“How does it feel to be a traitor?”: When the String Breaks

August 22, 2014 by Richard Lyon in Blog 0 comments
“How does it feel to be a traitor?” he accused, his words smashing into my face  in full, no holds barred mode. “A traitor to all we’ve believed together?” “Are you going to tell anybody else?” “No.” “So, if you’re so sure clear, why tell me? Are you holding something back, Billy?” “And what would that be, I wonder?” I responded. “I want to continue this operation. I’ve no doubts at all in my mind. I’d hate to see the Guide stopped from realising his plans, or Dwayne and Ronnie harmed if anything went wrong. I want the Risen to rise and succeed.” “I’m not too sure, Billy.” “Of what?” I replied. “What you’re telling me, that’s all. I’ve my own suspicions, my own explanations.” “Go on then, Mr. Know-It-All. You tell me.” “OK. It’s not actions which leave lasting hurt, Billy, but words, growing doubts. Words planted to orbit your brain, striking like a missile, undermining your faith. Words trapping you in the death wishes and failed ambitions of idiots, frustrated at their own failures, demanding others continue the same old nonsense. Words from myths into fairy tales inventing history. Old men demanding violent solutions with their sentences. As […]

“Intimacy and peace are essential for fulfilment, aren’t they?”: Climbing Trees Backwards

August 21, 2014 by Richard Lyon in Blog 0 comments
  “Intimacy and peace are essential for fulfilment, aren’t they? No peace, no space to be what we can. No intimacy and we can’t share with another who we are. With neither we’re half people. We can have intimacy without peace but can’t be human without it. If war emasculates humanity, intimacy is its antidote. Sharing intimacy we explore the human condition, intimacy to talk with another sentient being, someone who can feel, share with me what it’s like to be a permanent outsider. Nothing more, nothing less. Actual sex isn’t that important, it’s the I’m human and lost too, emotional foreplay that bonds. If that’s not there I move elsewhere. I’ve never achieved that in a relationship have I?” “You’ve tried Robert, spent hours with me talking about affairs which you claimed were it. They never were, were they? Why not?” “No, never. None even close. None glued together mind and body. None gave me sensual pleasure, sexual fulfilment through the night and beyond. Or the freedom to be honest”.  Hell, my mind is fuzzy with malt, but I’m feeling more confident than for a long time. “Robert”. “Yes Martha”. “Could you be intimate with me?” “Aren’t we intimate […]

“I remember fog and my world threatening to end”: Climbing Trees Backwards

August 21, 2014 by Richard Lyon in Blog 0 comments
  I remember fog and my world threatening to end in poor visibility. Ships boomed horns, squawked warnings. Bells gonged over water, hollow dull waves slapped the pier. Birds screeched, steam rose from mugs, sugar, thick, sticky, crystallised on edge, chipped and stained, hot hands cupped them. Overcoats, threadbare, fought off river damp cold. Steep hills plunged to the river. Docks busy with labour, guarded by thick walls. Watch towers ran along the water front, running with riches, goods and exotic fruit, littered with ships, a whelping bitch feeding its young. Poverty, a sore wound, ran along its fastness. I never forgot the weather. It made every mood, defined how, when and what I felt. Protected me with its variations, nature’s fugue, soft and hard sounds, contrasts, infinite counter points. Redolence never far from my nostrils; a cocaine of four seasons snorted with gusto and reverence. Hand kindled fires burned brightly, a necessary skill when winter’s coal cantankerously refused to flame into life. My sister sobbing around the fire from legs beaten red into rawness, welt belted, leathered by her father, my father too, in name only. Only when exhausted with his onslaught, did her father relent, satisfied he had […]

Aware of impending mortality: ‘When the String Breaks’

