Wednesday, 30 April 2014
Lets Unite and say no to UKIP, say no to racism, say no to homophobia, say no to Europhobia, by not voting UKIP.
I quote: 'In the UKIP local Manifesto 2014, the party leader mentions that "Today, local communities are under attack... On 1 January 2014, the UK opened its doors to people from both Romania and Bulgaria. Up to 29 million people more people are therefore entitled to come here, to take advantage of our benefits and social houses".
The reality is that just 0.06% of these 29 million have come to Britain but the bad news is a total of 400 million people from Europe are entitled to come to the UK if they wish so, because all EU citizens have the right to decide where to reside and work within the European Union. According to Mr Farage, one of these 400 million people is a member of his own family.
Personally I find UKIPS brand poisonous and toxic, pandering to racist rhetoric. They are deploying the same language and tactics used openly by racist parties and organisations like the BNP, the EDF and the NF before them, who now instead of targetting migrants from Africa are now targetting migrants within the EU.
Scratch under the surface and their racism is exposed. Many of their candidates, activists and representatives have been caught out making derogotary and offensive comments. People like to joke about them, but they continue to spread their venom, and the prospect of them gaining any credence or any asssemblage of power is very frightening indeed.
A wote for UKIP is like voting for the mafia as representatives of law and order.It is very worrying that people are being attracted and drawn to their dangerous ideas that seem intent on stirring up hatred and fostering division.
In Ceredigion, Wales where I live, we have already seen a so called independent councillor recently joining their ranks.
I really hope people stop their tide and stop them in their tracks
Oh and UKIP also have a freephone number that will cost them from their funds everytime you call...send them some love folks...the longer you stay on the better.....
Here's the number
0800 587 6 587
UKIP top brass can add poor driving to their list of recent controversies after one of their buses collided with a railway roof in Portsmouth recently.... ho ho ho.
Tuesday, 29 April 2014
" MAN was born free, and he is everywhere in chains. Those who think themselves the masters of others are indeed greater than they. How did this transformation come about? I do not know. How can it be made legitimate? That question I believe I can answer.
If I were to consider only force and the effects of force, I should say: 'So long as a people is constrained to obey, and obeys, it does well; but as soon as it can shake off the yoke, and shakes it off, it does better; for since it regains its freedom by the same right as that which removed it, a people is either justified in taking back its freedom, or there is no justifying those who took it away.' But the social order is a sacred right which serves as a basis for all other rights. And as it is not a natural right, it must be founded on covenants. The problem is to determine what those covenants are. "
The powerful opening lines from the social contract, the brilliant poltical treatise which earned the authoand philosopher exile from his home in Geneva and a place in the Pantheon in Paris, that went on to inspire the French Revolution. In it he wrote that man is naturally good, but becomes corrupted by the pernicious influence of human society and institutions. He preached that mankind could be improved by returning to nature and living a natural life of peace with his neighbours and himself.
Mankind must learn to break the chains that attach themselves to our lives.
Posted by teifidancer at 14:01
Thursday, 24 April 2014
On 24 April 2013, over 1,100 people were killed and thousands more were injured in the collapse of a building in Bangladesh which housed factories making clothes for Benetto, Primark, Matalan, Mango , Costa and other major brands The fate of the Rana Plaza building turned into a tragedy because workers were forced by their bosses to come to work in a place inspectors had previously ordered closed for safety reasons.It would be the worst factory tragedy in the history of the Garment industry. The majority of the victims were female garment workers. The disaster was entirely preventable. No longer could consumers, workers or governments turn a blind eye to the dangers facing workers every day.
To this day Gap refuses to sign a trade agreement that would improve conditions for the workers that produce their clothes. Survivors spoke about the intense costcutting pressures from Austalian retailers Like Costa. Many of these brands are still stocking clothes made in Bangladesh sweatshops and many workers have no choice than to return to an industry despite ill-health and fear of another collapse.
We should continue to demand from the rubbles and ashes of this disaster that workers particularly women workers the capacity to fight for a better life, and as we remember the victims of Rana Plaza we should carry on expressing our anger at companies mentioned earlier, their disregard for the workers in their supply chains in their thirst for profit.These companies must take responsibilty for their part in this disaster.
It is more than time that the fashion industry make human rights and basic safety non-negotiable. I remember today all those who lost their lives, remember their families, husbands, wives, children, mothers and brothers, all left mourning a loved one and still waiting for justice. A year on, the families of victims and the survivors are still waiting for full compensation, so they don't have to live with the additional burden of financial hardship.
As we remember all those affected, here is a link that names and calls on all brands that source from Rana Plaza to pay up.
