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Matthew Branagh


False Idols


“Men are haunted by the vastness of eternity”. I guess it’s only human to ponder the great questions of the universe. Why are we here? Who or what created us? And what is my purpose? It’s hard to find meaning in this universe of chaos.


Having moved away from the secular views of Northern Ireland, my eyes were opened to a whole world of views and beliefs. This sparked a debate within me between the difference of subjective truth and objective truth. Since the dawn of mankind, people have always strived for power and influence. For centuries the word of “God” was absolute. It transformed whole countries and shaped cultures for generations; people would even travel the world just the spared the word. However, in recent years and the rise of social media has led to a shift in belief. Influencers and Politicians now inspire the masses, and personal agendas are easier to push with access to the entire world.


From observing this shift, I realised that the premise may have changed, but the objective has not. I wrote the poem ‘False idols’ in an attempt to highlight how Humanity has always used power and influence to impact society, for both good and bad. However, the focus is on finding your own truth and not just following the crowd. I also felt there was a lot to unpack from each stanza, so by splitting it into 3 distinct sections, I was able to explore the themes in depth and use visual storytelling in place of an explanation. I did this purposely as it compels the audience to draw their own conclusions and further emphasises my concept of finding your own truth.

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