August 18, 2014 by Richard Lyon in Blog 0 comments
  Aware, as we have aged, Mam, up through her eighties, of impending mortality; an age where illusions no longer delude. We sat together, spent names like fate’s dice rolled across the table: as if that’s all they were! Shed a tear: this was the life we were conscripted into. I’d collected Harold, flat cap, heavy coat, outside his house waiting for us. His street in an earlier incantation celebrated a monarch’s ascension as an empire descended into twilight. Cobbles then bare, now part covered by tarmac and pot holed. Kids played the same on street corners, aerials, satellite dishes, camouflaging chances that had not improved their expectations. Was it death we talked or something more profound than how our endeavours will close? Some of those we talked about live, some of those we named were dead, none were unscarred. I sipped wine in an oversized glass, tea was drunk, food placed cheerfully on our table: last suppers, catholic purgatory threatening to envelop us in gloom amidst sensuous pleasure. Then misery. “He was dead”. Did anyone really think as he once was so he’ll be resurrected? “He’s unemployed”. “Made redundant three times”. “Does odd jobs”. “Ex-army, doing nothing”. “Died diabetic”. […]

“Tears upon which floated dead children …” ‘When the String Breaks’

August 17, 2014 by Richard Lyon in Blog 0 comments
  Tears, aeons of them, stagnating, trapped in time, upon which floated dead children; no one stirring in its dirty pool. Obsessed by encroaching finality I’m sharing mother’s remaining years, another journey to Liverpool; a motorway cruise. Colour surrounds me, urban and oceanic; thin blue sky, febrile hazy sun in spring’s first week; dry shadows covering pavement cracks reflecting people and buildings. I stand overlooking the dockland basin where departing ships once wove a floating web, currents copulated with rhythmically billowing canvas sails, bequeathing to the world products man made and man-made slave. Later it discharged vessels of steam and iron, hard and cold, symbols of a new age, throwing old certainties skyward. In this frantic cacophony disgorged seaman with their distinctive rolling gait carrying tales, adventure, money and sex drives, decamping across city boundaries. Monuments elevating poverty’s soul graced the skyline with aristocratic munificence. Hard calloused palms, stunted legs, toiled steel rimmed, wooden spoked, grease smeared handcarts laden with city essentials clattering over cobbles betwixt tram lines. Daily Herculean efforts broke many, as well used dusty hessian sacks were slung over tired shoulders. Steep hills plunged to the river, its water front running with riches, goods and exotic fruit. […]

With a gun at night to kill and a stethoscope during the day: The Monesse Mystery

August 16, 2014 by Richard Lyon in Blog 0 comments
“In war,” Serge began, “people do what they want in their darkest and brightest of moods. It’s a paradox, I know. If a drunken man speaks a sober mind, then a person in war behaves at either edge of their personality. They are capable of great deeds of selfless sacrifice and as quickly as flipping a coin crass acts of cowardice. Often, I believe, in the space of a short time. My father was in the Resistance and it affected him profoundly. He was a doctor of medicine by professionand driven by his psychology to aid and cure people. To deflect death if humanly possible and preserve life. Instead he found himself armed with a gun at night aiming to kill and with a stethoscope during the day. It was emotionally painful for him to become a hunter and disguise his true nature as the sun descended.”      

The heathen law pressures the weak: ‘When the String Breaks’

August 15, 2014 by Richard Lyon in Blog 0 comments
  Khaled wasn’t long in introducing Ronnie to the Guide, author of ‘God’s People Rising.’ “You must read this, Ronald,” said the Guide. “It is Our God speaking through me. I am His simple messenger, you, with Khaled’s other friends will become His prophets.” “The Guide has no name,” said Khaled to Ronnie, after asking the Guide’s permission to speak. “Do not even ask. It is disrespectful. The Guide exists in our life, but he is beyond our life. He is mortal like every man, but he reaches into God’s immortality. The Guide concerns himself with all the details of existence, from the seemingly insignificant to the profound: knowing the full moon as well as the sickle. “The Guide has no country, or home. He moves and lives where Our God sends him. He travels with no passport, but with many. To outsiders, the peering crowd of busy nobodies, he has different names, though they’ll never know him as the Guide. Only when we, the prophets and People of God, the Angels of Action, have begun our spiritual tasks in earnest will the Guide reveal himself to a waiting and expectant world. Until then, we, his prophets, reveal nothing; where […]