The real cost of fast fashion
Wednesday, 23 April 2014
( for a dear old friend)In Golden days,
he put a silver spoon on the table,
left sweetness on a rizla paper,
once when beaten, he opened the door,
a hundred hours later, having passed eternity,
he released me gently back into the world,
left no traces of tears or fear,
over the years, out of nowhere,
he would always return,
in richness bought unprescribed love,
together we followed the roads of possibility,
now I remember all the good times,
and try real hard not to be sad,
will miss the beauty of his familiar face,
as the wind blows, I will hear his breath.
Posted by teifidancer at 13:07
Monday, 21 April 2014
( for Aidan Llewellyn my grandson on his 2nd birthday)
Without language yet,
he follows footprints in the sand,
hopping, skipping and jumping,
a moving spirit of the earth,
rising and falling by the seas edge,
with bright eyes, his curiosity does not rest,
running across sandy beach, in boundless joy,
lost in a landscape of play and dreams.
A swashbuckling cavalier of Peace,
marching along the oceans edge,
we will serve him, as long as he needs,
under the sky and ebbing tides,
walk alongside, his determined grace,
sparkling as spring awakes.
No compass guides this great adventurer,
what sweeter cadence can there be than this,
this innocent soul, protected by love,
who stops for a moment to watch the waves
filling us all with wondrous hope,
and though he cannot yet speak of freedom,
we will try and make sure, that it fills his heart,
day after day, year after year,
wish him happiness in every winding path,
here and now, beyond the corners of this topsy
Friday, 18 April 2014
" This is what you shall do; Love the earth and sun and the animals, despise riches, give alms to every one that asks, stand up for the stupid and crazy, devote your income and labor to others, hate tyrants, argue not concerning God, have patience and indulgence toward the people, take off your hat to nothing known or unknown or to any man or number of men, go freely with powerful uneducated persons and with the young and with the mothers of families, read these leaves in the open air every season of every year of your life, re-examine all you have been told at school or church or in any book, dismiss whatever insults your own soul, and your very flesh shall be a great poem and have the richest fluency not only in its words but in the silent lines of its lips and face and between the lashes of your eyes and in every motion and joint of your body."
Thursday, 17 April 2014
More than 800,000 Palestinians including children, have been kidnapped and imprisoned by Israel sice 1967, while at least 5,000 Palestinians are currently held by Israel. Everyday arrests are made targetting both men and women, adults and minors of varying ages.
These arrests do not target any certain demographic or age group, instead, they target all aspects of the Palestinian Society, including children, seniors, women, men, officials, ministers, legislators, political leaders, union leaders, disabled Palestinians, students, intellectuals, poets and artists.
There are 19 Palestinian women and 200 children who are still imprisoned by Israel in addition to hundreds of children who grew up and became adults while in prison.
Israel is still holding captive 185 Palestinians under arbitrary Administation orders without charge, eleven elected legislators and dozens of political officials.More than 1,400 Palestinians need medical attention but are, instead, denied the needed medical treatment.
Administrative Detention is the "Unknown enemy" which the detainees face, as it is a punishment without charge, without indictment. Administrative Detainees are held without trial. Neither they or their lawyers are allowed to defend themselves simply because they face what Israel calls a 'secret file' that no one is allowed to see. Each arbitrary order is usually for 1 to 6 months, but are repeatedly renewed and, in many cases, just as the detainees are about to step out of prison, they are then informedof a new order, often spending months and years under such orders without even knowing when, or if, they will ever be freed.
The memory of Palestinian Prisoners day comes this year while the Palestinian people still suffer systematic Israeli violations against them and their familiesthrough the West Bank and Gaza Strip.
G4S is still profiting from Israel's illegal detention and torture of Palestinians. G4S is British/Danish company that services Israeli prisons and checkpoints.
I hope that the international community will continue to take effective measures to ensure that Israel releases unlawfully detained prisoners and ensures that conditions of arrest are consistent with international human rights and humanitarian law.
Posted by teifidancer at 14:15
Wednesday, 16 April 2014
Israel : Lift 'Ludicrous' restrictions on whistleblower Vanunu a decade after release he is still not free.
