Oh, say! can you see by the dawn's early light
That a beaming misogynist at twilight's gleaming;
White hoods are back, and lynching at night,
O'er the ramparts we watched drunken bigots all steaming?
And the rocket's red glare, the bombs bursting in air,
Gave proof through the night that the Earth was scorched bare:
Oh, say! does that cash-spangled banner still wave
Though all of humanity's sent to the grave?
Oh the things, barely seen as reaction does creep,
Where a Billionaire host, claimed 'outsider' reposes,
What is that which will vote like a bunch of tamed sheep,
A reality TV host, half conceals, half discloses?
Now he catches the gleam of the photograph's beam,
Enough ugliness exposed to poison a stream:
'Tis the cash-spangled banner! a loin cloth to save
While the poor and the destitute head for the grave!
And where are the braves who were here before
The 'ching' of the Gold Rush and Cotton's confusion?
A history of genocide - here's the cat's paw:
Now the Standing Rock Sioux face foul pipeline's pollution!
No refugee has a welcome here save
For the terror of flight or the gloom of the grave:
And the cash-spangled banner does divide and rule
In a race to the bottom - where the folk act like fools
Oh, this should be never, when freemen shall hand
Over loved home to war's desolation!
And the murderers ransack, and screw other lands
Praise the power of the rich as they destroy your nation!
And as global warming turns crops to dust,
This be the motto: "In Trump is our trust":
And the cash-spangled banner in triumph unfurled
Will be the only thing left when they've destroyed the world.
© Des Mannay
Des Mannay has won prizes and been shortlisted in 6 competitions, performed at 8 festivals, published in 8 magazines/blogs. His work has appeared in 13 poetry anthologies. Catch him on Facebook as "The stuff wot I wrote' Des Mannay - hooligan Poet". Twitter: @hooliganpoet