Cuba Libre!

April 17, 2018

Fifty-seven years ago today, the Cuban people fought back bravely against the United States government-sponsored invasion by those who would put the corrupt Mob casino bosses and American corporations back in charge of their beautiful country.

Agreeing to the Bay of Pigs invasion — America returning to type — was probably the most inept decision ever taken by John Kennedy. Within hours, the CIA-backed invaders were already lost, and the whole enterprise collapsed within two days. Hundreds of combatants died and more than 1,000 “exiles” were captured and held for an extended period.

The invasion hardened attitudes to the States throughout the region, made Castro an even bigger hero than he was already, and strengthened Che’s revolutionary hand within the Politbureau.  It was a major failure by every possible metric and is still celebrated as such.

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Verses Festival of Words

April 17, 2018

The annual Verses Festival of Words kicks off this week with poetry, storytelling, and music events at various locations on and around the Drive — WISE Hall, Havana, Stormcrow, RIO Theatre, for example.

I was planning to write small synopses of each local event but, to be frank, I found their website just horrible to navigate — why can’t there be a simple list events somewhere? — but hopefully you will have better luck.

 


Night Music: Under The Boardwalk

April 16, 2018


Poem: Care

April 16, 2018

 

To enter into

the castle of her mind

 

— a private place adorned

with the illuminated thought

of past centuries —

 

was an adventure

she allowed to few.

 

The gate into

that world of reminiscence

 

— a veil ornamented

with the beauty and vacancy

of a divine smile —

 

was kept firmly shut

to all but the hardy.

 

The key to

that locked-up voice

 

— a brittle stained glass window

etched and impacted

by the meteors of time —

 

was inspiration

affection and love.

 


Image: Fleet In Fog

April 15, 2018


A Truly Brave Man

April 15, 2018

The first hero that I remember having was Duncan Edwards, the Manchester United footballer who was killed along with many others in the team in the Munich air crash of 1958.  The second was Yuri Gagarin.

Fifty-seven years ago last Thursday, Yuri Gagarin entered history as the first human being in space. A few years earlier, just before my 8th birthday, my father had taken the time to get me interested in the Soviet Union’s feat in putting Sputnik into space. I was entranced and remained an avid follower of the space race for decades. I followed the Russian dogs going up, and Gagarin’s flight was the obvious next step.

It wasn’t revealed for forty years that the cosmonaut ejected from the capsule before it crash-landed, parachuting to earth. And it was definitely sad for Gagarin that he was thereafter too valuable to put at threat and so he was never allowed to return to orbit. No matter.  That first flight was a glorious triumph for mankind!


I’ve Always Boycotted Starbucks!

April 14, 2018