Ear cupped,

still hard to hear the voices you wish to listen to, through all the noise.

Question the need to switch off, reboot or desire to tune in closer

to competitive cackles, ‘I me, I me, I me’ status management.

Dolby Gulls

coercing, swooping, manipulating tones for selfish ends.

Dispiriting drones echo a shrill cacophony

detecting deceit and bullshit sieve.

Sifting paperclips colours distracts

Hope lies in 5 colour piles on the floor.

If only the people could hear their noise

and things were as straightforward

as paperclips, opening a new window.

Honestly, so what.

He walks against the arrows, stuck to the visible floor.

Head down pushing a trolley, one handed, gloved.

Big glasses, big hair, short body, big head, big jacket.

Difficult to lose a look of scorn, to keep silent disagreeable tuts.

Tough to keep quiet, alright.

“Excuse me sir”, would you mind?” point at flow of direction.

“Guidelines”, he said. “Not law”. He pushes by with his trolley.

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Hope lost for a moment, buried with common good.

Park honest bewilderment, lose the stewing, FFS echoes inside.

Obstructive and non compliant challenges exist

in the way, but not that way.

He picks bananas, peels one and begins to chew.

Catch on – SO WHAT whispers your voice. Deal with it, now move on.

Avert puffing temper, too much to expect too much!

Snooze into ignore-land – bye bye.

He moves against more arrows into the dead poultry aisle.

Onlookers shake heads.

So what! Where’s broccoli?


Rich read this morning of the governments incompetence around Windrush and Grenfell.

In the past 3 months those with less have much less, but more debt.

The prime minister, prime only in title and certainly not humane leadership, makes decisions on pub openings. More important to him rather than constant high numbers of deaths. His defence of his team’s actions for the pandemic is farcical.

This government’s communication’s are repugnant. Scoffing at pay rises, refusing to acknowledge some nurses contracts, reneging on other promises, failing to understand the significance of taking a knee.

Etc etc.

A government high on agitation. While the blundering blond one hides in his Warren again.

Rich read a short essay from a student who attended his night class. Tom is a parent. He has twin girls at High School, both favour getting into the Arts in some capacity. Either at College or University. Both volunteer. Megan at the City Art Building and Eilidh at the local hospital on a Saturday morning facilitating art and craft session with children, some terminally ill.

We had been chatting about politics in education and short impactful pieces that people might read in the Metro.

My two-pence worth, Rich.

The inept conductors of Confinement education,

hold the chain gang pawns seated in chambers

housing a conditioning production line in the mist.

Teachers tones tuned into contrived curricula

telling what boxes to tick, instructing what labels to match up to, specifying what to think too, to feed this functional apparatus.

Lording shallow impediments and ignoring initial adolescent voices,

these bewildering thieves of young imagination and creativity appear to march on regardless of cost and consequence.

Until a wise person scripts a calling from their verse, which

implore’s people towards exploring the closed mentality, questioning, critical thinking and adventurous travelling.

In music sits a rebellious beat, a heavy drum solo leads into

packing boxes away, working on blank labels and unlocking freedoms.

Artful mellow violins weave transformational outlooks,

discovering the reach of learning’s wonders.

A plethora of guitars plucking harmoniously all

combine to design keys for future freedom now,

luring the deconstruction of stakeholders

and their worming educations boxes or coffins.

The children’s reasoning overpowers their opponents.

A line of portraits hang on the wall of irrefutable bare-faced liars

and musics metaphor amplifies making sense, dissipating confinement,

with imagination and creativity now on a more equal footing.

Sky reaching.

Yours sincerely,


Healing Rich

When the mind is festering with trouble or the heart torn, we can find healing among the silence of mountains or fields, or listen to the simple, steadying rhythm of waves. The slowness and stillness gradually takes us over. Our breathing deepens and our hearts calm and our hungers relent. When serenity is restored, new perspectives open to us and difficulty can begin to seem like an invitation to new growth.

This invitation to friendship with nature does of course entail a willingness to be alone out there. Yet this aloneness is anything but lonely. Solitude gradually clarifies the heart until a true tranquillity is reached. The irony is that at the heart of that aloneness you feel intimately connected with the world. Indeed, the beauty of nature is often the wisest balm for it gently relieves and releases the caged mind.


Excerpt from his book, Divine Beauty (Europe)

Head and heart both torn, reading this cutting took Rich to the hills early. Distancing was easy. Unwind the festering, allowing it to bleed amongst the rows of tree’s. The breeze acting in the warmth, as an ointment to bare skin. Solid steps uphill and around corners for miles.

The new calm of heart. The settling of pulsing temples gives room to new focus. Rich embraced time alone after the trauma of past months.

Nature’s magnificent culture can heal. Hope can return with each visit.

Big Norm

Rich read the work from Shona, 14 years of age from a decent parentage in a deprived area, They were haunted by demons on the estate, ignored by big wigs in their senile institutions.

Part of the Big Norm.

Shona wrote;

The mind looking at the mirror is saying I don’t look too good. For beauty, there appear certain boxes to be ticked, looking right now shows a deficit, a certain lack of these beauty boxes.

