Twinkle Twinkle

I saw a murmuration

It reminded me

Of all those times

When sadness overwhelmed

I felt at the end

Outside, beyond the pale

Vilified and made insane

And scratching at my own psyche

I had nowhere else to go

But down

Check out

No one wants you here

You make their lives easier

By not being around

And then selfishly

As I stood in the cold night

And gazed upwards

Realised

It would rob me of the stars

That have been there poor

And rich

That have been a place to run to

Always

Always looking to the sky

In my everyday and my despair

The tree that overlooks

The mother tree

For mother me

The birds that swoop in community formation

The moon, enriches and inspires

I never knew it stole its light from the sun

Always thought it was its own regard

And

The stars

There, a path

But so brilliant that they are

Twinkle twinkle little star

You saved my life

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Future Unfurled – World Part 2

I’m crying about a dog that waits for the dead

It’s something on facebook I just read

I’m shocked by unkempt coat he bears

But the food bank grows while I browse there

I’m saying we should look after our own

Whilst voting that my tax should go on down

I’m crying over dogs and abandoned kitties

But don’t care for the homeless in this hard city

I’m calling out scroungers whilst cash in hand

I work a short day in this rich land

I’m calling out people who work with compassion

Whilst ‘you lost get over it’ is my new fashion

I’m writing a letter to my MP

Waving it frantically for all to see

I’m shiny and proud of my generous hamper

To foodbank I go, Christmas joy camper

My list that I tick off my festive duties

Good work, examples for my children’s future

At this special season we must share

But not all year round – don’t you dare

My favourite mantra look after our own

Charity you see, begins at home

364 days they are drunks and addicts

1 day my halo is bright and lit

With the self satisfied feeling I do my duty

Unwrap my self service sipping my green tea

Settle in to a comfortable tv debate

Repeat you lost get over it, it is too late

And the bastions of health and safety

A yellow high vis heralds revolutionary

Police drop their helmets to join in the anthem

We pathetic look on as our country dismantled

Like the austere aunt in a black jet gown

We fulfill their rule in our soul less town

Cover up the table legs they spark our passion

Whilst flagellate mercy, justice, compassion

We are all lost, we are all lost, in glitter and jungle

We are destroying hope, wait for what song will

Finally sound the note to wake us

To rebuild what thus greed takes from us

It’s not the bricks, the things you buy

But within us what we can try

To make each of us as one another

Start to see the future on here

That schism is as was foretold

But who said we have to listen to the old

The point of these texts is to goad a new horizon

Where we contemplate gentle goodness and take in

A chance to reset this despicable spin

Of the world that loves its vicious sin

As some kind of hair shirt

It measured itself

When easier to just breathe into its health

Why fight for the right when it is ours already

Confidence breeds its new reality

And we can be the architects too

I in me and me in you

I feel sad for those who logic reveals

Cannot feel the rhythm that informs and heals

There is truth in our molecular make up

That articulates nothing you can write on paper

You know it is there your heart is truthful

For those who fear need find a way through

This tiresome world cries to us to save it

We have one chance, now lets take it.

Dismantle structure set to bind

Let kindness flow out where there is kind

Give love the strength that rage did bear

And silence where the ignorant roared

So quiet truth has its day

And the voiceless finally have their say

That resets how we shape our world

The second part of future unfurled

A DISCOURSE ON THE HISTORY OF FASHION c 2011

I am not sure if I am a proper woman.

I needed new shoes, ones with high heels and wanted to be a grown up but couldn’t be arsed, when the girls were trying on Ugg style boots in ShoeFayre, just raring to go for dropped insteps and walking like Nans aged 11 and 12.

Ugg boots look like they were a drawing of boots by toddlers which flew out of a nursery window one morning in a high mountain village in the alps where there is still a toymaker who makes wooden toys…and the picture flies through the window of a chalet hotel where a high class American shoe designer is staying. Under pressure from their employers for new ideas; they sit, despairing, in their room. How do they tell their family their job has gone at Christmas time? (sorry did I not mention it was Christmas? Oh and the designer will be played by Steve Martin or Adam Sandler if he’s not available) They absentmindedly pick up the piece of paper that has flown through the window and crunch it into a ball to lob in the bin basketball stylie; just then they stop, mid throw and uncurl the ravaged paper, spreading it out on the small desk and switch on the desk lamp, pondering. Quickly they take out an ancient leather case with pencils and sketch pad and are seen working through the night surrounded by sketches.

