Friday, 31 May 2019

I read the news today

















I read the news today, oh boy…
…about a lucky man…

…who (because it was there) climbed the roof of the world, who paid 
a fortune to rise above his own mean streets and breathe the wonder 
of the rarified, oxygen-poor wind as if he was alone in it but, 
shuffling up the ice-path above the weather, he stumbled, tired, 
one-foot-after-another bored, prey to gravity, one slip in its grip, 
he fell, he died despite his dreams, died in a queue;

I read the news today…
…the English army had just won the war…

…and another war, another pointless squabble, had begun…
for a pennyworth of governance, shoo-ins, get-outs, no names, no pack-drill
no more making the grade, loaded dice and a rigged game, identities changed 
to protect the guilty, in the uphill struggle, the pompous drag of going up 
in the world, of staying up, of going on forever;

I read the news…
…I’d seen that face before…

…and a country weeps, it’s leader (take me to her) weeps crocodile rain 
on crocodile shoes, petty sadness dries on her shrivelled cheeks,
a parody of grief for misbegotten promises run into sand, grimaces and tears 
for being found out, found wanting, for being arrogant and full of pride, 
for being a crock of shit and heartless with it;

I read the news, today, oh God…
…everybody spoke and I went into a dream…

…the whole world weeps, sheds water from its fractured veins, finds its bedrock 
shattered or under pressure, under duress, it oozes blood, a blood-like fluid, 
a thin extraction, the Earth’s crust sobbing, mortally wounded by stabs of greed;

i read the news, oh boy…
…a million ozone holes and counting…

…entropy, catastrophe, panegyric apostrophe, rhetoric, caustic wit, 
paregoric for the brain, arsenic in the soul, the duplicity of figureheads 
now hidden in the shadows, purchased men and women, no less, 
who self-identify as honourable, who lie, yes, who lie perfectly still, 
scheming and scheming, and still pass unnoticed.

I read the news today, one final time…
…because I had to look…
…no sign of love behind the tears…
…cried for no-one…

© Brian Hill

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Brian Hill - [Blog: One Piece a Week]

Brian has been 50 years a poet. One-time designer and film-maker; long ago, the rhyme-slinger, cartoon cowboy, and planetarium poet; now feverishly stringing words together in the hope of making sense.