(from Press release from Amnesty International)
Ten years after serving a full sentence for his revelations to the press about Israel's nuclear weapons programme, Mordechai Vanunu still faces severe restrictions that arbitrarily infringes on his freedom of movement, expression and associaton, said Amnesty International. The former nuvlear technician served an 18-year prison sentence, the first 11 of which were in solitary confinement for disclosing information to journalists about Israel's nuclear arsenal during the 1980s. Since his release in 2004, renewable military orders, have placed Mordechai Vanunu under police supervision. Among other things, he is banned from leaving the country and participating in internet chats. He must also seek permission to communicate with any foreign nationals, including journalists. "The authorities continued punishment of Mordechai Vanunu appears to be purely vindictive. The government's arguments that these severe restrictions are necessary for national security are ludicrous," said Avner Gidron, Senior Policy Adviser at Amnesty International
Read more from press release here :-
On 21 April 2014 it will be 10 years since Mordechai walked out of Ashkelon to cheering supporters from around the world. It should also be noted that Mordechai's initial revelations, were not given to the enemy, but to newspapers, in an attempt to protect his own people, the region and the world against great danger, he has served his time most of it in solitary confinement, with civilised justice a prisoner who has served his time is back in society, but Vanunu itseems is being punished again and again.
It seems that the Israeli establishment cannot forgive Mordechai his act of honesty and, shamefully, the international community has done nothing to support Mordechai as one of the few men who risked his freedom for peace in the Middle East as a man of peace and conscience.
A traitor to some a hero to others, one thing is clear he has served his time , it's time to let him get on with his life.
As 21April approaches UK Vanunu supporters are planning and hoping to raise his profile and the fact that he is still being held in Israel against his wishes. He is still being harassed and his current status falls very short of being a free man.
There is already one petition circulating entitled:
We are not free until Vanunu is free
(Please sign it below)
I Am Your Spy- Mordechai Vanunu
I am the clerk, the technician, the mechanic, the driver.
They said, do this, do that, don't look left or right,
don't read the text. Don't look at the whole machine. You
are ony responsible for this one bolt. For this one rubber-stamp.
This is your only concern. Don't bother with what is above you.
Don't try to think for us. Go on, drive. Keep going. On, on.
So they thought, the big ones, the smart ones, the futurologists.
There is nothing to fear. Not to worry.
Everything's ticking just fine.
Our little clerk is a diligent worker. He's a simple mechanic.
He's a little man.
Little men's ears don't hear, their eyes don't see.
We have heads, they don't.
Answer them, said he to himself, said the little man,
the man with a head of his own. Who is in charge? Who knows
where this train is going?
Where is their head? I too have a head.
Why do I see the whole engine,
Why do I see the precipice--
is there a driver on this train?
The clerk driver technician mechanic looked up.
He stepped back and saw -- what a monster.
Can't believe it. Rubbed his eyes and - yes,
it's there all right. I'm all right. I do see
the monster. I'm part of the system.
I signed the form. Only now I am reading the rest of it.
This bolt is part of a bomb. This bolt is me. How
did I fail to see, and how do the others go on
fitting bolts. Who else knows?
Who has seen? Who has heard? The emperor really is naked.
I see him. Why me? It's not for me. It's too big.
Rise and cry out. Rise and tell the peopkle. You can.
I, the bolt, the technician, mechanic? Yes, you.
You are the secret agent of the peopkle. You are the eyes of the nation.
Agent-spy, tellus what you've seen. Tell us what the insiders, the clever ones
have hidden from us.
Without you, there is only the precipice. Only catastrophe.
I have no choice. I'm a little man, a citizen, one of the people,
but I'll do what I have to. I've heard the voice of my conscience
and there's nowehere to hide.
The world is small, small for Big Brother.
I'm on your mission. I'm doing my duty. Take it from me.
Come and see yourselves. Lighten my burden. Stop the train.
Get of the train. The next stop - nuclear disaster. The next book,
the next machine. No. There is no such thing.
1987, Ashkelon Prison
Posted by teifidancer at 15:15
Tuesday, 15 April 2014
Here was a man sadly killed by sectarian forces, his murder an outrage, one of of enormous tragedy. He lived and died expressing his solidarity with the Palestinians, this was a man who loved Gaza, it's land, it's sea and it's sky. A huge inspiration, brave and defiant.
He embodied a certain spirit of the European anti-fascists of the 1930's and 1940's, who went to fight and die as partisans in Italy and Spain. In his own words he said " My granfathers fought and died struggling against an occupation, another occupation. It was the Nazi-Fascist one. For this reason, probably, in my DNA, there are particles that push me to struggle for human rights and freedom."
Long before he had embraced the Palestinians cause he had been involved in human rights issues.
Here was a man, that seemed to me to define the spirit of humanity, who also used to also say "The winner is a dreamer who never gives up." He remains a hero to the people of Palestine.
I hope his great spirit is not forgotten.
" We must remain human, even in the most difficult times, because depite everything, there must allways be humanity within us. We have to bring it to others." - Vittorio Arrigoni
Vittorio Arrigoni - Staying Human
Posted by teifidancer at 16:04
It was on this day April 15, 1989 that 96 Liverpool supporters went to a game of football and never came back. The terrrible events of that day at Hillsborough remain as heartbreaking now as they were 25 years ago.
