David Betteridge

ON SEEING A GOVERNMENT MINISTER

BEING INTERVIEWED ON TV,

and determining to stop paying                                  

the licence fee

 

 

Those are the eyes of a killer.

What hungering void, or dream,

or wound consumes behind?

 

Those are the words of a killer.

They are the twistings

of a well-schooled mind.

 

Those are the hands of a killer,

gesturing a semaphore of power.

What command papers have they held,

consigning some to death by slow degrees,

and some by instant fire?

 

The killer curves his mouth in a lean grin.

I see a shark, in his element,

sure of his next and every win.

 

The killer manages a judicious tear.

(“I empathise; I go to church; I care...”)

I see an obvious reptile here.

 

The killer laughs.

I see an alpha ape,

exulting in his dominance.

 

Enough!

I cannot thole this monster

and his arrogance.

 

        I’ve pulled the plug.

David Betteridge (b. 1941) is the author of a collection of poems celebrating Glasgow’s radical traditions, Granny Albyn's Complaint (Smokestack Books, 2008). He is also the editor of a book celebrating the work-in at the UCS shipyards in 1971-2, A Rose Loupt Oot (2011). With the designer Tom Malone, he has produced a series of poetry pamphlets, published by Rhizome Press (2008-15).

atos
Poor Doors
Sheriff Stars
spikes

thistles stretch their prickly arms afar

Black Triangle
bedroom tax
Disrupt and Upset
triangle_small
spikes
bedroom tax
Sheriff Stars

thistles stretch their prickly arms afar

Black Triangle
Disrupt and Upset

Militant Thistles

prickling the politics of "permanent austerity"