Monday, 30 September 2019

PRAYING FOR A BUS by Alun Buffry (1985, India)

by Alun Buffry (1985, India)

We left Delhi 4 P.M. today
To Kathmandu by bus
But midnight whilst still on the way
We stopped without a fuss.

It had been quite a bumpy ride
Through places without names
The seating wasn't very wide
No sleep, it was a shame.

Half day upon this bus we are
Frying in the heat,
This is no delux bus by far
It is a lying cheat.

Another bus soon coming here,
Well. that is what we're told,
Exactly when is not made clear,
No Indian is that bold.

Then still we're waiting on the bus,
Later on that day,
A Foreign girl invited us
To come along and pray.

"We'll do some prayers and puja chants
And maybe sing a song,
If that don't work we'll maybe dance
And bus will come along."

The bus to Kathmandu we think
Will much improve our mood,
And on the way, perhaps a drink,
And then a plate of food.

"Oh bus! Oh bus! Show us your magic!
Come and save this day,
For this trip we're on's become quite tragic..."
Oh! Now we're on our way!

Rajasthan Desert Song by Alun Buffry, 1985

Rajasthan Desert Song
Alun Buffry

Lesley and I went down to Rajasthan
Desert, with Salima, a camel riding man.
Through a morning trotting on,
Just the sound of Salima's songs.
Peahens, crows and tinkle bells,
Crowds of men at water wells,
Telling tales of who-knows-what
While we're wishing it not so hot.
Stop for lunch, a shady tree,
Eat some vegetable chapatti,
Drinking some chai, hot and sweet
Try to avoid the deadly heat.
All around us golden sand,
Shrubs and cacti about this land.
"Be careful please, where you sit,
"Cos desert's full of camel shit."

DIVISION: a poem by Alun Buffry, 1977

Alun Buffry (1977)

In this world, division
Makes one desire decision,
As if one were almighty God
Seeing all through mindless fog,

As if the choice we make is ours
To pick or simply smell the flowers,
Whether left or right to turn,
Whether to sleep, rest, play or learn.

Why can't we see that we are His,
He breathes,
He thinks
He moves
He lives.

TRYING TO FLY AND WONDERING WHY: a poem from Veranassi, 1985

by Alun Buffry (1985)

Varanasi airport is quite a dump.
It's run by a man who is quite a chump.
Now we cannot board the plane,
Later we will miss our train.
Money flowing down the drain,
India Airways fucked my brain.
Seems the way here is to cheat,
So the system you can beat,
Just don't let them squash your feet,
Push for schedules try to keep.
"Baksheesh - don't say that word here sir,
"We're all paid well by Indian Air
"And you don't know the system here."
"Well I think it fucking weird!"
In India, it's different, so we're told,
Totally corrupt since times of old.
No problem sir, your seats been sold,
Paid in Karma but now with gold.

Annapurna For Sale, a poem from Nepal 1985

Annapurna For Sale
by Alun Buffry (Nepal, 1985)

The calm serenity of Annapurna
Sweeps lazily over the town Pokhara;
People here have more time to smile,
Occasionally to come chat a while.
"Namaste, hello, good morning" they say
Then to business or change money.
Still, at least themselves they try to keep,
Yet their starting price is steep
"American, French, where you from?"
Like the opening line of a Nepalese song,
Which they teach in their local schools,
To say to tourists who like fools,
Are parted from their cash to soon,
As "Better prices before afternoon,
Or "First business I make today with you,
"So if you like one, why not buy two?"
Whether beggars or hallsres or honest men,
Want dollars, pounds or even yen.
As much as mountains beautiful
WE all need a living our stomachs to fill.
"Here we are, no problem way of life,
"Is she your friend or is she wife?
"You want charas or marid-u-are-na,
"Opium, mushroom or brown sugar?"
"What you want buy?", so often heard,
As if just looking is absurd.
It would be good to walk one day,
Without these offers filling our way,
To absorb life's energy so obviously close,
But then that's part of it, I s'pose.

Monday, 16 September 2019

WAKING IN NEPAL a poem by Alun Buffry (1985)

Alun Buffry (1985)


Is a cloudy sky, bright sun between, a slight breeze,
The sound of one man chanting.

