Poem: Present/Future

Writing

 

We only have the present.

Regardless of what we want in our futures,

It is the ‘now’ which takes all of the credit.

 

Living in the moment,

An experience unknown to many.

We disown it in exchange for a chance to oneday own a moment, 

Which is nothing more than merely a ‘maybe’.

 

Hope is one thing.

Oblivion another.

Do you look in the mirror and see yourself for who you are?

Or always strive to be somebody better?

 

Are We Truly Selfish Or Kind?

Writing

Altruism – “Having or showing an unselfish concern for the welfare of others.”

Do you think you’re a nice person? And by this, self-validation in the form of saying “thank you” to the cashier and “hello” to your neighbor I’m afraid doesn’t quite cut it.

This question springs to my mind in light of a recent conversation I had with a work colleague, as a previous psychology student he divulged in a mixture of both his past successful and failing science experiments within the field.

One which stood out had to be the case where he intended to a stage a robbery, not by using actors or people who were atleast aware of actions to be taken upon them. Oh no, he was aiming to use the element of surprise and stage robberies on innocent ill-prepared passer-bys. The psychology experiment wasn’t to analyse jumpscare reactions, it was in his words to put to test the behaviors of the witnessing bystanders. In other words, would someone come to the rescue of the person who has just been robbed? Thereby testing to what extent people exhibit altruism. Do you think you would go to their rescue in the example above?

Whether you would or not, or whether anyone would  for that matter, the experiment never came to fruition, no surprises as to why. One sniff downwind that one of the school’s students aimed to scare the sh*t out of members of the public and the study was shutdown. Who wants a pass in psychology when it comes at the cost of being passed a 10 year jail sentence for manslaughter because the test subject suffered a heart attack?

As I digested the story of his scientific setback, it got me thinking – are we really as kind as we like to think?

Moving away from human beings for just a moment, I recently came across this video of altruism being exhibited in the bird species – the African grey parrot.

Here you can see that although bird one does not receive a treat for indirectly facilitating in the passing of a token to the human hand by passing it to the bird that does, it still chooses to continue the action despite no reward. A selfless act if you ask me! And likewise, when the birds switched places, the same was shown, they continued to help get the token to the human hand even when they themselves were not rewarded with food and the other bird was:

Courtesy of The Scientist

So where am I going with this? Well, if birds have the capacity for selflessness, then so should humans, right? Afterall, we live in a society, there is a need to be social, to create bonds and work co-cooperatively, so surely it’s in our best interests to look out for eachother, no?

So why might we want to help eachother?

Neuroscience? –  The reward centers in the brain are activated when we carry out an altruistic act [source: Hinterthuer].

But isn’t this in itself a selfish thing? I help you because it makes me feel better?

Survival technique – Cooperative Breeding? – offspring receive care not only from their parents, but also from additional group members, often called helpers. As Burkart suggests in Psypost: “When our hominin ancestors began to raise their offspring cooperatively, they laid the foundation for both our altruism and our exceptional cognition.”

So perhaps deep down helping others really means helping ourselves.

 

Poetry: Change

Writing

A leopard can change its spots.

But cheetahs never do.

Changing your mind is one thing.

But changing your heart, is about as easy as making a mountain move.

 

2020

A new year, a new you.

This year will be different.

A false promise? Or does here lie the truth?

 

Do you need to change your perspective?

Moreso than actually changing you?

Do you need to take more time reflecting?

Than taking time, faking, being too big for your boots?

 

Poem: Stress

Writing

Stress.
The subtle strangler.
It manifests itself in many ways.
A fabrication of the mind.
Sending cortisol coursing through our veins.

Life – so full of precious pressures.
So petty, so small, minute.
‘A busy life is a happy one.’
A lie disguised as truth.

Poem: Home

Writing

Where is ‘home’?

Is home my little brick house by the sea, corroded by gale gusts and seagulls?

Is home the place in my mind, that place noone else can see of?

Does my heart lead me home, where my parents still reside?

Or if migrated, is it instead the place where I first began life?

Tell me –  ‘home’?

Is it just a little place that we dream of?

 

What if I said that I had no ‘home’?

Would this be a joy or tragedy?

A nomad has no set land of their own.

So does this mean that they must live life tragically?

 

Why do we feel the need to call a certain location a ‘home’?

For a sense of security, comfort and shelter?

If we were to all lose our homes tomorrow,

Would it be for the worse or for the better?

 

 

 

 

Change

Writing

I feel like I’m in such a weird space at present, no sooner have I moved flat than I’m trawling the jobboards of everything from Indeed.com to Craigslist (ok maybe not Craigslist).  Being a seasoned veteran on these job sites is not something I’m proud of, frequenting them so much that Google ads now pop up with ‘need a new job?’ as I’m downloading a voucher off Groupon for a pair of discounted leggings.

