Truth

Should I give them up

my pockmarked truths?

(Each scar-shamed one.)

 

Are they deemed
too blunt and ugly, now?

(Although hard-won.)

 

As if unearthed
dirt-bound

like postholes under
abandoned ancient sites

which only speak
to us
in ash.

 

In charcoal’s black.

From lives undone.

By sufferings
that came on fast.

Remorselessly
unjust.

 

And where

(however much
its victims strove
at staying strong)

Fate’s sharpened heel
then ground things down.

Unto this
trace.

Unnamed.
Unhallowed.

Charred
across deep soil.

 

So to ask

(today)

Do I tell them still:
these damnably
unwelcome truths?

 

Or let what I know
be taken

cancelled

snatched
by
(that thieving death’s-hand)
time?

Or silenced
via law
and dogmas?

 

Either way

(it feels)

I shall
finish

lost.

 

Burning

in censored

exile.

 

 

Or

forgot.

 

 

 

 


 

 

 

Konica1117319

 

 

(Post-poem musing)

 

 

 

Defeat code

 

 

 

Lies may be popular
yet still pollute the soul.

I’ve seen them spread.

Of course, I speak as mere outsider.
Reject.

Society had no place for me.

Love proved unobtainable.
Friendship unavailable.
Beauty unattainable.
Recognition unachievable.
Conformity unendurable.

But in this desert I sought Truth.
Among a myriad books.

Thinking til my brain hurt.
Bearing painful disillusion.

Served Truth as a mistress.
(Though she was cruel.)

 

Now I fear loss of legacy.
Taking secrets to the grave.

Dread a smothering control-grid
where free thought may barely breathe.

And dissent can get deleted
before even being read.

 

Anxious tyranny goes masked
conceals its mean grimace.

Behind sugar coated rhetoric
of “safety”, “care”, “community”.

Whose guidelines filter
disliked views.

And keep things hid
not argued with.

 

So perhaps my words
will all be wasted?

And hence bullies win again.
(I found they often did.)

Feeling need to speak in code
already signals one’s defeat.

 

What remains is fretting.
Muted impotence.

Watching
washed-up
on the sidelines

While a smug parade
struts by.

To hear its well-lit
noisy victory

sound

that triumph

 

of

the lie.

 

 

 

 


 


 

 

 

 

Belated Birthday Piece

 

The photo below is as close as I ever got to a wedding…

(That’s me, with the top hat.
And a girl even held my hand!
I always loved women’s company.
Hoped one might marry me.

But fate had other plans.)

 

 

11

 

 

I intended a post marking my 30th consecutive birthday isolated and ill.
(After living alone from 1991.)

Although too unwell for publishing this on time, I am pushing back against oblivion:
by including it, now.

(Please forgive the lateness.)

 


 

 

 

Nothingness

 

 

In a futile imitation of self-love
I’d vowed:

To mark each birthday
by a piece.

Though the date meant less
it still held worth for me.

Yet I sank too low
this year.

Hence failed (alas).
At feigning some significance.

Depression crushed my spirit
like a bug.

 

I lost a fight
which lostness won.

Then sensed a darkening destiny
a long-imagined fear.

Of joining those forgotten ones.
Who die unseen.

Who lie alone in quiet homes.
Unmissed for months.

As all around go rushing on
compulsive in their busyness.

 

And while I watch 
such fate approach

to change is growing harder
since

it does not just depend on me
but strangers.

As old age reveals
diminished status

shrink toward a nullity
beyond humane regard.

Where no other life
encountered

makes spare any space
for mine.

 

Thus I sit, again
with silence.

Only mapping out
these margins

In my
nothingness.

 

 

 

 



 

 

Wait ages for a poem, then three come along at once! 😀

 

(I wonder which one works best?

Did any lines stand out for you?)

Art on the blog is mine: I hope you like it?  🌛

 

Comments are always VERY welcome! 🙏

 

 

 


 

 

I apologise for blogging infrequently in 2021.

Was going to write about the reasons.
Yet this post seems rather long, already.
(Worry you may get too bored.)
Therefore I’ll leave that topic for another time.

