The Near Aftermath

The coronavirus gave me the worst illness I have ever experienced. I’ve had chills and fever that were so severe that I couldn’t shift out of bed. I was still shivering even with the electric blanket on the highest setting. The virus does its evil work by bogging down the immune system, forcing the body […]

The View from My Sickbed

The NHS believes I have the coronavirus. The pleasant GP on the other end of the phone ran through my symptoms while I lay in bed. She told me that there is no testing at this point in time. The focus, she said, is on treatment, not testing. Just rest, take paracetamol, drink plenty of […]

In the Shadow of the Coronavirus

“Oh, damn.” That was my first thought when I woke up on Friday the 13th. I had that scratchy feeling in the back of the throat, my lungs felt like there was something they wanted to expel. Sure enough, I coughed. I hoped it was a one-off. No. I coughed again. I sat up and […]

On the Campaign Trail

The dark clouds obscured the twilight. Rain was falling steadily, large drops bounced off the hood of my olive green jacket. I accidentally cut my finger: it didn’t hurt, but it was one of those irritating lacerations that wouldn’t stop bleeding. I covered it with my thumb as I grasped my stack of leaflets tightly. […]

Bernie Sanders and the Half-Breed Blowhard

Author’s note: recent comments by Donald Trump’s spokesperson about other politicians being “half-breeds” reminded me of how the “Death Eaters” in the Harry Potter series focused on the necessity of having “pure blood”; apparently J.K. Rowling thought the same:   Ironically, Trump’s mother was born in Scotland, hence he’s also a “half-breed”. The following story […]

Refugees Welcome

The story could have had a different outcome. With an alternate set of policies and priorities, 3 year old Aylan Kurdi might have lived. He could have settled in Bedford or Peterborough, gone to school, torn holes in his navy blue jumper, gotten scrapes on his knees after falling off his bike, done well on […]

The Very Model of a Modern Labour Candidate

My black suit was clean and pressed. My white shirt with a herringbone pattern embedded into its weave had been ironed. A silk maroon tie was neatly tucked underneath my stiff collar, tied into a Windsor knot. The head of fresh red rose was pinned to my lapel. I had shaved around my beard that […]

A Death in the Family

I was probably the last human being to see my cat Amelia alive. It was a bright August morning: the coffee maker was gurgling away as it pushed hot water through the freshly ground beans. The kitchen was imbued with the scent of banana flavoured porridge which was just out of the microwave. The sun was […]

Standing

Democracy, contrary to what some may think, is not just about mentions in the press, appearances on television or cleverly contrived advertising campaigns. Often, its processes take place in humble locations among relatively small groups of people: just so, otherwise supposedly representative government would become solely a product of the media, who would spoon feed us […]

Yvette & Tom

The nominations for the Labour leadership and deputy leadership elections are now closed. As much as one may wish for more contenders to enter the race, rules are rules: one can’t write in “Keir Starmer” or “Dan Jarvis” on the ballot. Despite the many reservations which I’ve articulated previously, I’ve had time to think about for […]

Me And My Blog

Picture of meI'm a Doctor of Creative Writing, a husband, a son, a brother, an uncle, a published novelist, a technologist, a student, and still an amateur in much else.

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