Today bells will ring 96 times around the city of Liverpool at 3.06, the moment the match was halted. A minutes silence will be observed.After all these, despite Prime Minister David Cameron finally aplogising for the cover up attempt by police, investigators and the media, many people are still searching for answers. 25 years later there have still been no criminal charges against any individual or group on the supposed grounds of insufficient evidence.
On this anniversary, my thoughts go out to the familis of the 96, Liverpool Football Club and the City of Liverpool.
Post from last year including Carol Ann Duffy Poem on the subject.
Posted by teifidancer at 14:35
In response to the horrendous daily onslaughts of yet another odious BBC report on Kate and Will and little georgy porgy. Enjoying another 'public funded holiday' while the rest of us suffer from cutbacks. To be honest I'd rather they stay down under, their welcome to them.
Posted by teifidancer at 10:38
Monday, 14 April 2014
I saw it written and I saw it say
Pink moon is on it's way
And none of you stand so tall
Pink moon gonna get you all
It's a pink moon
Hey, it's a pink moon
It's a pink, pink, pink, pink, pink moon
I saw it written and I saw it say
Pink moon is on it's way
And none of you stand so tall
Pink moon gonna get you all
It's a pink moon
Yeah, it's a pink moon
So later on Tuesday morning, will be the first full moon after the vernal equinox, not sure if I will see anything over the skies of West Wales, but will keep my eyes peeled. According to the Farmers Almanac http://www.almanac.com/content/full-pink-moon-aprils-moon-guide ' it is also known as the Sprouting Grass Moon, the Egg Moon and the Fish Moon.Tomorrow's is also a total lunar eclipse, giving it the additional name of ' Blood Red Moon'. The name Pink Moon derives from the Native American name for the full moon that takes place in April coming from the herb moss pink, or wild ground phlox, which is one of the earliest flowers to bloom in springtime. The native Americans used phrases and cycles of the moon, to keep track of the changing seasons. Pink Moon, so happens to be one of my favourite songs by the late great Nick Drake.
In some parts of the world now is the time to plant and in other parts of the world it is time to harvest those rewards. A time it is said when the Earth, Sun and Moon will align. I am not one for prophesy, but there are those that say, that under a Pink Moon, it could be part of significant change in World history too. Personally I quite like the influence of the old moon, but if we really want to grasp some change, I think we as a people have a long way to go, but together we can keep pushing, for some real, significant social change.
Posted by teifidancer at 16:00
The Israeli-Palestinian war in 1948 took one area that had been a single, territorial, cultural, ecomomic unit and divided it into seperate areas. After the Israeli occupation in 1967, there was freedom of movement among the West Bank, Gaza, and Israel, which as the occupation continued and people began to resist the occupation - became restricted.
Beginning in the 1990's, Israel began to seal the borders in ways that were really hard for Palestinians living in the West Bank and Gaza. Imagine that overnight the mayor of New York declares that people from Brooklyn can no longer enter Manhattan.People cut off, seperated from friends and loved ones. Imagine F16's roaring over your head, while you try to sleep. Imagine a daily life under seige, under blockade, restriction of movement, no equal rights, access to clean water and saintation etc etc. This the daily ordeal of the People Of Gaza. Having endured one of the longest blockades in human history, resulting in suffering for the 1.7 million Palestinians living under siege in just 365 sq/km of land. Half of the population are under 18, and two/thirds are refugees.Subject to attacks by land, air and sea.
We must continue to confont Israelis abuses of the Palestinian's human and political rights, and challenge Israel's illegal seige, keeping pressure on our own Governments to take action on this issue, and by supporting the many initiatives out there to help the dispirited people of Gaza.
' No man can put a chain about the ankles of his fellow man, without at last finding the other end fastened about his own neck. The life of the nation is secure only while the nation is honest, truthful, and virtuous. Where justice is denied, where poverty is enforced, where ignorance prevails, and where any one class is made to feel that sociry is an organised conspracy to oppress. rob and degrade them, neither persons nor property will be safe.
Whatever the future may have in store for us, one thing is certain - this new revolution in human thought will never go backward. When a great truth once gets abroad in the world, no power on earth can imprison it or prescribe its limits, or suppress it. It is bound to go on till it becomes the thought of the world."
