Tag Archive | Westminster

Swarm

As we draw ever closer to Christmas I’ve written this poem in support of those that the right wing press love to demonise as those bloody foreigners who if you were to believe these billionaire tax evaders are the source of all the problems in the United Kingdom.  Speaking as someone who supported Scotland leaving this moribund superstate and for that matter still does I wrote this to highlight these obscene beliefs  held by many of those who claimed we were better together and though mainly on the Conservative right they are not exclusively so.  I’ve given it the title Swarm a word so beloved by those on the ultra British right to describe those of different ethnic or cultural origin. I hope you enjoy what I think you’ll a thought provoking read. 

Swarm 

Our British existance is under attack 

let’s wrap ourselves in a union jack 

it’s time to take our country back

we have to start swotting this swarm 

I can’t speak Polish and I don’t do Syrian 

I want the great put back into Great Britain 

I couldn’t give a damn about Palestinians

I just want rid of this swarm 

Trust me my friend it’s an alien invasion

but a little blue passport will be your salvation 

it will give us inspiration 

on how to get rid of this swarm 

They come over here to milk the system 

because of our wonderful United Kingdom 

If all of them left we wouldn’t miss them 

we’d be well rid of the swarm 

They can’t speak the language 

we gave to our colonies 

there a threat to our empire and our democracy

yet the Jocks all say we’ll die in poverty

Maybe they are part of the swarm

I read this bile every day in the press 

 It’s part of the reason I voted yes 

I know global citizens who’ve achieved great success 

since making a home among us 

So as I say this I do it with pride

In Scotland all have a place to bide 

unlike the Brits we’re on your side 

and proud to be part of the swarm.

© Gayle Smith 2017 

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The North British Cringe 

Four years ago to the day I marched with 30,000 others  through the streets of Edinburgh in support of my country’s independence . Alas when the vote was held we were defeated by the forces of apathy and fear and our nation remains what the author John Steinbeck described in a conversation with President Kennedy as an unwon cause. It is my opinion that one of the key reasons for this is what some people refer as the Scottish cringe. You know the idea, that we alone of the nations on earth are too wee, too poor , and too stupid to run our own affairs. It is my considered opinion that this is a form of cultural oppression and this cringe is anything but Scottish. Indeed I believe it was in fact born in Westminster by those who are absolutely terrified to see Scotland become an independent nation namely the British establishment whose vested interests in our country be they economic or political make them and their all too willing servants  overtly hostile to our independence. It is for this reason that I have written this poem and given it the title The North British Cringe . I hope you enjoy the read. 

The North British Cringe 

We are told by the establishment and their friends in the press

Scotland is not oppressed 

Well if that’s the case 

why is Scotland’s population

which was a 1/3 of England’s at the formation of the United Kingdom 

now less than a 1/10 

they cringe when I tell them 

 there pro union argument makes no sense 

yet when we contest this notion we are scorned 

told we are idealistic but ill informed

but it’s our accusers who are deluded

the idea of not being oppressed because we’re Scots is misguided 

If you don’t believe me let’s look at the evidence 

we’ll start with the rough wooing in the period leading up to union 

When The Ailen Act was passed by a Westminster government 

determined to secure their unity at all costs

even their anthem talks about crushing rebellious Scots

then there was the banning of the Gaelic, the pipes, and the tartan after the 45

this is a ban unionists choose to ignore 

preferring to bang on empty drums about the sashes their fathers wore 

whilst never mentioning the privileges it brought them 

too many in Scotland are ignorant of our history 

so I’ll start by informing them 

that much to our disgrace 

this prohibition of our language, culture , and tradition did take place 

and wasn’t lifted until 1782

almost 40 years after Culloden 

if that wasn’t an attempt to keep us downtrodden I don’t know what is 

It was a deliberate attempt to show resistance was futile 

and the beginning of a campaign to keep Scotland in our place

the more fanatical sycophants

even tried have our country’s name wiped from existence

and replaced by North Britain 

I still believe this to be your career unionist’s wet dream 

but this girl from the schemes 

is wise to Westminster and their establishment’s never ending lies

whilst the truth cries tears at the endless myths and misconceptions 

their parties will use to gain votes at election time 

these practioners of the dark arts 

are well versed when it comes to the crimes of  deception and duplicity 

as we can see when they use their carefully worded propaganda

they fraudulently call British history 

this has been manufactured in the interests of the elite 

by their friendly Oxbridge historians

I afford them no credibility especially the Tory ones 

the hope and glory brigade

 who will claim we played a part in shaping the new world and the politics of empire 

