the history of all human culture with its brutality, superstitious beliefs, arrogance, superiority, ignorance, hypocrisy and stupidity. I cannot abide the hedonistic senselessness indulgence of the modern society with no values, aspirations, depth or creativity. I abhor the celebrity culture. I am dismayed by the senseless direction we are being jerked along in by the power seeking, wealth gathering, blinkered morons.

It’s a wonder I’m not seriously depressed. It is even more amazing that I remain an optimist who still believes in the ideals I set off with – or most of them.

I am a devout antitheist who practices tolerance religiously and teaches respect and peace.

I want something more out of life that is not cruel, is productive, creative and in harmony with the natural world. I’m not a dreamer; I’m a fighter.

Poetry – God, King, Country but above all me

God,  King, Country but above all me

Beneath the veneer of morality

God, Queen and country

The Tory party

They’d sell their children

For a cup of tea

A thimble full of prosperity.

If it gets them on

They’d claw out your eyes

Ravage your genes

Fog out the skies

Stuff all your children

Full of their lies

Bring back the birch on prime time TV

Hang all the scum in the land of the free

Forget the homeless in deserved poverty

We’ve got the philosophy

Of the terminal greedy

This is the land

Where the rich hold the cards

Make the decisions

Run hunts through your yard

Posture and sneer

If you protest – you’re fired.

Opher 8.4.95

This poem seemed appropriate in the new Tory Britain.

I dug this one out of the archives from twenty years back. It seemed just as relevant now.

I am a socialist idealist. That means I believe in a fair society with justice for all. I do not believe that workers should be exploited by bosses or that there should be a huge differential of wages and wealth. I am not opposed to there being a differential – it is when salaries and bonuses become obscene that I object. Some people are greedy, selfish and uncaring. They take from the poor to enhance themselves beyond all reasonable levels.

I do not believe people should have benefits and hand-outs unless they really deserve them. They should work for a living and receive a fair days pay for a fair days work. I believe we should stimulate the economy to provide skilled, well-paid jobs for working people. I believe we should do away with zero hours (except for the few who are in circumstances where it suits their needs) and low-paid work.

I do not believe in patriotism – I want a global community where all people are valued equally. No race is superior to another. We are all one species.

I do not believe in monarchy. The robber barons of old stole the land and riches through force, violence and callous brutality. The monarchy and aristocracy have blood on their hands.

I believe the Tory party represents business, banks and the wealthy. They were set up by the wealthy to look after the interests of the wealthy. They are a disaster for public services and ordinary people. They give working people as little as they can in order to ensure re-election and avoid riots. They always give tax breaks and concessions to the rich who they represent.

I wrote this poem in 1995. I had Thatcher’s duplicity and viciousness ringing in my ears. I saw the decimation of industry, destruction of well-paid jobs for working people, deliberate wrecking of working communities, breaking of the unions and policies that favored the bosses.

I fear we are in for another dose of the same – The proposed anti-union laws, cuts to public services and policies that put power in the hands of the people.

I predict riots and social unrest.

Poetry – God Too

God Too

I’m the power in your sun

The atom and the wind

Giving light its speed

Its colour

And its spin

Arising out of nothing

To make your sunset glow

Organising your bodies

To your neurone flow

I give life its mystery

Creating all the laws

That keep it all in motion

Its perfection

And its flaws

You make me into Gods

Religions and Holy books

But I evade all your

Interpretations of my looks

You will not find me concerned

With how your life should run

Providing you with morals

For what is

Or is not done

I am not a human

Apart from the cosmic flow

I connect you to the mystic

That you cannot know

Your religions try to capture me

As I appear to you all

But I spiral through the words

Of the prayers that you call

Everything you think is real

You create it from the void

And you are doomed

To live the life

With which your dreams have toyed.

Opher 8.2.99

I suppose I think there is some mystery, some mystical element behind the universe. It comes out of nothing in a big bang – from nothing to the universe in a fraction of a second; atoms out of nothing. There is energy flowing through the universe. There is size beyond comprehension. There is infinity and the void from which it comes. There are atoms that cannot wear out and energy that goes on forever. But is there a plan or purpose? Is there a God that is concerned with morals and human destiny? Is there an after-life? That is too human to me; too convenient. If there was a God it is one God; the God of all religions – no one special sect. The morals and the dogma do not hold with the mystical. I ridicule it. Religion is the biggest tyranny. It has held us back for thousands of years, stopping progress, inhibiting ideas, constraining thought, filling us with dread and fear, sin, evil and paradise, Heaven and Hell. It is human concocted rubbish that does not hold up under scrutiny. It merely moves you on to a series of other questions. So what happens after Heaven? Where did God come from? What purpose could there be to eternity? Mysticism I can equate as some flow of energy but religion is a pathetic attempt to explain things that are beyond human imagination and god is a construct. 

Poetry – The Great Ape

The Great Ape

I am the great ape

Who grew an imagination.

I imagined god

And I imagined a nation.

I imagined money

Music and fashion.

I am the great ape

Who grew an imagination.

Opher – 13.9.2020

I blame it on religion.

We have lost sight of what we really are. We are apes.

Nothing more.

Intelligent apes.

We have this absurd notion that we are superior to every other form of life.

We are not.

We are apes.

We feel we are separate from the web of life that exists upon this planet. We are not.

We are apes.

We are part of the great web of life that has evolved.

We invented this notion that we were specially created by some god and alone, out of all the creatures on the planet, have a soul.

This is wrong.

We are apes.

We have no soul.

We evolved on this planet the same as every other creature.

We think that all life was put on this planet for us to use and abuse at will.

It wasn’t.

It evolved the same as us and has the same right to live as we have.

We think that all over life is so inferior it does not think or feel. So we can torture and slaughter it with impunity.

That is wrong.

They feel. They feel as much as us.

We are apes. No better, no worse.

The sooner we understand that the better.