The deepwater port at Piraeus

At Piraeus’s deepwater port ends Europe where Themistocles built his navy sheds and high walls against the Persians, walls to protect the precious Athenian way of life. Now Europe ends in concrete and quayside cranes made elsewhere, raised over the sea to process containers sat waiting in the sunshine. An international ship approaches slows and […]

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Notes on the Common Good & Community Organising

These notes describe what I learned during a day (23 March 2018) in London spent with the Labour peer Maurice Glasman and the American community organiser Arnie Graf. The day was convened by Maurice Glasman to discuss his Common Good philosophy and to hear Arnie describe how to build powerful community organisations. Maurice Glasman It […]

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Stoned

When one is pushed off a high building, bound to a plastic chair is there any sense of relief – that one is freed from the barbarism, I mean? Does a crazy stillness prevail, am I feeling out for God’s hands, stretching hoping fantastically for lift? Whispering someone’s name. Does the smash hurt? I imagine it like […]

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Trump displays all the frailties of his sex: my predictions for 2016

(1) The billionaire is too weak to lead the United States of America Trump’s show-stealing offensiveness and derision of his opponents may still be enough to win him the Republican nomination (against weak opposition) but his lack of substance would be exposed in a run-off against Hillary Clinton. Hillary is the much tougher and more resilient character. […]

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Notes on Dubai

Sunday AM A taxi driver called Maithripala (not his real name) gives me a lift into town from Dubai’s International Airport. M is in his thirties, smart, apparently upbeat, anxious to be helpful. He is a fine driver but it is not hard to imagine him doing equally well in less monotonous work environments. M tells me that […]

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Mediterranean

Do you remember that glorious morning before the war when I swam you out into the sea, against your mother’s warning of urchins scouting the rock water for rays? You holding too tight around my neck, laughing, encouraging me over the blue space beneath our feet. You were not punctured by urchins that day. Or, […]

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North

Lonely on deck, the day in embers on Oslofjord I am riding the city ferry home. An islander from south of here, my temperate curiosity is catching cold in the autumn wind. And there is little drama on deck, just the lighthouse playing on wet rock, on the silos for international wheat, light play in […]

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