and maybe we did but not in the way they would have you believe

you see there was no voluntary migration to Canada in 1773

In the real world this has another name

It was called the clearances 

as tens of thousands of families were evicted from their land 

to make way for sheep 

yet you dare to tell me we are not oppressed 

I weep when I think of the martyrs of Tolpuddle 

or the massacre at Peterloo 

but I do so in an international context

 as I ask with respect 

why I was taught about these events at school

rather than the Paisley mill girls 

or the fact that Scottish radicals 

were executed by cold hearted killers 

for demanding independence in 1820

these facts are hidden from our young 

just in case knowing them, might turn them against this precious union

the myth that took centuries to build

by those skilled in the art of the cringe 

the 90 minute patriots who claim we can’t possibly be oppressed 

as we are allowed to wear kilts

and support our national football team 

though when I remind them we can’t watch Scotland games on TV

I am told I am fanatical SNP

and unpatriotic to Britain

they make fools of themselves 

by going on about British highlands , whisky, and bridges

and saying that by being allowed to vote 

we can’t possibly be undermined in any way 

this is the garbage spouted by those Proud Scots 

 who read The Daily Mail , watch EastEnders and Match of the Day 

the ignorance of these people astounds me and suggests 

they know nothing of the place they are ashamed to call home 

and that’s the way they need it to stay 

they ignore the fact that their Westminster masters can’t stand them 

or even tolerate them 

they’ve never been informed about the Scottish potato famine 

which though nowhere near the genocide 

faced by our Irish kin 

still happened nonetheless 

our oppression was and remains more covert in nature

the press and media used as tools to surpress 

any feelings of national identity 

and cover up any events the Brits would rather hide 

like the Govan rent strikes or the socialists of Red Clydeside

and why not because we are oppressed 

by the British is best brigade 

who make sure this history 

our real history is never taught in schools

it would undermine their right to rule 

to which they believe their entitled 

reality however paints a different picture to the one they want to see 

through the prism of their union jack blinkers 

these not so liberal thinkers 

who think narrow minds are prized possessions 

would still deny our oppression 

or while part of this United Kingdom 

some Scots oppressed those in other lands and their own 

In the name of empire crown and glory 

working class Protestants encouraged to vote Tory 

and many still do 

In fear of an imaginary Irish Catholic takeover 

wrapping themselves in the red, white, and blue of union

believing themselves to be the true blue Scots 

yet boasting that they are Brits

from an early age these hypocrites were and still are 

indoctrinated in to hating the Highlander,  the Irish , the French , and Jew

with Muslims now perceived to be enemy 

the Irish and the others used to be 

as Voltaire once said it is difficult to free fools 

from the chains they revere 

on teaching our history 

we must make it clear 

Scotland’s story is not an easy read 

but read it we must 

if we are ever to conquer the cringe 

that of all nations only we 

are too wee, too poor , and too stupid to be free

this is complete drivel 

and the perpetrators must be called out as liars

as a nation we have to aim higher 

but first we must come to terms with our past and our  present 

and facing up to our continued oppression 

this can only end with independence 

and becoming the authors of our destiny 

only then can we look the world in the eye 

as no longer conditioned to be shy 

we will say to every nation 

we are equal to you

the cringe has been conquered at last 

© Gayle Smith 2017 

People’s Friend 

As Jeremy Corbyn addresses the masses at Glastonbury I give my thoughts on a middle class man addressing a middle class crowd and pretending to be a friend of the people. I don’t know why but this working class hero stuff is something I just don’t buy. You see if you are a unionist of any kind you are essentially a conservative maybe not in the economic sense but you certainly are in the social and cultural senses of the word. I’ve given the poem the title People’s Friend I hope you enjoy the read. 

