The critics just faun it, the Mail just loathes;
The public’s not stupid, it’s in on the deal –
We’ve always known it’s the emperor’s clothes,
It’s only the artists who think it’s for real.
And all’s just performance-ing art in the end,
These artists we hate yet adore:
That pompously-arrogant, smugly-camp blend –
Such wonderful caricature !
Out of work and out of dole,
While high on blues and low on soul.
And all the songs we’d ever hear
Were old, and theirs, and insincere.
We hung around in aimless bands
To stop us feeling suicidal,
But the Devil makes work for idle hands –
And boy, were our hands idle !
So we are why the faithful flocks
Must mumble hymns while Satan rocks !
We’re drowning-out the choirs of Heaven
With three-chord worship at 11.
His music fills a hole in us,
It hugs our pockmarked skin –
If God gave rock & roll to us,
Then Satan plugged us in.
Ordered by social convention into inaction,
I sit at my desk and abstain –
I keep my head down and stare at my pen till I hear
The murmur of morning again.
Like most, I start on my shutdown at ten-fifty-eight,
And end at eleven-oh-four,
To cover the randomly-synchronised watches of colleagues –
And never mind minding the store.
Across the room, someone is typing. (Is that still allowed ?)
Their rat-a-tat keystokes clatter.
A phone rings out the alarm, which nobody answers,
Till voicemail settles the matter.
I ought to be thinking, I know, of tommies and trenches,
Of birdsong, bombardements and screams –
Instead, I just notice this shuffle’ing silence-by-rote –
My thoughts are deserters, it seems.
Innocent spiders close down schools
When ignorant humans panic.
Why the hell are we so prepared
To see them as Satanic ?
We wonder why our schools are broke,
And so is our inside –
Yet choose which phobias we’ll stoke,
And wear our hates with pride –
It only takes the merest sight
To send us shrieking with delight.
Our fears are learned, and screeching
Ain’t what our schools should teach in.
Far, far better we learn to love
The harmless ones, at least –
Let our babies play with monies,
Let our kids embrace the beast.
Rearing spinners out of eggs,
And never let the wolves repulse –
Daddy, bring a daddy-longlegs,
Mama, bring a widow-false –
Or better yet, we should be shown
To watch awhile, then leave alone.
And maybe then, here’s hoping,
The schools can all stay open.
A crossword book with a pen attached –
Now isn’t that thoughtful…there must be a catch…
Of course ! It’s a pen, not a pencil they proffer –
It’s starting to look like less of an offer.
We have to commit to the answers we choose
No try-this-for-nows or perhaps-that’ll-dos.
Just black squares and white squares,
Such tiny wee white squares,
And make one mistake and the whole grid will sink –
So pencil-pussies best beware,
This game is won by those who dare,
By those who leave their mark on life in ink.