the sysetm


Of Service And Sacrifice

They were called to serve,
Called to duty and to fate.
When times were better,
Caring corralled in exemplar.
They formed up Our Wall.

Then they were called
In times of great distress,
To further service.

They knew some would die.
Some scarcely their training having ended
Taking up their oaths,
As all who serve do,
Spoken out loud
Or sworn and kept inside.

Their names inscribed on plastic tags.
Each name starts a story
And most will go untold,
Of honour, bravery, service and kindness,
In the face of relentless threat.

Honoured heroes.
Some names now echo,
Printed, etched and engraved,
Filling the nation’s hearts.
Their sacrifices applauded
As those lost, are called
To higher service.

Isolated Together

These strong roots tap deep,
Birds, bees, flowers, sing,
Saturated stone
And dirt at wellsprings,
From where we all drink,
Whilst we stand alone.

Solum distance love,
Clamouring to touch,
But when cooling winds blow,
From our firm stance,
We must not catch.

Long black shadows form
From the midday light,
Tracking on the ground.
We’re not yet withering,
But harvest must come.

Loves lost,
We yearn for those holy places
Of ancient times:
Hilltops, Valleys, Rivers, Seas,
Tasted in dreams.

Yet still, we sing our stories,
From this splendid abandonment.
Others make glory,
And harvest the spent.

Our songs peel their endeavours,
Whilst we bask in the sun,
In isolation in homely surrounds,
We reach out to know we’re heard.

Each day dies
And cold comes.
In darkness,
We wait for the morning.

And the dawn will come,
And we will drink deep again,
And songs will be sung,

Leading on

Be it not be in perfect English,
Given over now to those my friends
All the things that we’ve done have bought this
Thing we’ve got to see out to the end

So, if I were to die this day,
Would anyone fondly recall,
The way I’d lived my life at all?

It goes on

And those friends go away,
The ones you had yesterday,
The ones with whom you had history.
As your life evolves and resolves.

Looking through your parents’ eyes,
Hearing children cry.
Wondering when you said goodbye
To your childhood,
It lasted longer than you thought.

And those friends go away,
The ones you had yesterday,
The ones with whom you share history,
The ones with whom you walk everyday.

And so I’ll speak boldly of destiny,
And of friendships and family.
Until next we meet dear friends.

No more bills, fears of an impotent provider

I’ve let a house define me.
Like so many before.
I’ve created a role which gives me meaning,
“I have to keep going, to keep us strong, established, stable, together.”
Head down.
“This is why I exist”

This thin veil is cut through as quickly as a guillotine dispenses of a long redundant royal head.
And as I am relieved of certain responsibilities,
I find myself to be not relieved.

To my surprise, I’m the one that struggles with the change, 
the pressing necessity to keep us warm and dry, gone,
I see the opportunity,
But this freedom does not liberate me,
It endangers me,
It lands me on a line at a distance from my being.
Demanding of me a new definition,
A new raison d’être.

Like when the wings of an angel
Are clipped by god
At angelic request,
The consequences are read only by omniscient eyes and never wholly relayed.
Thus hoodwinked,
I’m left teetering on the precipice,
The normal restraints, retaining me, removed.
Left hoping my faith in my existence and that of my family will save me from a fall and from the worst of myself.

Stodge Angels and Whisky Demons

Singing with the angels through the lifeline of a breakfast baguette, (Bacon, Sausage and Egg are always better served with a hangover and regret) I’m losing my mind to this golden rhyming time that’s lost to a thousand other voices in here, that question everything, that say nothing other than the things that come out straight down the middle, a little riddle, a ponderance or two. There’s a McFilth Breakfast for everyone that needs one – mainline the coffee, it’s perky, worked up in a lather that tastes sweet to its victims as it rolls monstrously fast over moist egg and grease glistening skin. Masking the taste of Lagavulin. Divine salutations offer happy ever afters whilst you dance with the devils within.

Another meeting down in the big smoke

Another meeting down in the big smoke
Another day: a chance to go for broke
Another meeting with stiff looking suits
The devil’s soulless corporate recruits.
In a boardroom that’s just like the last one
Its high back chairs cupping me like a womb
These head office rooms lulling you in,
Do or die. Sink or swim. In this room you win.
Flanked by the high priests of management speak
Bullshitting sales guys blag they’ve got no cares
MDs that try to hide receding lined hair
They hide behind their ostentatious bling
Big chromed watches and flashy diamonded rings
Corporate blingy things are like the cod pieces that embellished covered crotches.

What’s not in the news

“The family’s been informed”
[their son’s just died]
“The family’s been informed”
[a mother breaks down and cries]
“The family’s been informed”
[her screams echo his last breath]
“The family’s been informed”
[informed of a valiant death]
“The family’s been informed”
[a father’s heart just broke]
“The family’s been informed”
[a lump wells up in his throat]
“The family’s been informed”
[he was proudly doing his bit]
“The family’s been informed”
[he was scared and alone when hit]
“The family’s been informed”
[a wife sobs numbly in despair]
“The family’s been informed”
[all she can do is stare]
“The family’s been informed”
[his daughter is too young to understand, cry or care]
“The family’s been informed”



The greatest plague mankind has ever known
We embrace it
We nurture it
We espouse its virtues
We pay for it with plastic cards
And chipped up trees
And drying seas
And a smaller world
In which the void between the next man and me
Is increasingly pronounced
Our similarities ignored as collective inevitability.

The only collective action of note

Take no vote on this
And stand well back
“Practice your apathy”

Forget those collective terms
And inwardly turn
And search your soul for what could make you whole
Somewhere you’ll find the meaning of it all
Then head to the supermarket and high street chain
Purchase powered, four monthly cycles
Post-fordist cultural monopoly: buy and you’re cured
Well: lured, to wonder what it’s all about
A new car or book case?
You’re a mass-produced fake,
So go on.
Define yourself Individual: Stand Out.

The Stampeding Herd

Head down
No questions
No need for questions
Don’t question
Just Run
And Panic
Just like everyone else
That’s all this is
Each of us a member of the Stampeding Herd


Our endless race to out pace our own humanity