What’s going on with me?

I just have this inbuilt element of restlessness, like the kind you get when you sit on a computer chair for too long and your ass starts getting really itchy. I have to get up and move, find something different. I truly think there’s something not right with me, I honestly get bored of things too frequently and too quickly. Tell me I’m NOT the only one who feels this way?!

This attitude has seeped its way into every aspect of my life, from where I live to what I eat. I’m a glutenous pig for chips, but I just can’t stomach any other food item repeated more that twice in a row.

This element of ‘change’ has sprung to mind in more recent times as I think about how much change I’ve actually went through since moving to London. Change to me is like a flame to a moth, I’m attracted to it but with dangerous consequences.

Jobs, housing, hobbies, hair colour! I’ve done it all! I seriously ask myself if I’m having some sort of identity crisis, a quarter life breakdown, perhaps? But these frantic thoughts and feelings are swiftly pacified by a session of binge eating and multiple episodes of ‘Botched’. But  I guess you can only suppress your feelings for so long, sooner or later they creep back out from under the woodwork. Manifest themselves in mysterious ways. If you’ve ever found yourself getting annoyed at the checkout lady in the supermarket for not scanning through your groceries fast enough then maybe it’s actually a sign that you’re internally annoyed at yourself for something. or if you find yourself crying after impulsively ending the short life of a housefly which landed on your homemade Victoria sponge, maybe it’s time for some self-reflection.

At least this is what I’ve found in my own life, frustration in myself can wrongfully be taken out on those closest to me. One thing I get frustrated about is this sense that we have such little time on this planet and it’s as if I change what I’m doing a little too often because in some subconscious way I have massive fomo (fear of missing out). Life is short I want to try as much as I can, I guess. But is this really the best attitude to have?

There’s really no point getting worked up about time, I know that but sometimes you can’t help it. When you see people your age travelling or enjoying certain experiences you can’t help but wish you had those too, right? That’s why I think social media on the whole isn’t a good thing for people’s mental health. We are being bombarded by a plethora of photoshopped pictures, and rented out rich lifestyles. Photos and opinions are liked and disliked, all of it a facade at the end of the day.

Apologies, I feel like I’m going off on a bit of a tangent, I just wanted to share with you this element of change I’m going through currently. I wonder if I’m alone with this, or have you went through change as frequently as I?

I’ll leave this with you, the words of Greek Philosopher Heraclitus (terrible choice of name):

change is the only constant in life.”

 

 

 

 

Poetry: Success

Writing

The sweet scent of success,

If only it lingered just that little bit longer.

If only it tasted just that little bit stronger.

 

Is success a waiting game,

Or a game of chase?

Should I give it my all,

Or should I accept my fate?

 

Success.

The word on the tips of all of our tongues.

Yet what it actually means,

Is anyone’s guess,

So has yours ended or begun?

Poem: Time

Writing

We think about the future,

So that we can enjoy its ‘present’.

But like a dollar bill drifting in the wind.

We never do quite catch it.

 

We worry that it’s not on our side.

Like it’s going by too quickly.

Asking ‘where does it fly’?

 

Time – isn’t it a peculiar concept?

Does it exist or does it not?

As humans have we just ‘created’ it?

Or is it time that created us?

 

We can’t rewind the clocks,

And we certainly can’t speed them up.

Why don’t we just get lost in the moment?

And not worry about the time that we’ve lost?

 

What Does It Mean To Be Human?

Writing

As I sit with a cold bag of peas smooshed against the left cheek of my painfully windburned face (Northern Ireland’s coastlines are blustery af), I gasp in awe at the astoundingly graphic yet oddly fascinating scenes of ‘Surgeons – At The Edge Of Life’, a show guaranteed to have you on the edge of your seat grappling for the sick bucket I can assure you. From close-up camera angles highlighting the magnificent ability of the surgeons to intentionally stop a 3 year old child’s heart on the operating table in order to conduct surgery on the respiratory system, to the scenes of pneumatic drills screwing in metal rods vertically down the spinal cord of a 63 year old man. All I can say is it’ll put you right off your TV dinner and straight onto Google to investigate all types of weird questions about your very own body.

Mesmerised by every filmed intricate movement the hospital staff make in their efforts to save the lives of patients in life-threatening conditions to vastly improving the quality of life in others. To being in awe of the recovery and the adaptability to which the human body is capable of, I ask myself, are we all just bags of flesh and bone, or are we something more than that? Having a ‘personality’, the ability to empathize and rationalize, are these not qualities spared only for humanity or are we all just an experiment of evolution? Evolution going so far as to grant us with the brain to body ratio necessary to think logically and imaginatively and perhaps to think that there is more to us than maybe there really is?

