Numbers for One Life

London. Friday afternoon. 2017.

It is summer. And a beautiful bitter one.

A few numbers for a statistical analysis which does not matter.

There are 775 rooms in Buckingham Palace.

There are almost 20,000 homes sitting empty in London. They are called ‘ghost’ homes.

The Crown Jewels have a total value of 44.5 billion pounds.

Stuart Gulliver, CEO at HSBC, will receive 9.7 million pounds as reward for cutting costs. Basically, for making money for others.

Philip May works as a senior executive at investment fund Capital Group that controls $1.4 trillion in assets.

Over 31 million pounds will be given this year in prizes at Wimbledon.

Theresa May promises 5 million pounds. To be shared between hundreds of people without food, clothes and a roof over their heads. Victims of Grenfell Tower fire.

Theresa May gets free food and accommodation wherever she goes. At all times.

An average wedding in the UK costs 20,000 pounds.

One cremation is 1,600 pounds, if it is planned. Otherwise, it is free.

Fire resistant cladding is 24 pounds per square metre.

One life has no price. Nor numbers.

 

 

A Kind of World

If we want the world to move forward,

we must hold hands. Documenting the pain and the joy,

on the same page,

with water, with fire, with ashes

not with ink.

 

Freedom means nothing when the healthy and the sick

eat at separate tables.

Even the trees sit together. They know that life is actually simple.

But once people renounced their entitlement,

it will take more than a revolution

to reclaim such a right.

 

For too long we took the wrong turn.

 

What kind of world is this if

the madman tells us that

we should be ashamed of ourselves?

 

Photo: @Joss Beeley

Uranium Bullets

I always arrive late for everything.

Stuck in a traffic jam by the docks,

missed Noah’s boat but

survived under water

accidentally trapped between stolen books,

trapped by a word heavier than a stone,

lighter than a feather.

 

Hidden in the overcrowded wooden train carriage,

radicalised by the anonymity of my blue name-tag,

with a heart growing outside my body.

Each beat painfully visible to the guards

around the Monopoly table.

 

On the waiting list for ballet lessons,

radicalised by the price of uranium bullets on Mother’s Day

handwriting an apologetic note.

My deep eye silenced.

The familiar solemnity of a world without a face.

Photograph: @John Stadnicki, Bristol MMXVI

New text…@International Times

Exile

 

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
amongst
wrapped-well-packed boxes
brushing the dust off velvet cutlery
the only remains
of life before baptism.

©Maria Stadnicka

Photograph: ©Nick Victor

http://internationaltimes.it/exile-2/

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Gallery

Antarctica

1

Day I


2

Day II


3

Day III


4

Day IV


5

Day V


6

Day VI


7

Day VII


Installation – visual poem: @Maria Stadnicka, ‘Antarctica’ MMXIV- paper, wood, ink, acrylics, pastels

Dog Politics

People say they are unhappy with the current state of affairs and choose to keep at being upset in the warmth of their mortgaged homes. As long as there isn’t a real shortage of food, a shortage of electricity, as long they are allowed to own a car and a TV, they can easily abandon the right to speak up, hoping that the political elite will do something, anything for that matter, to put things right. But what so many cannot seem to grasp is that the elite is in it for itself, not for the greater good. And once people renounced their entitlement, it will take more than a revolution to reclaim such a right. By the end of the day, nobody has known a slave trader ready to give up their business plan for the sake of an idea.

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Photograph: @John Stadnicki, ‘Orio al Serio’ 2016

Poverty as a matter of contrast

Poverty has no definition. Not in any sociological sense. Once you face the human bones and the malnourished, any aesthetic value disappears. And with the one in agony, your own agony takes shape. The sourly tears are not for others’ pain but for your own disillusion and failure. For all the answers you hoped to get, and did not. Nothing sublime, genuine about the human nature, once the spirit is dead.
Poverty is always a matter of contrast. As the hungry has no sense of fullness when there is no water, no food to share. The poor are never unhappy. I am unhappy in the poor’s place as they can make the difference between the world’s emptiness and my dry throat. No freedom exists in poverty and no real understanding of the truth.
Once the poor are full, they do have time for questions.

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