Tag Archives: greed

Paul’s Words

sun-rays

Can it be our planet breathes?
It breathes through weeds and leaves on trees.
It seems to need to seed and breed
to please the needs of human greed.

So does it bleed through birds and bees
to feed our breed, bloodthirsty thieves!
The worst of fiends, the first to leave
and deemed to scream and curse and bleed.

©Paul David Ward

I’d have been proud to have put my name to this amazing poem, but alas, I don’t have the right, since it was written to my son Paul.

After a separation of almost fourteen months, we are now in contact again. He lives 45 miles away, and we agreed that at this stage in his recovery it would be safest for both of us if we don’t see each other yet – not that the current lock-down rules would allow it – but we text each other every day. He’s had a difficult time, but has grown from it. He managed to get several thoughtful birthday gifts to me in February, and even bought me a tree for Mother’s Day, but by then the restrictions were in place, so I haven’t received it yet. I feel proud of how far he’s come, and hopeful for the future.

The End of the Line

rose-stem

Valentine’s day
Pre-planned passion
hangs in the balance

Suspense

reigns

He lopes home
hugging a rain-drenched
bouquet to his frame, hunching
keep rain from staining petals, hoping
the beauty, the ruby hue, the perfume
of these hot-house blooms will halt
the drift. He’s humming a tune.

He walks in, singing
Roses are red

my love

He presents the spray
She feigns cat-lick surprise, yet
her greedy eyes betray

dismay

disdain

the end of the line.
Cheapskate flowers again;
hints for a cruise, or at least
a long weekend in Spain
were in vain.

rose-stem1

©Jane Paterson Basil

Where Charity Ends

childpoverty1

The cash
scorched their pockets,
so they drove to the shops.

They bought
silly hats for Ascot,
nifty jackets to match the fashion,
trainers imported from dim Asian sweatshops,
nasty plastic bracelets for no special reason,
dresses that hungry children had studded with beads
so secretaries could look like hippies when they hit the festival fields.

They slurped greedy treats
while on TV screens, malnourished children
struggled to breathe.

“Charity begins at home,” said mum,
speedily switching to BBC where a documentary
displayed equally disturbing images. “We can’t
let the kids see this,” said dad,
and switched channel again.

“We have no money for a third holiday
since the kitchen extension was so pricey,” said mum,
“and we can’t afford to improve our second home
as we’ve just had to pay for your shiny red
penis extension in the garage,”
she added.

They ordered oodles of takeaway
and ate chunks of cake while they waited.
When the food arrived they shovelled a few bites
then rudely shoved their plates away,
complaining that they were full.

Mum scraped waste into the obese garbage bin,
wondering why
she had so little appetite.

Meanwhile, in Somalia,
mothers held their breath, hunger forgotten as they watched
the struggle of small chests, hearing not their own wails
when deathly silence fell.
.

.

©Jane Paterson Basil

Not to Conquer

They come —

not to conquer;

not with guns and bombs,

or greedy eyes that

seek to steal our

forefathers’ land

and conceal it beneath

steel and concrete monstrosities

squeezing the people into

arid corners, as our

vainglorious

forbears

did.

They come —

not to conquer,

but to escape the

place of death

and hate.

They come —

not to conquer,

but simply

to live.

They come —

finite bodies

suffering and dying

that some may find

a better life.

They arrive

hungry and broken —

so let them in.

.

<> <> <>

©Jane Paterson Basil

Bees Without Stings

honey-bee-23.jpg

The fat
greedy corporates
flash .curious .glances .down
from windows in the sun, briefly resting
between counting money, sacking the hungry,
closing another factory and relocating in a practical,
poorer, thus more economical land where folk must work
hard hours .for a plate of rice .to keep their families alive.
The .fat. greedy corporates .show their .gleaming teeth.
They .see us .humbly .buzzing .to fulfil .their needs
that .we ..may .receive .the .least .sustenance.
It. may be. that .they .think. we are .bees.
The .fat, .greedy .corporates’ .bellies
swell. .They. know they .rely. on
our .minds and muscle, .yet
care not for our welfare,
and ..every ..week
they .steal
our
h
o
n
e
y

.

honey-bee-1.jpg

.

©Jane Paterson Basil

Greedy George

greedy

Gross!
Greedy
George gorges;
gulps gazpacho,
guzzles gingersnaps;
gives gargantuan groan…
gusts gigantic, gruesome gas…
gesticulates… grabs gut… goes green.
George gone! Graceless guests gawk, gasp, goggle,
Ghastly girlfriend gapes, gets giggles. Ghoulish.

