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Blog - Richard Downes

Signs: Of a Silent Voice

Print in red on black 'What's the point of having a voice if you're gonna be silent'

‘What’s the point of having a voice if you’re gonna be silent’

Only last wednesday I was saying I can’t remember something important, a feeling about a pain. In searching for the answer I meet with other people who were there at a certain time.

This is a lie
Though I wouldn’t call it that

A memory now forgotten
Wondering did it happen

I need to know
More about a strange location

Joan said Mom said
Life is but a vale of tears

Who was I in those days
What did I leave behind

An unloved lover loving
A lover unloved by her lover

Between fun and anguish
Torn once more by silence

Words escape me
I only wish they didn’t

But more than that
I’m pleased I can’t remember

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Declaration 9 – Exploring Exile

Maybe detention may have been a better focus here than exile. Exile raises questions of race and place. But can you not be exiled within your own country? Semantically maybe not. But what of institutionalised care, the house on the hill, the special school, the care home, nursing home, the psychiatric hospital. Separated, parted, away ...

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