Saturday, 5 March 2011

A Just Society

Some maintain that a just society
puts the needs of the poor
before the demands of the rich.

Yet consider the plight
of the six members of the present cabinet
who are not yet millionaires.

What kind of a just society is it that forces
Vince Cable to buy his shirts
and business studies books from Oxfam?

What kind of a just society sends
Andrew Lansley crawling to loan sharks
to pay for his prescription charges?

What kind of a just society lets Eric Pickles
queue for three hours for his Housing Benefit,
due to a scarcity of counter staff?

What kind of a just society confers
on Baroness Warsi the status of poor
non-Oxbridge educated Asian woman?

What kind of a just society could invent
the Chief-whip’s whip-round for Patrick McLoughlin’s
bus fare to his Derbyshire constituency?

What kind of a just society reduces
Danny Alexander to selling the Big Issue
on the streets of Glasgow at the weekend?

Expect the other twenty three to soon dig deep
into their combined sixty-three millions
and bail out their poverty-stricken colleagues.

© Colin Watts

Colin Watts is author of four collections of poems. He works in Adult Learning and is not a millionaire.