People’s Friend

A middle class man 

quotes a middle class poet 

to the middle class gathering 

at a festival in middle England 

with ticket prices which only the rich can afford

meanwhile champagne socialists 

ignore Scotland 

till they need our votes to gain power 

at a Westminster election 

if we dare to challenge them

they call us insurgents 

leading an insurrection

as the self righteous  luvvie brigade 

play pretend politics 

with a crowd to apathetic to care 

about humanity 

and grandpa Jeremy desperately tries to re-live his youth 

as proof he can hang with the cool kids

except the kids he’s hanging out with 

aren’t quite as cool as they would have you believe 

and this imposter did a cut and paste job 

on large parts of the SNP domestic policy 

and had the brass neck to claim it 

as radical

as his vision for the many not the few 

even a so-called red couldn’t ditch the slogan 

which had tints of a Tory Blue Tony 

and just like that phoney his mask is beginning to slip 

You see voters like me won’t take lip.

from a Brexiteer who will always put himself first 

as he cynically attempts to manipulate the less aware

he has garden paths to lead them up 

and garden parties to attend 

this man whose style at Prime Minister’s Questions 

was enough to give me  indigestion 

raising points which we were meant to believe

 were sent by ordinary people 

rather than focus groups of party members 

the honourable member for  Islington 

is and has always been a servant of the Westminster agenda 

and had only  one mission for Britain 

namely to win the colony back for the crown 

unlike some I never bought his story 

the people’s friend , I see him as  just another red Tory 

though maybe not in the economic sense 

I’ll cut him a bit of slack 

but anyone who believes in the union flag 

is and always will be 

a conservative at heart 

it doesn’t matter how nice they are 

or how trendy or cool they pretend to be 

if they don’t want be to free from the last chains of empire 

they subconsciously out themselves as hypocrits and liars 

every time the word socialism passes their lips 

the little Brits lack the awareness to realise

you can’t have socialism in a kingdom 

united or otherwise 

it depends on the class system to survive 

as a middle class man 

who quotes a middle class poet 

to a middle class crowd 

knows only too well

as he pretends to be the people’s friend 

and remains no friend of Scotland. 
© Gayle Smith 2017 

Lessons 

On day 3 of NaPoWriMo it is time for a political poem and it may not come as too much of a shock that the  topic of choice is independence. What may however be a bit of a surprise is that the tone of the poem comes as a warning to yes supporters to learn the lessons of history to avoid repeating the mistakes and indeed disappointments of 2014. In this poem I urge our supporters to offer the hand of friendship to those voters who voted no in 2014 and set about winning them over to Yes and winning a better Scotland because of it. I have given it the title  Lessons I hope you enjoy the read 
Lessons
If Scotland is ever to see the day 

