Half-truths in communications.

I thought it timely to pen some thoughts in verse:


In search of truth
Beware half-truths.

The half-truths that lull us into believing
Falsehoods that could be deceiving.
Information accepted fully and in haste.
Can instil trust that is misplaced.

False statements that contain a grain of fact.
Might shape our thoughts and how we act.
They could even aid deception.

Thus, misinformation and disinformation flow.
And seeds of misconception grow.

It’s good to have an open mind.
To listen but also to question
The source of a suggestion.
To seek evidence and review
Being careful not to misconstrue.

In science and in life we must
Beware half-truths and misplaced trust.

©Julie Charlesworth, 2023

Curiosity and an open mind are good but healthy skepticism without cynicism is also good. ‘Keep an open mind but not so open that your brain falls out.’

by Dr Julie Charlesworth 20/10/23

See also my earlier poem putting simply how misinformation and disinformation are wrong.

Science, Politics, and Trust.

Is opinion change viewed differently in science and politics? Why might that be?
Here are some thoughts
I thought I’d share.
If I dare.
Because I think
It should be said
That reactions to
Changes of opinion
In science and in politics
May differ.
Here goes:
Scientists may change their opinions
It’s acceptable.
It’s respectable
In science.
When new data emerge
More evidence may mount
To support
A new hypothesis.
But what of opinion change
In politics and policy?
It seems it can be frowned on,
Viewed suspiciously,
Even looked down on
In politics.
But as information evolves,
Evidence or other reasons may mount
to support a new policy
or opinion.
What then?
Unquestionable devotion
Is not a given.
Public support
Can be based on reasoning or emotion.
Past decisions should
Be understood.
Mistakes can even be forgiven.
It’s not a time to appear aloof
When people deserve the truth.
As a scientist I suggest
Evidence-based change is best.
But decisions may be needed
In times of uncertainty
When evidence is limited.
Where opinions change
Truth, reasons, and clarity
Are a must!
In science and in politics
Engagement is best earned
Through honesty and transparency,
That in turn will lead to trust.
                    ©Julie Charlesworth, 2023

by Dr Julie Charlesworth 03/01/23


(Thoughts are my own but inspired by several discussions at ESOF2022.)

Stay with me – a poem of loss and comfort.

I have very occasionally had the most vivid dreams about each of my parents which brought me great comfort. My mum died 10 years ago this May and my dad died 27 years ago this September. I recently wrote this poem to capture some intense feelings of loss and comfort. I thought it might be timely to share my poem with you as many people will be missing loved ones.


In a dream
You are here.
I can see, touch, and sense you.
I know it’s a dream
But just for now
Please stay with me a moment.

Life hurts.
I still miss you.

©Julie Charlesworth, 2022

Losing one parent was hard. With the second parent also gone I felt a profound sadness and a surreal sense of emptiness. However, their most precious legacy is their values, and the stories that continue to be passed on. In this way, I still feel the closeness and love of my parents.

I wrote this poem in memory of my parents and thinking of all those in mourning or missing loved ones.

Thinking of families and individuals who have lost loved ones or are reminded of the loss of loved ones, particularly this week and during difficult times.

It is also a period of time for thoughtful reflection.

by Dr Julie Charlesworth 10/9/22