And all elsewhere a few notes on some type of magic flute -
A strange cacophony of bells and horns and clattering.
No two horns seem to sound the same.

A mother engine? sounds like a tractor - probably a bus!
Beep, beep, beep.

If I look out of the window I see tin rooftops,
Blimsen Tower, a glorious white standing before the blue;

And there - a temple, a pagoda, a woman sitting with washing lay out to dry,
Pigeons coo-ing, crows a-crowing, gardens growing,
Potted plants that people tend,

A bicycle rickshaw, a cow, a man with a bundle of wood on his head!
A cockerel crows as another motorbike passes 3 men trying to move a fridge,

Young girl, proud, staring into space,
Three boys rolling rubber wheels of glee amidst the rubble,
Whilst more look on admiringly.

Yet another dog - a tempo (three-wheeler) barking as two boys, hand-in-hand,
Laugh at a goat.

Cock crows, horns, far away mountainous silences
Surround the Monkey Temple,

Like a golden palace on the hill.
Behind - another hill.
Shame about the dusty haze.

Sunday, 15 September 2019

The Cell, a poem by Alun Buffry, Cardiff Prison 1991

The Cell
by Alun Buffry

The cell was cold, dark, empty and bare.
The walls screamed to themselves - there was nobody there.
The bars in the window stood firmly and strongly.
The cell was alone, rightly or wrongly.

The door to the cell was locked up tight.
It stayed that way all day and all night.
No-one came in to this lonely cell,
To make sure the walls and the windows were well.

The cell, itself, was just doing it's time.
It could have been your cell, or even mine.
It waited the years just doing it's best,
Wanting for little, but a prisoner guest.

One day, the door was opened, by a man with a key.
Even then this one cell never really felt free.
The warder looked in, said "Is all OK?",
Slammed the door shut and just went away.

But this cell was so lucky, if only it knew,
For amongst so many it was one of a few.
For thousands of others were imprisoning men,
Bleeding their hearts out, again and again

The cell next door, which was much the same,
One man inside it, I forget his name.
One night the cell door was finally banged.
Next morning the man was found to be hanged.

Cardiff Prison, 1991.

Time for Cannabis The Prison Years 1991 to 1995

Saturday, 14 September 2019

Join the legal fight for British patients to access medicinal cannabis


Lezley Gibson wrote:

I'm a long-term Multiple Sclerosis sufferer who successfully uses cannabis manage my condition. Yet, like thousands of other British patients, I've been unable to access medicinal cannabis through the NHS, even though it is legal and doctors agree it helps control my condition.

Now my family and I are being prosecuted for growing cannabis to manage my MS. This case isn't just about me. It's about fighting for better access to medicinal cannabis for all British patients who can benefit. Please join my legal challenge by contributing now and sharing this page with your friends, family and on social media.

Although struggling with poor health, I am determined to fight against this prosecution using a medical necessity defence and drive forward changes that will open up access to medicinal cannabis for British patients.

Case Background

In January 2019, Cumbria Police raided our house and seized 10 baby plants. I was charged with the possession and production of a class B drug. If found guilty I could face up to 14 years in prison – despite the fact that I have a UK prescription for medical cannabis to treat my MS.

When medicinal cannabis was legalised in Germany, patients there experienced similar barriers to obtaining cannabis-based medicines. Legal battles on home cultivation were key to transforming this situation - the court cases resulted in Germany's Medical Cannabis Law being passed in 2017, allowing all doctors to prescribe cannabis-based medicines and making it affordable through their healthcare system.

This court case has the potential to improve access to medicinal cannabis for British patients – but only if we can raise money enough for the legal costs.

Legal Challenge

I urgently needs to instruct a criminal defence and human rights legal team to help change the law and policy on medicinal use of cannabis.

I've got one chance to beat my prosecution. During my trial I am going to prove to the court that my use of cannabis was for medicinal reasons and that it was necessary for me to use cannabis in this way.

The law is not very sympathetic to my situation, but I hope to change the way that the law deals with medicinal use of cannabis through this trial. I believe this case has the potential to help lead to widespread patient access to medicinal cannabis in the UK and to the decimalisation of its medicinal use.

Polling shows that the public has no interest in criminalising and prosecuting patients who have been forced to resort to obtaining their medicine through illegal routes, because they are unable to legally fill their prescriptions in the UK.

