Torch Lite

I have come up with a name for a blog -Antonym.

Also I have a torch: perpective and light.

Sometimes Godlike in its capabilities.

‘Move on’ is my new mantra.

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Pentecost is soon. Move On.

Some are coming, some are leaving; always making a noise.

As the Royal procession makes it way slowly, rats run from drain covers to hide in the crisp packet leaves.

Yellow sun. Blinding. To the corners of the earth.

Where even the meekest black cat hides in the shadows no more.

Transformer attack! No defence! Bright light beckons. Education!

More people coming or going. It’s the train Kevin Scam Michael Crowd.

 

Shouting mouse dog’s dinner

pundits talkshow mirror backwards

tiny voices building site tractors

overshadowed by the dark office buildings

little boy walking his dog reality shows up again.

 

Shadow. Station sign. 12 noon. 12:31 exactly. Blame soon. Innocent stares. Pyramid scams. Payout. Shadows and gloom, pints. 

Rune stones.

Goodbye!

The Wind

Let The Wind flay the dry skin from my face

Let the earth move me supine into rest

Let the stars move me heavenly into creativity

Let the moon dictate diurnally when I work and when I sleep.

Let my friends and family concern themselves over me

And let god take care of all that is heavenly.

Let the teachers teach the young in ABC and 123

And the trees that grow into forms will artists grow

inside as they grow older and wiser in the world.

And finally let all those who not believe below see

enough to convince them it’s worth trying.

Love Is The Difference

Did you ever watch one of those television programs where a tv crew follows the lives of children from cradle to age 16 or so?

And there were some who grew up to be right tearaways and others who were better adjusted. And often the child from the broken home would be less well adjusted than the one raised in a nuclear family with double garage – Well it’s all bollocks.

Well for me this doesn’t answer any begging questions but it sure does pose some.

Why do Dads have it so easy when it comes to not parenting and being absent fathers?

Why do mothers have free reign (within the law) to raise their children as she sees fit?

Why does our factory society think that my working age everyone is fit and able to do the same thing – work, or to stay at home to raise a baby?

What happened to love, ever so important aged 3 and upwards but seemingly now age 16 it’s economics that takes over. Did you need that Ikea lamp? Did you want your country to go to war? Do you want to live for the rest of your life in a bedsit?

Wouldn’t you prefer for someone else to pay for it? Bien Sur, you would.

What if you had the option of living at home. Would you take it?

What if you had the option of inheriting – would you risk it for a biscuit?

What if all of your options included a two-hour commute and manual barely skilled labour as a machine operator. Wouldn’t you rather not?

Personally I think that nobody in their right mind, with no options to choose from, with the threat of a bollocking, homelessness, rubbish tip living would do anything other than turning to a life of crime. Does everyone need self-respect right?

How did Gandhi and Mother Theresa do it? They had love. They did not steal their reputations, good deeds, and services to humanity, they did well. And probably had killer intellects, but let’s not give up just yet.

What about that guy who hung around a university speaking to people and who made friends with a football manager and became their kit man and then the BBC made a film about his life! Was he not blessed with love. Are there not angels on his shoulder? Hasn’t he enjoyed fame?

And what about the sacrifices that parents make for their children.

Face it as a child and young worker you have little choice but to work unless you become a parent.

Become a parent and the world has sympathy for you. Try and be an artist and the world will pour scorn, avarice and detritus all over you until you stop and comply.

Try and think about the big picture and you will find yourself wanting. You are either too far involved or too much  outside. You might as well begin listening to Rap Music.

And love? Well, love works in the background, making everything alright. If you haven’t got a friend, there is always Jesus.

Jesus cares. He is always there. On the wall, on the cross. When people say love makes the difference they are omitting the word, Jesus.

Jesus love makes the difference.

 

 

 

 

 

1234 Who are we waiting for? Jesus – That’s Who

I’ve been expecting someone for a while now and have been expecting his return ever since I was young enough to understand. The Savior will come again. And the idea of host and guest will be turned on its head.

And what have I been up to. And what has the church been up to? Preparing for Him to come again. Worshiping in my own private way and finding my way ever so slowly into the right company.