 

I want to finish by expressing my gratitude.
To readers and followers.

As a person absent from other platforms or social media
it has been a moving experience:
exposing my work online, for the first time, here.

Finding people so supportive and kind.

Your likes, follows, and comments, help keep me going.
Maintaining morale during chronic illness.
Countering those temptations to give up. 

 

Would really love to thank you all in person. 🤗

But must make do with sending

 

Best Wishes!

And

Thanks
for reading!

 

 

 

 


(  art / blog / blogging / depression / drawing / life / mental health / photography /poem / poetry / thoughts / truth / writing)

 

102 thoughts on “Truth”

        1. I assume you escaped that severe July heatwave we heard about on the news?
          To be frank, it rains so much here, I do fantasize around living somewhere really dry, but that’s
          very unlikely to happen.

          Like

          1. Hi, Maine rarely has temps in the 90’s but several cities did break 100 yr records. Being 12 miles from the Atlantic and within less than 1/4 mile from the Kennebec River it is very humid & sticky above 75 degrees. A year in Texas demonstrated at 105 degrees seemed equally HOT, but dry & always a breeze. West coast continues to have heat wave & wildfires, obliterating entire towns.

            Liked by 1 person

          2. Oh dear: I am sorry to hear that!😧
            (I hadn’t realised it was still going: the media over here soon moves onto a new story.)
            Interesting to learn about your local climate, though.
            Thank you.

            Liked by 2 people

      1. Yes, but where I work is shut down right now due to a computer chip shortage. We’ve been down 3 weeks. (Auto plant). I’ve got a little air conditioner at my house so, I’m fine. I’m sure there are some struggling. I’m just glad I didn’t have to work in the heat. Thank you for asking.

        Liked by 1 person

        1. I’m pleased to hear you escaped the worst of it, Mary!👏
          In England not many have air conditioning because it rarely stays hot for more than a few days.
          (That often ends in a thunderstorm: then we’re back to cool, wet and windy☔️ (as usual)😞.)

          Like

          1. Right now I’m thinking my little window air-conditioner was a worth while investment. Our summer days can be hot and continued hot. I like the variety of our four seasons though. It keeps things interesting and you appreciate those “perfect” days.

            Liked by 1 person

  1. Glad to see you’re back with a vengeance Ken. Really enjoyed all the poems, artwork and wonderful old photo. The lines that resonated most for me were:-

    Anxious tyranny goes masked
    conceals its mean grimace.

    Behind sugar coated rhetoric
    of “safety”, “care”, “community”.

    Whose guidelines filter
    disliked views.

    And keep things hid
    not argued with.

    This is so true.
    We must all keep on keeping on.
    🌹

    Liked by 6 people

  2. Nice to see your return! Thank you for sharing your moving words and artwork. Happy belated birthday! Isolation and illness is such a paradoxical unkindness. The world is grateful for your creative communications. Blessings be with you.

    Liked by 4 people

    1. Thanks Terry!😊
      You are so kind.
      Ah, yes: I wish it was “the world”, but my audience is a lot smaller than that, LOL!
      (Viewers of this post would all fit inside a bar, at present.😄)
      Hope things are going OK with you?🙏

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Hallo Ken, great to see you posting, always your work is profound. There is a consistency in your work that displays an individual style belonging to you, a gift to all who take the time to read. I am a big fan of your artwork as well, the photo is extraordinary, thanks for sharing mate.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thanks Gary!😊
      I feel deeply obliged for the great appreciation you have given me.
      Also, as a follower of your blog, I’m continually impressed by the level of creativity
      and imaginative fecundity on display, there.
      To be honest, your work-rate puts mine to shame: respect to you, mate! 👏

      Liked by 2 people

    1. And it’s always good to see YOU here, Wendi!😊
      In fact, I miss you each time you are absent.
      Your abiding presence has been such a help to me.
      I feel I can never fully repay you for your great kindness.
      But you will forever have my gratitude.🌟

      Liked by 2 people

        1. Thanks Wendi!😊
          Apologies: I forgot to ask how things were going in my previous reply.🤭
          I worry when you are absent from WPress, knowing of your health difficulties.

