Sweet little sperm

Japanese workers in California. Flickr. Library of Congress

SWEET LITTLE SPERM

 

Keep moving your tail,
sweet little sperm.
Show us what you are made of,
thrive to compete,
reach for the stars
in England’s global dream.

 

Keep moving your tail,
sweet little sperm.
Don’t worry if it’s just white tissue
where you have to navigate:
The world’s changing fast,
don’t refrain to adapt
to exciting new terrains.

 

Keep moving your tail,
sweet little sperm.
We don’t want any
foreign,
faster,
bastard
sperm
to get there,
to get anywhere,
in fact,
before you.

 

Keep moving your tail,
sweet little sperm,
if you’re idle, you’ll be dead.
I know there is no egg,
but who needs more of them
if technology will soon
allow to replicate,
even in their solitude,
individuals like you
who can’t find a mate?

 

Keep moving your tail,
sweet little sperm,
it’ll do you good.
You don’t want to be fat,
like me,
or have cholesterol.
Football game on campus, McGill University, Montreal, QC, about 1900. Anonymous. Flickr. Notman photographic Archives - McCord Museum.

Football game on campus, McGill University, Montreal, QC, about 1900. Anonymous. Flickr.
Notman photographic Archives – McCord Museum.

Keep moving your tail,
sweet little sperm,
it’s in your DNA
(and in my IDS),
like our sporting traditions,
discipline, skill,
our culture of duty,
glorious league tables,
sacrifice, routine.

 

Keep moving your tail,
sweet little sperm,
but do not demonstrate!
Do not complain!
Do not affiliate!
Put a brave face
and get on with it!
Keep calm, carry on!
Don’t believe what anyone says,
just believe in you.

 

Keep moving your tail,
sweet little sperm.
Your welfare depends
on the vibrancy of your motion,
your speed up the stream
and so does my wage,
and my job,
and the profits of thousands
of savvy businessmen
who trade
with the energy
of the movement
of your tail,
sweet little sperm.

 

Rubber Bands A worker at the recently opened Dunlop Factory in Cork slicing rubber for tyres. 13 September 1935. Flickr. National Library of Ireland

Rubber Bands
A worker at the recently opened Dunlop Factory in Cork slicing rubber for tyres. 13 September 1935. Flickr. National Library of Ireland

Copyright © 2014. Tony Martin-Woods (A.M.A.)
Todos los derechos reservados. All rights reserved

Put yourself in my shoes

PUT YOURSELF IN MY SHOES

 

When I was a teenager,
at a lecture on Sartre,
someone clever said:
‘You can’t put yourself
in someone else’s shoes,
because there’s already
someone wearing them.’
And I believed him.

 

Fifteen years later
at a reception centre
for asylum seekers,
I remember the clever man
when I meet another man.
This man is not wearing shoes.
This man is sharing his shoes
with someone else.

 

When the one wants to go out,
he has the shoes;
when the other has to go out,
then he wants the shoes.
When one is shod, the other is not.
When one is out, the other is not.

 

The mathematics of poverty, I see,
mirrors the rigour of existentialist philosophy.
The clever man, perhaps, was right.
But let the cobbler do his job
and re-form the worn-out metaphor
with hammer and awl:

 

re-fashion it into the finest footwear
that shines as though on fire,
and hand it, with a knowing smile,
to the barefoot refugee,
whose experience shows
that you can put someone else in your own shoes.

 

Copyright © 2014. Terry J. Bradford
Todos los derechos reservados. All rights reserved

Dolce et Gabbana Est

DOLCE ET GABBANA EST

 

Exhausted, bearing shopping bags and sacks,
But elated, pouting like ducks, we dodge the sludge,
And on the poor, the plebs we turn our backs
As to our modest homes, in fact, we trudge.
There we will sleep. And dream of our new boots,
Clothes, electronic goods – all brand names; blind
To having been conned; ignoring the hoots
Of derision from sales people behind.

 

Home. For ready meals, TV, and fumbling
With our partner. There’s just not enough time
In the day for work, rest, and play. Stumbling
Through debt – “I should’ve got that hat in lime…
Or puce?” – we are distracted by the light.
We grin with the weight. But we are drowning.

 

In a snowstorm of adverts we’ve lost sight
Of what’s real. ’Cos we’re worth it? We’re drowning.

 

We’re struggling just to keep up with the pace
Of this life, inflation, the mess we’re in;
If we’re honest, we don’t want to lose face,
Having lost our soul, our belief in sin.
Are we worth it? On our hands is the blood
Of foreign workers: they give up their lungs,
Their hopes, their lives. Whilst we dare chew the cud,
In a café with friends, cake on our tongues,
Swapping trivia with the zeal and zest
Of the desperate. We grab, in hollow glory,
The new lie: Dolce et Gabbana est
Pro patria Tory.

