We live in ‘interesting’ times; there is the first usage of poetic truth (thank you to Nimue Brown for coining the phrase).
Why use the term ‘interesting’ instead of using words that actually relate to the times that we are living in (I won’t type them for the very reason that we need to use them)? Why do I think that we need to start speaking in ‘Poetic Truths’?
You will no doubt have come across at least one version of the poem by German Lutheran pastor Martin Niemöller (1892–1984): –
First they came for the Socialists, and I did not speak out–
Because I was not a Socialist.
Then they came for the Trade Unionists, and I did not speak out–
Because I was not a Trade Unionist.
Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out–
Because I was not a Jew.
Then they came for me—and there was no one left to speak for me.
Whether you are in the U.S. or the U.K. you could easily re-write this poem today substituting words such as ; Muslim, Benefit Claimants, Disabled, Journalist, and specifically in the U.S. Mexican American, Black and LGBT (although I don’t think the U.K. is too far behind on this).
What bearing does this have on those of us who follow ‘Alternative paths’?
Well they have already started on us – the new classification of ‘Eco-terrorism’ targets those of us who stand up and fight for Mother Earth; the water protectors in the U.S., the anti-fracking movement on both sides of the pond. You can guarantee that terms such as Pagan or Druid are somewhere on their target list.
We are laid wide-open in the days when technology rules and social media is one of our main forms of communication; algorithms and other key-word hunting robots hunt and search everything we write, and if we use the ‘wrong’ terminology they have us marked.
We need to play them at their own game, we need to learn to speak in terms that their machines won’t recognise, we need our own version of the ‘Orange T’s’ ‘alternative truth’ – we need POETIC TRUTH to protect ourselves.
No doubt you will also have come across the quote attributed to Mahatma Ghandi – “first they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they fight you, then you win”.
We are at the fight stage and we may well have the fight of our lives on our hands, a fight that if we want to survive it we need to learn to be clever, to protect ourselves from the technology that they use to seek us out, we have to start speaking in ‘Poetic Truth’s’.
I seriously do believe that in the end we will win, in the meantime I will protect myself. I have probably used far too much terminology in here that the minute I publish will be picked up, I must learn to be more creative.
This sounds like a plot for a suspense thriller novel – I only wish it was. – Tan Harvey