Tuesday, March 13, 2007
See how each passing civilisation
Leaves it footprint on the face
Of the human psyche….
Romans were notable for their love
Of wholesome family entertainment,
Gawping high above
As lions gorged themselves, or gladiators
Refined new skills
And on leaving the glory of their Coliseum
Admiring the geometry of the kills,
One crucifixion every hundred paces,
On each side of mathematically perfect roads.
The Spanish Inquisition
Developed human fascination
With scientific precision,
The art of extracting screams,
Within the sanctity of the confessional,
The fascination for ritual coupling with
The immaculate thrill of ecstatic dreams.
To the history of human abuse,
Were concentration camps,
Boers for the use of?
Dealing with terror
By way a very British pragmatic solution.
The Czars harnessed nature,
Mother Russia’s essence
And Uncle Joseph,
Never one for neglecting
Someone else’s bright idea,
Made a conveyor belt from kangeroo court,
To Gulag, where the cleansing properties of asbestos
Kept the cells free.
Germans introduced efficiency on an industrial scale,
Combined with scientific zeal
To waste nothing, not the slightest peel
Of skin, not a single gold filling.
All in the name of higher culture,
The black and pristine vulture
Circled words of steel,
Arbeit Macht Frei
Etched across a smoke filled sky.
My memory is not so good now.
I forget now who first thought
Of the Diplock court,
Internment without trial,
H Blocks, gangs and counter gangs,
Shoot to kill.
I try to remember
And I know that one day it will
Come back to me.
Pinochet proved himself most creative
When faced with thirty thousand mouths to stop,
Converted a football Stadium into a mortuary
From whence corpses could disappear, flop
Into canals, refuse tips, foundations.
Today, watch Chileans in the street,
So careful where they place their feet.
Chinese lack subtlety,
In full view,
In a main square,
Under the full glare of TV lights,
Tanks crush bones.
Americans have brought it bang up to date.
Rendition, choice of short or long haul flight,
Secret locations, dead of night,
A selection of the best technicians,
Right off the shelf,
Egyptians incapable of pity,
South Americans skilled with electricity,
Serbs with patient razors,
German experts with lasers,
Romanian ex Stasi thugs,
East German specialists in the usage of drugs.
All with free orange jump suits thrown in
And mobile phones for all the boys
To send picture to Mom and the rest of the tribe
From Camp Delta, Guantanamo and Abu Graib.
Forget it all! That’s history!
Leave it where it belongs,
In the past,
Staggering down Wind Street bum half mast,
Flashing all her bits,
To make quite sure she’s not outclassed
By that tart of a receptionist,
Fresh from County Hall
Look at her. She’s so pissed
She’s sure she’s kissed
The Prince of Wales
Or Camilla, whatever,
But we know it was that Neanderthal,
The bouncer, the ex squaddie
With a skin like chain mail
And hands that went Walkabout.
Tomorrow the street cleaners might find her,
Sprawled in a halo of broken glass,
Breathing heavily behind a wheelie bin.
She’ll swallow a bitter morning after pill
She’ll have all day to kill
In her cave beneath the duvet,
Cocooned, cut off,
Oblivious. Not guilty.
Invisible. Free from sin.
This one has been a long time coming. Can't believe how busy I've been. Three capital cities in three weeks and hopefully 'Klimtomania' will be published soon. More of that later....