I am not quite sure this planet realises how problematic it is that children are not treated right in too many parts of the world. Probably in every part of the world. I cannot understand the need people have to breed and then abuse their children. Why would you procreate when you cannot handle having a child? And motherhood – and fatherhood – is about handling your progeny, not annihilating them. That – to me – is possibly the most stupid of all human behaviours. Breeding willy-nilly without thought of consequence, just having babies because you cannot be bothered not to. It’s obscene.
Children are vulnerable and very impressionable. All of them. How many times does that have to be said before people take heed? What you show your child of life is how it will grow. The reality is startling in its simplicity. You kick your child around, or abuse it verbally and emotionally, and you are building a damaged human being. There is not much space left on this planet for damaged people. There are already way too many. It is time that the damaging was brought under control. It is ruining people, society. I am not sure what would happen if every abuser took accountability for his/her behaviour – recognised it, themselves. If they opened their eyes they would realise the fate that was awaiting them.
Having children is not ‘what you do’ in life. Times have changed. How hard can it be to understand that parenting is not an essential part of living? How hard can it be to understand that there are a great many lives that would be far less stressful without children in them? That is fact, it is not something to feel sentimental about. Children are a joy on many levels, and that is what they are supposed to be. They are not punch-bags. They are not adults. They are not to be underestimated, either.
Why do people who can barely provide for themselves, breed? Why are millions of children caught up in their parent’s poverty? When you bring a child into a shit life – and you know very well whether your life is shit or not – what are you thinking? I don’t think you are thinking. You can’t be. In some countries children are bred to sell, or to work. That makes no sense. The parents must work. For themselves, first. If you cannot put food on the table for yourself, let alone a family, then you have to sit parenthood out. You do not breed children to provide for you – know that for free. It is time people grew more responsible and looked at what they are doing to themselves, as a whole. What are you showing a child when you bear and raise it in poverty, squalour? You are teaching it disease and suffering. Death. Why would anyone choose to do that? As a parent, do not tell me that there is surplus energy to love and nurture your children when you are struggling to stay alive.
Breeding violence is not productive. What is the point of generation after generation learning that hurting other people is how you send a message or get what you want? That is not the way. Violence is second nature to some people. It is their first reaction to any confrontation. In fact, violent people will seek confrontation so that they can inflict damage. Theirs’ is a bizarre mindset. It wants controlling. Realise that violence changes a person. It hardens your heart. If you commit acts of violence, you are not in control. You need to be in control of your wild inside. The anger that drives violence is a voice – amidst many – that still needs to be heard, but there are other ways for that pain to say what needs saying. The fact that so much senseless violence is played out through alcohol intoxication should alert mankind to what it becomes under the influence. Often, where there is truth there is conflict.
In the same way that you get breeds of animals, you get breeds of people. Of men. Women. Animals accept their classification without taking it personally. Humans don’t. They fight themselves, each other, over what and who they are. They are precious about their identity. This is a consistency, everywhere. It causes wars. You are bred into tradition – the system – or you are bred to question the system. Some people are bred into wealth. What they do with that privilege is always measured. You are bred into security, or you are not. If you are not, your questions are for your parents. Hard workers are a breed of people. As are the compassionate. Arseholes, too, are a breed. Take each at face value.
For children The Circus has a special matinee performance.
At noon. This is when the cowboys come out.
All real circuses have cowboys.
They ride side-saddle, backwards. Standing.
Their horses do not overly mind the small galloping circle.
Three generations of performers born in captivity.
So they did not forget. They never knew.
Sometimes the horses would love to buck off the cowboy, ruin his show.
They are cheeky like that. They know their power.
The horses are glad for their blinkers. They keep the noise of people out.
The horses know their moves. They cruise through their routine.
The cowboys tip-toe up and down their spines spinning lasso.
The horses laugh at the prancing men and dream of saving the tigers.
The girls in gold glitter g-strings get everyone’s attention.
The bored men straighten their backs for a better view.
Black feathers, corsets, suspenders. Heels.
Tits everywhere. Bonus.
Jesus. Those matching backsides.
Where is the wife looking? Not at me. Nor are the kids.
The one on the far right is hot, hot, hot.
Very, very nice. She would look good bent over the bonnet.
Oh no. Boner.
It’s been three weeks. And that is some faceful of lady.
Nod, for fuck’s sake. She is watching you watching.
What? A Coke? Now?
The trapeze artists watch from the wings the goings-on in the audience.
Theirs’ is the show that comes on after the glamour-girls finish.
It is as popular. Flying people are compelling.
The opening contortionists that unwind themselves from the shadows at the top of the tent
are not called ‘aerial silk’ for nothing.
Their display is a tale: red/orange/yellow/green/blue/indigo/violet
and people read the way they ride ribbons in their sequinned spirals, stretches, spins,
telling the story of The Circus’ evolution.
The trapeze artists have an opening act. Theirs’ is the evolution.
In fact, trapeze artists can smile these days.
Circus politics have begun to change in their favour.
Respect is now being given where it is due.
Theirs’ has become a kind of autonomy in the ranks.
Even the ringmaster stops what he does to watch them fly.
They enjoy their daredevil status. It is years’ worth of work.
As before, they brought their skill to the table, the trapeze artists. Nothing more.
Nothing more was needed.