Posts Tagged ‘nightmare’

. . . . how self-confidence, however rigorous, strong or embedded can be shredded by anxiety. I got MY letter today and read every word as it was not only an explanation of future matters but also a first point of contact. No one wrote or phone or emailed me to say this was coming and that I should prepare myself for a repetition of my humiliation by the ignorant to determine if I should be aided by Her Majesty’s Government. Appealing was an indignity, finally winning at Tribunal with specialists supporting me. The Department of Health & Security’s representative obviously having had the necessary papers thrown to him minutes before he sat down in front of a lawyer as chairman and a local Councillor and Trade Union representative. That told the whole story. When Neurologists and witnesses of my condition put ink on paper they cannot be mistrusted or brought into question by the DHS. I was made a lifetime decision. Because it took so long it cost HMG thousands of pounds in back payments with which I could repay my debts to good friends.

Already I hear the whisperings “but that’s my tax money”, well who helped pay for your grandfathers pension or hospitalisation? For your children’s education etc. etc. I did. After 2 World Wars after which the returning soldier or anyone who had a role in winning, were promised freedom, liberty and equality especially in medical and social matters, this Prime Minister has finally discarded some of the final threads of what his colleagues would call the “nanny state” in private of course. Soldiers literally, return from modern day battle with disabilities and are ignored, thrown aside. Sailors and Airmen after serving their country for many years are made redundant and then the government place an advertisement on the television for the Royal Marines??

Equality, – if you have enough money with which to try and destroy the world’s financial markets and oh by the way, make generous contributions to the Conservative or Republican party, which can now only be seen as corruption. Two to three years later how many financiers have been prosecuted, how many Executives have taken responsibility and how much non-paid tax has been gathered. I recently read that unpaid tax amounted to ten times the amount that could be possibly gathered from benefit fraud.

The very tone of MY letter is of constricted black and white alternatives, “You will” “It is important” the whole tone is that of you shall! or starve. Employment and Support Allowance (note the words of actual definition ‘Incapacity’ “Illness”, “Disability” and “Severe Disablement” have vanished from titles and text) and ‘lifetime decisions’ of the DHS Tribunal completely disappeared, no acknowledgement, nothing, no mention of appeal. The whole point of tribunal arrangements was to avoid the courts which were clogged up enough no doubt. This Prime Minister has played an ace card, it is not a court who made such decisions therefore, they count for nothing. So yet again I have to show that I do not have a wheelchair but still a big problem, however embarrassing, however hard I might try to pursue one day at time in some lucid form, I am required to…. well let me quote it:

“Customers will be considered and assessed for Employment and Support Allowance between 2010 and 2014”. I wonder what I am buying?

“We will send you a questionnaire” “We use the information to decide if you need to attend a Work Capability Assessment”, “A health care professional (a contractor has been employed to find and employ them) will assess you and advise Jobcentre Plus how your illness or disability affects you in your everyday life” This professional in most cases will be a doctor without a job, not a specialist Professor in Neurology and Neurosurgery whose clinic I have attended every 3 months for a very long time. They will, probably, not know the extent or possibility of harm complex partial seizures have and will do. Side effects of drugs or of the damage done by full seizure when I was younger.

“You may be required to attend a work-focused health-related assessment and work focused interviews” – oh boy, the bureaucrat is back in the saddle, despite amassing a bill at lunchtime (a recent scandal) larger than genuine benefit fraudsters create in one year. Yes, I believe that people out there are pretending because of sheer laziness or are just corrupt. Landlords claiming for dead tenants, people fully recovered but still claiming assistance. But I don’t believe that those who chase the sick have the clarity of thought that work should be created for the able-bodied and the cheater routed out in all places first. This week I heard British companies were advertising in foreign countries in the native language of those countries?.

“IF YOU DON’T YOUR BENEFIT MAY BE AFFECTED” (their capitals). “We then decide if you are entitled to Employment and Support Advice”. I now have a new Neurology Consultant who even expresses his concern at my being “unaccompanied” in a letter to my General Practitioner whose clinic I have to chase to get a medical prescription out of each month. This is for medicine I have taken for 25 years. This clinic is now run by a private company overseen by a medical Trust. 7 years ago it was run by a group of doctors and someone would call you, usually staff on doctor’s instructions, you would even know their name and say “you have forgotten your Prescription David, are you OK? Not now! The shifting of budget and medical referral responsibilities to the General Practitioner or the family doctor, a Urology Specialist once explained to me, was to slow down the money coming to medicine in general from central government.

