Tomorrow will come with a sunny spell,
the rain will stop at the border so
we will begin the long-waited rebellion,
as they say,
at the right moment.
To satisfy our need for greatness,
we will politely ask the just questions and
sit on the pew
in return for the hand-written answer.
We will finally go home,
or so we believe,
to master the only remedy left for pain – patience.
Stroud’s Politics Kitchen presents a musical experience showcasing a new and exciting political paradigm whose time has come – the Politics of the Heart. This is Politics that recognises that we have more in common than that which divides – a more intelligent, courageous and compassionate politics.
The event, on 11th February 2017 at 19.30 – The Subscription Rooms Stroud, features music from the sensational Bristol-based Spiro who are described as “World Music that speaks directly to the soul” – this is a truly unmissable event.
“This is soulful, passionate music, and I love it”, says Peter Gabriel, speaking of Spiro (see links below). If there were a ‘Stroud Sound’, Spiro would surely be it.
They are supported by Jennifer Maidman Music, stellar singer-songwriter and ex-member of the legendary Penguin Café Orchestra, 1984–2007.
Spiro are also supported by Hattie Briggs another wonderful singer-songwriter, inspired by the likes of Joni Mitchell and James Taylor Hattie recorded her debut album, ‘Red and Gold’ with Peter Waterman (Joss Stone/Uriah Heep/Emma Ballantine), as was her second album, ‘Young Runaway’, in 2016.
The event is supported by and features poetry readings with Gabriel Millar, Maria Stadnicka and JoJo Mehta.
Tickets available at Stroud Subscription Rooms: http://www.subscriptionrooms.org.uk/whats-on/politics-of-the-heart-with-spiro/
Witness to a repeated history
in exile I learn a new language
facing the border control
at Heathrow Airport I wear my mother’s coat
ready for a winter of politics
when I need to
I keep my mouth shut I change my name
to look just like her
white and uncomfortable
the blinding sun has been washed and
smells of violets
people are happy
in such a beautiful land
nobody minds me
brushing the dust off velvet cutlery
the only remains
of life before baptism.
photographs: copyright@John Stadnicki, 2016
The fatal morning Europe woke up and thought it had something to say,
there was nobody else left in the world able to listen.
Oh, earth, the bones had gathered to queue for bread,
by the front door at Saint Joseph seminary.
An ordinary day for ordinary death.
The bakery opened and closed.
The workers arrived on time for a last shift then went home.
The ovens had no traces of grain.
The ink stained hope filled up rusty water pipes.
The crowds’ whisper went on, up the hill, out of the city.
After that, freedom meant nothing.
It all came down to
who could hold the front running place the longest.
Dear local MP, a while ago I vividly remember
writing you a very short note to say ‘fuck it, I quit!’.
I licked the stamp and dropped the envelope
in the box number eighty four, school lane, first left,
by the traffic lights.
I ran back to my flat, unplugged the TV
and read ‘War and Peace’ under the duvet covers.
By the time I got to page seven hundred and twenty I’d realised
the war was not the most important thing in a man’s life.
I started to feel a bit sorry for myself
having nothing to be angry about anymore.
But now, coming to think of it, you gracefully got over the insult
and posted back a signed Christmas card.
It arrived in January but let’s not stop at details.
I kept at my book for over a month.
The French got stuck in Siberia,
the women mourned, the men went back home
as they did in those days.
And then a neat Valentine appeared
hand-delivered by a Romanian postman.
Your concern for my love life brings me to tears.
There is nothing worse than rejected love.
It might be that the Panama Papers will become as iconic in history as the fashionable Ecuadorian ‘panama hat’; a striking and a bit ostentatious item, which everybody wants but nobody knows how to properly wear it. Not in Britain. For obvious climatic restrictions.
However though, on Monday morning, Britain received such a hat, delivered by the mediatic postal service, whilst not wide awake yet, post Easter holiday, when the weather forecast was not that brilliant anyway. Would it worth the bother, for the sake of seven or eight hours of sunshine a week? Should it return to sender and have the money back?
The British rich and the poor found out, with some surprise, that once they had signed for the goods, the sender remained unknown. And, as the box opened, millions of other items emerged. Things which we all ‘kind of’ knew about, but wished we hadn’t. The truth.
The shock of discovering your master licking his honey smeared fingers in your own pantry. The shock of being discovered and still trying to say ‘sorry it won’t happen again’ type of thing.
In a society where the wealth and the poverty cohabit undisturbed, in their own universe, parallel with each other, it becomes increasingly difficult to formulate an opinion about social injustice, corruption, and privileged few. Almost impossible to do something about it. This explains the public opinion’s delayed reaction to the recent ‘Panama Papers’. But does it justify it? And even if, let’s say, something could be done about it, what resolution would not involve fundamental change and transformation, on both sides?
Given the realities of international and national politics, each of us is, to some extent, victim of conflicting demands between truth and power. Observers of social reality, rather than makers of it. Furthermore, the unfortunate circumstances, which define the current trends, deepen in a climate where radical thinking and critical debate do not address the core values on which we built our social structures and institutions.
With the current revelations in mind, it is rather justifiable, once more, the duty to bring in focus the possibility of change, which, ‘to some extent’, comes from our desire ‘to create the future rather than merely observe the flow of events. Given the stakes, it would be criminal to let real opportunities pass unexplored.’ (Noam Chomsky, 2014, ‘A Genuine Movement for Social Change’)