Three years ago they told me
‘the future’s guaranteed’,
three years of study was their mantra,
work and riches was their creed.
Three years later on the scrap heap,
a hundred letters sent –
I am your lost generation,
scourge of Europe’s parliament.
My God – what next – a Master’s
of frustration or a Doctor of despair?
Not a Euro for electric, food, clothes, rent –
you can forget about my hair!
You’ll find a job, they tell me,
you're young, literate, highly skilled;
but I’m their lost generation –
I’m not so proud – I’ll sell my
writing, one-fifty Euros for my brain.
I’ll stack shelves in any country,
I don’t want to be a drain
and my family will support me –
we're resilient and close knit.
I turn my back upon your hand-outs
don't want a penny from your State.
So tell me, what’s your future,
is this your Baby Boomers’ dream?
All I see is desperation
whilst the Capitalists get the cream.
This is not my adventure –
wasted youth and forced exile –
I guess I’ll give up
looking, join Europe’s ever-growing pile.
© Carolyn Cornthwaite
Young, qualified and jobless: plight of Europe's best-educated generation
Carolyn writes poetry, flash fiction, short stories and has almost completed the first draft of a novel. She dreams of Booker prizes and a life in France and blogs at wimpywriter.com