Should we really be criminalising people for wanting to be well?

My prosecution represents a failure of the British political and healthcare system, rather than criminal behaviour on my part.

It highlights the logical incoherence and lack of compassion within current British law and practice on medicinal cannabis. Doctors, science, and British law recognise that medicinal cannabis can be helpful in managing and alleviating symptoms for Multiple Sclerosis sufferers, epilepsy, and other conditions such as chronic pain and nausea arising from chemotherapy.

I have a legal UK prescription for medicinal cannabis yet, along with thousands more British patients, I can't access my medicine via the NHS, or afford a private prescription costing over £1000 a month.

Ordinary British patients and families deserve fair and affordable access to medicines that allow them to best manage long-term health conditions and improve their quality of life.

How much am I raising and why?

My legal costs will cost a minimum of £30,000. If you care about fair access to lifechanging medicines in the UK, please donate what you can to fund an expert legal team in what could be a landmark court case for improving medicinal cannabis access for British patients.

I am back in court in early December and my trial begins shortly after, so we need to move fast.

Please contribute to help Lezley pay for the legal costs of fighting against criminalisation of the medicinal use of cannabis and for fair, affordable access to life-changing cannabis-based medicines in the UK for all British patients.

Thank you for you support.

RIVER ALIVE, a poem by Alun Buffry, Kashmir 1981

River alive!

Whether we laugh, or whether we cry,
the river of life goes rushing by,
down the hills and mountain sides,
into valleys, long and wide,
towards the ocean that is its goal,
its journey travelled by our soul.

When I was but little boy,
the river rippled and dashed with joy,
and as I grew and longed to learn,
the river for the ocean yearned.

As young man travelled round the world,
the river twisted, turned and twirled,
eager to find its resting place,
eager to travel in time and space.

And as the seeking man grew older,
the river found the bigger boulders,
but on it travelled without care,
it knew its destiny's not there.

The rushing water's now quite slow,
the river old has nothing to show,
it's happiness is calm and deep,
as old man takes his final sleep.

The ocean that is never ending,
is to the sky its waters lending,
to rain again on mountain top,
to make sure life's rivers never stop.

The rivers message lies in this
Ocean of Mercy, Peace and Bliss

POSITIVITY, a poem by Alun Buffry, 2015


Always to be found in this the same place,
Throughout our universe of time and space,
On I will travel, at my own pace,
Can you now see it, in my face?

Never to question how or why,
Upon this earth I find I,
Content and amazed beneath earth's sky,
Yet soaring above white clouds on high.

Hidden within us there is a clue.
It looks like I, it looks like you
For once we were one and that is true,
Now one of so many amongst quite a few.

There is a Love, there is a Light,
Forget any guilt, ignore any fright,
Focus within on a wondrous sight,
The future is now and it's ever so Bright.

NINE MONTHS a poem by Alun Buffry (1991)


After nine months a baby was born,

And it's name was hate and its heart was torn,

Never to be seen a smile on a face,

Of men waiting so long in this goddam place.

God help the world if it only knew

What hate would become if it ever grew

Into an adult and then got free

To destroy all, believe you me.

For after the beasts had had their way,

Lied and deceived to lock men away,

The Magistrates fine all turned their blind eyes,

Whilst inside at night the chaplains all cried.

Month after month they stay on remand,

Listen in mystery to conspired bad plans,

Never allowed just one word in defence,

The law in this country just don't make much sense.

So locked up these men at country's expense,

Guilty or innocent they sit on a fence,

Awaiting the trials on some distant days,

When men either walk free or get thrown away.

