Poem

Conservative Party HQ Lunchtime Menu

Deprived shrimps

Money-glazed smirked ham

Scorn fritters

*

Battered electorate,
with a basket of crushed hopes
and slow-cooked fatigue

Half-baked notions,
idling on a soft bed of privilege,
served with a thick faux pas sauce

Kids in blankets,
deep-famished, with a deprivation of vegetables
and a relish reduction

Toads in the hole,
with golden hand-outs in a thick rich gravy
(self-serving only)

*

Eton Mess

Fudge (ten different flavours)

An Outbreak of Matt Hancock

turned off my phone and radio
got rid of my tv
ran barbed wire around the house
yet still i am not free

matt hancocks in the sitting room
matt hancocks in the loo
matt hancocks in the kitchen drawer
i don’t know what to do              

there’s six of them beneath the stairs
in the fridge another ten
my house is getting overwhelmed
by underwhelming men

i think i may have lost my mind
i see them every place
just yesterday i stroked the cat
she had matt hancock’s face

filled gaps in all the skirting boards
laid poison in the hall
set traps involving bits of cheese
but nothing works at all

matt hancocks haunt my dreams at night
wake up screaming yet again
my mind is getting overwhelmed
by underwhelming men

Alexa, what is there to know about love?

Some news. I’m delighted to have a new poetry collection publishing next year with Picador Books: ‘Alexa, what is there to know about love?’

It’s coming in January to coincide with the seventh wave of the virus, and can be preordered now.

You can find out more at the link below:

https://www.panmacmillan.com/authors/brian-bilston/alexa-what-is-there-to-know-about-love/9781529051629

Dominic Cummings: The Lockdown Tour

He’s been locking down in London,
And a bit in Durham, too.
Not to mention Barnard Castle,
Legoland and Bristol Zoo.

He’s been locking down in Stoke-on-Trent
And Weston-super-Mare.
He’s spread himself quite thin of late.
He’s been spreading everywhere.

He’s been locking down in Basildon,
In Derby, Penge and Rome.
Wherever he lays his beanie hat,
That’s his lockdown home.

He’s more spreadable than margarine.
He’s been spreading far and wide.
He’ll be locking down in your town soon:
Spread the word and stay inside.

Notes and Clarifications

Let’s be very clear about this,
you should stay inside,
except for those occasions
when you go outside.

You should work from home
unless, that is, you cannot;
in which case you should work
in other places,

avoiding all public transport
(unless you have to use it)
and the shared, confined spaces
in which you work.

A socially distanced meeting
is permissible with ONE person
(possibly more, maybe fewer)
from another household,

but this must only take place
either in a park, on desolate wasteland,
or in the BBQs and Grills section
of a local garden centre.

Clarity and precision are vital
at this time. Please see
the accompanying 50-page booklet
for further details.

Kindness

To recap what we now know: it did not begin
in a laboratory in Wuhan, nor with a pangolin or bat,
but it already lay dormant within us, like a seed
in need of certain conditions to grow;

its symptoms are many and various,
and may include some, or all, of the following:
tear drops, sudden laughter, a feeling of warmth,
and a peculiar uplifting of the heart;

it leaves its traces everywhere: from boxes
left on doorsteps to conversations over fences;
it can be transmitted over vast distances,
through a phone call, or from a smile across a street,

or a certain softness of tone spoken beside
a hospital bed; it affects young and old equally;
there is no race or gender immune from it;
it has the power to topple bad governments;

if one person were to pass it on to just three others
and they, in turn, were to pass it on to three more,
in no time at all, the world would be full of it,
and where, might we ask ourselves, would we be then.

Spokesperson for the Department of Positive Thinking

… but let’s not dwell on all of that.
Now is hardly the time for tears or frowns.
We would like to share with you the latest figures,
which show shoplifting is down.

And the good news doesn’t stop there.
Car crime and burglary have declined the same.
Our social distancing strategy has begun to pay off,
pickpocketing is on the wane.

The economy is booming.
We’ve seen huge market growth for sanitiser gel.
And the video-conference company (in which I have a half-share)
is performing rather well.

It’s also a wonderful time for rescue remedy makers
and anxiety pill suppliers;
whilst anyone manufacturing PPE knows
demand has never been higher.

So, no, it’s not all doom and gloom!
Let us leave that to the negatrons!
Everything has been going entirely to plan.
Keep calm, good people, and carry on.

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