If I am dead when it comes It will not be too late. Although I would like it to happen during my lifetime.  He will raise me up to life. And I should try to emulate his life.

Into whose home for want of a better description Where In Birmingham would he live? He can use my Internet He is omniscient, omnipotent and all holy.

My neighbours are probably better prepared than I. Their families will welcome him with a feast, family fun and wise words, all of which will please him.

I would humbly accept him into my heart and home and rejoice for I know that I helped prepare for his coming too.

And I’d follow his movements on Midlands Today News, watch televised miracles, rallies, etc with glee.

And I would be glad I rejoined in with church life locally, before the crowds turn up. But then again I do think selfishly.

Take Stock And ?

For me, it’s simple. Take stock and write, the rest will take care of itself.

Like now. I have no subject to write about except Maya Angelou (I think that’s her name) I have only read one or two poems by her on AllPoetry.com but I can see skill where it is and feel something great when I read her words.

Now sadly deceased, I am thinking now of Desmond Dekker another African  American. Maybe, maybe not.. But before I go on I want to think. but how can I think when writing has the upper hand. I must type but typing fills the front of my brain and leaves little space for thought. Anyway, thought is overrated. Think of the times you have been happy and you might very well say that the times you had to think outnumber the times you were happy without having to think. This may be true or maybe not. But reading this you are thinking. How does that make you feel? But before I lose you perhaps I should mention the Harlem Globetrotters. Always good for a smile. All that showmanship and entertainment. I saw them when I was eight. I didn’t take up basketball, but the thrill remains every time I hear their name.

I wasn’t an intellectual child.I was an intellectual child. I was a fractured child. I spent most of the time searching for some real meaning which was sadly lacking from my life. God Jesus and everything I rated alongside Enid Blyton, and The Guns of Navarone, The Beano, Dandy and Action Man were my childhood heroes.

Now the wood has split and warped I see God Jesus and Everything and it’s as real to me know as the Beano and Dandy was then. What does that mean? That I will go to heaven? I doubt it. I am still searching for meaning.

Writing gives you something to be authentic at doing. If you write what comes into your head, and don’t premeditate a plot, characters or content and it makes sense to you and someone else then at least you can say you are lucid. If it raises and eyebrow or a smile you might even venture that you have some talent too.

I have written every day for the past 2 years pretty much and have amassed a significant amount of words in that time. But what does that mean. That I care? That I have something to say, or that I have too much time on my hands? And what and who am I writing for. For gods glory, for me or for man? I tend to imitate. I prevaricate, I philosophise but never in a  proper way. Plato, Boole, Dickens, Plath et al have nothing to worry about I am sure. Fame is not knocking at my door. Only the postman.

Almost 500 words down now. I have read about writers managing 7000 words a day (Enid Blyton) or close to that figure, Me I have managed 3500 of readable copy Hip! Hip! Hurrah! Now I need a publisher. When I began writing I was all about getting a thousand words or so of writing and then taking that to publishers and saying this is what I can do. Any chance of a book deal?

I took my idea to a writer’s start up agency in town and heard nothing from them ever again. They have since closed down. I have been sadly insular about my writing ever since. I publish to my blog and the few regular readers I have on there but really I have given up on serious writing as an ambition. What went wrong?

Well, my plan was OK but the Internet took over. I became aroused by internet magazines of the literary variety and getting my name in one of them along with a few hundred words perhaps. Except that my style never seemed to fit. So I tried altering it but soon that petered out as it did not seem worth the effort. Perhaps I need to be better focused. But then I might stop enjoying it. The thrill of getting a like, The headrush of being in the prose as my fingers race across the keys!

Imagine that there is not a problem and there is not a problem only some prose. Imagine that there are a problem and the prose stops flowing. If It’s flowing its good. When I first started out I read about some famous author writing a word a day and then spending a whole day thinking about the next word. Easter Bunnies I am sure.

I should know I won an award. The Versatile Blogger Award. It’s not exactly a writing deal or commission but its a start. And I draw too. Badly some say, others say rubbish. I say it’s Okay. OKAY!

I also photograph which most people like. Perhaps I should do that NO! I have never really been that sort of person. I prefer to find my own way in the dark sometimes rather than tread the well-lit path.