They nestle deep in my heart.

I’m out of make-up, Christmas is soon.



Catholic upbringing

Rich was thinking about the recent TV news and the pixelated faces. He wrote some reflections.

A Catholic upbringing looking back

not what it says on their irrational tin,

glad to be free from

holes in sin, no-mans land and retribution, free from

holes in safety, trust and shielded cassocks.

To question as a sceptical stranger

highlights new dimensions of freedom, contrasting

layered tiers in humankind’s uplifting spirit and debilitating evil.

Thankfully, rational decisions continue to prevail.


Never alone, walking in a park

Vibram soles stop still, activate nature’s solidarity

Wind funnels through full tree’s, fluttering leaves whisper

2 squirrels confront, short fuses scolding chirps

drowns gentle birdsong,

Hold your integrity when noise rises.

Escape back to solid memories

Free from high stakes quarantine, viable free rain begins

Spring shower.

Rich wrote to Tom, his cousin in London.

To discover the worth in this life worth living.

Yes, away from the touch of an obscene government intent on competitive incompetence. Bridging sickness and evil.

Filing out to save face day after day in front of a weakening lectern. The daily parade. A distanced and feeble address to ever growing sceptical masses.

People mourn respected media displayed faces of the dead and the weakened. Never again will many dream.

History will scream out a governments collective vices. Progressing thousands to death and mass suffering.

Millions scrutinising, reflecting a cause for fairness and ethical principles. Division of haves and have not’s seem ever evident again, despite these diseased times.

Ten out of ten for callous deceit. Suits still looking to prevail their vanity and riches at each corner.

Root and branch thuggery from roaches and leeches in their temple of lies. These people, reams of elected public servants, asleep at their various wheels.

What does expecting more from them do? Creates waves of smothering disappointment. Fellow human beings being exploited, consigning thousands to early coffins, lives forfeited.

Embattled confrontations from outsiders seems to waste energy, unable to penetrate those wicked fixed minds. Even cows grow wear. Wise up.

Revolutions sometimes start with one act, one voice. Retrieve a stolen sense of decency owed to thousands of corpse’s, an open plea.

A sad vision reflected in mirror’s of death. Lives irreparable, now destitute and destroyed.

In abundance around us, are many indications informing of unworthiness. Messages of downing, debasing and degrading underscore their hollow rhetoric.

The collective selves eroded and erased by heinous people and their cold authoritarian institutions. Failing people reliant on them.

People making outrageous decisions brutally failing a population. Them in a nutshell. A lack of interest in upholding basic human rights as a standard bearer in an extra rich country.

Indisputably putrid, distancing responsibility and abhorrent slowness to act. Frequent skin saving exercises

They demonise poke and prod with their own version of truth not lost in science fiction travesty. Breaking mirrors wilfully wherever they point, herding unfairness, discrimination and injustice with their grubby soiled fingers.

Avoidance of their quantitative statistical collateral is vital.

The choice of dignified behaviour or pissing on someone’s corn flakes week after week. Stench of grave disillusionment reeks across the fairer minded in society.

The naive take it. The lack of objective challenge is fatal, almost complicit, this is our lot. No better but worse, just worse.

The challenge – to prise away self control. Re-imagining each day free from their toxic reach. Never idle in thought and effort. On the inside while leading as best as one can in the outside.

The challenge, maintaining active hope. Impulse to be more active against them. A hopeful cause. Plenty still act out of caring, love, kindness and integrity.

Sometimes there is no pleasure in truth. They will not wait for me to die. They will not wait for me to live and rise, they don’t know of me. My reach is minuscule.

But still it’s important to understand what to get out of life, what do you want? What does life want for you? In each day that presents itself, passing with meaning and pleasure. Weigh up the worthy acts, the tasks to pursue. Questions and unselfish solutions. Day after day. Your own rescue plan, if….then… Plotting.

Write my own final analysis. A life well lived is a well lived life revealed. My owned responsibilities. Fulfilling this precarious human existence.

This single life.

Current sky in Dublin.



Like to become

There are no manuals for the construction of the individual you would like to become. You are the only one who can decide this and take up the lifetime of work that it demands. This is a wonderful privilege and such an exciting adventure.

To grow into the person that your deepest longing desires is a great blessing. If you can find a creative harmony between your soul and your life, you will have found something infinitely precious. You may not be able to do much about the great problems of the world or to change the situation you are in, but if you can awaken the eternal beauty and light of your soul, you will bring light wherever you go.

The gift of life is given to us for ourselves and also to bring peace, courage, and compassion to others.


John writes so eloquently about life’s decisions. Whether we make them or not. Whether we allow people to make them for us or not? With or without our best intentions at heart and in head.

Sometimes I wish there was a manual constructed, especially unique. But there isn’t. There are thousands of books and people to guide. A matter of choosing the right steps. Shaping and moulding, step following step.

See Glenshee in summer, Glendolough and the wild Atlantic waves crash the coast. Feel the spray on your face and the sun on your neck.