- Frederick Douglass ( 2/1818 -20/2/95, social reformer, escaped African-American Slave)
Posted by teifidancer at 11:37
Saturday, 12 April 2014
Released in 1915, I Didn't Raise My Son to be a Soldier, sung here by the Peerless Quartet, was the first commercially successful anti-ar record and featured prominenlty yn the American ant-war record and featured prominently in the American anti-war movement opposing US entry in the first world war. The warmongering ex-president Theodore Roosevelt objected to the song's message of peace and its early feminism: " Foolish people who applaud a song entitled "I Didn't Raise My Boy To Be A soldier" are just the people who would also in their hearts aplaud a song entitled "I Didn't Raise my Girl To Be A mother."
Follow stop the War Coalition
Posted by teifidancer at 13:44
Friday, 11 April 2014
Sue Townsend, passionate socialist,republican, humourist, and author died on Thursaday after a short illness. illness. She was best known as the author of the succesful Adrian Mole series, which I thoroughly remember, enjoying at the time, when I too was a spotty teenager growing up in the early years of Thatcher's Britains.She was a big fan of Aneurin Bevan, and used to be a staunch supporter of the Labour Party, but felt left down by them, especially under Tony Bliar during the Iraq war, a war that she opposed. She knew back then that the New Labour bubble was about to burst.
Her work and her life was informed by her sense of where she came from. The daughter of a post man from Leicester, she left school at 15 working at a series of jobs including factory worker, shop assistant and youth worker, a secret voracious reader, it was with sadness that she was later to lose her sight, and be unable to read her beloved books.
She married a sheet-metal worker aged 18 and leaves behind four children. She had suffered a stroke at Christmas, which had affected her memory and made it " difficult to get the tongue around words." Back in 2009 she said, she would not be goin on to 'make old bones.'
The world hs lost another fine writer, often both poignant and funny, theres always a special sadness for writers, who have helped shape our youth. Sue Townsend R.I.P
" I am a passionate socialist, but, God, I can't stand them now. I support the memory and the history of the party and I consider that these lot are interlopers. . . I could still cry to think about shock and awe, to watch it on television and think 'there are bombers and they're bombing children. That Blair could sit and watch that, with his kids, possibly. How would he have explained it to his children?"
Posted by teifidancer at 12:11
Thursday, 10 April 2014
What is God's name?
Does she/he listen to music like this?
If David Cameron thinks he's doing God's work you have to wonder what he worships? That's if he worships any religious figure at all, I think he would get along with Mammon, though, the very personification of greed. Personally think David Cameron has been deluded for a long time now. I do know another thing, that in the wake of Maria Miller's resignation, there's a whole load of people out there, hoping and praying that David Cameron does the same. 'The Bible tells us to bear one another's burdens" he said yesterday, but his weight on the world is surely to much for us to take, this country of ours shares many faiths and traditions, one thing that is definitely not making this country stronger is David Cameron's Tory Government. He certainly has not listened to the passages from a certain book about giving to the poor, god's apparent deep concern for the poor and social justice.
So to put it quite simply.
Posted by teifidancer at 12:12
Wednesday, 9 April 2014
Yet all around the world, especially here in Wales, his voice still carries much resonance, gives us some hope.
His first contact with Wales came in 1928, when he was performing in 'Showboat' in the West End. Whilst in his hotel he was attracted by the sound of singing from outside. The singing was coming from unemployed miners who had marched to London to draw attention to the hardship and suffering endured by thousands of mining families in South Wales. He went outside to meet them, listened to their plight, recognised a shared suffering, and a mutual bond was born. He was to visit Wales many times, between 1928 and 1939, performing at Neath, Swansea and Cardiff. In 1940 he starred in the film Proud Valley, set in South Wales, that captured the harsh realities of Welsh coal miners' lives.
Most famously in 1938, he sang and addressed a massed audience in the Pavillion, Mountain Ash, at the International Brigade Memorial Service, organised to commemorate the 33 Welshmen who had been killed in the Spanish Civil War.
He addressed the audience thus :-
' I am here because I know these brave fellows fought not only for me but for the freedom of the people of the whole world. I feel it is my duty to be here.'
Long may he remain an inspiration. His name remembered as one synonomous with equal rights, the search for justice, peace and solidarity,the unquavering thirst for freedom.
Paul Robeson - Land of My Fathers.
Paul Robeson sings for the workers at Sydney Opera House.
Paul Robeson - We are climbing Jacob's ladder.
Posted by teifidancer at 17:40
It was the jolting vibrations
that shook our senses,
nonetheless directed by fellow humans.
Our eyes darted from mysterious fears
of losing one another.
"There's been an explosion. Don't come this way!",
torn by our outspoken wish to huddle together,
as if madness could be scattered
among the fragile shells of ourselves.
as if we could
dream the unknown away.
