singing these old songs

It has been, you have to admit a funny old year and today I’m out in the garden singing the same refrain:

“The kingdoms of Experience
In the precious winds they rot
While paupers change possessions
Each one wishing for what the other has got
And the princess and the prince
Discuss what’s real and what is not
It doesn’t matter inside the Gates of Eden.”

Bob Dylan, Gates of Eden. 

To be honest I’m not sure what Bob Dylan meant but it has a certain ring to it that seems apt. I’m pretty sure that the Clintons sang along with Bob in those far distant days when we all thought we could change the world. Make it a better place. I wonder if it comes as a shock to them to realise that they are the ‘corrupt Establishment”. Just as it comes as a surprise that I/baby boomers/some of us/ are seen as rich old codgers who benefit from the inequality that has visited the world, it seems , this year, in more force. And that we do have the luxury of arguing what is real and what is not.

This post is really a sort of musing as I have nothing to add to the thousands of words that fill the airwaves/screens and papers.

But with Leonard Cohen’s death this week there’s a kind of irony that he believed democracy was coming to the USA and that so many of his songs were about love, hope and forgiveness (along with sexual love of course ).

So: I am pleased that neoliberal politics are on the wane, but I’m concerned that extreme nationalism, and tolerance of racism and misogyny  are on the rise. I’m concerned that the snakingly small steps made towards cleaning up the environment may be in jeopardy and that fascism may be hiding around the corner.

But. As Lenny said “There is a crack, a crack in everything, that’s how the light gets in.”

Hope so Lenny, hope so.


“Ah the wars they will
Be fought again
The holy dove
She will be caught again
Bought and sold
And bought again
The dove is never free”






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