Arlington Cemetery and the Religious Order of the Military

Arlington Cemetery and the Religious Order of the Military

Coming from a country with no great military tradition, the visual presence of the military and its infrastructure in other countries, such as France, the UK and the US has always intrigued and somehow unnerved me.

We were in Collioure, in France, a few years ago on holiday. We went for a walk along the coast, just north of the town. Beautiful, beautiful place by the Med. We had to go around a military compound to find the path by the cliffs and when we came back they were doing some kind of training exercise in the yard outside the compound. Continue reading “Arlington Cemetery and the Religious Order of the Military”

Washington DC – The New Rome

Washington DC – The New Rome

The most amazing thing about Washington DC for me was how much it reminded me of Rome – Rome as it once was, that is. All the buildings (around the National Mall especially) were so Roman, with friezes and thick columns (in a strange mix of Doric, Ionic and Corinthian) rising up above grand sets of steps. Huge domes in the middle, reaching skyward towards the gods, pregnant with glory. Full of the symbolic grandeur of Rome (and ancient Greece before it). Pale stone, clean and imposing, shining in sunlight. Huge lettering on the outside, massive doors for entry. Continue reading “Washington DC – The New Rome”

A Picture of a Man

A Picture of a Man

There’s an amazing scene in the film M by Fritz Lang* where a serial killer of children is put on trial by the local criminal fraternity and the parents of those he has murdered. They decide, not surprisingly, that he must die for his crimes. And in the scene, the murderer, Beckert, played wonderfully by the wonderful Peter Lorre, tells them all that they cannot kill him, in fact they have no right to try him at all, because he is a man. Continue reading “A Picture of a Man”

Montgomery Clift is Homeless

Montgomery Clift is Homeless

I wrote a poem. Well I think it’s a poem, I’m not sure. I don’t really knjow what a poem is. Anyway I wrote it on my way home from O’Bheal, the poetry night in The Long Valley. They were launching the book Looking at the Stars, edited by Kerrie O’ Brien for which the proceeds were going to helping the homeless.

In O’Bheal there is an exercise where you write a poem that contains some words that are provided. Continue reading “Montgomery Clift is Homeless”

Clinton v. Trump

Clinton v. Trump

Mark posted this article by Michael Moore on Facebook, so I read it. 

I’m glad I did. Moore makes a very compelling case.

It’s depressing, because I love that friggin’ country, and the global ramifications are frightening. But I do wonder if the great socio-historical experiment in democracy that is the United States of America is coming to a wind-down. A bit like Weimar Germany. And yes, I am aware of Godwin’s Law. Continue reading “Clinton v. Trump”

A Good Day for Ireland

A Good Day for Ireland

I was delighted with the sudden news today that Enda Kenny and Michéal Martin put their Civil War differences aside and will form a national government next week, for the good of all Irish people, especially those in need, and the homeless.

Fair play to Enda Kenny, in particular to offer the first 6 months of the rotating office of Taoiseach to the Fianna Fáil leader. And also a lot of praise had to go to Michéal who offered the office of Táiniste to Gerry Adams and congratulated him for his role in the Peace Process. Continue reading “A Good Day for Ireland”