          (PS: Sent an e-mail today, as well. It links to some info I thought might be of interest.)

          Liked by 1 person

          1. Oh Ken, You are so very sweet and thoughtful and I always appreciate hearing from you. I also worry about you and pray for you on a regular basis. I am doing ok, it just has been very difficult for me to sit and focus on this blog for long periods of time……….I prayed today is being kind to you…..

            Liked by 1 person

          2. I am so sorry you haven’t blogged either. I think my last one was in July. I have too much other stuff on my plate right now to spare the proper time to answer or comment on others blogs. I miss it but maybe this winter I can get back at it! So, how is today treating you? Is there anything I can do or send to you?

            Liked by 1 person

          3. Yes: I know what you mean, about dealing with too much other stuff, Wendi.
            Feeling pretty stressed myself, recently:
            including 9 hours waiting for an ambulance; then 8hrs of hospital, A&E,
            with what I thought was appendicitis.
            Then another (largely sleepless) night in severe pain on Monday.
            Now, after an emergency CT scan, they want to do a colonoscopy.
            (I’m hoping the abnormal area they found on the image, is not cancer.)
            So it’s harder for me to focus on WordPress, than usual, as well.

            Like

  4. “Feeling need to speak in code
    already signals one’s defeat.”

    I think it is a profound realisation, but I somehow do not relate to it. I think code is art, and secrecy is a choice and/or a privilege.

    Also, wish you a very happy birthday! I do look forward to seeing you here more often, although I understand that you may not always be willing to write. Your poems and art inspire me to keep going at mine, and I am very grateful for you being in this world at this time.

    Keep shining and stay blessed!

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Thanks Ajanta!🌞
      I am always happy to hear from you, and am honoured that you like my work.

      Though, perhaps I should make one element, reflected in the lines you quoted, a little clearer.
      I am concerned by censorship and constraint, which I’ve seen increase during my time online.
      For example: certain You Tube content creators have their work affected (and sometimes completely shut down) by this.
      Thus they resort to “code words” for subjects which can no longer be discussed openly.
      People attempting to debate, on videos (and in Newspaper discussion threads) find their whole comment disapppeared
      because of a single (forbidden) word (noticed by bots).
      Use of coded language may give only temporary respite, until the code word is also banned.
      But the whole process indicates an underlying, and profound, power imbalance.
      It is no “privilege” to be forbidden from speaking.
      Or forced into contortions of language, to avoid being silenced.
      And that was rather what I had in mind: rather than deliberate secrecy.
      Secrecy is more often a privilege of the powerful (who may prefer to silence dissent altogether).
      I already self-censor, on here.
      And I live in a country where expressing a single unorthodox opinion can ruin one’s life.
      As a writer, being unable to speak seems like a defeat, even a kind of partial death.
      Anyway I hope this reply might slightly clarify some implication of those lines.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Thank you so very much for sharing your perspective on the quoted lines!

        Aye, I do understand the bane of censorship in the current times. During my eleven years on Twitter, my tweets only started disappearing after I had started to write about pedophilia. Over the years, I have quit all social media platforms, some in protest and some out of defeat, when my bank accounts got blocked and more. These things were certainly not privileges.

        When I was reading your poem though, it was the old soul in me who still believes, that every human being is a powerful and sovereign being, as long as we have our free-will. And it is in my empowered avatar, when I think secrecy is more of a choice for me, rather than censorship, and hence a privilege. Also, at times, I may be only willing to share certain information with someone, who I know/feel may be the best receiver of the information, based on their willingness and ability to receive it, and make use of it the way it is intended to. For those things, I do not blame modern censorship rules, since I would not want to yell it out in the middle of a busy street, so why bother putting in on social media too.

        I just wanted to share my perspective on secrecy with you too, and I am very happy to hear from you and talk to you too!
        In case you did not know, what you are doing today by living alone for so long, is what I pray to have the strength and resilience for.

        I hope to hear from you for centuries to come!

        Liked by 2 people

          1. Sad to hear that. May you be gifted with better health now on. Please take care. And there is no age limit to restart art, especially painting! Have a great day!

            Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks, Svetka!🌞
      It’s so nice of you to say my work is powerful.

      (PS: One strange thing, though (in my experience), about posting more often:
      back when I posted every Sunday my blog hardly grew at all.
      When I began post LESS it became far more popular.
      And now I, also, don’t tend to follow people who post often, either, as it’s so hard to keep up,
      with everybody.
      (But I’m speaking as someone who’s followed over 275 blogs😀.))

      Liked by 2 people

    1. Such beautiful compliments, Svetka!🌝
      I suspect we may share certain sensibilities (despite any geographical, cultural, and linguistic distance).
      Hence I might feel closer to you, in spirit, than to those who live around me.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. PS have you thought about creating a Trust which would enable them to publish your material after your eventual passing, if you’re not ready before then. I am 67, and I am in the process of setting something like that up. Mental Health charity or Age UK could probably assist with the legal structure. And you need one person involved, one person you trust to ‘get you’. Best wishes,

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you for this interesting and helpful suggestion, Barbara! 👏
      One problem, however, may be my extreme isolation: as the last of my family line.
      There is no-one around me, in real life, who “gets” my work; or even cares about it; let alone its survival.
      I live on a council estate, where drugs, crime, and anti-social behaviour are common.
      Some people seem to hate me, instinctively.
      And there is nobody I can even have an intelligent conversation with.
      Only here, online, do I have readers.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. thanks for persisting Ken. If are able to do a google search, try these two key words: 1) poetry foundation, 2.) “poetry from disadvantaged groups” possibly with your location/region and see whether you get any leads for people to liaise with. You could also try to liaise with the open university with related key words etc – if that does not make sense or does not lead to anything, do come back and ask again; I might come up with more ideas. Best wishes,

        Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks, Jeffrey!🌝
      Great to hear from you.
      I’ve been enjoying all your stories.

      (PS: I hope taxi drivers have respected your personal boundaries, since the incident mentioned in July 19th’s post! 🙏)

      Like

    1. Thanks Janice! 🌞
      That’s an interesting observation. Though, sadly, I never had a sister.
      In fact I don’t even know who any of the other people in the photo are.
      (They might not be alive by now, as it was taken about 60 years ago.)
      Also, being the last of my family line, I have no-one around to ask, either.

      I’m pleased you found my work affective.🌛

      Like

  6. like finding an old garden, i feel such a solace reading your words as always. so first i thank you for sharing this with us. it never fails to make me feel
    the first poem has such an unnerving honesty to it, fate’s sharpened heel grounding things down and time as thieving death’s hand such powerful striking metaphors. the voice that still burns through the exile and keeps on burning. grateful for this poem more than i can say.
    also the art is just amazing and how amazingly it speaks with the poem.

    the second poem, i loved this one. how personal a poem can be and yet flows across in an untying universality. ‘Feeling need to speak in code already signals one’s defeat.
    this is very resonating. the lies triumphing their trumpets and your poem a quiet hum of resilience. and the art is so telling, genius.

    a very belated happy birthday, Ken! the picture is beautiful, thank you for sharing.

    the third poem of nothingness, i love how delicately you express such a consuming feeling. thus, i sit again with silence, in my nothingness. solaceful like a soothing sea.

    I am sorry for such a long comment, I read your work after so long. I had forgotten how much I loved it. Thank you, Ken for writing and sharing. And also next time don’t worry about the post being too long or people getting bored, I would want to hear more from you.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Ah! such a joy hearing from you, Harshada!🌞
      Yes: joy (an all-too-infrequent sensation), lit up the wasteland of my aching soul,
      upon finding you had visited me again.

      Though the “old garden” analogy seemed slightly less reassuring…
      “Does Harshada think my work is derelict, unkempt and overgrown with weeds, these days?”😧
      (NB: it’s an English custom to sometimes playfully tease those we are fond of.
      But as you cannot see my smile, I’ll let you know, that bit was me joking around😄.)

      Actually, I always love your comments.
      Their spontaneity, honesty, and charm.
      Because you are so perceptive and expressive, I feel able to bask in them, indulgently.
      Such quality feedback is truly valuable for a writer, and I am deeply grateful for it.

