Without Prejudice

With a full belly, we know right from wrong;
We have strength of will to hew out borders.

With an empty belly, we are careful;
We adopt shapes that permit us to receive.

Share your next meal with somebody you love.

Don't wanna fight no more

Here’s a piece of writing that
May be technically correct.
A boring little drama
Filled with not much but regret

For all the sleepless nights spent
Rummaging without regard
For safety, peace or heartache,
Past valences marred by scars.

I’ve dug for gold and dust-motes
In long-forgotten landscapes;
Shared hope and joy with soul-mates;
Wrought love from death’s embrace.

Monumental sacrifice
Is no longer going to yield
The kind of truth I’m used to
Because I no longer feel

Working hard and sharing love
Is valuable or welcome.
I’m shrunken down, held below
The current social fulcrum.

As usual I’m despised
When I wish for something more,
When all I have around me
Is lying, greed and war.

I try my best, I don’t know
How to hate my fellow man,
To see him as a demon
For the things I know he’s planned.

The only hope that’s left is
Disappearing through the floor.
Hide me from that bully-man
And his awful, wounded roar.

And then there is this other way, but I’m not convinced

I’m always looking for one small thing
one minute of light!

Hey just a second, can’t you give me
this moment before it spoils and we have to
revert to life on the clean-up crew?

Same, same, same
every human interaction yields collateral damage.

It’s always us when it goes wrong
And me when it goes right, as if
it could be defined somehow. There is
no easy path that isn’t simple. Hunger

needs eating like alone needs closeness
At this point we don’t care what we eat
or whose heartbeat is the port where we
find shelter from the storm.

All that matters is that we move arms and legs,
the whole body/mind/spirit if need be.
Whatever it takes to get what I need.

I feel chastised
and humbled,
possibly shamed,
but I don’t care.
I am full of love.
I don’t understand
yet, why
I am grateful
and it hurts.

It’s a quantification situation,
great mathematics are in play,
iterations and recriminations,
joy is fucking out the window.

If there were no five-syllable words
I would not write,
I would beat the drums instead.
Not everyone sees language.
This way.

And I am still too cheeky
for my own good.

December 22

Take care, my friends.

This is not a time to be internal,
too many energies flying around.

Nature, people.

That which is empty will fill quite quickly,
that which is full will empty quite quickly.

It’s that kind of time.
Solstice notwithstanding.

If you have a wish
now is the time to
demonstrate it to yourself
in some way.

As if the gods were waiting
and all you need do is hint
at half an idea
and the world shifts
to make such a thing possible.

Hope is a double-edged sword though,
so watch out for the pricks.

Distracting dramatics

The last poem was prompted by an intense period of ridiculous things happening. These kinds of experiences are occurring more and more frequently when I am reasonably certain I pose virtually zero threat to most people. It’s a bit of a mind-bender in isolation, but looking at the state of the entire world, Australia can run backwards faster than you can. Check our climate policy score if you aren’t convinced.

At this stage, I would posit the state of race/class relations in Australia is significantly more disharmonious than your everyday person would have you believe. I am not going to back it up though. Here’s one of the ridiculous things that’s been in play for the past 1-2 months.

Workers near my place, long hours, too loud. I approach one worker to find out how long it is going on for and what we can do about it. She wouldn’t answer me so I called the company responsible and they made a plan. Response. 4 weeks of harassment from the workers so far. More details in the link.

I reached out a little to see if there were any local community members who could help with ideas (for keeping sane and not escalating the situation into something even more unmanageable). Here is how that is going: https://www.reddit.com/r/melbourne/comments/e8wknn/what_rights_do_contractors_conducting_civil_works/?utm_source=share&utm_medium=web2x – good people exist.

I always feel as though I have failed somehow when I find myself in a racially charged situation. My mind gets stuck on — this shouldn’t be happening now, there is no reason for it and all my energy is put to work on not letting each incident escalate to the emotional stage.

Yet in so many interactions I have had this year (bar a few amazing friends that I rarely or never see in person) I have been required to swallow hundreds of negative racial images often left unaddressed through a sort of courtesy or expediency.

We’ve got some violent youth gangs and even though there are many races represented in these gangs, the African kids are in a distinctive number and therefore sole perpetrators and responsible for everything wrong in this country. I feel like every second person I talk to wants to orate on the topic and share their deeply illogical opinion with me – I call it African bashing.

I can’t listen to it. I wonder why they want to discuss it with me? In other ways these are not very stupid people — or perhaps they are. Inevitably my response is to leave, or break off communications with this or that excuse and for most of the last couple of years I have been very isolated as a result.

My impression is that the occurrence of racially charged situations is more frequent in my life than when I wrote Go Home, You Black Bitch back in 2012 and more on a par with, say 1979 than what I hoped for in 2019, perhaps because many of the incidents have quite a negative effect on my day-to-day living.

For a bit there I didn’t even want to try to take another breath I was so disheartened.

So it was my secrets I was trying to uncover, the secrets I have in response to the prehistoric racist ideals I am constantly being fed… secrets starting to turn ugly in the dark, and I wrote Private Neutral Secret to be there for me the next time I struggle with it and forget that I am colonised to the hilt and so is everyone around me. To recall that I reinforce it when I am not aware, and most important to me – there is nothing I need to do to overcome racism.

Doesn’t mean I won’t, but right now it is beyond me and survival is not, so we look there, at how we are going to traverse this period.

Peace. x

ps: now you all know why I keep disappearing regularly 😉