Perhaps that sets me up for some journalism. I would, but I haven’t the skills or the energy. I have a friend who asked me If I would write a paper what would it be. Such flattery!

Literary criticism is something I would like to be fluent in although writing in a literary style eludes me. So long lucidity I am becoming a pedant I hear myself say. Goodbye and farewell, the Beano and Dandy  action man and Star Wars forever and a day. Why can’t I have both I wonder?

I find lots of mainstream literature heavy going and reading a long literature book too academic. I like Shakespeare. I like quirky, funny, aloof, twisted characters, I like the damned (if it’s not too depressing) the unwanted, the lame and the shrewd. I like whatever gets me in the mood. If I can’t get that through literature then it’s not worth reading.

Well, that a thousand words and I am due a rest. I make the rules here.Thanks for reading. Leave your appreciation, requests or commissions on the comments below. Fondest Regards

AMW

Christian Thought

OK. I am not perfect. In fact, I am as far away from perfect as you can get. In the past week, I have been umming and ahhing my way as I find out more about the life I might yet lead. Might. I feel mighty real. You make me feel mighty real. Communards Or Bronski Beat or Jimmy Somerville I think. It was a cover version I think. Oh me oh my.

In the past week, and I have had a creeping feeling that this is one share too much, I have had visions of me meeting and greeting a church full of parishioners at the Church door I used to attend during my youth, before going inside and taking the service complete with visiting lay readers and musicians. Ha, you say. You want to be a priest!!

Also in my life my fractured family and I got together at the weekend to celebrate my mothers 69th. Oh. And also I came back home to quiet instead of the usual backbreaking beat of living in (un)supported accommodation.

I put up (out) my Christmas tree today.

Theology. It sounds hard. Bible Studies sounds hard. Lay7 preaching sounds hard. Being an ordained minister sounds even harder and since when has a midnight encounter with God one cold November night counted as a spiritual awakening? Or a calling? But like having a wallet full of cash while walking through a futuristic shopping mall I feel something pulling at my synapses and soul. Is it the call?

I have mental health problems of the Schizo depressive kind. I am overweight. I am 42. I lost all my material possessions in 2005. I was hospitalised ion 2009 with a psychotic episode. I am nervous, shy, weird. How could the priesthood possibly be for me? Words have power, especially when they are written down. Perhaps I should hide my faults but that’s not my way really. At least I am honest.

I am imagining talking to a vicar.’The Meeting’ in which i pour out my sorry soliloquy about how i intend to break with tradition and make a church full of art that goes to festivals and spreads a dual knowledge of art and God, love and life, the scriptures and their interpretations in a holistic, harmonious, inclusive vision I have for my flock that also includes churchwardens, summer fayres, Christmas parties, cubs and scouts and promotion.

It’s all hardly thought through and a millions of miles from my current situation ‘ In Limbo’ as I see it at times.’Better Late than Never’ he would say ‘But…’

*Your grammar sucks.
*you know no theology. (zero, zilch, nada)
*you are burned out.
*your art is childish.
*you have no discretion.
*you do not attend church
*etc…

I read today that lay readers going in for training should attend church for at least six months and become known to both members of the congregation and priest before commencing training. How long for a priest?

In my other ear is half a conversation I had with a FB friend who was talking about the C of E being ritualistic. By saying this, did he mean ritualistic in a mind-numbing shallow sort of way or’ritualistic in an enriching, inclusive sort of worship? One can only guess.

After a conversation at the weekend with someone who has taken services but is not ordained or a lay preacher/reader. Taking a service!?! I feel that there is much to be learned from talking to parishoners who are actively involved in church life beforfe taking a plunge into the unknown (reading too perhaps) Networking? Is this church networking?I am a church yuppie. Wheres my filofax and mobile phone? I can see myself lectionary under one arm and Hymms ancient and modern in my back pocket pigeonholing people and digging for gold. Ecumenical assassin Watkins! (thats enough imagination for one day.: ed)
Parable Anyone?
Bye.

