Colin Will – A dead horse

A dead horse

Dear Comrades – and when did you last hear
that word? It’s good of you to join me tonight,
on this sad occasion. Dinner was nice, wasn’t it?
The same menu as that long-gone evening
when poor Robin hosted a hatchet-burying
with Gordon. Remember that? Gordon used
the S-word, socialism, and we smirked, knowing
no reporters were present to report back to Tony.
We diners were loyal, as some still are.

But I think we all knew the S-times were passing,
or starting to pass, and now they have.
We’ve let down our nets for the last time
into the fat shoal of the centre ground,
and there are fuck-all fish left,
just the by-catch we can’t throw back –
the Nats, Greens, and goggle-eyed chimeras
from the Hadean depths.

Some, no doubt, will blame a people
numbed by fast-food values, unreality TV
and shit schooling, and there’s maybe
some truth in that, but ask yourselves,
Who did that to them? You know,
don’t you? Best keep it to ourselves.
We didn’t change, we didn’t fight,
we made wrong choices, lost our way.
So raise your glasses, lads and lasses,
to the end of Scottish Labour, let’s resurrect
our old battle cry once more, and proudly shout,

‘It wisnae me!’

Colin Will is a poet, publisher and gardener living in Dunbar. His 8th collection, The Book of Ways, was published by Red Squirrel Press in 2014. He chairs the Board of the StAnza Poetry Festival. Website

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