Class

Hey everyone This poem is my highly personal response to the new British Class Survey. I have never bought in to the whole class issue as I think the only acceptable labels for girls like me are Versace Woolford and Karen Millen
Guys will know there equivalent brands. My personal belief is that class is not defined by wealth or possessions by how you treat others and is something you’ve either got or you haven’t. I hope you enjoy a thought provoking read.

Class

I was born as a child of the housing schemes
I had dreams and social aspirations
I wanted to live as if I was living
in the first days of a better nation
I’m unemployed just now but I’ve worked as a trainer
I’m not too posh to consider voting Labour
at sometime after independence
but not before I make a choice to ignore
the working class mantra that I should care
about what’s happening in Basildon not focus on Baillieston but I say I’m no slave to that idea
let me make it crystal clear
Basildon’s call must be Basildon’s choice
be authentic speak with your own voice
I’ve always voted SNP got a university honours degree
mix with poets and political types
I dance round the living room
but can’t ride a bike
I am well read and semi academic
I have been known for the occasional polemic
I go to the theatre and perform my own work
at spoken word nights
know the only fights worth fighting
are for the enlightenment real freedom brings
as to how you view the world
I’m highly articulate and socially skilled
I do use facebook and I tweet
though I try hard to be discreet
I am successful most of the time
I don’t drive or drink
I think before I speak
I am liberal on most issues
I need tissues when I watch girlie films and can rant for the universe
at I certain sections
of the free press
boring me to death with their opinions
in the name of truth justice and the conservative way of New Labour
Tony Blair was a phoney not the saviour of humanity
its insanity to suggest otherwise
I don’t do secrets smears and lies
honest to a fault that’s me
its just the way I’ve always been
and the way I’ll always be
ever since I began to realise
I liked hot guys
and lipstick and perfume work for a reason
as I started to write my first poem
I read the classics
I see that evolution leaves outdated attitudes
in the attic of our past
I build friendships made to last
round the values of shared cultural identity
as writers, poets, music lovers
know that those I chat to
under the covers of the dark night sky
are stars who sprinkle my thoughts with gold
this is my story I have told in my voice I will make mistakes sometimes
but the most important thing
is that my choices are mine to make
I have confidence to know I will get more right than wrong
I will sing in my words
be they in rhyme or free verse
as a daughter of earth I will speak when my truth needs spoken
I am nobody’s token nor will I ever be
one of my favourite songs is dignity
and another though less well known is marigolds
in each of them of a story of warmth unfolds
poems are stories which pass the test of time
expressing an opinion is not a crime
at least not to me
I tick many boxes in this survey
but not enough to fit me in any pigeonhole
I am a force of nature I cannot be moulded or controlled
I am not sorry if that makes me a pain in the ass
a social traveller I fit no group
though I do know one inescapable fact
I have got class.

@ Gayle Smith 2013

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