Photography: ©John Stadnicki, 2018
Photography: ©John Stadnicki, 2018
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.
In a country where all books are forbidden,
the hurricane spits out a new world
with a new legacy of destruction.
People stop by the house with a light on and a blue door,
the house with boarded-up windows where
the mandolin player keeps an eye
on his own basement revolution.
These are the days when the truth learns to
travel on cigarette papers, between prison cells,
before the police arrives
Ink on paper: ‘Fisherman’, Maria Stadnicka
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
I have come to recognise God in a violent song,
played in the evening with broken forks and knives.
If I refuse to kneel, the winter starts at the end of September,
on Tuesdays, when I pass by the Jewish quarters.
My road to confession starts, just the same, in the morning chill.
The stones, the trees, the sky have a message,
of that I am certain, arrived at the wooden door of the hermitage.
And I knock and I knock.
A raven finally opens the white background.
The raven says with calculated words that, at present,
this government is busy.
Important wars need attending, in a land like no other.
I am given a form and I hear the padlocks.
I jump on the treadmill to keep warm.
Photo: copyright@John Stadnicki, 2016
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’)