Tuesday, 18 September 2012

Cheese in the Middle East

The road to Damascus and the Middle East Cheese Process.

I had a dream - I am a traveller in space and time. I seek the closeness of the truth, it's intangibly, here and there, some non-specific place on this winding ribbon of road. The broken hearted trail that runs along the desert ridges and valleys between Jerusalem and Damascus. I carry my tools and I make or break things on the journey. Slowly I dig myself in, I make repairs, impromptu, necessary, sometimes life saving as I burrow into your psyche. Sweating and keeping the highway open, clear and as straight as the complex terrain will allow. Pruning the signs so they can all be read and a consistent message taken; the only way for peace on earth they say. But this is the road that comes out of a place of enlightenment and then takes the trail of assumed wisdom and Pagan Voodoo, out of the way to very the heathen and non-believers that must be saved, all full of precious argument and principle.

The sun beats down on my bare head, on the back of my neck. Fighter jets fly low, some baffled helicopter gun ships on patrol, some Russian tank hulks lie dead off road, burned out by the desert. Thuds from far away and unexplained explosions. Borders, poles and wire, men with trucks and no company. Soldiers shoulder their arms, make nervous checks, blow dust from the weapon's breaches, rub in oil, smiles flicker across their faces. Peasants, beat up peddlers, Gypsy-like caravan people, donkeys, Toyota Land Cruisers and battered Mercedes pass me by. Drivers hidden by designer sunglasses, glowering in the reflected heat handing out bottles of Highland Spring water, bottled in the cellars of the Houses of Parliament, five Bucks each.

Once an angel came here and blinded a man just to get his attention, as if being an angel isn't enough to make an impact  - or so the story goes. To you it may sound far fetched but a lot of good people believed it at the time. I'm told that there's a weathered blue plaque on a mud wall at the petrol station. Commemoration is important, better than respect. I hear that the man took it badly and became bitter and sued the wider world and then wrote a best seller. So I just sit here in the dust and dirt, my advice ready for you, if and when you come. You can get me on my mobile though, did I mention the mast conveniently sited over there by the minefield?

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