My Poem “Say No To Dystopia”

When I woke up this morning,
in my mind I felt like I had travelled
back in time to the year 1989 –
over thirty years in the past –
to a time in my life
when I began to become absolutely fascinated
by films and TV shows that depicted
what life would look like thirty years,
a hundred years, a thousand years in the future;
and this morning, while watching
a film called ‘Millennium’ –
a movie that centred around
the prospect and the concept
of time travellers travelling
back and forth in time
to save people before they died
and transporting them into the future –
I realized that almost thirty years before,
as a child, I was most likely watching
the same film that I was watching now on DVD
back then on VHS tape,
and while just as completely
enthralled now as I was by
what I saw depicted back then
I realise now that at the time
I did not fully understand what
the film trying to say.

Every film, every TV show, every book
whose story takes place
in a future setting and at a future time
always attempts to predict an accurate
depiction of how the world of tomorrow
will look, sound, feel,
and what the life of our descendants
will be like based upon an extrapolation
of the direction that some things
seem to be logically taking –
such as technology, fashion,
and the way that people treat one another –
and sometimes the world to come
is predicted to be one of hope, optimism,
universal understanding
and peaceful coexistence,
while some cautionary tales
predict that we may all be slowly
but surely spiralling into a world
that can only be described as being
dystopian
in which the children of tomorrow
have to live a hard and painful life
because of the short term actions
and mistakes of our present
which to them would be perceived
as their past.

Science Fiction writers and futurists
have been trying to warn people
what the future might be like,
and what the future world might
look like, if we – humanity –
do not stop and take a good, long,
and deep look at ourselves
while asking ourselves
where we are going wrong
and what we can do to build a better
world to leave for future generations
to be thankful for.

At this moment in time,
it sometimes feels like the world
is teetering on the edge of a precipice
from which there will be no coming back from:
a potential future that has been prophesied about
in science fiction tales for almost
a hundred years –
from H.G. Wells’ ‘The Time Machine’
to films like ‘Waterworld’ ‘Mad Max’,
‘The Matrix’, ‘Blade runner’,
and ‘The Terminator’ movies,
which all depict possible versions of our world
and a dark vision of the future
in which Earth’s natural resources
are in short supply or have been completely depleted entirely
and humanity is mostly living a day to day existence of not always knowing
how they are going to survive
and if it is possible for them to leave
a legacy going forwards that generations
to come will be proud of.

Humanity always has a choice
about which direction they want to go
in terms of technological interdependency,
the destruction of the natural world,
and the way they we take
what we have for granted –
and time will definitely tell
whether the predictions of those who either predict a positive version of the future
or those who predict a negative version of the future will ultimately be judged to be right;
however, what is as clear as a crystal ball
is that whatever happens in the future
to humanity and to the world around us,
every one of us are all the architects
of what has yet to come
and by influencing the people
in a position of power now
to want to give the gift of optimism
for the children of the future –
some who might not even be born yet –
we can be a part of making a potential
utopia by promising to keep
the predictions already made
of a potential world-wide armageddon
or an inevitable dystopia
tales of science fiction
that will never become a reality.

My Poem “02022020”

Today is the second of February, 2020 –
meaning that if you were to write it down
then today’s date would be read as “02022020”,
which of course is a palidrome:
meaning that no matter in which order
that you read it it can be read in exactly the same way,
forwards or backwards,
which I consider as being symbolic
of the beautiful symmetry of life, of people,
of the universe that everybody finds themselves
a vital member of when they look up,
when they look down,
when they look in every direction possible,
in order to find their place in this
amazing hive of activity that is constantly
creating new gifts of love, energy, and inspiration
that we can only hope will fuel
that which is responsible for helping
each and everyone of us –
especially those of us here on Earth –
find our way and our purpose in life.

In Punxsutawney, PA, this morning
the Groundhog spoke
and Punxsutawney Phil himself
informed all in attendance that
he did not see his shadow –
which of course means that
there will be an early Spring,
which means that everything
and everyone can look forward
to the early start of a brand new season
of light and beauty
and all the blessings
that it will bring.


Happy Groundhog Day! 😊

My Poem “The Eyes of a Poet”

As the rain lashed down
on a cloudy day
I looked out the window
of the Diplomat café,
as a bright blue tram car
glided passed upon the rails
of the tram railway –
and as I did I immediately
found myself experiencing
a wave of inspiration grow within me,
which I knew almost instantly
that I wanted to savour,
to save, and to capture
so that it may endure
in some profound way.

Writers and artists are always looking
for a place where they can create
unimpeded by the distractions
of the outside world –
especially when they are first
starting out upon their artistic journey;
personally, I try not to box myself
into the corner of a particular room
and declare that there is only
one place and one way,
where, when, and how,
I can express what I want to say.

Writers and artists are constantly
finding themselves creating art
at every time of the day
and wherever they find themselves
caught in the shower of
shooting stars of inspiration,
because what artists become inspired by
is ultimately in the hands of fate,
and over the years I have
randomly found myself –
while staring at a sunset,
while sitting in a movie theatre,
while staring at a masterpiece of art
by Vincent van Gogh or Leonardo da Vinci –
absolutely and unfathomably
in a state of complete mesmerism
in which I felt like I could access
deeper layers of connection, life,
and an understanding about the art
that I saw and the artist
responsible for creating
what ultimately turned out to be
that something that would inspire me.

