Tuesday, 17 October 2017

Power of Eves

Pull a scarlet shawl

around your shoulders

Know you are important

wear that cow mask

Dodge the grabbing hand

the pull on your blouse

your dupatta

your bag

Protest a curfew

police baton charge

Avoid Holi crowds

hit the men groping

your buttock

your breast

Name it sexual assault

Name male bullies

Protest putrid police

Unite as stalwart women

march together

shoulder to shoulder

© Lavinia Kumar

India’s female students say ‘to hell with it, we won’t stand for molesting and Eve-teasing’

Lavinia Kumar has a new poetry book, The Celtic Fisherman’s Wife: A Druid Life, it can be found on Amazon (US & UK).

Monday, 16 October 2017

The Awesome Wind, Northern California, 2017

Our world’s on fire. The wind blusters across
the countryside, taunting us to fear its awesome
power, sparks the ember, turns everything to char.
Fire lives inside the tree, hollows out the core.
A squirrel clings to a branch. We watch as fire
inhales, then spits out fur and bone. No relief
until the wind calms and fire sates its hunger.
The sky is not a sky we’ve ever known. Ash rains
down spectral and acrid. We can hardly breathe.

© Nancy Scott

Some evacuation orders lifted in Northern California fires; death toll at 40

Nancy Scott is author of nine books of poetry. Many of her poems deal with social justice issues.
She resides in New Jersey, USA.

Sunday, 15 October 2017

Fox in Stocks

Look, sir! Look, sir! Britain mocks, sir.
Let's play tricks with Dr Fox, sir.
Ticks and tocks from Brexit clocks:
British tradesmen shake in socks.
Brexit tricks and Brexit shticks:
Fox gets kicks and gets on wicks.
Brits in shocks and Fox in stocks:
Fox locked up where no-one knocks.
Britain mocks at Dr Fox:
Fox with nix and in his box.

© Philip Challinor

Liam Fox ridiculed for being only member of new UK board of trade

Philip Challinor posts fiction, satire and assorted grumbles on his blog: The Curmudgeon. His longer fiction is available here.

Saturday, 14 October 2017

Off Your Knees

Keep politics out of sport
Black lives may matter
but all that matters here
is the score

Keep politics out of football
because standing up for the national anthem
is not political
but kneeling for it is

Keep politics off the pitch
Offence and defence
are matters for the field of play
not for the field of struggle

Keep politics out of sport
Do your duty, entertain
don't complain
Forget those folk who can't be at the game

Play for us, throw for us
put on a show for us
Tackle them hard for us
run forty yards for us
Deliver our sport for us
don't ask for support from us

Keep politics out of sport
Keep your protests out of our faces
Know your places
Touch down your ball, run down your races

Stuff justice, think of your career
We just want a score to cheer

Get off your knees
and stand up

© Janine Booth

President Trump tells Fox News: NFL should have suspended Colin Kaepernick

Janine Booth is a Marxist motormouth, who grinds out poems serious and humorous, for the page and the stage. She has had three slim volumes of poetry published, and posts poems and political polemics at http://www.janinebooth.com/

Friday, 13 October 2017

The British Dream

Do you dream British?

Do you wake up thinking Jerusalem and jam

Wipe your plates with royal faced tea towels?

And take the bright red bus to a dull, dull office?

#TheBritishDream: when u think 'it is a coat day' so u wear a coat and it turns out it was indeed a coat day and u are a good temperature

Do you start your day with a pinky-fingered Earl Grey or a

builder’s brew stirred with a splash of fake cockney

and just a small spoon of casual xenophobia?

#TheBritishDream: slightly better weather on bank holidays

Do dreams have a nationality?

Does Uncle Sam prod pillows and

whisper sweet everythings about all those amendments?

#TheBritishDream: getting through a self-checkout without ‘unexpected item’ in the bagging area

Does the right to bear arms

comfort and cuddle our cousins as they

zee zee zee til morning?

#TheBritishDeam: a channel that plays Del-boy falling through the bar 24 hours a day

Do they bounce outta bed, with their cuppa Jo

And go off in their Cadillac in the pursuit of

life, liberty and happiness?

#TheBritishDream: finding a Kit Kat with no wafer in it

#TheBritishDream: sausages and mash Desperate-Dan style

#TheBritishDream: a nice cup of tea and a sit down

#TheBritishDream: changing queues and finding the one you have moved to, does, in fact, move faster

#TheBritishDream: doing an entire speech without interruption, without pranksters, without heckling, without coughing, without letters droppin


© Jane Slavin

Theresa May offers the ‘British dream’ but speech turns into a nightmare

Jane Slavin is a former journalist, now council press officer, living in Plymouth. In her spare time, she is falling in love with words again by making her own stuff up!

Thursday, 12 October 2017

When will this Madness end?

Yet again we turn on the TV
And witness horrible scenes
Of unparalleled violence, hatred, and despair

An old man consumed by his own demons
Opens fire from a hotel room
Killing 58 people injuring hundreds
In Las Vegas, Sin City

And the cry goes out throughout the land
Why yet again this tragedy?

The usual suspects are rounded up
It's the culture, stupid, cry the conservative voices

Guns are the price of our freedom
Guns Don’t Kill People
The only solution is more guns for everyone

The only solution for a bad guy with a gun
Is a good guy with a gun
An armed society is a polite society

No, it's the guns, cry the liberal pundits
We must confiscate the guns
Ban Assault weapons
And join the rest of the world
Where such carnage does not occur

And we sit around and argue
Knowing that there will be a next time
And another time and time and time again
Until the end of time

What is the sickness in our souls
That allows for this hatred to fester so
Deep within the minds of our killers

Nothing will change
Until we confront the evil
That lurks deep within each of us

There will be another Las Vegas
Soon enough

© Jake Aller

Families across 14 states unite in grief after Las Vegas shooting

John (“Jake”) Cosmos Aller is a novelist, poet and former Foreign Service officer. He served 27 years with the U.S. State Department, in ten countries. An aspiring novelist for several years, he has completed four novels, and has published his poetry and fiction in over 25 literary journals. Jake grew up in Berkeley, California.

Wednesday, 11 October 2017

Get a Grip

It's World Mental Health Day, so

Snap out of taking orders
Snap out of blame
Snap out of 'disorders'
Snap out of shame
Snap out of austerity
Snap out of stressors
Snap out of poverty
Snap out of pressures
Snap out of 'raising awareness'
and start raising hell
This system's sick
It isn't well

Clench your fists and bite your lip
Get a grip on broken minds and
Ask yourself what is breaking them
Get a grip on that banner pole
On that placard stick
Stop the traffic
Shout and kick
Take my tip
Get a grip

and chill out
Never spit your pill out
Chin up, man up
Pull everything you can up
Raise your hand up
Make your point and stand up

Pull our allies together
Pull our demands together
Pull our hands and arms together
Pull together all our resources
Our battling and campaigning forces
Pull ourselves together
Solidarity forever

© Janine Booth

Janine Booth lives in Hackney, East London. She writes and performs poetry, and has had three slim volumes of poetry published. Janine posts poems and political polemics at www.janinebooth.com