Sunday, 8 November 2015

Infinite Inversions.

I Remember back in the fledgling days of punk being introduced to the poems of Wilfred Owen. You would have thought I would have learned about this man's work at school but alas we were thinly read at our school. A chap called Igor who dressed like something from a Victor Hugo novel and was missing a few front teeth told me about Anthem For Doomed Youth after I asked about a home made tee shirt he was wearing with the words of the poem written on it. He was something of a singular scarlet bloom was old Igor.It was an awakening of sorts for me, a call to arms to learn more, or rather the beginning of a deep rooted refusal to bear arms except as a very last resort.
             It is a very powerful piece of work and Wilfred Owen most have been something of a very special man. He died a week before the end of the war. The Great War as it was known then and now. Although history had a rather nasty lesson still to teach us regarding such a premature baptismal naming.There are now no survivors of that terrible war who may tell us in their own words what we very badly need to  hear. The inexorable march of time has reduced their number to zero.
             It is surely not hubris to try to speak for them or on their behalf or even to repeat the written form as laid down by those who lived it. The rights and wrongs of any conflict have so much power on their own it is hard at times to distinguish the loss. Perhaps that is what lay behind that powerful speech by The Doctor last night during the Zygon Inversion. His powerful denouncement of the refusal to seek compromise and the ignorance of the weight of responsibility that come with the decision to inflict suffering for its own sake.There is no cause more self defeating. War as a statement of what we are capable off, the hideous slouching terror shambling towards Jerusalem, the endless search for peace, the inversion of the best of us.Was it a coincidence this episode and the themes it invoked aired the night before today; Remembrance Sunday? Actually I do believe it was but in my confused little world I forget the whole world does not watch my favourite television show and a moment that makes me rise to my feet barely ripples on the shared cultural zeitgeist. Chances are though if you are reading this you might spend spend some time there yourself.
               Just wanted to say hello.

(Do you think that this will become recognised as the moment in many people's minds that Peter Capaldi truly became The Doctor. I have read him say in interviews that at times he looks in the mirror and he does not see The Doctor looking back. Maybe the mirrors he has been using are broken..)