Taking Responsibility

Demonstrate Flexibility

Offer Open Source

Become more Collegial 

Get interested in the Transfer of Power

Learn to Criticise the Institutions

Develop Capacity

None of this need be about so-called empowerment for a Dandelion Child

Read how your Resilience has Developed through Adversity

Care Leavers

Bridging the Power Gap

An odd choice for me to focus on you might say, but if you want to do something really practical to bridge the ever-widening socio-economic power gap, then spare a thought for all those young people making the transition from deep institutionalisation to a poverty-stricken independence. You could do worse than get involved with this particular cohort of young people, all at the threshold of becoming a responsible adult in a hostile environment.

Continue reading Care Leavers

Mental Health

The lockdown started with fears of dystopia and social breakdown, but appears to be ending with people more closely bonded and appreciative of nature than before. 

The question is: How long can we get that mood to last, once capitalism revs up again?

Pay more attention to each other – there is more to life than money.

Provide a “gentle space” that will help socially isolated residents to reintegrate Cook for one another and leave food on the steps

Reconnect with friends

Get the beachfront as close to bustling as it is possible to get in an era of physical distancing:  long queues for fish and chips and ice-cream, family picnics, play football, fly kites.

See https://unitedgmh.org

Tapas Goyescas


This poem is part of a series I wrote while on a break on the Costa del SolThe tapas bar in question was in Benalmadena Puerto but has now closed: 

The chalked sign reads Comida casera
Home cooking – except, disappointed,
One Spanish customer has angrily obliterated
That choice word casera.

Steel trays, neat and stainless,
Top the bar in a cool cabinet
Parading their wares like babies in an incubator
Podgy meatballs dripping in oil,
Melting chicken, wasted peppers.

Diners greedily eye the offerings
Ordering with a stab of the finger
Return to a stool to sit out the time
Until a waitress brings the slaughter.

Sharp eyes, pleased, rove over the carnage
The uneven teeth and fuller lips
Closing round the succulent mortals
Squeezing dry the flowing juices
All washed down with a beer or rioja.

Till replete, the eye now duller
The fat mouth red as blood from the sauces
Overweight hands wipe evidence inaccurately
Leaving tell-tale stains to adorn the napkins.

The odd burp, a furtive toothpick
And off into the night we stutter
Growling softly.