Mils’ Ad Hoc blog

Tipping point / Slipping point

And I did so want it to B

And I did so want it to C

And I did so want it true

And I did so want it you

And the point at which I have tipped away

Was only reached today,

As I realised I no longer am

A sacrificial man.

In the absence of any expression 

On your part 

Of soul and love and life and heart

And where 

Every attempt I’ve made

To contact you true

Has met with your insolent daze

Of electronic 

Shut me out –

And add me guilt 

And burden on shoulders 

Already so weighty 

With the baggage 

Of a wifetime –

That sight time has now become

The last thing I yearn.

For the only thing now 

Which could turn this on its head

And make me want you

All again to bed 

And make me dream

Of the head you’d give

Me wildly unseemly –

Oh so tiny 

Dead – 

Is if you showed 

Me – Nay! 

Proved without doubt! – 

That you ever loved me at all.

Because the tipping point 

Is now the slipping point

And my desire for you

Is gone the way 

Of the other three women 

Never in my life:

Down the tube 

Like oncoming train – 

An underground passage

Of fate, just too 


On “schizophrenality” #veteranality #criticaldiscourseanalysis #criminaljustice #ljmu

The day started out with that rubbish idiocy of the old fiver which remains legal tender but doesn’t have to be accepted.  I had one slipped my son’s way via Aldi in Chester yesterday; when I came to use it at a Costa at Cheshire Oaks this morning, rejection was the name of the game; later, at a place called Liv in Liverpool, with two banks either side of the establishment, I had someone repeat the act – even though the banks’ staff had confirmed it was still legal tender to midnight.

It’s actually more futilely complex than the above suggests, but that is not to be the subject of this post.  Suffice it to say that I was in a really sad mood for most of the morning.

However, the day is ending up in far better way, and education and real learning are the reasons and the drivers for this change in my feelings and mood.

Primarily at the hands of two fabulous articles which arrived via Emma Teresa Murray, the lecturer of my “Crime, Power and Victimisation” (CPV) module (she’s also my dissertation supervisor for her pains!).

The first one arrived at my laptop because I searched “veteranality” through Google on the open web and stumbled across this beautifully brief overview of the concept here:…/09627251.2013.865497.p…

The article is by Emma herself, who coined the term some years ago.  I can highly recommend this introduction to some of the key issues.

I then started annotating it a bit randomly, as is my wont and preferred learning style, finding connections and relationships, as well as downright counterpoints, with an idea I have only managed to tease more fully out this afternoon.  The idea relates to my own experiences of hospital imprisonment at the hands of mental health legislation, institutions, processes and procedures used in England & Wales in 2003, whilst I was suffering mental dysfunctionality.  It was argued that I was mentally ill (ie me as an individual, with an individual condition).  Never at any time did anyone involved in the process suggest that I could be mentally distressed (ie at the mercy of an aggressive environment, reacting as cogently as I was able, to the same).

So as with veteranality, and the 20,000 veterans touched (maybe fingered would be a better term) by the Criminal Justice system, I am beginning to wonder if “schizophrenality” could be a similar kind of thing.  It’s the focus of the assignment I am currently writing for the CPV module Emma has been running in a mind-blowing and horizon-widening way over the past few months at LJMU, as I proceed with my second semester on the MA in Criminal Justice I am currently studying.

It’s a really eye-opening module, and I am able to say I shall never be the same person again.

The second article which Emma has more directly sent my way is a brilliant 36-page overview, explanation and example case study on Critical Discourse Analysis, nicely focussed around top-down elites, text and talk.  I started it whilst having a Cup of Joe at Joe & the Juice in Liverpool One, and have fairly engulfed it.  Again, it comes highly recommended via Emma, and I can equally highly concur.

In this case, by Teun A. van Dijk, from Amsterdam University.

A really really cool pair of texts, which have rescued my day from initial misery.  Thanks to all concerned (people, concepts, ideas and methods …).  Learning is truly my saviour in moments like these.

And I am now well set up to scribble furiously on with my assignment for the module in question.


Dublin 2017 #notjustonething 

Last summer, on my 54th birthday, I met the most wonderful woman in the world.

This May, exactly a month before my 55th birthday, I will have dinner in exactly the same place as I met this absolutely beautiful brain.

But this year I shall be accompanied only by memories: by the past; by the passed also, perhaps.

Physically, I will finally be solo.  Yet mentally, I will finally be complete.

The last nine months have been a serious period of emotional gestation for me.  

Yet with the interventions wise and glorious of Claire, for that is the name of the person I am describing, I have overcome a more than decade-long depression, due entirely to a relationship with her mother, dating from 2004, which broke up quite savagely and furiously after a very brief liaison.

The relationship was a madness from start to end, and deserved to end, of course: but not as it did.  No one – especially neither of these two parties on this occasion – deserves to bear the weight of so much pain.

And so in different ways, both of the lovers suffered equally distressing fates.

Both have wonderful children.  And this is surely an unalloyed blessing.

In my case, meanwhile, I refused to accept society’s judgement of me as paranoid schizophrenic.  

With respect to my opposite number in this affair, I lately know too little of her feelings to be sure if she really accepted her quite saddening diagnosis also.

I suspect she did, and I suspect she has.

My initial instinct is to think less of her for ultimately throwing in the towel on life’s terrible vicissitudes.  But we are all free agents, and have all suffered differently.  It is clearly not my right to pass judgement in any way.

