Prisoners of Fear

You think you can define me,
With a single simple word?
You think you can confine me,
And keep me within the herd?
Your simple lying pigeonholes,
like geek and dork and nerd.
Just can’t contain the me I am,
Or my intellectual world.

I’m here to say
That’s not the way
That things are going to be from here.
You bred us,
Led us,
Lied to us.
Kept us prisoners of fear.

You think that you’ll survive this,
When we rise to claim our rights?
You think that you can fight this,
With your military mights?
You believe that all your money,
will see you through the night?
When we come to smash your windows,
and expose you to the light.

I’m here to call,
For your downfall,
And the end of your imagined fears.
You’ll hear us,
fear us,
It’s clear to us,
Your ending begins here.

We don’t have all the answers
and the outcome is not sure.
But we will not live in slavery,
nor serfdom we’ll endure.
Your sickness it will kill us,
If we don’t enact a cure.
We can’t be free while you still rule,
And your motives are impure.

I’m here to cry,
unto the sky.
For a future, bright and clear.
It lifts us,
lights us,
calls to us,
It’s a future without fear.

Keith Neilson, November 2013


This is the first of what will eventually be many posts of my own halting doggerel. I do try not to rhyme, but I can’t seem to help it. I have a particular set of rhythms and cadences too that I can’t seem to break out of. It’s here more for an archive than anything else, and I mainly write it for myself, but if you like it, please let me know 🙂

It’s time to bring the light back
Time to heal our broken souls
To salve our bruises
Lick our wounds
And repair this shattered whole

Don’t throw yourselves on mercy
In this apathetic realm
Your life’s a ship
On stormy seas
But you are at the helm
Though they seem to overwhelm you
These waves you can’t control
You grip the tiller
Your course is true
You will weather this storm whole.

It’s time to hold the dark back
Be a beacon in this storm
A lighthouse in
The cold and black
In a place that is kept warm

Don’t rely upon your body
Its awesome but fragile form
It does things
Of its own accord
Evolved in us to avoid harm
But the world back then was simpler
Handled well by fight or flight
It struggles now
In a complex world
Where things aren’t so black and white.

It’s time to take your mind back
From your body and its flaws
It reacts upon
The slightest threats
Treating them like tiger’s jaws

As you drown in information
Stories of horror, far away
You should know that
You are not to blame
Over these you have no sway
You must decide what is important
What is useful, real, and true.
Trust no-one when
They tell you so
The final arbiter is you.

It’s time to take the truth back
From the lips of those who lie
And don’t let this, our truth, die

Every day our hearts are broken
Filled with woe at mankind’s plight
Our compassion stretched
Out far too thin
So it’s impact is but slight
All these charities and causes
Parasiting on your guilt
They only help
You close your eyes
To the suffering we’ve built

It’s time to give our love back
Directly and with verve
To needs that sit
Right at your feet
That’s the purpose it best serves

So, we otherise each other
And wrap ourselves in baseless fears
We weaponise
Our differences
But normal’s an idea.
All this us and them will kill us
Is it part of some great plan
To divide and rule
Giving a free reign
To our inhumanity to man.

It’s time to take our lives back
We’re not resources or things
To be objectified
Our rights denied
This is mankind’s greatest sin.

Keith ‘Mandrill’ Neilson 21/12/2016

Author’s Note:
This is a poetic expression of an idea that I’m hoping to be able to turn into an essay or article at some point, and is inspired by my limited reading around Stoicism.