      I also thank you for all the kind thoughts.

      I hope things are going well, Harshada?
      Are you writing?
      Are you going to post again, soon? 🙏
      Prey tell!

      Liked by 2 people

      1. it’s truly all my pleasure, ken. and so true about joy.

        oh god, thank you for clarifying it as a joke, because my stupid brain would definitely have taken it literally. i feel inadequate in expressing what i feel especially in response to reading a poem that makes me feel something. so yeah, excuse me for my awkward word phrasing, an old garden that speaks of a melancholic wisdom and a strangely comforting familiarity. ❤ (sounds very cliche but can't escape it sorry 🙈)

        also it made me smile so wide that you made fun of me, especially the thought you might be smiling made me smile too. :)))

        Liked by 2 people

        1. I can be quite a funny guy, in person, Harshada!😄
          No, really!
          (Have even written many jokes and short comedy routines.)
          Admittedly, that side of me isn’t greatly in evidence on here.🥀

          Anyway, I hoped you wouldn’t mind too much, since we’ve known each other for a while.

          And so, now, perhaps I should tease you some MORE, for avoiding my questions! LOL!

          Pray tell, Harshada!
          (I’m waiting with baited breath.
          The tension is building…😳)

          Are you writing?
          Are you going to post again, soon?🙏

          Liked by 1 person

          1. haha! i do remember your good sense of humour from our previous interactions! have you published them, the jokes and comedy routines? that would be fun to read surely!

            i have written some, but i don’t think i would post it, it’s just rant and blabbering stuff lol.

            Liked by 1 person

          2. Sorry to hear you aren’t planning on posting anything, Harshada.😞
            I feel you sound, sometimes, a bit dismissive about your own talents?
            Discovering your blog, my first impression was of how expressive, intelligent and highly-imaginative you are.
            I enjoyed your work immediately.

            Coincidentally, back then, I remember how, at the very moment I was hoping you might visit my site,
            your icon appeared on the screen.
            And a sense of connection persisted: when you returned around the time I posted (after an extended break) in January.
            Then you returned again: once I’d published this piece (after a longer gap).
            But rather more unusual is:
            you contacted me just after first short-story I’ve written in many years came (fully-formed) into my mind.
            A story which begins with (something I’d never written of before):
            An unexpected message, arriving from India, from someone who speaks English and Hindi.

            And I hardly had time to finish it before your e-mail appeared (after a 6-month gap).
            (i.e: An unexpected message, arriving from India, from someone who speaks English and Hindi.)
            It seemed quite a coincidence?

            Or are you simply teasing me with your hidden psychic powers, now?
            👻 LOL!

            Liked by 1 person

          3. thank you for your kind words, ken.

            haha, now I’m not sure if you’re joking or not! But hidden psychic powers,
            not really but i wish. 😌
            but did these coincidences really happen or are you just once again pulling my leg? 🙄

            also you are working on a short story? that’s awesome! hope you publish soon!

            Liked by 1 person

          4. Yes: all the coincidences happened.👻
            I wrote my only short story featuring an unexpected message from India
            and your unexpected message arrived from India 😮!
            It’s completed, now, by the way: though I’m not sure about posting it.

            (PS: I realise you may prefer keeping your psychic superpower a secret from the world, Harshada.😉
            But don’t worry: it’s still pretty well hidden, at present, as hardly anyone reads my blog comments, LOL! 😄)

            Liked by 1 person

          5. Hahaha, (coincidences seem to surprise me too lately) but superpowers are more burden than boon.
            better have none lol.

            why not? i would really like to read it. i genuinely hope you publish because now my psychic superpower (which was unknown to myself) has spiked even more curiosity about the story.
            and also it would be a different experience to read a short story from you.

