Saturday, 23 March 2019

Hush


Verbal assaults abound online and it can be such an ugly place to be - words contorted and shaped to hurt. It's an awful mess and nothing like I've seen before - maybe it's because we have the communications tools to carry the words or that the divisiveness of the issues we face at this point in history, is so acute?
Even my own words have been hacked by the rage and venom I feel at the viciousness of our assault on the planet, the loss of wildlife and the culpability of politicians the world over, in denying our children health, well-being and a future.
Words though have the power to heal, to soothe, to bridge divides and to draw out the good in us... just sadly there is so much noise from the abusers of words that the softer songs are hard to hear.

When I still had room for poetry in my soul, I wrote about the love and power I find in words and I barely recognise my own song anymore ...
*********************************************

HUSH


Seduce me with your words
Verbs draped across my breasts
Suggest…
…anything….
just suggest
Murmur meanderings into my neck
Wreck mediocrity with a subtext
Hex spells upon me
Free spirit with prose
Expose tongue twisters to my toes
So I can feel your wet wordy lap
Tap ten digital code rap
Sap soaked in your graffiti
Defeat me, shout out
Doubt me with your mouth
Make me from your song
Long, longing belonging near
Where I can hear
Sheer seduction as you satiate
Wait …
…please…
just wait
Tense, thriller panting
Chanting rhythmic rhymes dancing
Entrancing passion advancing
Chancing whispers light breeze
Tease lips atop lips as they move
Smooth over each other
Smother the world outside
Slide into the library of us
Hush
*********************************************
*Thanks Jo Lucylou for image I just 'borrowed' from your wall <3 span="">

Wednesday, 27 February 2019

Normalising abuse

Related image



"So how was your day?"

Oh you know… same old, same old!!! Well not quite but the ‘normalisation of the injustices here atPreston New Road Rolling Roadside Protest is hugely worrying and deeply saddening as we watch our right to genuinely peaceful protest, eroded one minute at a time. I was arrested AGAIN as I was on Monday. Today, I made a concerted effort to not linger as long as I did in my dancing near vehicles on Monday (about 6 minutes then and less than 3 today!)– yet AGAIN though they unnecessarily arrested, hand-cuffed and jailed - they just ate half my bloody day with this nonsense. What sort of criminal am I or the other 3 lovely people arrested too today?

It was our 81st Wednesday of the Call for Calm, when the women gather to hold a silence before singing, dancing and rejoicing in life to balance the horrors that go on – it finished as always about 12:30 and some of us continued to enjoy the music and dance. A particularly vile Officer was on duty – 322 who has history of violence and horrid behaviour here in the past 2 and a bit years… he didn’t reach where we were dancing near a staff car – until the car had entered (as on Monday) so (like Monday) they witnessed no obstruction and clearly, it had been brief. He and his team though seemed unhappy that they didn’t get to break us up or do anything other than stand about… we did a ‘conga’ through their lines – we were just lifting the mood and doing what we always do but they seemed aggressive and with 322 on duty, there was ‘something in the air’.

Julie and I sensed it was definitely time to go – as she had stuff to do and I was going to meet my daughter and granddaughter for some sorely needed family time… so off we went, each of us holding one side of the PA system to walk down the hill. We were cut off by police telling me I was under arrest and within minutes, so was Jewel and I heard that Cait and Om also got arrested. I was a bit ranty and emotional and the officer said that due to my animation, he was going to cuff me. I explained the whole sore wrist thing and he did loosen the cuff a little… unlike Monday’s brutal beast.

I’m a bit drained so won’t go on (I know… nice change lol) but pretty much, if you take Monday’s post, half the harm they claimed happened, slightly ease the handcuff agony and got all of us released with NO FURTHER ACTION… that’s the day.

Articles 10 & 11 of our Human Rights describe how they work as a key feature of DEMOCRACY – in fact without them, there is no democracy. So what is peaceful protest? Women dancing at gates of a fracking site and perhaps causing some minutes of delay in the kerfuffle? Surely this… surely? Because IF NOT THIS… then what next?