Read more and view photos here:-
Posted by teifidancer at 10:52
Tuesday, 8 April 2014
For Margaret Thatcher:
To this day she remains one of the most controversial and divisive figures to emerge from British politics.
I still remain a proud member of the Thatcher hating society, this so called Iron Lady was responsible for plunging the countinto a pit of unemplyment, riots and despair, selling off anything of worth. Took us off to war, shortly after waging her own with the so called 'enemy within', a lifelong friend of fascist despot, General Pinochet, etc etc. Her policies made life a misery for millions.
She sought to suffocate all that was around her, rather than give life. An enemy of the people.
Ding Dong, one year on the witch is dead but her dark legacy still lingers though, time that we buried that also....
Posted by teifidancer at 15:33
Yesterday across Rwanda, thousands gathered in stadiums, shurches and Community centres to take part in Kwibuka - the flame of Rememberance.
20 years ago marked the start of 100 of the darkest days in human history. 1 million people were killed in the Rwandan Genocide. We should not forget.
Yet there are thousands of lives on the line right now b- lives that are being extinguished because of bigotry, prejudice, hatred and cruelty. lives that are being lost with the full awareness - and complicity - of government officials.
In this moment in time in Burma, thousands of Rohingya Muslims are being persecuted, languishing in camps where many thousands are being forced to live. Then there are the thousands of Palestinians, stranded in Yarmouk Refugee camp in Syria.
We should not forget the damage done to our own morality by choosing to ignore genocide, wherever it is taking place.
Here are some words from Bobby Kennedy, as addressed to a group of young people from Soweta, South Africa.
" It is from numberless diverse acts of courage and belief that human history is shaped. Each time a man stands up for an ideal or acts to improve the lot of others or strikes out against injustice, he sends forth a tiny ripple of hope, and crossing each other from a million centers of energy and daring those ripples build a current that can sweep down the mightiest walls of oppression and resistance."
Posted by teifidancer at 11:04
Monday, 7 April 2014
we who have no will, no world:
marked with the marks of the latest anxiety,
disfigure, stripped of leaves.
Around us swirls the dust of the cities,
the garbage clings to us.
We are shunned as if contaminated,
thrown away like broken pots, like bones,
the last year's calender.
And yet if our Earth needed to
she could weave us together like roses
and make of us a garland
For each being is cleaner than washed stones
and endlessy yours, and like an animal
who knows already in its first blind moments
its need for one thing only-
to let ourselves be poor like that - as we truly are
Photo: Child and her mother, FSA Rehabilitation Clients, 1939 by Dorothea Lange
Posted by teifidancer at 14:51
Friday, 4 April 2014
" The individual . . . lives poetry every moment that he affirms his existence. The poetic image itself, as much as experience, is not only a product of reason and imagination, it is valid only if it has been lived. Every creation is therefore, for the poet, an aggressive affirmation of his consciousness."
-Tristan Tzara:- Dialectics of Poetry, 1946
Tristan Tzara was a writer for whom artistic and political revolution were one and the same. He was a Romanian and French poet, essayist and performance artist and founding member of the anti-establishment artistic movement known as known as Dada.
Born Samuel Rosentsock on April 4th , 1896 in Moinesi, Romania, to a wealthy jewish family.In his early youth was the lover of the dancer Maja Krusceek, he would go on to to marry the Swedish aritist and poet Greta Knutson.
In 1915 his parents sent him to Zurich, where he enrolled at a University to study philosophy, inspired by the Symbolist Poets, in particular, the works of Arthur Rimbaud. He adopted the pseudonym Tristan Tzara (sad in country) as a protest of the treatment of jews in his native country. It was here in Zurich that he was to write the first Dadaist texts, after meeting the German Hugo Ball, an anarchist poet and pianist and his young wife Emmy Hennings, a music hall performer, attending events at the Caberet Voltaire, where he also put on shows that would combine performance art, with his poetry and art manifestos, which were all to become key components of early Dadaism.
His talent as a performer and event organiser, and his role on the journal DADA and his founding Dadaist writings quickly placed Tzara at the centre of this blossonming movement.
