I Am National Collective

Hey everyone A poem on Scotland’s grassroots political movement for poets, artists and creatives. This poem spells out the vision of a cultural campaign which the no camp cannot hope to match and explains not only what we stand for but also what we stand against. Bearing this in mind I have given it the title I Am National Collective I hope you enjoy the read.

I Am National Collective

From Burns to Neruda
From Havel to Higgins
poets have always been patriots
with a vision of a better humanity.
where freedom’s flames are the rainbow of the night
providing the warmth of passion
Inspiring us to fight
using words as weapons
with which we paint pictures
in the hearts those are willing to listen
to a different view from established elites
where we speak of a nation from a global perspective
I Am National Collective
because when I talk of yesterday it is to make sure we learn
from the mistakes of history
and do not repeat them tomorrow
I will not borrow clichés
to sing the praises of those I will never know
I respectfully ask those who do
to explain their view of the future
not be seduced by slogans
like better together or the best of both worlds
without telling our people why
we should stay in a marriage
where one partner goes out for drinks at the club G 8
and dines at the top table
with macho mates
leaving the other to stay at home then has the nerve to claim
we share the risks and rewards
I think they’ve lost it
I can see the potential danger of trident remaining in Scotland
but my unanswered question is what are the so-called rewards
of this unequal union
devolution is not and never will be the solution
to problems only independence can solve
we shouldn’t have food banks in a nation with a plentiful supply of
oil
but the Olympics were nice
and we can share Susan Boyle
I am told by a sycophantic press
which doesn’t want us to be independent
desperate they wheel out those dressed in ermine
to defend the old older
coated as it is in prejudice
and privilege
it has served them well
they will fight hard to retain it
enlist friends to try and influence
our decision
by whatever means they must
placing their trust in fear to triumph over hope
this is the rope with they will hang themselves
I speak as a poet and nothing else
not as a Celtic fan, SNP member transwoman or kirk attender
though I am proud to be
all of them and a whole lot more
I know the score and like those who are good team players
with creative flair to see openings which create chances for others
one fact I do know is that life
is a journey of self discovery
and in the process of discovering myself
I have realised that ability matters more than perceived strength
it just makes sense to make your choices
rather than listen to distant voices make them for you
but in the interest of themselves
and their clique of friends
It is time to stop pretending
we can change their ways
by remaining in a dis united kingdom
and believe in a better Scotland
as we see a brighter picture
with a greater diversity and range of hues
the day has come to tell the world
we will offer a fairer more inclusive perspective
so with hope in my heart
and faith in our future
I follow in the footsteps of poetry’s greats
and declare for my nation, and our culture
I can imagine a better Scotland
I Am National Collective.

@ Gayle Smith 2014

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