The Armadillo

Imagine that you are an armadillo with an armoured carapace. What would you shield yourself from? Birds of Prey? Predators that prowl  in the night? It weighs a lot this armor but really you as an armadillo have no choice but to wear it. It is part of them and protects them fro when they are most vulnerable to predators: when they are calmly going about their daily business of eating, preparing or maintaining a burrow, raising their young or whatever. The armor isn’t the only defences nature gave to the armadillo: a keen sense of sight, smell and of hearing also aid the armadillo in keeping vigilant when it needs to be. Our health, mental health, prospects, ambitions.

Beyond what we as humans know about keeping vigilant in our own lives is our faith. Faith can take on many forms. Faith as a person living alone is as strong or needs to be as someone helping to raise a family or running a large corporation.Why? Because you are human.But stuck alone in a bedsit without anyone to talk to all day long it is often the feeling that faith is without form to be strong and to celebrate the Christian festivals which all seem to be centred around family or community. Taking in the harvest, Easter, Christmas alone are all an act of will devoid of the variety and joy we were lead to believe that as Christians our lives would contain.

Be not bitter. Have faith becomes a mantra repeated indefinitely through friends, family and the media. Have faith because one day fortune will come along! Have faith, do not be selfish, think of your friends and family.

I am confident that many of you reading this can tell uplifting stories of faith has carried you through difficult and testing times and this will come as no surprise to you probably because as you have no doubt realised: faith works! When we are down in the dumps, friendless or feeling like that, when hope seems furthest away is when we Christians come through for ourselves and for others.

When it really matters. When the odds are stacked against us time and time again, faith and the presence of God and the Holy Spirit makes us strong enough to mend that fence, to take out and scrub the bins, to clean the windows, to wash-up and dry up.

And in this time now when nothing adds up is when as a Christian you can use your faith imaginatively or like the armadillo’s shell, just to keep yourself safe.


Phew! I think that’s what ‘they’ call ‘cathartic’ in that my own experiences and views came out in my writing. Be that as it may I realise that the struggle many people face is very present and real and difficult, if not extremely so and prayer seems like so much p***ing into the wind. But I also know that the bible teaches us about Jesus the Healer, Miracles and believe that much of that is because stuff like that happens because God wills it to.

I am still waiting for my book on Lay Preaching to arrive, but I am going away for a few days now so there will probably be no more writing for a few days until Monday or Tuesday of next week.

I am still open to requests for writing on a Lay Preaching theme. If say you wanted a piece of writing centred around the parable of the miracle of the loaves and fishes I would be happy to attempt it for you, as a form of practice for me. It’s a win-win. There will be a delay as I do research, draft and read around your chosen subject. But so long as you are aware of this you can give me as much information as you like e.g. word length, audience, bent etc.

If any of you good people (or not so good) does wish to contact me please do so using the website. Bye.

God, Jesus and Everything.

To The people of the internet.You and God can have a relationship. Perhaps you are already in a relationship. Perhaps your relationship with God is polymorphic and God, Jesus and the Holy Spirit occupy special places in your mind body and spirit depending on the situation you are in, what you are doing, as life dictates how and when (at all times) you relationship with God is defined. I know that is how it is for me. I don’t go to church so a set time and place for worship is out of the question in that respect, but there is nothing stopping me setting aside a time and a place to commune with God when it suits me. But there is something special about a church I hear you say. Music, people, a holy place. The house of God. Or you might not care about a building as much as you about the terms on which you negotiate the facts of life, God, Jesus and everything. For Christs sake, you might say. It is wholly inappropriate to be discussing God, Jesus and everything at this juncture. I happen to be busy dealing with my mortal life and those who I love have worldly problems also and praying is a waste of time.

If you know your Christianity at all you will already know that the churches in the world have a mission to help the poor and in addition that those with a problem may find solace or even help from a congregation, interpretation of the scriptures, worship and even through prayer. Problems are a part of everyday life unfortunately and I think positively that God, Jesus and everything knows this. I have long believed that even if the church is not handing out actual money or survival guides and that immaculate conception is a bit far fetched and not possible, that resurrection was a myth and that the concept of a god is all a part of the hegemony of organised religion that there are too many people involved for it to be rubbish even if I couldn’t see a way in for me. The bible, the followers, the clergy, the traditions and the seemingly endless variation of faith might still be enough to convince you even with the promise of support! To me, that translates as wisdom and we could all do with more of that rather than searching for it in Rap music, consumer culture of whatever takes your fancy. But I don’t want you to stop shopping or eating out or to cease alcoholic consumption but I do want you to read between the lines. Not only in scriptures or in teachings or in consumer culture, money, sport of whatever makes up your big picture because it, just like the commandments needn’t be set in stone as strongly as I believe gods will is for you. One day God might come for you in your everyday life. Wouldn’t you like to be prepared?