when we become an independent self governing nation 

we must learn the lessons of the last campaign 

we cannot afford to win the day 

and lose the future 

economics may be not my seducer 

but it is effective for many 

and that penny needs to drop  

we have to recognise its power 

or the flower of Scotland will never truly bloom 

our country will not be won 

by slogans, clipboards, and demonstrations 

though they will play a part 

we must use the head and speak from the heart 

be inclusive of all communities 

and not be afraid of tackling deeply held prejudices 

amongst our own supporters 

as to why we think the way we do 

this will be a challenge 

but it has to be faced 

we can’t simply wish it away 

and hope our opponents are magically cured 

of the loyalties which bind them to  union 

this is why we never won last time 

we need to engage and say clearly and with honestly 

we can offer no guarantees 

but neither can our opponents 

and we need to call them out 

when they claim otherwise 

there are no such thing as certainties 

to pretend that the present is set in stone 

is not the solution 

we were told we would never leave 

the European Union 

yet Brexit and the isolation it will bring 

will turn us more selfish and right wing

as gradually the UK becomes ever more insular 

with xenophobia masked as the new patriotism 

this is a vision I do not share 

I despair that our civic Scotland will be under threat 

and every word we say will be scrutinised 

the smears and lies have already started 

winning the future is not a job for the faint hearted 

we have to offer the hand of friendship 

to those who voted no in 2014 

not accuse them of killing our dreams 

in moments of anger and frustration 

it is too easy to throw about words like independence and nation 

without explaining why we would better than Westminster 

at running our own affairs 

I want to live in a country that cares 

for our most vulnerable citizens 

not a United Kingdom based on wealth patronage and privilege 

that’s why my identity is Scottish not British

I don’t want to live a land which still fantasises  

about a past when they called other countries colonies 

whilst keeping their own people poor in the name of empire 

 telling them they should be proud 

they couldn’t feed their families 

I don’t want to live in a country 

where people are devalued due to race , religion , gender or sexuality 

where diversity is demonised 

and difference is viewed with fear 

to me  these kind of attitudes

are barriers to the progressive society 

I’ve always believed in 

I know there will be some in both the SNP and yes

who will be uncomfortable with me 

because of the way I dress 

and the fact I am a woman with a trans past 

but I’m prepared to take the chance

 that our very different versions of what independence should mean 

will be keenly contested in elections in which Scotland’s voters matter 

as for now I’ll accept them as allies 

in defeating the spin and patter 

coming from unionists with agendas 

the way the Tories have been behaving 

they might as well start singing no surrender or Rule Britannia

or giving pensioners free photographs of Margaret Thatcher

rather than trying to pretend 

they give a damn about our country 

we need to debate them on the issues

we need to win ugly 

by convincing those voters who are willing to listen 

that Britain belongs in the past 

though I admit it  may have been good for some 

 this battle needs won 

not for Auld Lang Syne 

nor memories of old 

we’ve got to be bold for the future generations

those growing up 

and others still to see the day 

it is their future that’s at risk 

we can , we must, we will do better than this 

when we learn our lessons 

the future will be ours. 

@ Gayle Smith 2017 

Tartan Sheep 

Hey Readers Though primarily about the speeches made by Sadiq Khan and  Jeremy Corbyn to the Labour Party’s Scottish conference, this poem could be about the attitude of any British Government Minister or potential  candidate for that job  in my lifetime. 

Whether Labour or Tory it makes no difference to me, the attitude these people have to Scotland  is at best insulting and at worst a damnable disgrace and before you ask does that include the Scottish ones, let me tell you it most certainly does.  Indeed, I suggest that it is even more relevant to them than it is to Jeremy Corbyn, as all Corbyn did by not chastening the mayor of London for his ill informed remarks about the SNP was give me the opportunity to write it. 

Trust me that was like giving Henrik Larsson an open goal and like Henrik I wasn’t going to miss. I have given this poem the title Tartan Sheep as that is how the Labour Party treated their Scottish vote for years and before the rise of the SNP it was how the Tory Party treated the entire Scottish electorate. I have a funny feeling that this will not be an easy read for pro unionist friends with the possible exception of the Liberal Democrats but if you voted yes in the last independence referendum or have moved across to that view since I think you’ll  a much more enjoyable read. 

Tartan Sheep 

This is the voice of your colonial master 

I’m visiting you to pretend I care 

and to tell you that those who love their country 

would never seek to divide it

we are a united kingdom and that is how it will stay 

I won’t let little things 

like pretending to be a socialist 
get in the way of patronising you 

for the red white and blue 

look  I came up all the way from Westminster

to give you this lecture 

this makes me a very important person 

in the United Kingdom

which I will fight to make sure you are kept in 

whether you like it or not 

after all your only Scots 

so don’t get ideas above your station 

which by the way 

is wherever Westminster tells you it should be 

listen to me you don’t need the SNP 

you are tartan sheep who need to come my pen

otherwise I’ll never make number 10 

and become prime minister 

I mean you don’t want to be branded racists or fascists  

why would you vote nationalist 

when you can have me 

and my friends to tell you 

what to do

we know what’s best for your little land 

what part of that do you not understand ?

