The Sonnet: Awakener of the Soul

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Let’s start with a big question: Is it possible that structure can bring freedom? Can some kind of “limitation” ever be inspiring? Your immediate reaction might be to say, emphatically, “No way! I’d just want to break out of it” But that would be too quick and too easy a response. In fact, it would have been a response based only in the realm of the physical, which itself is already very limited by its nature. If that question was put to me — “Can structure bring freedom?” — I would be tempted to have some fun with whatever that structure was — to turn it around — to reinvent it, transform it, without any violation of the original question. You see, working within a structure can be joyful and liberating if your artistic mind is already totally free. For limitations, when confronted by a free mind, do not bring an imposition — in just the same way that so-called “problems” for the free soul are merely exciting challenges. 😊

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Dark Horse [sonnet]

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Dark Horse

She killed the horse before the race began.
“It’s no use, for I know he’ll never win;
he lost before”, she said. “And if he can
so thwart me once, I can’t again begin”.

Terrorism in European Cities: The Only Conclusion

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REGARDING ALL THE TERRORIST ATROCITIES happening regularly in European cities — after all the information available has been digested — there is only one conclusion to which any sane, honest, informed and rational person can come: That governmental security services, intelligence agencies and even the upper echelons of those governments themselves (i.e. presidential, prime ministerial and ministerial levels) are complicit in those atrocities. To fail to come to that conclusion, one would have to be either extremely stupid, an escapist living in la-la land or simply too fearful to face up to the implications of that life-changing revelation.

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Angel Chances [poem]

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Here this man now sits and stands and paces
round the room while twin-scented swirling
strands make fiery dangling traces round the
edges of his tiny ever-[never]-reaching hands

The strands of which I speak are two and golden
flamed and tainted handsomely and guaranteed
to thrill and ultimately fill the yearning burn of
glistening dreams (undoing over-tightened seams)

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Vaughan Williams’s Symphony no 5

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IF YOU RECALL, a few weeks ago I presented Shostakovich’s 11th Symphony as THE symphony for our times, in its realistic depiction of state evil and its warning that history repeats itself. Well, here is another symphony for our times but in a very different sense altogether — one which reflects beauty, honour, glory and everything noble and virtuous about life which is nostalgically lurking on the hinterland of the universe and in a hidden corner of our hearts. The 5th Symphony of the English composer, Ralph Vaughan Williams, is, to my mind, the most beautiful piece of pure music ever written. It is certainly one of the most spiritual pieces of music ever composed. Astonishingly, it was written at the height of the Second World War! Vaughan Williams was inspired to write it while composing his opera “Pilgrim’s Progress”, which he viewed as the manifestation of morality and this is what lies at the heart of this symphony. There is an order and cleanness which feels wholesomely noble. The very opposite of the chaos, amorality and disorder which lay at the heart of Europe when the symphony was being written. From start to finish, it is rivetingly beautiful. Just when you think it couldn’t get any more beautiful than the first movement, the third movement (coming after a lilting scherzo) is nothing less than divine, music to bring you into the presence of God. The final movement is the perfect end to the work; the coda in the last few minutes being one of the most beautiful endings of any symphony ever written.

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Why Do I Feel So Alone?

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Why Do I Feel So Alone

First, let me say this: Spiritual aloneness is not the same as loneliness. People very often communicate to me how lonely and isolated they feel on their spiritual pathway. The crazier the world becomes, the more “strung out” one can feel. Last week, someone wrote this to me:

“You talk a lot about the Light. I love the Light too. I thought that when I woke up a couple of years ago that in place of the old friends I had to leave behind or who left me behind because of my changes, I would find a lot of new friends who walked the same path as me. I remember as I was waking up that I felt more and more out of place and all alone when with my old friends. But two years later I actually feel more alone than ever before. I don’t understand why this should be. Can you explain it?”

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Trigger Happy!

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Trigger

What triggers you so easily to throw your “bombs” around
(a metaphor which indicates the nature of your verbal blasts
& all your gauche attempts at playing the part of cold iconoclast)
and make the heartless sounds you do, reacting scornfully to
anything originating from outside your hypernarrow field of view
(instead of looking in yourself and then exploring other worlds
which live beyond the multitude of books upon your shelf),
projecting all the darksome things that you have now become
— for instance, narcissist, derivative and thiefly plagiarising
plunderman who skulks in waiting rooms on doctors’ lists,
a dour old man who’s long forgotten when he last was kissed
by pretty things, a man who never sings or bares his truly soul
but simply plays the role of “I’m-in-charge-and-don’t-get-in-my-
way-’cause-then-I’ll-start-to-play-the-games-I’ve-learned-will-
hide-my-tiny-soul-from-view” — on those who you have envied
with your hotly jealous heart; and everywhere are strewed the
now-dead petals from the summer flowers you never bloomed
and all the books you have consumed can never save you now.

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