Dadaism was principally an anti-art, anti-war, anti-bourgeois movement born as a reaction to World War 1. They reacted in horror and disgust to the brutality of thewar, to the mechanical anonymous killing and to the cynical justifications put forward by the powers that be on both sides, who sought to use the seeming logic of their arguments to legitimise their war policy. The Dadaists accused the public in the belligerent nations of a deferentia, nationalist attitude, so they formulated their own position with a corresponding self confidence. Also together with kindred spirits Tzara and the Dadaists laid out in Hugo Balls' original Dada Manifesto (1916), their opposition to all characteristics of the middle classes, including materialism, convention and consumerism. They believed art had become a commercial transaction both literally and metaphorically, so they navigated a deeper pulse, swimming in the deep end of sighs. They used Dada as a form of shock art that intended to provoke and outrage its audience, using obscenity and humour in an attempt to probe the cultural public. Anarchic, nihilistic and disruptive, childhood and chance its two most important sources of inspiration, the name itself a nonsense, a baby-talk word, born out of dissillusionment, a cult of non-art that became overtly political, that for me has much enduring appeal and the presence of immense passion and beauty. He would collaborate with Breton, Aragon, Soupault, Picabio and Paul Eluard, much illustrious company methinks.
" Freedom: Dada, dada, dada,
crying open the constricted pains,
swallowing the contrasts and all
the contradictions, the grotequeries
and the illogicalities of life."
- Tristan Tzara
Tristan Tzara's writing I have only be able to read in translation, unfortunately, highly experimental, rich and anarchic. His later poems would reveal the anquish of his soul, caught between revolt and wonderment at the daily tragedy of the human condition. He was committed to art being used as a political weapon and continued to be involved in politics and political activism throughout his life. A stauch anti-fascist he joined the republicans in the Spanish Civil War and became a member of the French Resistance in World WarII. Though originally alligned with the Communist Party of France, serving a time in the French National Assembly, he later distanced himself fom them after the 1956 Hungarian uprising. He did however, remain a spokesman for Dada, and in 1960 was among the intellectuals who protested against French actions in the Algerian War.
On December 24th, 1963, he died in Paris of lung cancer at the age of sixty-seven.Still a Poet of Revolt, a proud defender of Dada's movements. His legacy still echoes in our rumbling confusions, in every art fad that has since echoed,down the age.
The following poems that I share, have no structure or rhthym, but they speak with boldness, beauty and wonder, translated by someone who understands Tzara's potency, the fine poet Lee Harwood ( who I was fortunate to catch reading his own work in Carmarthen last year), even in translation, the raw honesty is allowed to breathe and reveal.
Hope you appreciate them as much as I do.
To Make a Dadaist Poem
Take a newspaper,
Take some scissors.
Choose from this paper an article the length you want to make your poem.
Cut out the article.
Next take each cutting one aftr the other.
Copy conscieintiously in theorder in whichthey left the bag
The poem will reseble you.
And there yu are-an infinitely author of charming
sensibility, even though unappreciated by the vulgar herd.
the clashing seas spread the ocean of their idleness
in the beds with white foam sheets
as the sound of pages of waves turned by the reader of
the unsated sky
the loving and steady caress of clouds
dissolves behind the mist
the long awaited promise on the horizon of your smile
the land at its bursting point reveals the young white stone
of a giant's firm breast offered for the length of time
and the wind bites its lips in its black rage
smashed is the clarity passing through the glasses of our lives
the wind chokes the word in the village's throat poor village
its life of strange revelations
shattered is the chain of wors covered in winters and dramas
which connnected the the intimate revelations of our lives
and the wind spits in our face
the untiring brutality of it all
(Translated by Lee Harwood)
the glance's sand
the loose earth
the tower's bark
the exchange of pleasant hills
the first stone
the vines tore off
from the flock of stacks
then the low trusting water
and night everywhere
the grass sheathed
the voice blocked
the roaf beheaded
the houuse buried
eveything for you you see
you son't see anything anymore
what is this road that seperates us
across which I hold out the hand of my thoughts
a flower is written at the end of each finger
and the end of the road is a flower which walks with you
glass to pass through peaceful
the joy of lines wind around you soul's central heating
smoke speed steel smoke
geography of silk embroideries
colonised with flowering sponges
the song crystallized
body's vase with the smoke flower
the black's vibration
in your blood
in your blood of the evening's intelligence and wisdom
a blue wrinkled eye in a clear glass
I love you I love you
a vertical comes down into my tiredeness which no longer enlightenjs me
my heart muffled in an old newsapaper
you can bite it: whistle
the clouds set in ranks in the offices' fever
the bridges mangle your poor body is very large these milky way
scissors and cut out the memory in green shapes
in one direction always in the same direction
expanding always expanding
Recommended Further Reading:-
Chanson Dada :-- Tristan Tzara
Selected poems translated by Lee Harwood
Black Widow Press, 2005
dada :- art and anti-art
Thames and Hudson, 1965
Hugo Ball- Flight out of time
Viking Press, 1974
Posted by teifidancer at 15:08
Thursday, 3 April 2014
Eighteen year old violinist Omar Saad was recently handed down a sixth prison sentence for his ongoing refusal to serve in Israel's occupation army.Hehas declared that he would refuse to serve in the army even if he was jailed sixty times.
