I’m at a Royal party. I’m dressed as a beefeater. R is there, dressed as a vicar. Lots of people are camping. It’s just before dawn. Some tents have collapsed in the rain. I talk to K and C in their collapsed tent. They seem to be quite happy.
A general calls us to order. A drunk 7 of 9 tries to organise us.
I’m playing a game. Vehicles drive past, but parts are in the wrong place. I shoot at them from my vehicle, and the parts slide around, like a tile puzzle. The aim is to get all the pieces in the right place, without moving the wheels, and stopping the vehicle. I finish round one, an SUV, and round two, a tank.
The tank is fired upon from behind. I steer it into a building on the right. There’s lots of infantry here. We enter a huge warehouse.
At its centre, a giant, cylindrical container, glowing light blue from a band around its top. My view changes. I’m looking down from above. I open the container. I pull out a glass cylinder of glowing blue light. I place it in a bag. An alarm is activated. I’m aware another giant is coming, to claim the power back. I scoop up my infantry, trying not to tread on them, though they are very small, and hard to see. I place them on my shoulders, in my pockets, both entry points to my internal weapons systems. Behind me, I see the other giant. It is fuzzy, it’s edges indistinct, from the many tiny individuals that make up its body. I instruct my small soldiers what weapons I have, where they are, and how to use them. I carry a small, tactical, nuclear device, that I recommend we arm, but save as a weapon of last resort. I ask them to arm missiles located in my back.
The other giant is gaining on me, as we stride across sand dunes. It trips. I see it clearly. It is an old dinosaur. It tells me that it’s not a dinosaur, but from another world. It’s offended that I think of it as a dinosaur.
As it tries to struggle to stand up, we escape, weapons and power cylinder intact.
I’ve visited my brothers in London. I realise I’ve bought too much vinyl, and a collapsible red metal pyramid cage, and ice I way to transport it all back home. I ask them nicely if I can leave it there for a while. They agree.
I play with a visualisation of a New Berlin on my iPhone. I fly through giant towers, creating huge courtyards at the bottom. Speakers play samples of feedback, using motion sensors to detect where I am. I fly into a gallery, as a bird, and steal and swap hats on the gallery attendants and members of the public. I try to escape through a window, but it’s too small. I find a flap in a wall, that leads to an exit door.
On the street, I’m by my favourite club, the Opthamologist’s Scope. The front of the building is dirty glass, decorated with torn plastic bags. I remember that inside, in the dark bar, crazy creative people try to sell you their latest fanzine for £5. I wander back to where I’m staying, aware that I can never remember how to get to the club. I pass a bar, another favourite place, all rosewood furniture and large, glass doors. Great for food. The name escapes me. Back where I’m staying, I share pizza for a friends sons birthday party. I thank them as I leave. J calls me to a window. I look out at Venus in a stunning red sunset. I get ready to join J at my rosewood bar, he’s eating, I’ll just have wine. I convince him to try the Scope club later, I think he’ll like it.
My name is Mustapha. I fled from Syria, from the war. I came to Europe to find a safe future.
Instead I found the work zones. International Work Zones. Areas where National Law was suspended. Not belonging to any country. Ghettoes of alleged safety. Part of the TTIP agreement. A solution to migration. To survive, and live in the safety of Europe, I must work 14 hours a day, every day. For this I get food, shelter and clothing. No wages. No union rights. No support if I get sick. No days off.
I see now why they bombed us. Those like me, who want to live in peace, will flee. We will be easy to control and resettle, easy to lie to and deceive. With nowhere to go, and no country to return to, we are the first residents of the new global workhouses.
Soon, I think, others will arrive. The poor, and sick from European countries, the old who have had their pensions stolen. The unemployed. Anyone who opposes the marching advance of capitalism. Anyone from the wrong side of the wealth divide.
Sometimes, my work involves recycling newspapers and magazines. The guards don’t know I can read and speak English. I used to see, sometimes, articles about us, our lives in here. The New Slavery, they called it, rather than the new safety we were promised. Journalists argued for our freedom, for human rights. There were protests and petitions. Then all that stopped. The names of the journalists changed, as if they had disappeared. As if they had never been.
I wonder what ghetto they are in now. I wonder f they still think that protests and petitions are useful weapons, against brutal men with no morals, and guns.
I have a flat, but inside I still feel homeless. I wander around run down dock areas, talking to lonely old men in dive pubs about bridges controlled by hydraulic air pressure.
I stay in a large building divided into bedsits. I don’t use the toilet, but choose to shit into a laundry basket. There’s a chance to move into a slightly bigger crappy bedsit, and I’m excited about it.
A friend invited me to watch a film, with a woman who’s job is to provide us with support. We sit on high stools, and a story unfolds, of three saxophonists duelling with swords, working in technology.
One of them solves a wooden puzzle, attached to a classroom wall. It’s shapes are an encrypted tune. A song about raindrops. Music plays, and I can only think how much better the bassline would be in Locrian mode.
I’m in a supermarket with friends. A child is ill. I steal the medicine he needs. Healthcare should be free. Inside the mall, an artist slides around inside giant sculptures of hands and dinosaurs. Cooking oil on the feet acts as lubrication.
I grab a tail and slide with the dinosaur, childish fun to relieve my adult sadness.
mark e smith
Sings in my ears
The people in sight
Move in time
In 4/4 time.
A John Bird
Gives us his opinion
On professional begging
Figures are quoted
No evidence presented
Good Morning Britain
From the mainstream media gym
We’ll get your mind trim
Shape your behaviour
Into Piers Morgan