I read and hear of the disabled, attending the above interviews and there is no access for wheel chairs! Mobility in the form of a car removed from a suffer of palsy, her husband worked part-time so they could afford their life and tipped the balance so no more going out. Others now taking their own lives rather than be immobilised or pushed into a lonely poverty, I understand, it is just too much. This letter lying before me now from Glasgow not a local Jobcentre, means I have travelled back in time to the mid 90’s, when self-employed I simply could not get people to pay me and so had nothing to eat or pay the rent and was epileptic too. A lowest point. The attitude then was ‘no wheelchair’ no disability, no assistance, until one asked about Disability Working Allowance and was asked to “wait a minute”.

All this instigated by a man who wheeled out his disabled son to meet the press, is now an overweight Prime Minister, who wants to hurt me for the accumulation of debt by the greedy?


In this field of positivity, there is a stone. It cannot be moved by the plough of knowledge, it cannot be moved by the pneumatic drill of progress, and on  it letters have faded to braille or have sharply chiselled serifs. Not Buddha, Jesus or Mohammed’s words, but text only understood by who finds it. The greatest obstacle to this throne stone?


There are many productive meadows, in which to create, re-model, re-design the future, but there are no roads to this fertile grassland and there are no paths on the range , only chest high harvests of realisation. Drifting so far from belief, logic or reason means many miles of life walking and  if we find the field the best one can do is cling to the perimeter fence.

Some do not have fences as natural clustering or gathering together helps in the climbing search. Assists in the struggles with daytime movement and fights off the nightmare with mutual security. Civility is draining away, helping without gain is not fashionable. If you are not in the now you are no one. Rather group in a dark pool of street corner limelight, in the new team, the new faith, the new circle, as natural gregariousness will persist. These will never find the field, their feet never leave, in all its irony, street stone.

Difficult enough to find in a swaying harvest,  one’s  stone has to be uncovered,  is cracked granite, or perhaps  polished marble, but heavily compressed  needs no test and will always be a cornerstone. That is our conscience or the still small voice.


nightmare gate

Posted: February 18, 2012 in Entertainment
Tags: , ,

Richard paced the square, he had seen this on film. That he was a prisoner had been a very slow realisation nonetheless. He knew his name, but how did he know his name? Who had named him? His mind was a cell.

Richard paced his square as he did every morning, every day perhaps, for as long as he could remember. He felt good this morning but did not know it because the only conditions he could rationally realise were comfortable or uncomfortable. He comfortably looked at the walls and the floor and the ceiling. They were their eternal white. The surfaces almost glowed and looked too hot or too cold to touch? Yet again he turned this over in his mind and dared not touch. He simply continued to shuffle around the perimeter of his square, in his protective boots, which he only wore for this simple exercise which began every day.

He reached the triangular symbol for the twentieth time and as it always did, it grew in size to accommodate return to his circular room. He never attempted to break with his routine on any occasion as he knew he would immediately feel uncomfortable. He could not remember the last time he had broken the scheme of his day, but he remembered the pain which started in his lower back and raced at terrific pace up his spine into his head. This thought began to ricochet around his mind as he found the entrance to his round room sealed?

He concentrated harder but did not struggle with the entrance, just passively tried to open it by replacing his hand on the red, glowing circle beside it. Almost immediately the circle moved off and down the corridor, away from Richard’s exercise square and circular room, he dutifully followed. One hundred yards further on in a direction he had never ventured before he stopped as quickly as the circle halted and obediently entered the triangular entrance which developed to his size. He gazed in wonder at this new place. He squinted and blinked and stretched his eyes wide open but still could not see where dimensions or perspectives he was used to, began or ended.

Then he received a tremendous shock that made him shake and tremble. Everything was suddenly blackness, something he had never known was complete darkness. This was the opposite to his extreme existence in the reassuring white glow he had always known. It seemed an age before Richard unravelled himself from the protective foetal position which he had crumpled into. The convulsive sobbing still in his throat he sat up and touched his hand to his face and suddenly his fingers felt different and then between his thumb and forefinger. Why was he experiencing moisture from his eyes? In the lightless environment he could not fully appreciate what even teardrops were.

Before he could ponder any further the light which had led him to this discomfort reappeared beside him. It did not lead him any further but the slight illumination it provided fell upon a form which he recognised immediately. It was the same as the rectangular bench he lay on to sleep in his circular room. This floating transparent slab, somehow invisibly supported, was at that moment as reassuring to Richard as anything he might of thought of in this strange place. Despite its familiar hardness, he stretched himself out expecting to feel the inner warmth he normally experienced before sleeping in the white circular room. As he did so more light began to permeate the area around him. Despite the lack of expected warmth and increasing light he fell asleep.

Eight hours later he awoke as usual in his circular white room, next to his wife, the first Lady of America. He realised he was late for a visit to a pentagonal room on Capitol Hill! He sat on the edge of his bed and pulled on his protective boots.

(wrote this in 1981, I was still at college. Found it in old diary pages.) dwk