 

Copyright © 2014. Terry J. Bradford

 

 

Fireworks

FIREWORKS

 

While others are gawping, upwards,
like lobotomized meer-kats,
and oohing, and aahing
at colourful chemical reactions
in the sky, I go down to my kitchen
to put bangers under the grill.

 

Sitting on the cold stone floor,
I warm myself as I watch
flesh-pink sausages,
sun-bathers, repellently obese,
sweat grease and brown and burn
until they explode,
whistling, pissing fat.

 

No artifice from their orifice,
but spitting flashes of life:
incandescent shooting stars,
evanescent stirring shots
of celebration, cheaper
than fireworks, and edible.

 

Copyright © 2014. Terry J. Bradford

 

Tesco Chainstore Massacre

TESCO CHAINSTORE MASSACRE, BY STAN SKINNY
http://www.stanskinny.co.uk/w/doku.php

 

TESCO TERRORIST
 
I’m a Tesco terrorist
a food shopping anarchist
 
every little helps
so, I help myself
to a little something
from each shelf
 
I don’t wash my hands
after I’ve pissed up the walls
or feel guilty
when afterwards
I fondle the fruit and veg stalls
 
I ‘accidentally” drop bottles
of tomato sauce
 on the floor
and leave it for
‘Gary, spillage on aisle 4’
 
I’m a Tesco terrorist
a food shopping anarchist
 
I put Tesco finest sirloin steaks
through as onions on the self service machine
and in some guy’s basket, at the till
when he’s not looking I put
cucumbers, KY jelly, and top shelf magazines
 
I’m a Tesco terrorist
a food shopping anarchist
 
I pay with pennies and I push in queues
spit in the customer comments box
and block up the loos
 
I swap price labels
and wear my pyjamas in store
or if it’s a 24 hour
I wear nothing at all
 
I’m a Tesco terrorist
a food shopping anarchist
 
because Tesco world is coming
unless we all resist
 
Stan Skinny
http://www.stanskinny.co.uk/w/doku.php  
Copyright © 2013 Stan Skinny
Todos los derechos reservados. All rights reserved

The Echo of the Story

THE ECHO OF THE STORY

 

The withering heir

Gave a name to the empire

Of brave ornaments

And healing chronicles

For the tarnished glory

Of the ruling heroes

Who tamed him

With whisky

And killed him

With a bullet of gold.

 

And now it’s David,

the star of the quiz show,

Who has the key

Of the victim’s coffin.

 

Rule Britannia

Britannia rules the books

 

Copyright © 2013. Tony Martin-Woods (A.M.A)

Todos los derechos reservados. All rights reserved.

The Last Mohican

THE LAST MOHICAN

 

The last Mohican

I met had a mat of

Crow’s nest hair

Interthreaded with

Woolen strands

Bright as feathers.

 

‘Thank you for stopping.’

Reservation in her voice

As the shopping non-stoppers

Stampeded by.

We enacted the ritual

Called ‘Giving to the Poor’

‘No-one stops anymore.’

 

She sat down on some steps

To suffer the bows and arrows

Of disgraceful disinterest.

Toting for some kind

Of change outside the market.

 

Donal Thompson

www.donal.info

cc by nc sa

Seeing the busker set up

SEEING THE BUSKER SET UP

 

How many of us

see the busker set up?

Or hearing the music

think where it comes from?

 

We hear reflections

of notes on tube station

Tiles and believe the

walls are singing to us.

 

Because we have never

heard them silent.

Because the busker

is always there.

 

As if his song

is the only song.

As if we can’t

make up our own tunes.

 

Donal Thompson

www.donal.info

cc by nc sa

Magnetic Soup Wagon

MAGNETIC SOUP WAGON

 

Perhaps a fumbling shuffle

this promised shift to spirit.

A mistrustful nodding from

those who never made it to the party.

A reassurance like a magnetic

soup wagon among

A dereliction of bricks may

tease us from the cardboard night.

 

Light may come through a

proliferation of windows in

Ringbound schedules. Genuine

prayer mats flattened on floors,

Taken from walls, purchased

on tours of commerce. A piety

Attack like the reinvention

of running by joggers.

 

From us our atomic attachments

may be beaten by vanguards

Running ahead of tanks

with sticks and ideas.

We may sniff a gush of something

in the rush of heat round a petrol bomb.

Or reap a gift from the

cracked head of a hero.

 

Throw together a new vocabulary

tall as minaret and recharge

Our icons to topple tired economics.

Pick at the bones of old faith.

Strive for voice by unmuting

the still good of the past.

Will we slaughter the Sacred Dow ?

Will we choose Rome? Or

Stonehenge?