Understanding the term ‘radicalisation’ is a horrible thing to experience – I have often lost my temper and this results in verbal outbursts but never have I been violent or criminal in my behaviour and yet this cuffing and arrest is featuring twice in one week… very wrong, hugely unjust and so time consuming, painful and downright upsetting. I walked out of jail today feeling grateful that it didn’t result in a charge. GRATEFUL! This is what happens when 'normalisation' of a situation occurs not because it's NORMAL but because it just keeps happening until you accept it. I am now remembering to be bloody livid – how dare they have done this at all… denied my my rights and ruined my days.

As I sat with the anger my thoughts turned to protesting the police and my rage directed itself to them – but they are pawns – used as a buffer zone between us and the actual enemy – those harming our environment (and the government that enables them). The industry would love nothing more than for us to become so enraged with the unjust policing, that we waste our energy and precious (well-informed) anger attacking them… hard to not want to but we have little time, our children are depending on us and we have a far more important job to do.

See you at the roadside 

Monday, 25 February 2019

Unnatural Laws...

"So how was your day?"

Well pretty shit really. Ever since becoming partners in not-crime-but-slightly-out-of-the-norm activism in 2011, my sister Julie and I have come to a sort-of routine and system that basically means – we avoid doing anything together that could get us both in trouble at the same time - because like many, we are integral to carer responsibilities in our families; Julie far more than I. We have an elder and a few young ones that require picking up, shopping for, checking in on and feeding – so far, this works for us and we keep each other away from silly moves too when we can.

In all these years, Julie has never been arrested or in a position where she pushed it so far that she could be – I have one civil case for the Nana’s taking of the field back in 2014, one arrest that was just silly and charges dropped (I crossed a road), one actual arrest/jail/charges for an action that is currently awaiting court (Caravan of Love lock-on)… and today, a totally unfathomable arrest for ‘obstructing a highway’ that is totally unfounded or at least bloody odd. And Julie was arrested today for the same.

So how the hell did it happen that our system failed? Well we truly did not imagine for one moment that what we were doing, would get us arrested. We’ve been at this roadside with others for 781 days now and are well aware of how NOT to be arrested –particularly on a Monday when I have to bring my step-dad his pies and my company and Julie is needed at home for her youngest grandchild.

Somewhere around 2pm, Julie and I were dancing in and around in the entrance way to the fracking site (as usual) as a vehicle started to pull in, we continued to laugh and dance and direct it in right up to the line – at this point (a few minutes in, as almost every other time), we saw the police arrive and get out of their vans. As we do, we immediately wandered off… the vehicle we’d been dancing about was in the site before the police even got to it. The police all stood about and Julie and I wandered to Gate Camp, had a chat and a chuckle and then went back to resuming peaceful activity at the site entrance.

As we sat on the bench, the police suddenly started to move as a mass towards us – we thought they might be coming with a ‘warning notice’ about our behavior as others have had in the past… so I started to make speed and was past gate camp by the time I looked over my shoulder and realised that nearly the entire unit of officers, was racing after me! It would have been funny, in fact I think at that point I still thought it was – though that may have been growing nerves. It’s not like you expect this sort of madness to your days – even here at PNR where a lot of days have indeed been pretty damned crazy. I bolted in a sort of panic-meets-Hollywood-blockbuster scene – as I spotted a truck coming up in the opposite lane and some weird thing in my head made me imagine I could shoot across and make it to the other side and those following me (that looked a bit like a Benny Hill caper by now) – wouldn’t be able to make it too as the truck would separate us.

What this would achieve or if there was purpose – mustn’t have mattered lol! I reached the other side and wondered what the hell I was doing… especially as it became apparent that police had been running up both sides of the road (and the centre!). Perhaps they’ve been listening to conspiracies and imagine I’m some major villain? What a stupid fuss.

I was surrounded and not going anywhere but despite being under 5ft tall and not much of a physical challenge for them – they gripped by hands behind my back and cuffed me. I quickly let them know that due to recent breaks, my right wrist in particular was misshapen and painful… he then clicked three more tightening noises on the cuffs. Cruel – just plain bloody cruel. I was screaming in pain. The officer later tried to excuse this by saying the cuffs are more uncomfortable and dangerous if they’re loose. I begged for them to be removed but they said I was being aggressive – I was being in pain. I was though finally released by a runny nose… I’m getting over a cold and needed a tissue that I wouldn’t be able to use myself as I was cuffed – so I told the officer I needed to blow my nose and he would have to hold a tissue for me. He undid the cuffs 

Julie had come into view at some point in my recall I saw her surrounded by police just outside gate camp – we were taken separately to jail for about 4 hours and charged.