The next morning excited, and unshaven they put a call through to America waking their disgruntled boss – they have found it! A new shoe design to sweep the world, and, as in the case of the Emperors New Clothes people everywhere from Sydney to Montreal are seen sporting brown boots made from a toddler’s drawing thinking they are stylish. The film shoots to scenes of lots of newspapers spinning round and round with headlines on and the once despairing designer accepting accolade after accolade and award after award.

Hollywood stars are shown wearing the Ugg boot to the Oscars under their haute couture, nuns sporting Uggs under their habits are seen kneeling at Mass, the Queen of England does her Christmas Speech in them (as Cliff Richard, the Young Ones and all of the Spice Girls circumnavigate Big Ben in an Ugg shaped National Express coach with Richard E Grant yawning with ennui on the back seat making notes to sack his agent ) All the time the toddler in the alpine village grows up not knowing their part in all of this, and, as they flee their jobless village to end up sleeping rough in the backstreets of an industrial German town committing petty crime to feed their drug habit, they lie in the street, zoned out on crack cocaine and watching feet shuffle by, to go home, to go out, to get married, to party, to church, to divorce court, but all of them, every single one, clad in an Ugg boot…..if only……..

In next week’s fashion histories !!!!!!

How Mary Mungo and Midge felt when Vidal Sassoon stole the idea for the iconic Bob hairstyle, passing off as his own, the style created by a carpenter called Bob in the canteen of the hip 60’s cartoon. What would they all think now even Vidal, to know, that blow dried vigorously with mousse, it is synonymous with people who want to speak to the manager in any unsatisfactory retail situation.

SPECIAL OFFER! SUBSCRIBE TO FASHION HISTORIES FOR ONLY £45 PER MONTH AND LEARN ABSOLUTELY FECK ALL ABOUT FASHION; COLLECTING PIECES OF COTTON EVERY MONTH TO BUILD YOUR OWN UNIQUE THREAD COLLECTION ISSUE 1 COMES WITH FREE DISPLAY CASE.

BE THE ENVY OF YOUR FRIENDS AND LOCAL HABERDASHERY RETAILER!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

PS In case you are wondering I got some shoes – they’re black.

Humanity Lands

This was the poem that became Humanity Lands – the title track of Phoenix Chroi’s second album

I’ve done my penance

Walked on my knees

Fixed on a star

Through the wood and the trees

And as I traversed this scorched earth

I never regretted that I gave birth

I trod the fine line

Between celebration and solace

Saw the selfie explode in its own menace)

I wiped a tear that stole its own path

Slapped my own face to wake my own heart

This blighted star hangs so futile

Amidst terror cruel law all the while

Waits Blinking a beacon of hope

And we have to wait too enlighten folk

But wait for what and wait for who

Hope springs in the heart of you

It’s you who fixes you who builds

You who paints and you who guilds

You can make believe and propagate lies

Or feel the truth see with own eyes

There’s absolutely only one truth

To make a better place starts with you

Pull out your heart and hold it up high

Use its rhythm to move the star from dangerous sky

Spin your tales rewrite the law

Show your children what it is all for

Stand stand stand

The ground is yours now

Take no more milk from their sacred cow

Open your mouth drink in the rain

From high from sky from heaven again

Shout in the face of the despot who dares

Belittle your truth stamp on your cares

Throw off your shackles

There’s no prisoners here

Just the jail made from lies divisions and fear

There’s no ballot box that controls your heart

Take back compassion

March on from the start

The Giants who stood who knew what to do

Had hope in their hearts and holes in their shoes

The once insignificant voiceless few

Felt rage in those hearts but knew what to do

Because rage can be love Set on fire

And rage can be care whose purpose is higher

Take back your lives and hold out your hands

Your people need you

when hope flies

Humanity lands

copyright EMcGinty 2015

Sword

Even

as my hands

poised over the keys

I asked myself

If I still believe

If I write a story

When so uncertain

Would regret be result

Of pulled back curtain

The WiFi unstable

The resolve shaken

Even committing the words

And feelings forsaken

Never a guarantee

Aught would be read

The chamber of laying

Became chamber of dread

And so as always

I curl my fingers in

Too shy to write the extent of his sin

And so

I sit, contemplate madness

For that is what happens

When you crush your sadness

I try to prevail

Find strength and rally

But dark is the road

And narrow the alley

Bright sharp

pinprick of light

And pen, mighty sword

Will take up your fight

Beautiful and Woking ……………….

