I wonder what Dickens would think…

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Carefully, he laid the book on the table
He’d been re-reading Oliver Twist
In those terrible poor Dickensian times
He often wondered how the poor could exist.

The rain poured down heavy on the windows
The sky matched his mood, it was grey
For after they had both done their eight hours of work
They had picked up a parcel today.

Journeys to the food bank were in silence
Both felt an extreme sense of loss
That they had to rely on charity and handouts
From a government who treated them as dross.

The food banks get more, the poor get more poor
It was ever thus and shall ever be
He wondered what Dickens would think of it all
About poverty he thought, no change he would see.

He’d look to the Houses of Parliament
No changes would he expect to see there
Then he’d look to the poor who still roam the streets
And see a government that still didn’t care.

Then he’d put his quill to notepaper
And tell them exactly what he thought
And ask if they’d do something about it
Or whether their votes had been bought.

All this the man mused as they emptied the box
As a solitary tear ran down his cheek
Then he held his wife and child in his arms
And he wept, for he just couldn’t speak.

©Joe Wilson – I wonder what Dickens would think…2016

What news today…

What news today my friends, what news today…

Many more babies have been born into want
Whilst many more weren’t wanted at all
For them, a terrible, difficult life lies ahead
As they fight against ignorance and society’s sprawl.

How many trees have been felled today, how many trees did fall…

All of the gases that leech from the wounds
Where tropical rainforests stood
Slashed by the profiteer company greed
Another piece of Earth that’s shedding its blood.

How goes the war brother, how goes that war…

We watch all those thousands who flee from their land
Evicted by violence as is always the way
Yet leaders on all sides never suffer like this
For the refugee struggle is a price they don’t pay.

Do we love our fellow brethren, do we…

For if a man could truly love his brother
The world would soon somewhat alter
But it would take so very much courage
And be a task from which man can’t falter.

©Joe Wilson – What news today…2016

Those who are at the end of the queue, always…

I)
At year end oft, we think to say
Look back no more, as comes new day.

Some will see it with their spoons engraved
Though sadly, many remain enslaved.

But Hopeful ever, we press right on
As we search for good in everyone.

II)
In store and warehouse food is bailed
Urgent supplies for when crops have failed.

While shattered lives in tents on hillsides
Families caught in the refugee tides.

As earthquake victims lie underground
Courageous rescuers listen for sound.

Some must rely on drug-lord’s favours
In lives that no sane person savours.

Yet here are we in our clean safe home
From which we’re always free to roam.

III)
Complaining often, we fail to grasp
The richness of our situations
In truth we live in comfort zones
Free from terror and deprivation.
Whilst some no luck they ever see
Until in death at last they’re free.

IV)
And who should tackle such terrible woes
It should be us, plain as your nose
So we elect fine politicians
Who mainly only serve patricians
From whence they mainly are derived
Plebeians forgotten, of voice deprived.
For even though your vote was cast
And Bills you disapprove get passed
You only get to vote one way
And never really have your say
Your troubled mind creaks with unease
As those in charge do as they please.

V)
And in inertia nothing moves
The rut of hopelessness just proves
That though we feel the pain of others
Around this Earth we all are brothers
The comfort zone adapts to fit
The place within in which you sit.

VI)
Meanwhile, those victims still in tents
Await such help as we have sent
Which waits in ports in rotting state
While shares are argued in debate.
We did our bit they all will cry
But did that stop young children die??

©Joe Wilson – Those who are at the end of the queue, always…2016

Spare a thought…

School has broken up now
Their nativity plays all ended
It’s time to get out that stocking
That every year gets mended.

The fridges and larders are bursting
With food for the Christmas table
As we celebrate again this year
The miracle in that far away stable.

But spare a thought for the less well-fed
As you eat your well-earned dinner
For while you’re gaining unwanted fat
In poverty people get thinner.

Huddled in rags and blankets for warmth
In a doss-house in a back street somewhere
The people who live in Dead End Street
Will miss out on Christmas Fayre.

It isn’t your fault, nor oft even theirs
It’s simply the way some things are
But just a few pence for a coffee
Shows kindness can travel quite far.

©Joe Wilson – Spare a thought…2015

Another sad statistic…

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Harsh cold winds race down dirty back alleys
Bin lids are lifted and all taking flight
Ragged town foxes, heads inside dustbins
Cries of sheer anguish and they take off in fright.

Cold stillborn baby found in a dustbin
Wrapped up in bin bags and filthy soaked towel
A bitter result of unlawful liaison
Another young girl has been treated so foul.

Search is now on to find the sad mother
Everyone knows that she will be ill
Soon she is found with wrists that are bright red
Only fourteen, lying perfectly still.

Another statistic of society’s indifference
As always lip service just isn’t enough
And still the harsh wind blows down dirty back alleys
Where young children find on the street, life is tough.

©Joe Wilson – Another sad statistic…2015

One planet, one goal…

In woeful ignorance man toils away
A crust for the table, for his kin
Wealth creation with barely a whisper
Is so often the wages of sin.

There will be no Earth that the week shall gain
As the land gets destroyed by the rich
Desperate to draw all last ounces of wealth
From every last exploited ditch.

But the poor need to feed and clothe their flock
So the workload is for them to do
And the ones making profit as forests disappear
Sit a long way away blaming you.

And they talk of the wonder of the planets
The chances of life on another
It’s nonsense of course, it won’t happen
When they can’t even live with each other.

We have but one planet that we all live on
So its protection is our primary aim
It’s time that we acted together
Before Earth bleeds to death from our shame.

©Joe Wilson – One planet , one goal…2015

A Poor Woman

Angelic voices called to her
She faltered at beauty’s sound
She’d thought that she was doing well
Surprised that now she had been found.

The monsoon rains had brought her down
A fever struck so deep
Her strength gave out eventually
Her will began to seep.

She’d worked out in the harshest place
She’d dug and picked and sown
On land that others made profit from
The land was not her own.

She’d even had a child once there
And then just carried on
The baby wrapped up on her back
Her plaintiff cry so wan.

But now the time had come for her
Worn out at forty two
Amidst the constant poverty
Her death was nothing new.

They buried her and carried on
No tears upon their face
The crops still needed planting
Her daughter filled her place.

©Joe Wilson – A poor woman 2014