What does it mean to be human?

Haiku Time!

Writing

How do you feel now?

That I am no longer here.

Do you feel….freedom?

two people holding each other s hands

Photo by rawpixel.com on Pexels.com

I close my eyes tight.

Yet I still can’t erase you.

From my dreams at night.

abstract art artistic blur

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

 

Sugar – sickly sticks

Sweet sensory sensations

May it never end.

coffee dark candy chocolate

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

Poem: A Human

Writing

A Human

A subatomic bunch of laughter and woes,

From our nose down to our toes,

We either grimace or glow.

Why are we here on this planet of blue sea and earth?

Does it own us?

Or do we own the world?

Brief is the time we get to embrace it.

You blink your eye,

and it’s gone, you’ve missed it.

Decades of memories have gone, they’ve passed.

All that’s now left,

a subatomic mass within grass.

 

How morbid am I?! Although it’s true, life is so precious because it’s so short. So as Horace so eloquently put it ‘carpe diem’!

 

 

Poem – Lost

Writing

Lost

I feel lost sometimes.

Like I don’t fit in.

And yet I don’t want to stand out.

I just bear and  grin.

A broken doll.

Is an appearance I feel from within.

 

But I shouldn’t always play the victim,

life is kind to me at times.

I only wish I wasn’t just as strict in,

How I divided up my time.

 

Life has no map.

It has no compass.

But even if it did.

I still believe that I’d be hopeless.

At reading every bit.

How do you build belief in yourself?

This question I internally ask.

Are we doomed to be the prisoners of our own mindsets?

Or are we blessed in just being lost?

 

 

 

Sigmund Freud – Pioneer or Provocateur?

Writing

The name ‘Sigmund Freud’ brings with it antagonistic thoughts in my mind, was he a sexist pig or pioneering psychoanalyst?

I was going to enter a poetry competition recently about his findings on ‘civilisation and it discontents’. But something stopped me in my tracks. It was the opinions of others around me when I told them of my plans. I went to the Sigmund Freud Museum in London, listened to his theories, saw his thinking chair, saw his daughter’s room. I went into the gift shop and saw mugs, and fridge magnets, tea towels and aprons. Were they all dressing up someone who needed to be un-masked, I thought? Or is there truly room for celebration for his psychoanalytic work?

Below you will see the start of my poems I was going to enter, you can read two alternative endings on the beginning of my thoughts and feelings towards him. Perhaps I was wrong not to enter the poetry competition. But whether I agree with his theories or not, I felt like my poetry was not yet ready to explore his person. I still don’t know if he is famous or infamous, all I know is he is thought-provoking and I will need to do further research before I can form a true opinion of my own.

I’ve read articles such from physchology today and the Huffington Post, dichotomous reads.

My question is, who was Sigmund Freud, really?

A Civilisation of Discontent

I laugh in hysteria,

daydreaming about se……

x-rays of my inner emotions.

There’s this constant commotion of chaos.

I get lost.

In Life.

Yet, still, I don’t want to lose my life.

Civilisation has me in a choke-hold.

The kiss of death imminent.

Yet in this moment I am reborn.

The vice grip of society loosens as I sense the sweat trickle down my neck.

My anxieties become my strengths.

 

You ask me for what brings this discontentment?

I lament, and answer softly.

Because I am a human in disagreement.

For I do not agree that rape is an innate desire within me,

I do not agree that by killing another human being,

 it would infact pacify me.

 

*Oedipus Complex  *Penis Envy  * Hysteria

 

A Civilisation of Discontent

I laugh in hysteria,

daydreaming about se……

x-rays of my inner emotions.

There’s this constant commotion of chaos.

I get lost.

In Life.

Yet, still, I don’t want to lose my life.

Civilisation has me in a choke-hold.

The kiss of death imminent.

Yet in this moment I am reborn.

The vice grip of society loosens as I sense the sweat trickle down my neck.

My anxieties become my strengths.

 

My mind has morphed,

And I feel no more,

Pain.

My walls have come down,

I embody now,

A reversed resistance to change.

 

*Defeating Resistance To Change  * Development  *Defence Mechanisms

 

**Please note I have gave different sides, because I take no side. So don’t bash me and say I’m a hater! Just a discusser! My poems are based off of opinion not fact. I’m neither for or against Freud, just offering alternative viewpoints to his studies through poetry.

 

What are your thoughts on Sigmund Freud?