            Liked by 1 person

          6. Aha!
            How concisely you signal your occult knowledge, Harshada:
            With just a little (semicolon)wink, and the single word “witch”. 🧙🏻‍♀️
            Rest assured, my dear: your secrets are safe with me, LOL!😄
            (Though I DO wonder if you are a practitioner of spells and magical rituals?🧚‍♀️)

            Like

          7. Actually there are a few prose pieces on here, blogged in 2019:
            though I don’t think you’ve read back that far, Harshada?
            (For which I’m also thankful: because they aren’t very good, LOL!)
            I posted them for the sake of completeness, as this site is my only place to preserve such works from oblivion.
            And I didn’t want them all to be lost, in the event of my death.

            Another concern about publishing a short story is that most people expect to see poems on this site, now.
            Hence I worry it would be a massive flop.
            And, perhaps, even cause me to lose followers.

            Like

    1. How very kind you are, Radhika!🌞
      That’s a lovely image, too.🤝✨
      Though it doesn’t really feel as if I were “standing strong” in a flux called the internet.
      But, rather (seems to myself) like someone almost invisible, amid the vastness of cyberspace;
      hoping people will find my work, before I disappear completely.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. See, how you are influencing people! We are all holding each other invisibly. So many are touched by your powerful and authentic voice and your art too. Never underestimate the light of God that is within you. You shine brightly, dear Ken, and will continue long after your body fades away! Sending you more love and light.⭐❤️💚💙⭐

        Liked by 2 people

  7. Your poems are so very powerful! You really are a gifted writer. And if the painting at the beginning of the post is also yours, then you are a very talented painter as well. I’m so very glad I discovered your blog.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Thanks Ann! 😊
      I’m very pleased you feel that way, about my work.
      (I can only dream of being so popular a blogger as you.✨)

      And, yes: ALL art on this site is mine.
      (I do put a little note, mentioning that, near the end of each post: but it’s easily overlooked.)

      The image at the top of this piece was done with fibre-tip pens, when I was 16.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks, Kameron!😊
      I’m grateful for your kind words and interesting feedback!

      Confession time: 🤭
      I’ve never actually read Robert Frost (though am aware he’s a famous poet).

      Tend to just write on instinct, and hope a piece works, LOL!

      Like

      1. I haven’t read many of his, but I do recommend “Stopping by woods on a snowy evening.”
        I think you two have similar style but I couldn’t tell you how or why lol!
        But just know it’s a compliment😋
        All good writing comes out of instinct I think. Writing isn’t something you can be too nit picky over (especially poetry) otherwise it might as well be a boring legal document!

        Liked by 1 person

        1. Yeah, I kinda hoped it was a compliment, Kameron, LOL! 😄

          To be honest, I’ve tried avoiding rhyme, generally.
          But it seemed, somehow, insistent on parts of this post.
          For example, in the line you mentioned, above (“Although hard-won”):
          I attempted replacing “won”, because of the rhyme with “one” (line 3).
          Yet I felt nothing else worked better, and, thus, let the word stay.

          Like

  8. I liked both the art-work and the poetry, Ken. Keep up your work, and look after yourself. I think there may be times in everyone’s life when (s)he realises that no-one else actually understands – or perhaps even cares about – his or her situation. Self-care is important.
    Wendy.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Hi Ken! I’m new to your blog, found through you liking my recent post and thanks for reading it!
    I really enjoyed these and can relate so much living with chronic illnesses myself.
    My favourite of the 3 was Defeat Code and my favourite lines were many:

    Either way
    (it feels)
    I shall
    finish
    lost.
     
    Burning
    in censored
    exile.
     
     
    Or
    forgot.
    …..
    Society had no place for me.
    Love proved unobtainable.
    Friendship unavailable.
    Beauty unattainable.
    Recognition unachievable.
    Conformity unendurable.

    Feeling need to speak in code
    already signals one’s defeat.

    …..
    Although too unwell for publishing this on time, I am pushing back against oblivion:
    by including it, now.
    …..
    Then sensed a darkening destiny
    a long-imagined fear.
    Of joining those forgotten ones.
    Who die unseen.
    Who lie alone in quiet homes.
    Unmissed for months.
    As all around go rushing on
    compulsive in their busyness.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you for your interesting, and generous, feedback, Sonja!✨
      It’s quite rare that any reader makes the effort required to produce such a detailed comment.
      As well as your response being informative, I am also flattered you felt able to list so many lines!😊

      Like

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