Although today was unexpected for Julie and I – it was a far from out-of-the-ordinary day here at PNR where so many arrests happen to result in No Further Action or charges later dropped - they do it to deter, to punish, to put off others from joining us and sometimes, I think because they are frustrated at the futility of lives spent pushing residents about in front of a fracking site when they were trained to fight actual crimes and deal with actual criminals. The policing has no consistency and all that happens is at the whim of whoever is in charge on the day and their style and mood.

The worst part I find in all this, is how desperately angry it makes me to be ‘handled’ and treated like I have committed a crime – what we do as Protectors is the polar bloody opposite to crime! Additionally, the police continue to apply force to our bodies, as if we were large, threatening criminals rather than who we really are – well-informed and desperately worried parents/grandparents forced to do unnatural things in an unrecognisable environment. This existence here is not only unfamiliar, unbalanced and wrong - it is absolutely absurd.

*Step father now comforted and fed... all young people in family where they need to be and two sisters a bit pissed off at a wasted day full of wasted time for some sort of phoney 'law' and ridiculous application of justice system - that isn't remotely just. A truly just system would manhandle and handcuff the polluters who are criminally damaging the land, air and water our children need to bloody survive.

*LOVE & massive thanks to our family of Protectors for sorting bags, pets, support and hugs 


Tuesday, 19 February 2019

Will we thrive, die or barely survive?









The photo states a fact... plain, simple, unavoidably true.

Sadly we're in a world where it's politics that dictates if our children have any future at all and even how many more will suffer this year with asthma and that politics is clearly corrupted.

Evidence of the corruption is all about us from the selling off of publicly paid for services to the power of lobbyists pushing more fossil fuel industries into our lives as well as opening more runways, softening regulatory safeguards, dumping toxic waste that will pollute long into the future and other profit-driven, cost-cutting exercises that only serve the very few who already hold the power and wealth.

The corruption is clear too in the fact that we'll bail out banks - but won't bail out our NHS, our education system or even the most important bail out of all - an environmental one that would see us get a renewable sector up, a fossil past down and a thriving future with jobs in new sectors, home insulation, public transport, tech for futures fit to live in etc.

Joining a party is a statement (not yet a vote)...

Joining the Green Party of England and Wales makes clear what YOUR priorities are and the more members we have, the more we can do to further the Green future the planet is screaming out for. Voting is something we do in secret to achieve an outcome (usually to get the worst out and least worst with-a-chance in)... but our membership is visible and shows our ideals.

The Green Party has always been the warning light at the heart of the system we rely on to sustain us and our members represent a clear vision and truth about what's important: clean air, safe water, a thriving renewable sector, forward thinking agricultural practices that nurture our soil and the future and jobs in sectors that are rewarding ...not harming the world we live in.

Woven through this is a passion for social justice, fairness, kindness, humanity and the determination to improve the world ..not stand by and watch it further ruined. The brighter future WILL come when we focus on our living world as the priority over pandering to polluters.

Joining is your statement that you want our positive vision for the future to be heard in government... give it a go? It's not like it's a matter of life or death ...*oh actually x

Sunday, 17 February 2019

Literally Youth...

I recall as a young child that there was a hole in the sky caused by my mother’s over-use of hairspray as she tried to maintain the structural integrity of hairstyles not designed to survive the wilting Australian heat we’d recently emigrated to. It was all over the news that the ozone hole would bring danger and action needed to be taken. I blamed my mother but apparently others were involved.

As children we take things literally – I also recall the absolute fear I was numbed by when I sounded out the words of a newspaper headline that indicated the animals were now organising and would be attacking humans! “Guerrilla Violence on Streets” would be less worrying when I learned to spell lol.

