Poems

By She Drew The Gun

 

I’m going to share a couple of poems with you.

The first is actually a song; it’s called poem because it started life as one. I’d seen an article about the police being on a drive to get rid of homeless people off the streets in London because they were unsightly and bad for tourism. They kept putting those anti homeless spikes up anywhere where people were sleeping and I was just thinking about how fucked up it was, how backwards that we were trying to keep up appearances so that people could feel more comfortable when they bought they’re union jack tat – it just seemed ironic. It was also at the time when the Labour party were doing their one shade lighter than Tory thing and there genuinely seemed like there was nothing between any of them, nothing to believe in from anyone who conceivably had any power to change things. Fast forward half a decade and we’ve been through a lot: the country, or at least the older contingent, fueled by the right wing propaganda machine, said no to genuine change towards a fairer society, and we find ourselves once again being ruled by a bunch of self-serving sociopaths – this time during a global pandemic no less.

The second piece is my response to that. I just hope we come out the other side of this fighting for the so called “low skilled” workers that actually keep us going, and fighting off the corporate power grabs that tend to happen wherever disaster strikes.

Poem

Can’t believe what I’m reading when I open these sheets
they’ve got the police, getting ‘bizzy’, cleaning up the streets
cos that’s what we need now to make the place neat
take the homeless man’s rags, no sleeping bags, no place to sleep
cos we’re far too civilized around here to see
an unkempt human being, a broken human being
open up your eyes, are you seeing what I’m seeing?
a misplaced, made to feel disgraced, human being
what, it’s not enough to just pretend you don’t see him
you can’t stand the sight, so you have to disappear-him
well I hope you feel more comfortable doing your sightseeing
taking pictures, buying fucking union jack magnets and keyrings

life give me something to believe in
no lies just something to believe in
am I the only one that’s grieving?
these things that belong to you and me that they are thieving

and how long till they build a wall and call it a ‘private’ city?
they’ve got walls made out of laws to exclude you and me
and now they take away our right to fight these laws for free
no legal aid no more, justice only for the wealthy
but they’re trying to build a healthy society
so that everybody knows you don’t get nothin’ for free
no scroungers, no living-room lounger’s, living off me
can I suggest you’re seeing exactly what they want you to see?
a monster, a cancer, a threat to your liberty
how ’bout a scapegoat for their crimes,
a victim of the times,
everything you’re not meant to be
how about a badly prepared, scared, human being
how about a necessary cog in the economic machine?
cos if there was no unemployment tell me how would things be
would you still feel lucky to be working 40 hours a week?
we’re like a caged bird and they got us by the beak
give us enough to eat, enough to sleep, enough to tweet
but there’s not enough space between the ground and our feet
no singing songs of freedom but were not flying free

life give me something to believe in
no lies just something to believe in
am I the only one that’s grieving?
these things that belong to you and me that they are thieving

see this whole world’s got me hurting, got me feeling undeserving
got me questioning my worth in this sad system that we’re serving
find no place in this twisted race for property
is making profit the sole aim of humanity?
save the banks, bring out the tanks if they disagree
while we’re at it lets invest some more in military
all our friends have shares so why shouldn’t we?
oh, and the markets are demanding that we give away for free
everything our grandparents fought for to some company
it’s called wealth creation, it’s more efficient you see
oh, sorry I forgot the free market would set us free
I forgot to only think about I, mine, and me
while brothers and sisters have nothing to eat
brothers and sisters at home and overseas
so I can’t lie down and I won’t let it be
while we are working for a market, that doesn’t work for we

these things that they’re thieving are yours and mine
you know that they’re stealing but there’s still time
if you feel this way too.

94 pound fucking 25

Shoutout to everyone who’s been laid off, had shifts cut
got no cushion, no savings, and no trust fund
strapped for cash and trapped on zero hours contracts
to the financially constricted, and anyone already just subsisting
we need nothing less than a transformation in the way we’re existing
a transformation in the way we see “Women’s work”
carers and childcare workers, cleaners and servers
teachers and nurses, and sex workers
low waged or unwaged, working below the surface
feeling undervalued and feeling nervous
stressed by household debts
stretched living standards, and no safety net
living in premeditated precariousness
cos if you need cheap labour
keep the plebs in distress.
Just tryin’ to stay alive
to anyone who can’t survive on 94 pound fucking 25
with no bankers’ bonus,
hope we can find some beds for the homeless
anyone in fucking psychosis
cos of the state of a system
that’s so cold and so hopeless
those resisting asylums, and resisting domestic violence
shout out to supermarket workers stacking shelves in hell
everybody feeling unwell, or unable
or been treated like shit for 10 years cos they’re disabled
wahey now we found the magic money tree
unfortunately it’s not for you or me
in insecure employment, or in-work poverty
it’s for the party of bought science, and dishonest responses
bent MPs, greedy landlords and power stance nonces
taking pleasures in austerity measures
disaster capitalists, circling like vultures
all the billionaires, retreat to your bunkers
ready to carve up the state and decimate cultures
get ready for the greatest corporate hand out of all time
cos people in shock get fucked every time
or we could wake up and change the script, rewrite the book
fuck mass hypnosis that got us stuck on self-destruct
individualism, consumerism, bullshit neoliberal constructs
do you really think they give a fuck about us?
corrupt institutions and a complicit press
time to deconstruct the military industrial complex
pause ecocide and think about next steps
respect for all life and habitat
change direction in the aftermath
without a fucking union jack flag attached
an internationalist perspective on the current world order
borders keep the poorest in their own four corners
while we line the pockets of all the wealth hoarders
who’s gonna be the financial fallout’s shock absorber?
we’ve got worldwide delusional disorder
looking forward to when they privatise water
“well the markets needed boosting cos we had a bad quarter”
time is getting shorter, time to start healing
collective improvement, planet breathing,
fuck the war on terror and the war on drugs
we need war on forest fires and war on floods
war on unnecessary plastic goods
and the parasitic vampires sucking our blood
a week ago they were happy to ‘let loved ones die’
just like a free market mitigated genocide
then they saw the scale and changed their minds
shit themselves in case we realise
all the holes in their system, and the results of all their cuts
and that their system is shit and it’s built on us.

 

She Drew the Gun are a band from Wirral, England, fronted by singer/songwriter Louisa Roach. Photo by Phoebe Jane. 

 

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