He wasa first jailed in early December last year, after he and his siblings performed a musical protest outside of an Israeli military induction center in the Galilee, where the majority of Palestinians in present day Israel reside. He has since been handed down six consecutive sentences of twenty days imprisonment.
Omar is a member of the Druze religious minority, which unlike the majority of Palestinian citizens of Israel, are required to serve in the military.
However growing numbers of Druze youth are refusing to comply, fasing imprisonment in the process.
The anti-militarization group New Profile is encouraging letters of support for Omar, as well as letters to the Israeli authorities calling for his release, and letters to the media to bring attention to his plight.
Turning 18, for most teenagers, means you are no longer imprisoned by your parents, but turning 18 for a Palestinian living in Palestine 1948 land means you are no longer imprisoned to your parents but you are now imprisoned by the Israelis, this young man who is a wonderful musician should from a village in Galilee has just turned 18 instead of celebrating his 18th birthday he should be free, out playing his beloved instruments with his awakened conscience.
Posted by teifidancer at 16:37
Wednesday, 2 April 2014
Internationally recognised and acclaimed poet Anne Waldman is 69 years young today.A prominent figure in the beat poetry generation. She has been an active member of the 'Outrider' experimental poetry community, a culture she has helped create and nurture for over four decades as wrier, editor, teacher, performer, feminist magpie scholar, infrastructure curator, student of buddhism and cultural/ political activist. The Late Allen Ginsber, with whom she co-founded the Jack Kerouac School of Diembodied Poetics at the Naropa Institute in Boulder, Colorado, called her his 'spiritual wife.'
For nearly half a century she has channelled her passions and experiences into poetry, urging us toward civic and political responsibility, long has she been committed to the survival of the planrt.. She is recipient of the Shelley Memorial Award from the Poetry Societ of America and is the author of over 40 books of poetry.
She sees her poetry performances as 'a ritualised event in time'. Long may she continue to inspire. Hold on to her premise of imaginative consciousness, remainingvibrant and unpredictable.
Fossil Fuel - Anne Waldman and Ambrose Bye
Art begins with a lie
The seperation is you plus me plus what we make
Look intolightbulb blink, sun's in your eye
I want a rare sky
vantage point free from misconception
Art begins with a lie
Nothing to lose, spontaneous rise
of reflection, paint the picture
of a lightbulb, or eye the sun
How to fuel the world, then die
Distance yourself from artfulness
How? Art begins with a lie
The audience wants to cry
when the actors are real & passionate
Look into footlight, then feed back to eye
You fluctuate in an artful body
You try to imitate the world's glory
Art begins with a lie
That's the story, sharp speck in the eye.
From: Helping the Dreamer:Selected Poems, 1966-1988
Anne Waldman - Reading from Manatee/Humanity
Anne Waldman: Poetry in Performance
Join her here and listen to some of here shamanic and subversive poems
at a reading at Eastern Illinois University 2009.
Posted by teifidancer at 18:05
Tuesday, 1 April 2014
On 31st May 24 years ago people took to the streets of London and fought back against Margaret Thatchers' hated polltax, leading to running street battles with the police and total chaos in Trafalgar Square - the following has some good footage of this battle.
Thatcher Poll Tax Riots
Over 250,000 people sweeped into London on this day, for many people it was not a case of wanting to demonstrate, it was a case of having too. There was no choice, this cruel tax would have seriously impacted on peoples lives.
Most people on the day of this demonstration, arrived unaligned - ordinary people, families, pensioners, the unemployed, students, black and white, all united as one to fight against this immoral tax.I'd travelled up from West Wales.
The overiding opinion of the time,is that what started as a peaceful protest, with an almost carnival feel to it against an illegal tax was quickly turned into a bloody battle by uniformed thugs acting under Thatcher's orders, with aided and abetted by agent provocateurs.The use of charged mounted police also aggravated the situation, leading to many peaceful byestanders with heads streaming with blood. A very frightening experience.
To this day many people lay the responsibility of the violence that happened on this day, firmly on the shoulders of Thatcher and her government.
Despite the demonisation of the protestors in the mass media, people still refused to pay, the campaign flourished, culminating in millions of people's non payment, bailiffs resisted, courts unable to cope because of opposition and active resistance. It would see the Poll Tax eventually being destroyed, also helping bring down Thatchers hated tory government.
Today, it seems the tories have still not learnt from their past mistakes, with the introduction of the bedroom tax and other horrors.
Hopefully we can bring them down again.
London Poll Tax Riot Documentary 1990