Category: poetry


Poverty is a state of mind

who’s mind

no jobs

weary

hopeless

depressed

anger at the struggle for daily living

made to feel worthless and lazy

second class citizens by the very people who should help

tired

ashamed

who do you think you are to say my struggle is all in my head

with your silver spoons and Eton education

do you really think you know how we suffer to live on seven quid a day

you say we need to cut the GDP

what about our debt

the fat cats sit on their cushy jobs and with no mind to the results

cut here cut there

slicing into our lives

but never their own

never their own

the old boy network help themselves and look down on the degraded suicidal

sanctioned

how can we pull ourselves out of this mess when there are no resources for us to use

we are not all lazy

worthless

work shy

scroungers

tell us enough and maybe we start to believe it

is poverty the state of my mind

the struggle is not in my head

we suffer the abuse

the prejudice

the shame of joblessness

oh they say

there are schemes for you to try

but where are the jobs

get yourself back into work

but where are the schemes to help start your business

stress

fear

despair

we will beat it and we will better it

poverty is not a mindful thing

it is that family pushed and shoved and squeezed into debt just because that 1% help themselves and the country goes to pot

but we will do it and we will do it well

and f*uck the government

we will do it without your help

no longer sanctioned

no more shame

not ostracised

stigmatised

demonised

but once again a member of the working class

poverty may still be there

but not in my mind

 

 

For my Grandad

My paternal grandfather ‘Joe’ was a young lad of 15 when he signed up for ‘Queen and Country’ at the beginning of the 1st World War. He lied about his age to become a private in the Cheshire Regiment and to go to war. Like him many young men disobeyed their parents and left for a grand adventure never to return home, staying forever young. My grandad never spoke to us about what happened to him during the war, i know he was mustard gassed and shot in the face but don’t know where he fought. To his grandchildren he was a small grumpy man who walked with a stick, to others a hero. Now i am older and have learnt of the things he may have suffered i consider that small slightly built old man a true hero, for having the courage to disobey his mother, for bravely going into something that would change the shape of his life without knowing how truly horrific it would become and for coming home and remaking his life, for living in a society that had no understanding of the things he had seen and done and for getting on with living. I have a painting of him as a young man in his uniform, it was painted especially for his mother and has passed from great grandmother to grandmother, to father and now to me. I don’t think it is an especially good portrait but it is a true reflection of the man. It is framed nicely and has stood the test of time, being bombed, stuck up in the loft, left in the cupboard. I knew at an early age that i would keep it and cherish it. For my grandfather and all of the men and women who have heard and answered the call to war this photograph and poem is for them. The poem is written by Chris Lawrence.
remenberance

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