On-Line Angst

On-Line Angst

This week it is reported that most of us
check our smart phones within 10 minutes of waking
and thereafter about every 12 minutes

Indeed, one of the last things we do at night
is tweak our devices before attempting to slip into unconsciousness

It occurs to me that we have perhaps allowed ourselves to
fall into an unhealthy relationship the cyber world

I am calling this On-Line Angst

In days gone by the phone would ring
As tidings it was wont to bring
Messages from friends and colleagues
Inducing cheer or melancholy

Our phone line linked to the exchange
Communications thus arranged
Connected to the world outside
Poles and cables far and wide

But only sound was then conveyed
No images could be portrayed
Nonetheless the network served us well
Exclusive GPO clientele

But in due time came privatization
Welcome thrusting competition
As technical change then coincided
The former framework just exploded

Fibre optics were invented
Old assumptions thus fragmented
Suddenly ‘on-line’ world-wide
No sanctuary, no place to hide

Eventually our phones turned smart
Displaying menus a la carte
Voice and text and pictures too
My selfie winging straight to you

When once the phone lived just at home
Nowadays GPS tracks us as we roam
The office too transformed by change
As smart devices widely range

So now we find phones everywhere
Just like our clothes, our phone we wear
Its beeps, and throbs gives low vibrations
Indicative of our close relation

So throughout the day from morn till eve
The smart phone we refuse to leave
Constant companion, demanding friend
Like a romance we dare not end

Because if of our phone we are deprived
We see no way we could survive
On-line angst now dominates
Our contract we must n’er forsake

Ken Fisher

Results!

Results!

To-day for Scottish pupils spare a thought
Whose awakening may be somewhat fraught
As they receive that communication
Which may not meet their expectation

Because to-day’s the day results arrive
To avoid them they cannot contrive
In the past they only came by post
But now by e-mail or text from coast to coast

So by whatever means each candidate
Hears news determining their fate
No doubt filled with apprehension
As they wait in expectation

For some of course it will be great relief
If their hoped for grades have been achieved
For others there may be some surprise
And future plans they must revise

The media no doubt will show beaming faces
Of high fliers locked in warm embraces
With teachers and parents full of admiration
Let’s hope the less successful find consolation

Whatever the results help to predict
By no means the definitive verdict
Exam success is surely not alone
By which our future worth be known

Ken Fisher

Home and Away

Home and Away

 

It is that time of year of the great escape
Abandon the treadmill of the daily round
Head for the shore, seek a wide landscape
Everyday worries we strive to confound

Yet the exodus is not without its own travail
Would that we could be transported without stress
That in our moving calm might still prevail
No anxiety inhibit our hopeful progress

And on arrival at our chosen destination
Perhaps perplexed by things quite unfamiliar
Still we lack that sense of jubilation
And disappointment creeps in to bewilder

Our holiday should bring us rich renewal
The impact of unanticipated surprise
The involvement in exploits quite unusual
For jaded body and soul a treasured prize

But when excitement slowly ceases to amuse
And thoughts return to comforts of our home
The novelty of absence becomes diffuse
And we find little pleasure as we roam

It is then that home seems more blessed than away
The solace of the familiar brings reassurance
No longer the impetus for us to stray
Prolonged absence would be mere forbearance

Ken Fisher

Turmoil

Turmoil

It has been said we are a nation in turmoil
Beset by confusion, upheaval, ferment and unrest
No still waters, everything kept on the boil
Unsure what to do, how to act for the best

The political scene is fraught with agitation
Factions convinced of the merits of their case
No sense of unity within the nation
The clamour of the marketplace

But turmoil is not just in the world external
Our very souls oft engaged in inner warfare
We have lost the desire for love fraternal
Obsessed by self we sink into despair

Would some power bring calmness to the storm
Restore peace where conflict still prevails
Make cool reason once again the norm
Rebalance the constant shifting of the scales

Ken Fisher

Waistcoat Wednesday

Waistcoat Wednesday

 

It matters not if you’re rich or poor
The new dress code makes it de rigueur
To be wearing this jacket without any sleeves
The humble waistcoat – would you believe?

The World Cup is surely not just about footy
It would appear that it’s still a Manager’s duty
To show as much style along the touch-line
As all the star players they ever did sign

Never mind the WAGS made up so classy
Dressed to the nines ever so flashy
It’s the boss who excels with such flair and poise
Surpassing the glamour of those girls and their boys

It is to Gareth we accord our congratulations
His success has matched all our expectations
And whatever comes next, at least we can hope
And if all else fails still wear the waistcoat!

Ken Fisher

 

Sunshine On Our Face

Sunshine On Our Face

Someone asked me the other day
Surely you have much to say
To ignore this heat-wave is a pity
So why not write a little ditty?