After nine months inside, away from the sky,

The birds and the trees and the friendships that die,

the children, the lovers, the life that won't wait,

Innocent and guilty share hearts full of hate.


by Alun Buffry

Look down for a moment at this Human race,
From origins to now, changes we trace,
That 'though most of the time we didn't want war,
We let politicians and military men store
Our weapons of hate - or protection they say,
In case we have enemies to strike at one day.
So, now we all stand facing each other,
Knowing all die if man strikes his brother.
Some people here shout about nuclear power;
The atoms are split not to make enemies cower;
Used instead to make heat, movement and light,
But some people feel radiation ain't right.
The burns, they tell us, will start with an itch,
Yet daily we continue to push down the switch,
For the sake of economy and to ease our lives,
To amuse the children and appease the wives.
None of us want deadly fumes in our heads,
Yet most of our cars are still pumping out lead,
And carbon monoxide and satanic gases
Which surround the globe and will choke the masses.
See - we all need to travel and warm up our homes.
It's so far from us that strange ozone.
The scientists, we hope, the solution will find,
While we run round like mad men to satisfy our minds.
We hide away the old, the mental, the spastics,
We dig our big holes and fill them with plastics,
We flush down the toilet with all kinds of shit,
Polluting the rivers and oceans with it.
The fish, they are dying, some species are lost,
We all say we're sorry but won't pay the cost;
Won't give up our luxuries, take care how we tread,
On this our planet, and live gently instead.
There up the road is a chemical factory,
The products, we think, are quite satisfactory.
The pollution it's causes around us, us bugs,
But it's all in the creation of bottles of drugs,
To cure all (they say) of illness and sores,
Forgetting to tell us the factory's the cause.
Ask how can we stop it, make the guilty atone,
When we are all using the same economics at home?
So, next time you notice the rivers all stink,
Remember at home what you put down the sink.
Next time that you feel that the air is impure,
Remember the fumes and the smoke that we pour,
Out of our chimneys and cars. Think of the mammals!
Remember each one of us is in essence an animal.
And if you choose now not to swim in the sea,
Remember the nasties were put there by thee.
One thing we all know in our heads is for sure,
A Huge sacrifice is needed and maybe much more.
We must think of the things that we use and we trash,
What we burn and destroy will have a backlash:
Poisoned air, water and radiation kill slow,
And the poor Human race has nowhere to go.
Unless each person can get into their head,
That the cause and effect will make it all dead.

AUDIO read by Winston Matthews


Alun Buffry

(to tune of Blowing in the Wind – thanks Bob Dylan)


How many times must a man be afraid

of the sound of a knock on his door

Yes 'n' how many times must he live in fear

of those who uphold the law

Yes 'n' how many times must the public pay

to take themselves to the courts

Yes 'n' how many times must a mother watch

her innocent children caught?

The answer my friends, is blowing in the wind,

the answer is blowing in the wind.

How many families will be split apart

when a father is sent to jail

Yes 'n' how many times lives must be lost to bad drugs

because of a law that fails

Yes 'n' how much pain must be felt by a man

that could be eased by a plant

Yes 'n' how suffering will not be cured

because of the drugs that can't

The answer my friends, is blowing in the wind,

the answer is blowing in the wind.

How many years must be passed while we wait

to be free to smoke the good herb

Yes 'n' how many times must we see the judge

before we get the rights we deserve

Yes 'n' how many drugs must a doctor sell

before we can grow our own ease

Yes 'n' how many drugs must a patient take

when cannabis can cure the disease

The answer my friends, is blowing in the wind,

the answer is blowing in the wind.

How many fines must the people pay

before they're allowed to get high

Yes 'n' how many times will a Government hide

before they will legalise

Yes 'n' how many lives will be spoilt by a law

when the law is meant to protect

Yes 'n' how many cells will the prisoners fill

for the good of a law that's suspect

The answer my friends, is blowing in the wind,

the answer is blowing in the wind.




Alun Buffry

They bin trying to curb

The free use of the 'erb

They don't give 'em no bail,

They just sling 'em in jail.

In the Belly of the Beast of Babylon

And dem people they's a-crying

And all a-wondering why-ing

No drug, no harm, no pain,

And then there be no gain,

In the Belly of the Beast of Babylon

Law won't let 'em people's high.

Them there makes them famlies cry,

And the years are gonna pass,

For 'erb smokers there on mass,

In the Belly of the Beast of Babylon

Them there law-abiding judges,

That bear all freedom people grudges

They gonna rest so calm at night?

When they know them people's fright?

In the Belly of the Beast of Babylon

For to man freedom did God grant,

To reach Him how they want,

And inside just like out,

The 'erb is all about

In the Belly of the Beast of Babylon

And them people's gonna know,

And the spliffs are gonna glow,

And dem prisnors they get high,

And dem Beast are gonna cry,

In the Belly of the Beast of Babylon.

