As a kid, I used to believe in the Seven Seas – But which on Earth were they ? Clearly the Channel, the North and the Irish, But which were the other four ?, I’d say. But then I learned there were dozens of others, From the Med to Aegean to Adriatic – Time for a rethink, I thought, to the map – Clearly the rolling waves weren’t static !
Some people say they were numbered by the Arabs From the Gulf to the South China Sea, Others that they represent the oceans In one big continuity. But some say currents can separate them, So some shall flood while others seep. And others again say the seas are layers From the sunlit shallows to Challenger Deep.
As a kid, I used to believe in old salts’ notion, Until I did no more – And then I believed in the Panthalassic Ocean, Lapping ev’ry shore. And then I believed in gradients and upward swells For the flows to surmount – Yet the tides never asked their name as they rose and fell, And the seas can’t count.
Rivers are boring when they’re straight, We’ve got the canals for that. But rivers will race and rivers will wait, As they twist through their habitat. They’re in no hurry to terminate, They meander around, and ambulate, Through oxbows of a future-date, Until they’re old and fat. I used to marvel how they’d know Which way to go to flow through ev’ry town. But gravity cares none for to or fro, For fast or slow, As long as they flow down. Rivers are boring when they’re straight, But once they’ve earned the name of ‘great’, They carve their many strands through delta sands, While the hungry sea must wait.
The run of the mill are the ones that work, That pass the quality control. The boilerplate will keep us warm, The squares are the pegs that fit square holes. Vanilla is liked by the most of us, In the melting pot in which we merge. And the middle of the highway Is much flatter than the verge.
We can’t all be an edge case, That’s why safe and steady sells – We’re statistic’ly predictable, Our curves are always bells. We can’t all be left-handed, Double-jointed, hazeled-eyes. Our clothing fits much better When it’s cut to av’rage size.
Oh sure, we may have corners, Here and there, which stray from the norm, But the hard-to-hear truth of it Is how we’re true to form. We try to be original, As a genius or freak – But just like us, our doubles Are convinced that they’re unique.
We all so long to be special, And so we are, in a typical way – They’ll never refer to us as The Great, But maybe as the doing-okay. This world belongs to the mediums, To the masses, not the kings – For how could we ever find stuff we liked If we all like diff’rent things ?
A cup of flour ? How much is that ? An onion, small ? How small ? How closely should I trim the fat ? How round each stuffing ball ? Cooking lacks precision, And quality controls – Explaining my omission Of some toads to fill these holes.
The clock is ticking, Fuse is lit – So no more bricking, This is it ! Oh no, There’s still a long and rocky road to go. Let’s chomp down on the bit, For we’ll never get to reap unless we sow. The walls are shaking, Floor’s on fire, The news we’re breaking’s Looking dire – Whoa-whoa, Looks like we’ll have to take this blow-by-blow. For if we don’t aspire Then we’ll never overcome the status quo. Our spirit’s flagging, Muscles cramp, Our mojo’s sagging, Powder’s damp – How so ? We’ve faced the ebb, now let’s surge with the flow ! So up-and-at-em champ, Cos when danger’s high, it’s too late to lie low.. We’re all we’ve got, Let’s try somehow, The iron’s hot, The time is now ! Heigh-ho, Let’s buckle-up and get on with the show. It’s time to give this world some wow And leave behind a golden afterglow !
How long should we leave the Lego built Before we break it down ? How long will the sandcastle stand Before its turrets drown ? How long should we sit back and admire The finished jigsaw puzzle, Till it’s taking up the table space Where other things could bustle ? Time then to embrace the entropy, Disrupt the orthodox, And smash the status quo with relish Back into its box.
What ho ! I’m Ali, Born in Cairo – True-blue British, doncha know ? Like squire Sanjay – Mumbai-bred, As English as a phone box red. And then there’s Chang, From County Down, By bowler hat and Chinatown. And Elzbieta, Glasgow gal, As fish-and-chips as any pal, And Welsh Pierre Of Montreal, So fluent in the bat-and-ball. The best of British, Tweeds and cap – As much as any other chap.
The Nazis used to be quite rare, With few who earned the name – But now it seems they’re ev’rywhere And free speech is to blame ! These random people on the net Who think they get a say – I call them out as fascists, yet Their views leap by the day I put them down, but still them come, Replete with facts and stats. I can’t believe how many scum Are lurking in the chats. They should be rounded up, the lot, And left to rot in Hell – And if you disagree, a spot Gets found for you, as well…
Painting’s hard, with all those tiny strokes, And poems are endless rhymes, And anyway, they’re the preserve of snooty folks And so behind the times. And architecture’s super-hard to build With all that carving and stuff I mean, who’s got the time to be that skilled ? Let’s keep it brutally rough. And music’s hard, not worth the perk To learn an instrument – Just sample other people’s work, And pay them not a cent
Creating beauty’s hard, we can’t be arsed, We’re far too lazy – But critics dig our arsey arts, And worship us like crazy. Make it ugly, hard to parse, This public-funded junk – The future finds it vain and sparse, Agog at how we’ve shrunk. We’re sinkholes in the bedrock karst, And ev’ryone knows we’re farces. Amazing how we can’t be arsed, And yet we’re up-our-own-arses.