What I do take away from the past nine months, and what I will treasure for the rest of my life, and what will mean that I will never love another woman again, is the look and glance and hug and smile and speech and gentleness and guts and sheer honesty which Claire expressed to me that 16th of June 2016, when we had dinner in The Woollen Mills in Dublin, and – as a result – I began my slow road to full emotional recovery. 

You never renege on a woman who regales you such a gift.

And now I never shall.

“A fr[agile] mind”*

Those of us who have it are wiser than wise:

we sadden and gladden with equal measure:

we see the whirled as it really flies and 

feel the whirled as it really dies: and after all

is said and done by yous, the clues to our wisdom 

are clear as day: whatever we do and may and might,

there’s nothing more eagle-eyed than the sight we possess, embrace and caress.

So remember that, yous fragile minds: 

in every fragility there is absolute agility.

Don’t forget above all yous are – in fact!so brave

that no one’s rage will be deserving 

of re-serving your time: never double-booked are you;

always looking, always seeing that goddamn tingly truth.

And thus remember this, and never forget that:

your perspicacity, your precise agility,

the grandeur of your exact fragility …

… all this and more is what makes yous right:

yous heroines and heroes of super-powered flight!

* For my daughter, who coined this term last night to describe both herself and this father, who proudly found himself speaking to her at the time.  

Earlier that day, she had also pointed me in the direction of the following video, from which I have taken inspiration for this morning’s poem.  I hope Neil doesn’t mind this.  I was mighty impressed, is all.

Finally, some photos I took and processed yesterday in Liverpool, as I continue to wander my auto-ethnographic way through life.

“… angels: ‘unbolted!’ …”



Am going to be insufferably unboltedly happy for the next year.

Tetiana and Tony have very kindly guest-posted a poem of mine about my recent visit to Dublin, along with a recording I made.

You can find the original post here.

And the noise is me doing virtual somersaults!!!


Oh, and Claire needs a mention here too, ‘cos part of what happened I get the feeling is due to wisdoms of a grand nature on her considerably wonderful part.


Ill-health vs distress

When it’s so easy 

To hurt someone

And make them 

Feel bad about themselves 

And gain advantage 

And build disadvantage in

And use an environment 

As a tool to break down 

Instead of build up,

Where’s the incentive

Not to try?

Where’s the why 

To resist the temptation?

Who ever didn’t 

Prefer to

Give in?

Ain’t hard at all …

So when you discover …

And when you uncover …

And when beautifully clever …

And when people …

And when they know more than you …

And then they do go tell you …

And you learn …

And so the person you mistaken thought …

Loved you herself …

And for yourself has sought …

And then you see …

How it ain’t like that …

And the see is fine …

And the rhyme is true …

And it wasn’t her for you, at all …

It was everyone in kindness, lieu …

And then it becomes clear …

And you see the pattern fearlessly …

And nothing is mere …

And nothing is near …

And nothing is or …

Nor either nor untold …

And the reality slowly does unfold …

And so now you can live …

With it easily … 

Bold …

Be the [d]river, not the [d]riven

When you lose your rag

and grand your voice

and toy with oh so debatable 

mad, and 

you refuse to stand firm

and then your life

takes a horrible 

turn and a curse 

for the worse,

and you gently begin

to reflect on toxicity,

and you realise you do share 

some of the 

blame now;

and how you don’t want to continue

being so sad, 

nor saying cruel things

about people 

who actually 

do want to help,

and it really would be grand,

and when visiting and 

speaking and talking is 

so good for you,

and loving and listening 

and doing cool stuff,

then you know

it is time to announce to the world

you must now be quite free

to be with

people you wish:

no questions gnawed 


no twosome any more 

which ain’t love as you desire: 

a love this on fire!

When bad stuff happens, and … #ireland #truth #culture #art

When bad stuff happens 

and still you love

a nation and state 

and place 

as if it were home,

as if every other place you’d gone to

had gone to 

and been from

a most of real loss …

… and it’s then 

you do realise how much sense it does make

to strive your best 

to take a risk 

and chance the future 

on what you now will 

always love.

And whilst some people hurt you 

and do their best 

to rest your pride,

your sense of self,

just because – goddamnit! – out of time  

they have occupied

a nation you fell in love with,

and tried to define your be and rhyme … 

… and then listen, dear man!

Now do require: require

yourself no rejection 

of culture and nature 

and suture 

fine: a surgical binding;

a reminding of meaning;

the essence of 

Ireland –

the truth it proclaims.

No derangement

nor denial of realities misconstrued:

instead, an attachment so

very fierce to the 

being and seeing 

and reading and righting 

of wrongs perpetuated universal

by that eternal injustice

of ill-adjusted human.

So never lose your fascination 

with the wrong of this song:

a melody of

disharmony is love uncalibrated 

for the man I am become;

and far better is such spontaneity 

than the impetuous cruelty

of the imposing dark 

suns that 

decline like evil 

clockworked night 

of each and every … 

of all our strifes.

I suppose I have a life …

I suppose the uni-

verse is telling me this pattern:

and I am radically refusing 

to accept its verdict and advice.

I have a life and family

and am just one man amongst so many

more: so when others live as best they can,

what right do I have to do 

what they quite clear cannot?