~O~

I wrote this poem last night, for a contest which required  an etheree poem containing as much alliteration as possible. An etheree consists of 10 lines of 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10 syllables.

To make sure I wasn’t outdone on the alliteration count, every word begins with G. I was quite pleased with the result.

When I tried to enter the contest, I was automatically  disqualified. The contest organiser had decreed that nobody who’d won a contest on that platform in the past 90 days was eligible. I think I’ve come 1st, 2nd or 3rd on that platform eight or nine times.

I thought I’d post it here instead. 

©Jane Paterson Basil

Honouring beauty

It’s day 3 of the 3 Day, 3 Quote challenge. Thank you Sumyanna for this interesting challenge, which has given me a chance to stretch my imagination. I repeat my apology for not passing it on.

 

waterfall232

If you wish to honour beauty
do not decorate it
nor claim possession
of the smallest piece
but gaze at it, then turn away
cradling it in your memory

This quote was inspired by my visit, yesterday, to a Cornish waterfall. If you read the post I wrote on the trip it will show you why.

©Jane Paterson Basil

The rich man’s table

capitalism has
gone sky high
and everyone
wants a slice;
those in poverty
read the tabloids
assuming truth
in every lie
they have the
right to vote
they draw their cross
in the box
marked suicide
because the
papers told them
it will
buy them a job
or at least supply
some human charity
they don’t know
they’re pig feed
to be tossed
into the
greed machine
and baked in one piece
just another
mundane millionaire meal
with caviar and
champagne

the rich man sits
so fat and pleased
he drinks their blood
and drips their grease
which pools and cools
around his feet
self-satisfied and at his ease
he never leaves
he
never
leaves

as we lose weight
and go to waste
he sits in state
and stuffs his face
and while we wait
so patiently
he’ll
never
go
away

©Jane Paterson Basil

Closing off the power

door-lock-391436__480.jpg

A text from Krusti’s phone;
“It’s Paul, please answer.”

I translate;
Hi mum, I need to see you
to offer hollow reassurance;
to speak of love and great futures;
to grovel and apologise.
I will offer you the richest slice
of my phoney dream;
I will promise you unbuilt castles
and fruit that I shall never pick;
I will say whatever I must
to make you jump,
and if my well-planned words
don’t persuade you to empty your wallet
into my outstretched hand,
I will find another way.

I pick up the phone
A light pressure from my thumb
closes off the power.

the sun sets.
my candle glows dim,
painting a subtle tint on the wall.
I sit on the floor, writing and listening
to the sounds of the town.
I hear Paul talking to someone outside.
the doorbell rings.
there’s no pause in the rhythm
of fingers on keys.
Paul speaks to someone who agrees
that I don’t appear to be in.

His companion is only half right;
I am in, but
I don’t appear.

The Daily Post #Jump

©Jane Paterson Basil

Fortune of birth

Who are we to close the gates
and refuse you entry?
who are we to claim this land
we have borrowed by fortune of birth?
how can any of us say it is our inheritance?
It belongs no more to us than to the wolves
and wildcats we anihilated so long ago,
or the crow circling an abandoned pastry in the gutter,
carelessly dropped from the hand of a man
who took more than he required.
I hear him now, whining about greedy seagull antics;
wailing that he can’t afford a holiday
because he’s just had a new kitchen fitted;
whinging that immigrants are parasitic.
His indignant belly threatens to break the zip
separating the word Ever from Last,
as he grinds a sodden fag-butt beneath his Nike shod toe
and slinks to the jobcentre with his sick note,
before slipping to work where they pay cash
and no questions are asked.

You arrive, hungry and confused,
your status robbed by cruel circumstance,
in need of some human kindness.
The government knows it can make
a tidy profit from your citizenship,
but it admits you in the name of charity
and in the name of charity you are herded
into asylum seekers’ hell;
grey prisoners in grey prisons, with no rights
and often no grasp of our language,
treated like criminals;
your only crime being misfortune.

The man collects his dole
and goes home to his cosy life,
to read the lies the tabloids tell,
while you try to settle in a de-humanising cell
in a country that tells you to go.

Who am I, and who is that man,
to say we should close the gates
and refuse you entry?
Who are we to claim this land
we have borrowed by fortune of birth?

This humble offering was inspired by M. Zane McClellan’s wonderful poem Captcha ~ I Am Human

Also please check out Not Me My Friend by Gbolabo Adetunji,

©Jane Paterson Basil