Friday, January 27, 2017

Overcombing the Facts

27th January 2017

We spend a lot of our time pulling ourselves into tight little worlds, fearing dissolution, dreading death. The Buddhist sees death as a little drop of water dissolving back into the ocean, and that image has not always seemed too alluring to this substantial ego. 
But then you get dropped into a seething mass of humanity 200,000 strong, and it makes your heart soar. It makes you cry. 

It's where you belong, not in your own little corner but as one beat in a massive moving human pulse.  E Pluribus Unum. It's loud, and it's uncomfortable, but it is wonderful. 

I had all but given up on the chance to walk in any of the women's marches last Saturday. My plans for DC fell through and then true to Colorado form the weather closed in and made driving to the nearest city of Denver a scary prospect. But at the last minute someone couldn't go on a bus I was eleventh on the waiting list for, and off I went at 3am, hardly knowing what I was going towards, only knowing that I had to go. I had no sooner got off the bus in Denver when someone from a radio station put a microphone in my face and forced the issue: Why on earth was I there?
This is what I said, not eloquent, because it was freezing at 8am in the Mile High City, and anyway, I hadn't really formulated the issue for myself. I said, "There's nothing much to be done about Donald Trump now but show solidarity against another male hierarchy. Woman have lived under male hierarchies for two thousand years, and it's time for a paradigm change."
I was wrong, of course. I vastly underestimated how long the male hierarchy thing has been going on. You have to go back to the moment in history those Israelites decided to take on their war god, El, as supreme God and make him plural, Elohim. Ex Uno Plures. Male God, male hierarchy. Across the world this happened. The goddess was seen as weak and discarded.
But, hey, she's back! 

There was nothing weak about the three million women who took on Predator in Chief Trump this last weekend. They came in the name, not of one male god, but with one female voice. I was there, and it was a wonderful. 

Friday, January 20, 2017

Marching as to War

20th January 2017

A star just appeared on my horizon, and it enables me to boycott the inauguration of Humpty Trumpty altogether and focus on what matters more to me, which is the independence bid of Scotland from the same rotting right wing factions that are taking over America. This week, the British prime minister defined her war zone and it doesn't include the single market within any community of foreigners, nor does it include any recognition of Scotland which has been screaming its dissent from the sidelines for at least a year and for the last three hundred years if you take the entire takeover of my lovely little country into consideration.

Get back in your box, says the British establishment. These boots are made for trumping.

Hard Brexit in Britain and Trump's inauguration today is a sad moment for progress. But for Scotland Brexit comes with a silver lining because it bolsters the arguments for independence. I am already seeing stickers for YES2018. If subersvience hadn't been pummeled into these occupied nations (a necessary strategy to keep the natives at heel), if the Scots hadn't been taught to keep their eyes on the well-heeled shoes of the masters, then the argument would have been over a long time ago.

You look at Trump handing Tillerson his in-route to the Russian economy and with the same utter disbelief you watch your fellow Scots handing Theresa May their allegiance. It's sheer ignorance, this Stockholm Syndrome, this kowtowing to the overlords, this adoration of the Windsor Magi.

I have been watching The Crown, a TV series about the reign of Queen Elizabeth the second of England and first of Scotland. These royals seem like nice enough people, but the takeaway is: what an utterly ridiculous insititution and how blithely it severs even those among them who dare to find a voice.

I say that I am turning a blind eye to Trumpantics today, but here I am about to make the four hour journey to Denver to join the thousands of women marching against the stinking offence called the old boy's club of America.
But in doing so, I will be taking a stand too against the self-interested shenanigans of the English government under the leadership of Margaret Thatcher Mark 2.
On either side of The Pond, we have the same sickness.

Friday, January 13, 2017

The Fall of the Titans

13th January 2017

History barrels forward with Humpty Dumpty elect, and Americans, who seem to have a psychological predisposition for gilding the lily, are going along with it. The question I keep asking myself is: how does this man and his party, this blatant takeover of America by collusion with its adversary, think they are all going to go down in history? We might have asked the same question of Nixon and his minions, but, frankly, Nixon would be welcome at this point. Come back twisted lier-in-chief, all is forgiven.

Kelly Anne Conway, adviser to Humpty Dumpty wants history to view him like this:

But take off the funny mask, and he is more like this:

The thing about any Humpty Dumpty is, he's set for a great fall. And that's how history will record Donald Trump and the strong-arms he surrounds himself with. Future high school students will look aghast at pictures of Trump and Tilllerson, Mitch McConnell and Paul Ryan.  They will shake their heads at the rise of autocracy in this moment in American history, and teachers will have to explain how like any fascism it happened from power-grabs, unbound egoism and lies. Trump will end up on history's garbage heap with all the egoists who have made their ultimate goal power.
Our only solace, as we curl our toes around the edge of this precipice, is that when the fall is over, and we are dusting ourselves off, not  all the law suits, not all the kings horses nor all the kings men will ever be able to put this Dumpty together again.

Friday, January 6, 2017

Back At The Beginning

6th January 2017

After a three week Christmas hiatus, the rewrite of my third book in the Veil of Time series is back up and running. There was a moment when I thought to do a Stephen King and push through the holidays as though nothing was happening. But the bottom line for me is that despite what writers often think, reading and writing are not a substitute for life. The arts, glorious though they be, come second and the world comes first. Too much near-sighted drivel has been written by authors who don't understand that their particular corner of the sky is only interesting in as much as it reflects the light of a bigger universe.

There has been a long tradition of hermit authors spending long periods in recluse, half in and half out of a bottle of strong drink. And so the romantic myth is promulgated.  But first you have to tingle at real life, submit yourself to the barrage of the everyday, take it in, let your heart process it, and then inch it out in scrawls onto the page. A Child's Christmas in Wales resonates because every one has been that child with their nose pressed up against the toy shop window. Art only hums if it joins in the wider hum, and the individual hum is interesting in itself only to the hummer and to those fringers who cast value on oddities simply by virtue of their being odd.

Anyway, after three weeks away, I'm going to have to go back to the beginning of the text and restart the uphill plod. When I was an eager writer in my twenties, so much seemed to be waiting for me at the end of the publishing rainbow: all my debts would be paid off, fame and fortune would be lavished upon me, I would have carved out my piece of history. I would, in short, be vindicated. But these days, it's the small steps I focus on. I have lost some of that "If only," which I think must be a good thing. Even though my debts are deeper these days, I keep turning up at my desk for the next write and the next re-write, for the simple reason that I can do no other. Ich kann nicht anders.