I repeat why vote nationalist 

when you can have me 

now I don’t know but to me at least 

the answer was clear 

I prefer the politics of hope 

to those of fearing others

and I don’t like being patronised 

by those who believe 

they can place limits on what I am capable of achieving 

I believe in myself and in abilities 

to get things done 

and will never settle for poverty 

I don’t want to be an outpost 

a distant colony only visited for votes 

when those who claim to be our masters 

think there is something in it for them 

the only number 10 I want to know about is a bus 

trust me this union disgusts me  

with it’s titles, gongs , and privilege

  used as bait to trap the gullible 

 as far as I’m concerned 

the Labour and Conservative parties

are and have always been

 two checks of the same backside 

how can you have pride in a land 

whose head of state is an unelected monarch

who knows nothing of the real world 

this is not something I can be proud of

if anything it makes me feel shame 

I want Scotland to be an independent  nation 

for egalitarian reasons 

you see I’m not dividing my country 

I’m reclaiming it 

the Britain the unionists talk about 

doesn’t exist 

it is no more than a colonial myth 

their establishment have rammed down our throats 
to suit their Westminster agenda 

with the no surrender brigade 

used as Britannia’s little helpers 

with orange flutes and Nazi salutes 

encouraged by unionists 

in the name of being better together

we saw their behaviour in George Square 

yet these are the people who claim to care

and have the nerve to say 

 that no-one who loves their country 

would seek to divide it 

but the problem with that argument

which the flat earth society 

refuse to see 

is that the united kingdom 

is a not a country it is a union of nations 

so you cannot divide what doesn’t exist 

meanwhile Westminster like a modern day Oliver Twist 

begs Scotland saying please 

can we have some more of your assests 

well if you don’t give us what we want 

we’ll call you racists and fascists 

only this time their threats fall on deaf ears

as nobody wants to listen 

we have our own ambitions and priorities 

and at the dawn of a new democracy 

our voice is getting stronger 

we are tartan sheep no longer 

we are moving on to build 

a better country 

the journey is already underway 

@ Gayle Smith 2017 

Alarm Bells

Hey Readers

This poem was inspired when I read an article in the Guardian which reported that Swedish population in the UK were the latest group to feel the wrath of the Brexit Brigade. You know the we hate Johnny Foreigner little Britishers the ones who will never speak for you and me no matter how much they claim to the contrary So this poem is for all of you who voted yes to independence in 2014 and those who voted to remain in the European Union in last years referendum. I’ve given it the title Alarm Bells I hope you enjoy the read. 

Alarm Bells

They are not the usual targets
for abuse
but according to reports in the guardian
even the Swedes are getting told
we voted for Brexit to get rid of people like you
meanwhile cheerleaders for the red white and blue
proudly proclaim they are taking Britain back again
to them Europe is that place
across the water
a continent that they have no interest in being part of
let alone at the heart of
their excuse is that they are
an island
and don’t need anyone else
we should be more British they say
forgetting the days when Britannia waived the rules
and treated the rest of the world like fools
are well and truly at an end
this friendless nation
wants to live in the ivory towers of isolation
as far away from reality as it’s possible to be
whilst attacking those they see as other
in the press and TV
almost at will
I have to admit it takes lack of social skills
to disturbing new heights
when you are picking fights
with nations who have done you no harm
this is establishment thinking
trickling down to the working classes
who are being told all sorts of lies
to disguise the truth
and avert their gaze from
this shambles made in Westminster
where envy seeps in every  trough
from which they’ve been drinking
god knows critical thinking
is something they would never attempt
they are far too content
with views
not held in civilised lands
since the old black and white news reels
you see on the yesterday channel
they are scraping the bottom of the barrel
and to be honest
Europe will be glad there leaving
it’s time to call time on the intellectual under achievers
who walk among our number
or before we know it
we’ll be sleepwalking on the road to oblivion
United Kingdom my backside
this land of no heroes
misplaced pride and oversized ego’s
has no place in the civilised world
despite the plastic protests
from sociopathic so-called socialists
whose sense of entitlement
leads them to believe they can act as overlords of others
and cover their sins
with rags and ermine robes
now the truths they didn’t want you to know
lies bare for all to see
exposed as a fantasy
the reality of the situation
shows xenophobia at the core
of a nation
which if it is to survive
badly needs a new arrangement
it needed it decades ago
but instead of looking to the future
their leaders yearned for yesterdays
and a golden age, which never truly existed
where people worked up chimneys
and went down mines
with no thoughts of silver linings
when Britain as they wrongly call it
was a happy little island
with no blacks,  no dogs and no Irish.
now their  useful idiots
are picking fights with nations which have done them no harm
as alarm bells ring to herald the death of democracy
in a country where others are viewed with suspicion

