Lamenting the Future

Dean Cracknell



After leaving school I had no interest in writing, for many years my only outlet for creative endeavour was drawing and painting and after a while even that was pushed to one side. All that remained were more passive pastimes, of reading and listening to music, and watching tv. Then the internet was born. Back in 1994 when all this technology was still young and ponderously slow it became an outlet that reawakened my creativity. I made websites and to populate those sites I started drawing again, and then writing stories to illustrate my artwork. Not very good stories for they were not very good drawings. In fact a pundit once remarked ‘…and not necessarily very good, but if you fancy something to read you will find it quite involving’ … but read them people did. People from all around the world who I did not know would email me and tell me that they enjoyed my work, I guess that is because they are not professional pundits. And some even liked the artwork enough that they would ask me about commissions and stuff like illustrating a children’s book, enquiries that I would politely refuse I hasten to add – doing this for fun is not fun when you’re doing it for someone else. As time progressed and bandwidth and speed increased I added soundtracks to these artistic scribbles, noodlings for doodlings you could say. The music merely a vehicle and adornment for the cover-artwork it too was not necessarily very good, but I enjoyed listening to it almost as much as the pleasure I gained from making it. To promote this musical venture I went to MySpace, for back then it was fresh and vibrant and much loved. But there is only so much you can write about your own music so I started to write a silly nonsensical MySpace blog that grew into a tall-tale of instalments that burgeoned into a convoluted serialised novel of sorts. Some people read it, not very many, but they were very polite. I hope at least they found it quite involving.

It seems to me, some 21 years later as I reflect back on this as the sun physically, though not metaphorically, sets over the horizon and a jet plane soars overhead, (the cat is sat by the laptop washing herself, but that is not relevant, distracting but not relevant), that the internet and the world wide web is now very wide. Much wider than it was back in 1994 or in the days of MySpace, but its volume remains the same. Sure there are more people surfing the net, and there are more waves to surf, but it’s not very deep. If I step off my silver surfboard the waves barely cover my shoes and I can run and splash with all the joy that such carefree behaviour can provide but the ripples do not travel very far.


I am old.

Please do not shed any tears,

For unless I live to see the year 2073,

I have to accept that more years

Are queuing up behind me

Than extend into the future,

And with each new January

Another year is added to the tally

And one more is removed from the pot.

More yesterdays than tomorrows

There is a sobering thought

Yet still my life balances.

Thou’ does not add up to nought.

Middle-aged is a state of mind,

Not a tipping point

So Middle-aged I am not.


I am young,

Not finished.

Current estimates put my age

Betwixt ten years and six.

My cells renewed constantly

And replenished,

Are very much twenty first century

I have t-shirts older than me.


a complementary piece of abstract space art