Shining threads

Shining threads

Friday, 31 December 2010

Re-arranging the ocean

My task is to cut up the ocean, into slices of fluid beauty and arrange the pieces, to construct a portrait of what I mean.

The erase button on Nature's programme has been hit and ecologists scrabble to save what creatures they can.

The Divinity of God's children has been spliced, twisted and perverted in a swash of chat-room trivia and hardcore pornography.

Booksellers tear up the Amazon and McDonald's arches frame the world.

Arctic ice melts to reveal more oil-fields for companies to exploit. 

Teenagers of the affluent starve themselves to death in a narcissistic mirroring of Third World poverty.

People dance to a happy beat, furiously intoning the mantra - 'it's all going to be alright'.

Developers push against the will of indigenous peoples and protesters for the forests, plains and rivers of the earth - lungs choked and decimated by the smoke of industry.

There's a battle going on between simplicity and complexity - between regression and evolution - the angels of extremity thrash into one another.

People dig their heels in, the reality knocking on their door is too much of a stranger - too fluid, too risky, too free.

Controllers try to assuage their anxiety by building prisons of thought and behaviour to protect citizens from the freedom of existence.

Mystic madmen are left in asylums, staring at the infinite surface patterns of their skin.

Feminists desperately try to reinvent the position of women in society and at one pole of experience, pole-dancers cavort pulling against the other end of the spectrum where, shrouded in burqas, femininity is kept under wraps.

And the beautiful people attempt to track down some fair-trade, organic cocaine.

The techni-colour fizz of TV keeps our minds focused on a high-definition of sanity, prescribed by the media of our times. If too many cooks spoil the broth, then what's going on on our screens?

The bankers could be Nietzsche's prophesied Supermen - beyond human, beyond morality, walking the tightrope of finance. And our fragile economy hangs precariously in the balance.

All the petty ideologues squabble to be heard in the crowd. A million factions and distorted opinions, have their three minutes of fame on youtube.

The American Dream came true for us in the West - hallelujah - and like all good spins, it's a two-sided coin, with ecological disaster and poverty on the other face.

Revolution flares up in a domino effect across the world, tagged freedom fighters, protesters or pure criminality, depending on the perspective of the commentator and the tone of the uprisings.

And a lone runner heads off into the distance, but nobody knows what he is running away from - perhaps it is us!

Does a crack baby's scream make a noise, if there is no-one in the council flat to hear it?

If you can bear the danger, talk to a stranger or look at the sun, because we are all one.

Amnesia is the condition that keeps the mass turning the wheel.

Those who imagine a day of judgment should bear in mind that the animals will be part of the jury.

Perspectives collide and their fusions give birth to new forms of thought.

The monkey at the typewriter has given up the task, since postmodernism has taken over the incessant, potluck generation of random prose.

The taut elegance of formal language is being massaged, seduced and raped by renegade poets, rap-artists and generation text.

Art is being bent, bleached, burst open - the bloody carcass of tradition has had its guts spilt and only those with courage proceed.

Tapping at our door, psychic phenomena and creatures from other dimensions pop into sight in dreams, comic books and hallucinations, reminding us of unseen realms, excluded from contemporary vision.

The race to Mars has been postponed, whilst we negotiate whether life on this planet will endure.

Politics has been squashed, compressed and packed into darts of spin - tipped with a poison combining promise, ambiguity and lies, in an unconvincing yet compulsive mix.

The earth shakes, because that is what the earth has to do, to keep itself vibrant, and all those cultures that have built upon its joints, see their buildings fall.

Our closest friends are our wits, which need to be exercised, to be kept alive. People, often with the best of intentions, sometimes with much worse, can pull the wool over our eyes.

In a cyclone, the safest place is the epi-centre, the still-point around which the illusion turns.

Forgetfulness may be an agent of grace, but memories are also doorways to wider perceptions, which the grey agenda has tried to shut down.

Pressure forces us to reply to the ongoing question of our lives - 'What is it, exactly, that you want? Where are your allegiances?'

And in the alchemical laboratory of emotion, the transformations of love, stress and pain - a new creature is being formed - whose blueprint lies in your dreams.

Things must be turned upside down, if we are to awaken to life.

Only through rebirth, can the lies that have taken up residence, be dissolved.

Now we can see the roots of life are in the sky and nature is a mirror of our psychic landscape.

The poetry of the universe is being made visible and her children are setting themselves free.

NB. Another person on the poetry scene, a while back called me 'a cultural conservative'. This comment makes most sense if you know the person though, reading this poem, I can see that strain of thought in my writing. However, although there are some lines which betray a scepticism about some elements of youth culture (which I hold to - for example, poor use of language in some cases), there are also here acknowledgements and celebrations of creativity - of artistic and psychological nature. What is true is that I am not slavish to popular culture and tend to carefully select what I enjoy, approve of, what is most useful and what is most potent. 


  1. Hey - thanks for the feedback! Did I meet you in London the other night?