Artists and writers
are always chasing that once
in a lifetime spark
of artistic creativity
that will excite and unify
every one of their senses
and their instincts
and that will perfectly combine
to make something special
that people will never forget –
and being an artist is sometimes
like walking a line,
like crossing borders,
and like discovering
and delivering a message…
being an artist and a writer
is sometimes like being some kind
of an envoy, a peacemaker, a diplomat,
and someone who can occasionally see –
when they can look at all
the multiple possibilities
of something simultaneously –
that things become increasingly
more clearer when you
take a step back from something,
while still looking at it
and while still internalizing it,
however while secretly interpreting it
by using the eyes of a poet.

My Poem “Substantial sustenance”

It’s always great to experience new things…
it’s always great to see things
you have never seen before…
it’s always refreshing to go somewhere
you have always wanted to go
but have never been before…
it’s always enlightening to be exposed
to the sights, the sounds, the people,
and the unique identity of a community
all living and breathing
every aspect of their particular
village, town, region, or city.

It has always been a passion of mine
to seek out, to explore, to experience,
and to learn more about the many
different and diverse voices, accents,
faces, beliefs, and opinions
that make humanity the distinct species
of dreamers, storytellers,
and builders that we are…
when people go somewhere that
is renowned for representing
and practicing certain customs
and for communicating
in certain ways of speech
that cannot be witnessed nor heard
anywhere else in the world,
you can find yourself initially
overwhelmed and uninformed –
however, like with most things,
the more that you are exposed to
certain things, and to certain practices,
the more likely it is that you will
naturally accept what you are surrounded by
and over time you will naturally
assimilate certain things into
your unconscious daily routines.

Being a wanderer can be exciting…
being someone who is constantly
looking for inspiration and stimulation
can be encompassing and thrilling…
being someone who wonders
why things are the way that they are
can be revealing…
being someone who ventures
beyond their understanding of what
life is all about is to be someone
who accepts the mission of exploration
and discovery that might take them
to places that are both illuminating
in terms of knowledge and fulfilling
in terms of inspiration
that cannot be underestimated
and are an essential and a substantial
source of sustenance
for the mind, for the body,
and for the soul of who you are.

Happy Birthday, Bowie!

It’s been 4 years since we lost David Bowie – on January 10th, 2016 – and today – January 8th, 2020 – would have been David Bowie’s 73rd birthday, and I wanted to write a post to wish one of the most interesting, inspirational, and influential artists the world has ever known a very Happy Birthday – who is hopefully looking down upon us all right now.

To celebrate David Bowie’s birthday today I wanted repost the poem that I wrote for him following his untimely death in 2016, called:

“Always the Starman”

Now it is you
who is the Starman in the sky;
now you know the answer
to the question “is there life of Mars?”;
now you can see just how much
you made us all smile
and how much you made us all dance;
now it will be the stardust of you
that will fall to Earth
and makes our minds sparkle
like the stars at night;
now and forever you will be a hero
for many and not just for one day;
now you can embark
on your own space-oddity;
now and forever through sound and vision
you will speak to us
and you will sing to us all from afar;
now that you have reached
the centre of life’s labyrinth,
and as you now look back
and touch Earth from heaven
with an outstretched hand –
from one poet to another,
this is my tribute to you,
the Starman of Magic in the sky,
who will always be the eternal
and the immortal artist of life David Bowie.

And I also wanted to repost my poem that I wrote last year which was inspired by a brand new piece of street art inspired by David Bowie, called:

“Bowie and Me”

Every day of the week
I head down to Dudley Street
to meet, to greet, and to speak
with the one and the only
David Bowie,
and every time I see him
he talks to me and
he communicates so much to me
without even having to say a word
how lucky we all are to be alive
and walking the streets and the paths
of this world –
and every time I see him
I get this instant flash
of inspiration,
like a bolt of lightning,
that I try to imbue
into the art that I create
which always follows
my divine-like encounter with “Bowie”
who waits tirelessly for me
against a wall of blue
on Dudley Street like a gate-keeper
and a guide to a world of
wonder, imagination, and self-discovery.


“Bowie” by Annatomix – Dudley Street, Birmingham, United Kingdom

And I also wanted to honour David Bowie once again by taking inspiration from his album Aladdin Sane and paying tribute to its iconic artwork by adorning the “Man in Black” who is the central character and who is on the cover of my book Playing God – which includes stories featuring a powerful hero who was also inspired by David Bowie and his timeless legacy of inspiring and motivating people to do unbelievably things… just as I was! Take a look at the Aladdin Sane-inspired cover of my book Playing God below:

And today is also the day when I have decided to start using my Collectors Edition David Bowie themed Moleskine notebook to begin writing who knows what? We shall see:

So, once again, I would like to wish the late great David Bowie a very happy birthday and I would like to thank him for all the inspiration that he has given me over the years!

Rest in peace, David!


1947-2016

-Mark