@ Gayle Smith 2017

The Verdict

Hey Readers

In this poem entitled The Verdict i aim my sights firmly in the direction of the UK Parliament and ask why our political leaders talk a lot of hot air and put profit before people whilst doing as a little as they think they can get away with on climate change. It is my opinion that lack of action will not be viewed favourably when these politicians meet their makar it is for this reason I’ve given it the title The Verdict I hope you enjoy the read 

 The Verdict 

It seems to me that British politicians

talk a lot of hot air

when it comes to making changes

trying to avoid them just in case

they might not work

we they claim, are by nature risk averse

preferring safety first

or better the devil you know

personally I think this is madness

you can’t keep doing the same thing

and expecting different results

that is not how the world works

but this is something Britain fails to understand

an isolated island we are told

we are a happy land

and those who want change

are viewed with distrust

or even suspicion

blamed for causing divisions

which in reality have always existed

no matter what Westminster thinks

you can’t paper over cracks

by wrapping everything in union flags

yet they seem to believe

that singing a chorus of Rule Britannia

will make everything better

there will be no surrender to the truth

facts will be dismissed

as lies which get in the way of a good story

the British establishment live in a bubble

unable to comprehend

the importance of taking care of the land

or that the world has evolved over time

and may not want the benefit of our advice

which will always come at a price

when it’s wrapped in corporate pin stripes

by the city of London

as gamblers disguised as traders

get away with whatever they like

it’s the way they play the game

meanwhile the ragged trousered philanthropists

live in poverty in areas where dreams died long ago

I thought they would have known by now

this is the inevitable result

of trusting Tories with democracy

it is they and their wealthy friends

who want to frack the land for profit

extract shale gas from under the ground

without a thought for the long term damage

this could do our environment

not to mention the impact

on our tourist industry

food crops or drinking water

whilst gullible sheep are led to the pen of self interest

and deliberately misformed by the press and media

to ignore these trendy liberal leftie causes

as many gladly will

preferring tabloid horror stories

which are exaggerated for effect

by journalists who know

there is always someone to blame

and that rule applies

whatever the problem may be

the UK leaders need to be made to see

what Scots Sudanese , Senegalese, and Swedes already know

this is not the time for showboating and grandstanding

we need to develop an understanding of our habitat

and stop referring to those who value nature

as tree huggers

those who put profit before people

are no better than muggers

stealing priceless gifts of nature  which do not  belong to them

if you think that sounds like

I’m singing a song of sustainability

then that would be correct

I value my world I treat it with respect

this plundering of the planet

cannot be allowed to continue unchecked

we need to learn where things are at

and see that next summit we attend

debating the problems facing the earth

we have to open our eyes and see the solution

if this takes a revolution in our thinking then so be it

we can’t just wish these issues away

global warning does  exist

we must open our eyes and actually listen

believe it or not the world does not revolve round the united kingdom

far less the stockbroker belt in the home counties of England

we have bigger issues to consider

than playing petty political games

where short term goals

are all that can be scored

a problem ignored is a problem doubled

if we don’t sort it out

we’re heading for trouble

we need to focus on cleaner greener energy

cutting down on waste

not acting in haste now

and regretting decisions at a later date

for the sake of humanity the future can’t wait

we need to act locally, nationally, and globally

or slowly like desertification

tomorrow will speak of our shame

when that happens the judge of the earth

will deliver a verdict on our environmental vandalism

and the scandal is that

on the charge of death by hot air

we will be found guilty of murder by apathy

@ Gayle Smith 2017