Beautiful the musical in Woking – the story of Carole King: As a line in the show uttered by her character says ‘I’m just a normal person, who wants to hear a normal person sing?’ Clearly the packed theatre confirmed they did and were interested to hear the story of one of the most successful songwriters of the 20th Century woven around the songs that made her so famous first as a writing partner with her then husband Gerry Goffin and later as a solo writer and performer.

Jukebox musicals are always popular. Whilst telling their story they allow the audience to add their own memories associated to the songs they share. As a vehicle to encompass, especially for those who may not know and assign the credit to performer rather than writers, the vast catalogue and contribution King made to modern music it serves so well.

The story centres at first around her relationship with Gerry Goffin (Kane Oliver Parry) and as part of the songwriting stable of impresario Donnie Kirshner (Adam Howden) they compete with friends Cynthia Weil (Amy Ellen Richardson) and Barry Mann (Matthew Gonsalves), as to who can produce the most hits. Including their work which was often then taken up by Phil Spector’s artists gave an added, welcome dimension to the piece – hearing the basic versions of songs pre Spector orchestration allowed the imagination to add that in and remember The Ronettes, Darlene Love, The Crystals, Righteous Brothers and the finished songs.

The friendships between King, Kirshner, Weil and Mann seemed to sustain her through troubled times with Goffin. His frustration at feeling inadequate in the wake of the new artists playing their own work and poets such as Dylan coming on the scene as well as his behaviour in the marriage finally contributed to its end and in a heartening scene her mother reminds her that she did write lyrics once and could again.

Her success in her own right came quickly after and the show tracks her reticence at being a performer to her concert at Carnegie Hall.

I admit to being still at odds with some of the songwriters I like getting the big musical treatment, though on the other hand happy to see people get deserved recognition I haven’t yet seen how ‘musical walking’ fits in – a style of sashaying across the stage that is so prevalent. Let’s face it though, if we don’t see it in real life that is only because we are all doing it in our heads going up the bread aisle at Asda and down the escalators in the Peacocks centre. It’s not just me…everyone does it, definitely.

I liked that it celebrated a diffident success “I’m just a normal person’ a person who had such a talent that she couldn’t not do it and who wrote regardless of fame, whose songs have provided a soundtrack to more than one generation even if they were flashbacks – The Locomotion- I remember jumping up on stage with the band at my sister’s wedding shouting that out, loudly, out of tune for three minutes – whatever- people danced and next day they did a whip round for singing lessons for me – never looked back- ha doubters! Anyway back in the room, Take Good Care of My Baby – sending that via private messenger to a teenage daughter’s boyfriend because I am so hilarious, a view not shared by her – philistines to my comedy. I Feel The Earth Move – doing an aerobics class, leg warmers (remember them) doing a grapevine in the wrong direction and knocking the rest of my line down like dominos, my sister (different sister, I keep spares) rolling her eyes and pretending she didn’t know me Around the theatre people were happily engaged in their own reminiscence.

As a vehicle to celebrate her work it, for those who know of it, and to present just how much she did for all those who didn’t realise, it is excellent. The early pop tunes to the later more introspective work and (ahem..) darker indictments of surburbia like Pleasant Valley Sunday and her release of an updated version of One Small Voice in 2017 on Donald Trump’s inauguration track her career. The cast were dynamic, especially Bronte Barbe in the lead role who reprised her poignantly, you really felt for innocent Carole who wanted to do the best for everyone. At times when the ensembles were singing the sound was very bright and as it only occurred when it was groups on the stage in big numbers – it seemed as if the performers couldn’t hear themselves over the music or the frequency was high, perhaps something only from the first night.

If it were to be said to be a musical about Carole King that centred more around her marriage than her work it wouldn’t be true, the King/Goffin collaboration was a success, it is also a celebration of friendship, You’ve Got A Friend seemed to sum up what her songs have done for people; been there in all aspects of their lives, and her attitude to her work and talent. I went with a friend, felt very friendy when that came on then I accidentally burped and looked at her in disgust so she would get the blame – as I said, friendship.

Beautiful – The Carole King Musical runs from Tues 27 February to Sat 3 March 2018 for tickets contact http://www.atgtickets.com/woking 08448717645