Poor Me. Poor Us.

With the release of this year's story about refugees, (in part) I offer up this poem, which was written in late 2018.
I think it speaks for itself.

Spotlight to me

Welcome to the reinforced
Of a suburban/urban lifestyle
With its exaggerated persecutions
And its trivial transgressions
Its play-acting martyrdom
And back strapping faux symbolisms.

Mirroring a supposed horror
Which few can relate
Or respect the depths
Of its true origins.

Justify thy existence
Thy lightweight complaints
Made heavy via exaggeration
The ‘Much ado about nothing’ moans
Hollow tantrums and cat ‘o’ nine tails

Yeah, I’ll cry too
And make no change
As the currency of pity
Yields more gravitas than responsibility.

Purchase this book and others Here

Audio Story - Cycle of Poverty

My first Audio Story

The Loop

5 minutes

Feedback appreciated. I might do more of these if people want them.

Listen on  Soundcloud or YouTube below.

Please Share if you are able. Thank you!

From the story collection, Pseudo Stars, available here.

Book Trailers Bonanza! In time for Christmas.

With Christmas around the corner and this year's A Refugee's Rage, let's look back on previous book trailers, in order of release. 

All are available to purchase, here

Bottomless River - 2012

Caged without Walls - 2013

For your pleasure - 2015

Pseudo Stars - 2017

Allowing a love to die is not murder - 2018

A Refugee's Rage - Pre-Release Text Version - 2019

Order NOW and receive a FREE pdf story! Plus all proceeds to charity.

A Refugee's Rage - Full Vision/Out Now Version - 2019

Perfect as a Christmas Gift!

All books plus free downloads available at

Brexiteers: The Only Solution

Brexiteers: The Only Solution

This story first appeared in the Telegraph Post, November 29, 2019

by Robert Mandel, UK
'It was great for the protest. Now what the fuck do we do with it?

Unable to agree on whether to leave the European Union or not, Britain has opted to agree on one thing; that they cannot agree.

“There’s only one viable solution left to us,’ said one Tory member anonymously. ‘We are drawing up plans to divide Britain, much like Ireland. The I’s will have it. And the No’s will have it.”
A leaked source shows that blueprints have already been drafted, with the British public soon to be able to vote on the new plans. One half of Britain will stay with the E.U., the other half will become the Independent States of Britain. ISIB.

No doubt there will be much contention but as some people on the street we’ve already spoken to, think it’s the only way to satisfy everybody.

‘An excellent idea. We should have done it years ago.’

You went to the same printer, didn't you? 

‘It’s a truly superb notion. I can shop locally and spend my good old English pounds then I can go across the border and spend some Euro’s without having the nuisance of long-distance travel. Wonderful!’

‘I’m all for it mate. Hate mixing with those bloody whiners anyway. The majority get the vote but that’s not good enough for ‘em. They hate democracy. They’re bloody fascists is what they are!’

This lot just confused everybody

Some are saying that England should remain for the English and palm Scotland off to the E.U. ‘No one really wants them anyway,’ said one conservative.

We asked one local M.P., with a sense of flippancy, 'Will you build a wall?' He replied, quite seriously, 'That's a bit much but a barb wired fence might be useful.'

According to one source, the entire process has already cost 78 billion pounds. Thus far. 

From what we’ve already seen, though attractive to some, this solution won’t work. The only logistical notion is to divide all four Semi-Nations, England, Wales, Scotland and Ireland down the middle. Half of the territory to each half. 

Now some will argue that London, being a powerhouse of economic earnings, will be an unfair advantage to those who possess it. So a possible solution is to exclude London from this division by simply dividing London in half. The same could be applied to other major cities like Edinburgh and Cardiff. Or simple divide every single town into two. Instead of having one town butcher, there could be two! This could stimulate all economies. A logical solution. Also a logistical nightmare.

Make Britain Hate Again
(Kind of achieved already)

While many hope for an easier way forward, it’s clear that democracy is just not viable in the modern day. As soon as one party wins an election, the other says the system must be rigged and everyone is at each other's throats. Unless people opt for a Communist/Socialist State, which may not be so far-fetched, then sanctioned division may be the only way to quell the discontent. Or jump the ten year queue and join the China/Russia Super States. Communism is coming anyway.

For now...

Will the Brexiteers have it, or the Musketeers?

Follow the discussion at ...







1960's Brisbane - Nostalgia Video No. 8

Nostalgia Video Series

No. 8 / 10

1960's in Brisbane

See previous Nostalgia Videos

Mental Health Month - Reaching for help - and failing

Mental Health Month

I'm Sorry, Not Sorry


I’m sorry to hear about that

She posted about her sick aunt
Dying really
She hinted at that aspect
But wasn’t it already obvious?
‘I’m sorry to hear about that’
They said
Sad face emoji
She stared at her phone
And it’s comments
And felt suddenly and overwhelmingly, empty.

He texted his ex
In a variation of detail
About his physiological problems
Brought about by real life obstacles
Or were they just the catalyst
For the exaggerated stress
He was enduring?
He knew
As did she
That it was long standing issues
That had brought him to this juncture
Almost to his knees
And that’s what he didn’t want
To be ground to a halt
Nervous breakdown
Or whatever the modern term was.
‘I’m sorry to hear about that’
She wrote
He went on some more
But quickly understood the futility
His pleas and requests
Fell on not deaf ears
As she had heard him just fine.
He was on his own
And had no idea
How to make any of it better
He’d never felt more alone in his life.

Not Sorry

‘R U Ok’
No, I’m not
But what will you do about it?
What will anyone do?

‘You need to get some help
Have you seen a doctor?’

It’s the first port of call
Doctors come long before
Confession to a friend
Pills come long before
Public admittance
Battles are fought
Long before fragments of defeat
Are admitted.

‘I’m sorry about that’
Makes them feel better
Do they really care?
What can they do anyway?
Sometimes, plenty
Simple practical steps
Take part of the life load off
Offer to pick up a chore
Insist on a personal visit
If only a small amount
Rather than buzzwords
Spewed out like an auto-correct response.

‘I’m sorry to hear about that
Now, where was I?’

© ajl 2019

This poem and 9 others are now available in a pdf for download, called All Empires Crumble.
All are from 2019.

exsomnis by m_tau

Previous entries in this Series on Mental Health

Thank you to M. Tau for permission to use these specific visuals in this series. 
See her profile at DeviantArt