In our youth, things are only as clear as they’re explained and so it is quite natural I think that this uprising of the young comes in response to the (finally) clear message that within 12 years… we reach a tipping point that makes future suffering for them, a certainty – IF we don’t act literally right now. There is finally some clarity in the words and evidence all about.. amidst the years of denial, spin and lies and that is why the young are rising.

The stern adults in government and some schools tut-tutted and tsk-ed the loss of a day at school – reprimanded them for their ‘folly’ and showed themselves to be so out of touch with reality. What part of “we made a mess of the environment with industrial processes, overuse of pesticides, polluting industries, air travel, waste dumping, plastics, indulgence, greed and ignorance” isn’t something that should have the attention of ALL of us right now? I think Greta Thunberg summed it up best with:

“Why should I be studying for a future that soon may be no more, when no one is doing anything to save that future? And what is the point of learning facts when the most important facts clearly means nothing to our society?”

I walked with the #YouthStrike4Climate #SchoolStrike4Climate in Preston, Lancashire and it was one of the most inspiring actions I’ve witnessed. Nearly all the young people striking from school, were doing an action for the first time and there was a beautifully stubborn determination in each that brought optimism to the rest of us.

They may have been new to this but rebellion + youth is a match made in good places… they worked it out as they went along, got ideas for improving the next one, made connections that will reinforce the bonds and aid the planning and… what’s most important (at least in my heart) – they truly SELF-empowered as individuals. Bloody beautiful 


*Meanwhile… in the corridors of power and media politics… there’s a #Brexit and a #Wall distracting those who DO know better!




Wrestling with Pigs & Stalkers...


Attacks, abuse, accusations and vile memes on Twitter and FB are such a cowardly way to deal with anything... I've seen the attacks break and damage some and am witnessing now as they land on young Greta Thunberg too. Seems every time a kind voice calls calmly for unity, action and solutions - some with violence at their core, call for ridicule, mockery and attack 

I have had a stalker and his small gang following my every move for years now - putting out videos many times per week, painting graffiti on the road where I walk most days in protest, hanging slanderous signs (27!) on lamposts on the same road (PNR), slandering each group I work with... letters sent to any I have done actions or events with: Greenpeace UK Green Party of England and Wales Lush Charity Pot UK Ecotricity and social attacks even on photographers and writers who deemed me worthy of quotes or images.

I know that the stalker thrives only on conflict - so I don't interact. I find the sad part though that I am now less willing to put up details of great events etc that I'll attend or speak at - because the stalker will try to come and feast on disruption. I also interact less on friends' posts because he will target who I am speaking to.

The police are updated on this case regularly with videos and posts as I am not the only target - there are sadly at least 5 women I love and value who will no longer come roadside because of him.

But it is what it is and in the end... the real enemy and the real fight are for the future for our children. My advice to Greta would be to walk your walk, be your truth and KNOW that those who matter, will be right beside you 



*APOLOGY to lovely pigs... I actually probably respect them more than some humans really  x

Friday, 8 February 2019

LOVE LETTERS TO GOD





After John Ashton's wonderful talk at Green Monday this week... I wrote on an old receipt "Love Letters to God - Nahko & Medicine for the People"


He just texted his gratitude and this it was beautiful. It is. It may be one of the finest songs I've ever heard - not just the lyrics and music but what it does here at PNR when we play it... there's a sway that starts up and all about I can see lips moving in synchronicity as we know the words so well and feel them deeply I think.


There's much that happens to us humans when we first take up positions of newly discovered self-empowerment and start on a road of Activism... the encounters with others we'd never have met under any other circumstances... the ideas, thoughts and observations beyond the realms of what we thought in our much smaller worlds of existence... skills, talents and creativity we discover in ourselves or learn from others we journey with now... and the music - one of the finest gifts we share as we open up our favourites to each other or listen to the fine strumming of a guitar and a single voice by a campfire or the full on, deep throaty rumble of the Samba bands that drive us as masses...


Activism seems somehow to define 'community' and although it looks like we're giving - it always feels like we're receiving much more <3

Hush

Verbal assaults abound online and it can be such an ugly place to be - words contorted and shaped to hurt. It's an awful mess an...