H: An Alliteration by Alun Buffry (1977)

An Alliteration
Alun Buffry (1977)

Transparent butterflies flit amongst the transient stars
as bouncing bubbles burst on broken moonbeams.

Rainbows run around the rippling rivers
fumbling over faithful fountains.

Sparkling shadows seep between the sunsets
whilst whistling weepers wave from windows.

Many millions mourners make a martyr,
standing somewhere silently beyond space.

Loosely rhyming lines of lullabies
gag the gorgeous gems of galaxies,
never noticing the numbered nomads,
driving dozens dromedaries down deserts,
purposely persuading passers by to pay,
countless crispy notes and coded coins -
before the beautiful beholder is belittled.

Frequently the foolish faulty fiddlers
only offer ornamental oodles,
very vaguely valued vibrants,
ever aiming for an endless evening,
questioning the qualities of quanta.

Yet the yellow yodellers yearn
as all the armadillos answer
zealous zebras zimmering in zoos.

It's intelligence involving inhibition,
exalting in exciting extras ever.
And all the world is in an atom - H.

Friday, 13 September 2019

God's Ganme, a poem from Marrakesh 1976

Alun Buffry (1976)

Left Marrakesh today, to Fez, but on the way,
Felt a lacking of some sort - forgotten my passport!
Got off the bus again, cursing my damned brain,
Went back to where we'd stayed. God's little game was played.
Amidst all this goddam fuss, in little Hotel 'Mus',
I got the passport back! But my head's about to crack!

It's started now to rain. I think I'll catch the train.
'Cos lover must be there and I wish I was with her!
Not possible this time, to use the railway line.
So I sit in sorrow, waiting for tomorrow,
When I hope that I can go, if rain don't turn to snow.
Well the money goes so quick, I'm gonna have a fit.

I want to smoke some stuff and call the devil's bluff.
Illusions all around, and my head aches from the sound
Of rains and cars and mules and stupid tourist fools.
But writing down these lines has made me feel quite fine.
It's just that I couldn't half do with a long hot bath,

And get rid of the dirt, and wash my only shirt,
And jeans and socks and all, and go and have a ball,

In Fez.


Alun Buffry (1995)
Dedicated to Prem Rawat

Two thousand years ago, a child was born.
A king He was, a Crown he should have worn.
Yet in a humble stable, in amongst the beasts,
Wise men and shepherds bowed their heads unto His feet.

The child, He grew and travelled forth to learn,
To find and teach the Secret that we yearn,
And Master took from men disciples few,
Though many more would follow if they only knew.

So Master's all-too-short life had to end,
Disciples had to struggle for their lives to mend,
Through faith and hope, they tried not to stray,
From Master's unsophisticated way.

Then men had visions onto paper that they wrote,
Along with Master's words and stories that He spoke,
So men, religious, later read about that wondrous age,
When God Almighty manifested as a sage.

Alas, the words, though, all had double-meanings,
The Truth is not quite always as it's seeming,
And in 2000 years divisions grew,
Of those who thought, had Faith, and those who knew.

If Master only came to us but once, it is a shame,
For men in ignorance need to see Him once again.
Besides the stories of the manger and the crèche,
We need to see The Master in the flesh!

Friday, 6 September 2019

LOOKING FOR NEW YEAR (1985) Kathmandu



Alun Buffry

Kathmandu: morning mist, disappears, mountain view...

Clouds spreading, sun shines, sky turns sealess blue.

Magic palace on the hill, silver morning light,

As the haze clears away, giving city sights.

Street below slowly wakes, dogs with horns and bells

All the homeless people there, washing at the wells.

Today is Nepalese New Year, should be celebrations,

Where they are is not too clear, to our mild frustration.

Maybe dancing in the street, or are there parades?

No-one here seems able to tell, where New Year's Day is made.

Life goes on as usual, everywhere you glance,

New Year doesn't seem like here, the spirit to enhance.

Where would we go in England,

If New Year we were there?

Down a pub or round a house

Or down Trafalgar Square?

I guess that from outside, it'd look all much the same,

Like we don't celebrate New Year, they'd think it was a shame.

So maybe here in Nepal, because I cannot see,

There's celebrations all around, invisible to me.