Bent Britain

by francine Hardaway on May 22, 2009

Bent Britain

I have a friend in the U.K. who reads my blog, and who sent me a favorite poem from the recent British poetry season. Yes, we may have football season and basketball season, but the Brits apparently have a poetry season. So the BBC picked this poem as a favorite from this season:

Bent Britain May 2009

We are bent Britain right now,
In this land of heroes,
The upper houses are
Reeking with stale piss.

We are bent Britain right now
In this land of tolerance
And hard won basic human dignity
Our elites
Are no better than tin pot regimes
Smeared with hypocrisy .

We are bent Britain right now
In the midst of sweated labour
The working people did everything
Asked of them; did everything the right way
The honourable way.And now look
As shattered dreams pile up in Swindon town.
Betrayed again betrayed again.

We are bent Britain right now
Treating our heroes from unwanted wars
Like discarded items on an accountants page ,
We don’t have room for the gurkhas
Our brave defenders ;
But everybody else is welcome.
We are bent Britain right now
As our bankers and money people
Have trashed us thrashed us
Robbed us skinned us
Like in some English public school brawl
They return to their dishonest lairs
To lick their wounds and sneer.
Looking for the next churn .

We are bent Britain right now
And we need our heroes again
Put the search out for our heroes!
Please blow the bugle
Torch the signal pyre
To bring us back or take us forward,
Just bring back our heroes!

Read it out loud to feel its power, especially on a day when the credit rating of the British government has been cut.

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