Thank you for reading this far! I hope you enjoyed reading my writing and that it made sense to you, dear reader…

As one of those bloggers on WordPress, I think of myself as a nice person, someone who is approachable and (most of the time)reasonable. So I am asking you to send me your thoughts in a like or a comment. I might even do requests if you ask nicely. So if you had read my last lay preaching attempt and the boring bit at the end you will know that I am awaiting delivery of a book on how to do lay preaching.,properly I suppose…with the benefit of someone else’s experience. I am a 42-year-old Christian artist/writer/ male who has had diagnosed mental health problems as well as all sorts of good and bad life experiences throughout my life. I like science, technology, animals, sport but not exclusively. I am an inclusive type of guy, well I do my best at it.

I would really like to make a go of Internet Lay Preaching so would appreciate any feedback you have or ideas for the blog. By this time next week or hopefully sooner I will be armed with a book on how to do this but still welcome your comments.Bye.

Praise The Lord

(Praise the lord’, Praise the lord’ Praise the lord’)

I ain’t gonna stand on no soapbox and talk down to ya.

I ain’t gonna call you up in the middle of the night

I ain’t gonna stalk ya’ and follow you home

I want to talk to ya’ and tell you I am in denial

because I have no faith in my own words no more.

I squandered all my money. I wasted opportunities.

I walked out and turned my back on my friends

and maybe God himself. Why? Because god gave me a gift

that I did not know how to use. I had patience and at the end of many years

I had discipline. I thought these were my gift to god hard work and graft. Just until I got my life in order.

because I was pleasing myself I was pleasing my workmates and family, I thought I was pleasing God.

But I got closest when I was just with people, talking to them. and they listened

to me. This brought terror to my heart! So I made sure I knew I studied and read books so I knew I was telling the truth.

The people who wrote those books were definitely close to God in some way. So I’m safe, I thought.

But me? I had no time for bible class. Time was running out. I needed a career.

Sound Familiar?

Now for the boring bit.

I have been working on ideas for sharing my faith and writing with the hope of getting closer to God. Of course, writing begins with reading and I am now awaiting the delivery of a book on Lay Preaching but I couldn’t wait to get it so I thought a test run was in order. Pitstop. The kettle has just boiled.

If like me you enjoy a little Vicar Of Dibley (showing my age) or Bluestone 42’s Chaplain ‘Mary’ there is a magazine published called Third Way containing articles by one of programmes writers. It’s exciting stuff, not to mention spiritually uplifting.

Mary, the Army Chaplain gives out toffees to get on peoples right side. A Bribe in disguise you say? Well I can’t very well give you a toffee over the internet now can I? (neither am I a chaplain)

But seriously. For me, God is real. God is love. God is hope. And Jesus was here on earth doing things not that long ago.

I wonder if he would use Tumblr or other social networking sites. You bet he would. Message to disciples ‘Brings yourselves and plenty of baskets to lake to distribute loaves and fishes. Smiley Face’ Jesus was not afraid. He threw the money-lenders out of the temple for starters.

Reading this back, I noticed that apart from a few easily corrected grammatical errors it read OK to me. I hope it did to you too. In a way, I knew what to write like I was being guided by forces unseen.

One thing I learned from writing this is that I could have set aside an hour or two and done it properly (first draft, second draft, final draft) even though I am fairly confident I did not embarrass myself doing it my way. 😉

Well, thats it. If you want some proper writing Christain comment on our culture that sort of thing  try the free issues on http://www.thirdwaymagazine.co.uk/ of  If any of you nice people on WordPress enjoyed reading this please leave a like or a comment letting me know.

Thanks for reading.Bye.