personal rebellion

The Rebel


As each day dawned I died a little more
Before the labour of my day began.
My life and work which once I’d held in awe
Induced the thought to flee.
I lived my time in sycophantic toil
In unremitting ennui. 

When they that matter say that time is money
Where goes my need for air and space and beauty.
Lack promotes the lessening of my being
And leaves me full of spleen.
Sustenance from these things dear to me
Lie buried and unseen.

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Sick Insurrection

The USSR’s economy was in decline and failing. Even tourism was being encouraged to help build up the GDP. Intourist, the official travel agency, was organising cheap holidays. 

The air hostesses, as we still called them then, were big burly women, the embodiment of the state and geared only to delivering its requirements. The state was always right. Any customer who disagreed was wrong.

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Fair Fares

I was a young rebel aged 16. It was the early 1970’s and I had been interested in politics at school and joined a political party which I though best represented my views.

After being informed that I had been selected to go to a major conference in my home town of Glasgow, I chose to speak on a subject that was close to my heart: public transport.

The bus fares had been rising progressively for some time with no apparent improvements in the quality of service. I decided that radical, direct action was required to bring this to the forefront of political debate.

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Breaking Free

We got off the train and stepped into the warm sunshine. I was really excited to see the blue sky, the sand, and the sea, any chance to escape the concrete jungle I lived in was always welcome. I felt very happy to feel the heat on my skin and was chatting away. The seaside has always struck a deep chord with me. I guess because it’s where I remember my happiest moments as a kid: swimming in the ocean, building sandcastles or burying my big sister in the sand. I can still remember watching an early morning sunrise over a Cornish Bay as I ate a pasty and did handstands in the sand.

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On Obedience

I used to be so good you know
when I was in my youth
I used to be compliant
and always told the truth. 

I kept myself so spotless
with perfect clothes and hair
and used to smile so nicely
when others weren’t fair. 

Now I am getting older
my patience has worn thin
I swear and curse my colleagues
and drink a lot of gin. 

My sarcasm is boundless
my temper rather frayed
and you will be quite certain
if your welcome’s overstayed. 

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For most of my life I’ve been battling fear
As a child, painfully shy
Never could meet anyone’s eye
Always afraid to speak up
Never let my voice be heard 

As I grew, it stayed with me
In my teens, my twenties too
Fear still there, some fears new
Becoming a woman, a mother, a wife
Navigating my way through life 

Then depression, anxiety, the fear grew
That dark, dense cloud suffocating 
All I could hear, myself, screaming
Inside, outside, around my head
My biggest fear - it would never end 

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Rebel Rebel, Joseph's Doing Well

My story begins with my head held high and a smile on my face when taking my dog out for a walk.

Suddenly, I came up with an idea for a song so after I had taken my dog home I decided to put pen to paper and write the lyrics


Then I went into Glasgow city centre to the music studios to record my song on a CD.

Once I had done that I created my own front cover from a recent photo of me to place on the CD.

The next day I took it into a record shop and I asked, "Can you put this on your shelf for me?"

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Island Rocker

I grew up on the island of Mull. I lived in the village of Bunessan and it was a quiet place. Most of the people there were fishermen and crofters.

Sometimes, when I was a teenager I would get a bit restless and bored. Then I discovered rock music. The first time I heard the beat of the drum and the wild sound of electric guitars I was hooked.

From then on I became a rocker. I had long hair and I would play my music really loud. Not as loud as some of the ceilidh music though. I liked Pink Floyd and Aerosmith in particular.

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Rebel Islander

The city offers work, a step up the ladder, a social life, and a wealth of distractions.
It is a place of opportunity and corporate interactions.
Millennials are told and told again.
I, on the other hand, rebelled.
I didn’t want to ‘get ahead’,
To commute, to pollute, to consume, to be subsumed by the noise, the want, and the desire.
A future of -
‘just another year renting’
‘just another year sharing’
‘just another year of a house that is not a home’
‘just another place that I will never belong’

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No Passport or Bus Pass Required

I had to get out of the country. I had no passport and no chance of getting one without being traced. The obvious choice was to find a small boat, but where?

Big ferry ports are a waste of time. There's security everywhere and you won't get far without a ticket, never mind a passport. Even trying the port area in the vicinity of a ferry terminal is useless. If you do manage to find a small boat with a talkative owner, he'll politely decline your request for fear of getting picked up by the customs patrols.

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