Indeed this hot spell is unusual
The daily sun glowing like a jewel
As in its warmth we duly bask
And keeping cool becomes a task

And then we have to watch radiation
As sunshine smiles o’er the nation
All is not lost as ice cream sales go through the roof
Profiting from weather, this is surely proof

Beaches deserted most of the year
Now crowded out we fear
We hope we can find a little space
To lie down and enjoy that sun’s embrace

And gardeners lament the dried out earth
Watering for all their worth
Their precious plants and burgeoning blooms
Until precipitation may resume

Forecasters can’t believe their own predictions
The bulletins sound just so much fiction
Heat-wave continues unremitting
To any change they’re not admitting

But no doubt in due time it will
And that will be a bitter pill
When glorious sunshine must give way
To what we call a ‘normal’ day

But while it lasts, why not enjoy
It all seems like a cunning ploy
To make us believe in climate change
I doubt if rainfall is far out of range

Ken Fisher

Bubble Wrap Society

Bubble Wrap Society

[A protective sonnet]

I read somewhere, the other day
We are far too protective
Kids no longer out to play
Of dangerous risk obsessive
Of course there are a lot of threats
Lurking in places unexpected
Harm and loss brings much regret
And should never be neglected
You will have heard of the GDPR*
All-pervasive in its intentions
We may have gone somewhat too far
In cyber crime prevention
A life cocooned thus saved from all mishap
Enveloping each and all in swathes of bubble wrap!

Ken Fisher

 

  • General Data Protection Regulation

Your Friendly Bean Counters!

Your Friendly Bean Counters

[A tribute to BN Associates – small accountancy Firm of the Year 2018]

 

Some claim that accountancy is really boring
And the subject is simply not worth exploring
But I would reject this view superficial
‘Cause accounting for business is most beneficial

Accounting can outline the state of our wealth
And strong cash flow is vital for health
If we find ourselves too deep in debt
Our creditors become a serious threat

So by keeping track of such vital numbers
Monetary issues should never encumber
And accurate accounting will show us the way
To monitor the business each working day

Enough of the system, it’s people that matter
And I don’t intend to unduly flatter
But I know of a squad who deserve all our praise
As they help their clients in so many ways

So today I offer warmest congratulations
To a firm now peerless within our great nation
So raise your glasses to Brett, David and team
As they tick every box and count every bean!

Ken Fisher
The Bard of Kelvindale

Forgiveness is the Threshold to Healing

Forgiveness is the Threshold to Healing

 

When we are stung by someone’s sharp rebuke
Their piercing words however unintended
The thoughtless gibe, unthinking sneer
That leaves our very soul offended

When those around apparently conspire
To thwart all our plans, our hopes and ambitions
How can be bring ourselves to readily forgive?
When our undoing seems the object of their mission

When in life we suffer losses and misfortune
Caused by others’ wanton actions or omissions
How can we cast aside our pain and resentment?
Absorbing all in self-deprecating submission

Of course we must attempt to stand up to the storms
And positively respond when confronted by adversity
Yet if our reaction is to meet challenge with aggression
Would not that alone simply be mean travesty?

We must find a better way to assuage our hurt
Not living out our days in pique and bitterness
But setting aside all past pain and suffering
Traverse the threshold of healing through forgiveness

Ken Fisher

Thought

Thought

Not animal, vegetable, or mineral
Sometimes fact, fiction or myth
As illusive as quicksilver
Unlike solid, liquid or gas

Who can define thought?
Or measure its power
To delight or scare or anger
An alchemy of energy

Would we be rid of this tyranny?
Which dominates our mind
Determines our deeds
And destroys our peace

Thought, intangible and unreal
Initiator of action from idea
By which we make a kirk or mill
From every brooding notion

And yet the delight of thought
The joy of inner anticipation
Treasured memories of happier days
All realized within that inward eye

Let’s rejoice in all that thought begets
In quiet contemplation or mental gymnastics
Find solace, peace, or ready stimulation
A memory bank and spur to this day’s living

Ken Fisher

 

GDPR

GDPR

The latest challenge to face our British nation
Is the General Data Protection Regulation
Now we must comply with detailed rules
To help us, some guidelines are useful tools

Curiously it is Europe who commands we comply
And Brexit appears to offer no alibi
In the UK the Information Commission
Demands our complete and ready submission

It would appear all these changes come in the wake
Of frequent liberties that intruders may take
With our personal data which we let others hold
As in on-line processing we have entered so bold

Big Data is the feature that might fill us with fear
As facts known about us break every frontier
Thus personal data ascends to the cloud
And lands where we surely would not have allowed

So all these new rules have been devised
To ensure of our data use we keep appraised
Above all, our privacy must be secured
And of that fact let us all be assured

Businesses, charities and all kinds of organisation
Will find they must meet their new obligation
To ensure that they comply with GDPR
Whose ramifications stretch both wide and far

One aspect of GDPR that surely will scare
Are the punishments if firms seem not to care
And it’s best that all submit to the ICO Regulator
Who is the ulitimate judge and arbitrator

So I hope all goes well in data protection
And miscreants will soon suffer detection
But don’t let all your links to others be lost
A price we may think is too high a cost

Ken Fisher

Hiding Under the Duvet

Hiding Under the Duvet

Too much to do, too little time
But too timid to resign
Must I pretend to run the nation?
Living, one drawn-out obligation

Is this how to make life fulfilling?
Ever the need to “show willing”
Too weak to lower my eyes
Avoiding pleas that I oblige

So I have created my own prison
Destined to serve time with no remission
Freedom glimpsed through duty’s bars
Liberty tempts but from afar

Where might refuge be discovered?
Tucked warmly beneath the covers
The duvet gives shelter from the storm
Secreted from pressure to conform

Ken Fisher