Daily Archives: November 13, 2017

The War Memorial for Women by Peter Wyton

I am not a silent poet

How many male joggers, out exercising one evening
along a canal towpath, or at the wooded extremity
of a public park, find themselves suddenly confronted
by a ferret-faced female, wielding a switchblade?

How many boyfriends, having kissed their fiancées
goodnight at a garden gate, will walk home alone,
entering an ill-lit underpass only to come face to face
with a sweaty thug of a woman, reeking of beer?

How many inoffensive, lightly clad lads will be set upon
in tower block stair-wells, or awaiting public transport,
by jeering assemblies of belligerent bitches
fighting one another to be first in the gang-bang queue?

How many violated, mutilated masculine corpses
will end up dumped in lay-byes or neglected cemeteries,
hastily sand-covered at a remote golf course bunker
or discovered by dog-walkers in tangled undergrowth?

The war memorial for women has not yet been built.
No cairn nor shrine nor plaque nor cenotaph…

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the 132 left by Martin Hayes

I am not a silent poet

the 139 people that this man lied to
sat in that big boardroom
convincing us all that we were “the oxygen of this company”
only to shut down our workshop 6 months later
laying off 7 of us 139
has left the 132 that are left
wondering which one of us will be next.
132 people who have flesh
and teeth and bones to support
but who are now unsure
whether they will be able to do that come Christmas,
come the next electricity bill,
come the end of the month.
132 people who combined
have given more than one-million hours of their time
getting paid to inflate this company
into something strong,
who have the scars and addictions,
the lonely lives and debts
to prove it.
132 people who now know
that they were lied to by this man
in that boardroom,
on that day
when he came in…

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132 more by Martin Hayes

I am not a silent poet

the new boss from the company behind the takeover

came in to give us all a pep talk

to ease the uncertainty and fears we all had

of maybe losing our jobs

and to paint for us all a vision

of the future

in groups of 10

we were all given a time slot

when we had to be in the boardroom

to listen to this man

this man who had never made a delivery to anyone anywhere

this man who whenever he got a parking ticket or CCTV fine

had only to make sure that it was entered correctly onto his expense account

this man who had never had to also hold down a weekend job

hauling 25lb boxes of frozen lamb into the backs of trucks

for £6.50 an hour after tax

just so he could afford to take his kids to the cinema

this man who had…

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And Finally by Bethany Rivers

I am not a silent poet

……………………….last night I did it.
Although I’m now sitting
in a cell in this stinking jail

of sweat and fear, I’m grinning.
I stole in to the private rooms
in Westminster and I graffitied

on every wall and every mirror
the names of all the benefit suicides.
I prit-sticked photos to MPs’ desks,

sellotaped them on plush seated chairs.
I then confettied the Speaking House
with photos of Aunt Beryl (put her head

in the oven), odd-job-man-Billy always
ready with a smile (took an overdose)
young Sally (mother of twins) hung herself,

stuck them down with chewing gum
along the central aisle,
all the way to the Speaker’s chair.

I painted dripping scarlet words
across the wooden panels:
Suicide is Murder, posted on the quiet.

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The World According to Trump by Rupert M Loydell

I am not a silent poet

The gun he killed with
doesn’t count:
it is not a gun law issue.

The women he fondled
do not count:
it was not sexual assault.

Money sent to offshore banks
does not count:
it is not tax avoidance.

Those who object
do not count:
they are simply wrong.

Those who are colored
do not count:
they are not American.

The election he won
counts for everything:
it was not rigged at all.

Donald Trump
cannot count.
His days are numbered.

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Hawthorn at Martinmas by Gillian Mellor

I am not a silent poet

The leaves are gone and the birds will come.
to pick at your splayed limbs
clotted red with the fruit of existence.
This is a season of remembrance.

You were laid down in lines to enclose the land,
found belonging in displacement –
you who have always remedied the heart’s failings.
A mother will always have her son home,

his actions always twisted to fit the fight
for a church, a history, a border, a dream.
This is how they harvest young men
with no land to call their own.

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