 

Then again some northern kids

may keep it safe from the magpies

Until we remember ourselves once more

And vow to stay awake this time.

Or, perhaps, it will be parcelled

in the fracture of promise.

Coded in the cold fear that for us

it may not come at all.

 

Donal Thompson

www.donal.info

cc by nc sa

Egyptians

EGYPTIANS

 

What are you waiting for?

This is it.

That shadow.

This website.

That car outside.

This evening.

 

The land mine of the day you die

Is already laid so you might as

well go

FiGhTiNg

down the road as

dancing

 

As well

dancing

as

FiGhTiNg

 

Or

Buy bricks to

Build rooms to die in.

We are little Egyptians

Weighing our souls against

Mortgages. See them balanced.

 

If you like.

If you can.

 

 

Donal Thompson

www.donal.info

cc by nc sa

Paradise

PARADISE

 

In paradise people smile at you,

although salaries don’t cover their needs.

 

In paradise there are swimming pools and oceans.

I get a towel, you dry off in the heat.

 

In paradise time doesn’t matter.

Your life is just hard work and dreams.

 

In paradise there are cars and bare feet.

I get a driver, you walk the streets.

 

In paradise tourists glance at market stalls.

“Come to my shop and buy some tea”.

 

In paradise there are wild animals.

You die with them,  I  go on a safari along the creek.

 

In paradise you can’t go to sleep at night time,

but I get mosquito nets and sheets.

 

Karibu to paradise!

 

 Inma Álvarez

cc by nc sa

This poem was written in the Tube in Madrid on 9 March 2013 immediately after a visit to Tanzania.

Poema escrito en el Metro de Madrid el 9 marzo 2013 inmediatamente después de una visita a Tanzania.

It’s a Free Market

IT’S A FREE MARKET

 

Lively chit chat

At the infallible tempo

Of the clinking of glass.

 

A drizzle of jazz

On live canapés.

 

Waiters who model.

 

Our man

Keeps his business cards

Very close to his chest.

No rush, no push.

He knows what is right

He knows who to approach

He knows how to wait

He knows when to fall

Softly and warmly

On his pickled prey:

The greedy relation

Who awaits with a smirk

For the usual courting.

 

Education,

Health,

Weapons,

Research,

Transport,

Land,

It’s all up for grabs,

It is all fair game,

It’s all the same,

It’s all just money,

At the end of the day.

(We don’t discriminate cash for its colour).

 

And

 

When the deal is ready,

 

The cloths of both parties

 

Drop discreetly on the floor.

 

Only Private Eye

Knows the strength of their bids.

 

No chance

For clean

Spreadsheets,

No need

For financial

Prophylaxis,

No point

In trimming the hedges.

This is,

Brutally,

A family affair,

Lubricated with the spark

Of Conservative Champagne.

 

Sneaky voyeurs

Pay a good price

For the steam in the room

Where business thrives,

Where public assets

End up privatised,

Where bastards in arms

Trade our demise.

 

Broadcasted in Bloomberg

For the rest of the world!

Close-ups available

In the salmon press!

 

 

Copyright © 2012-2015. Tony Martin-Woods (A.M.A.)

Todos los derechos reservados. All rights reserved.

When

WHEN

 

I sometimes hate my cell,

The enforced austerity of space,

The timely occurrence of events,

Retribution for crimes of omission.

 

One day,

The leg of the bench,

Where I sat everyday for hours,

Will become a club.

 

One day,

The timeliness of routines,

Will work its magic for us,

But not for you.

 

Copyright © 2012. Angustias Manzanera (A.M.A.)

Todos los derechos reservados. All rights reserved

Industrial Revolution

INDUSTRIAL REVOLUTION

 

Aisles of stone along the river

Fed tall incestuous mills

With innocent blood and talent

In tamed pastures of England’s glory.

 

Selfless surrender of joy and pride

Bread, butter, beer and sweat 

 

Casually awaken plastic dreams

Watered down metal pain

Fractured spikes of wooden bones

In hung-over dark junk yards

 

Selfless flowers of art spring

Organic rot of Northern progress

 

Copyright © 2012. Tony Martin-Woods (A.M.A)

Todos los derechos reservados. All rights reserved.

Economic break up

ECONOMIC BREAK UP

 

I’m in the middle of an economic break up.

There’s no lack of emotion, no waning devotion,

no love lost, no loaded words, no bickering, no spite.

No fights, no third party. He still writes me songs,

but my heart’s in recession.

We’re resigned, us both, to our different destinations,

but George, I’ll Guido Fawk you over

and Mariano, my ex-boy’s going to Murdoch all your assets

just as soon as we’ve both escaped

our economic heartbreak.

 

Copyright © 2012. Elizabeth Lamb

Todos los derechos reservados. All rights reserved.