DAY 212: Vote!

June 7th, 2017 § 0 comments

What can I say! I’ve rarely been at a point which has so clearly typified old Antonio’s saying about pessimism of the intellect coupled with optimism of the will. I feel I’m constantly having to correct the foolish assumptions of my friends, or even my foes, that Labour will – or might – win the election. The chances of this are quite extraordinarily slender, and no number of heartwarming vids of Corbyn rallies to audiences of thousands. or Clean Bandit songs, will move us from the unlikely to the just possible. In this blog’s view, the best we can hope for is a) a hung parliament plus b) an agreement between the non-right-wing parties that they will form a pseudo-government and get some of the decent things done which we want to see done. At the very least, NOT do some of the horrible things they would do if they were Tories. I know, don’t I know, of the evil decisions Jack Straw made when he was Home Secretary. I only pray that if Diane Abbott or someone else in the non-Tory camp gets they job, they won’t make similar decisions; they’ll move to end detention, close down Yarl’s Wood,yarlswood start accepting Dubs children and so on. Is it too much?

To achieve which, you all have to vote, and get your friends to vote, for whichever non-Tory stands a decent chance of winning. I personally have no patience with this ‘no pacts’ mantra.  Do you want to lose? As long as we’re stuck with FPTP we have to play by its rules. I’m elated by the image of thousands  of people who believe that we only need all the young to vote (and all the old do what?). I don’t believe it. We need everyone who’s getting screwed by the current government (i.e. the masses) to vote it out.

A couple of months ago many of my friends and relations believed that Corbyn was finished. I didn’t, and I was right; he’s done an amazing job. But not being finished isn’t the same thing as winning.

Get out and vote Labour (or Scot Nat or Green in the appropriate places); and get this evil government out.

Or, as Helen Dunmore said in her wonderful last poem which I posted yesterday, if you’re as old as I am and have nothing to expect but endless Tory governments, welcome death…

Hold out your arms
Death, hold out your arms for me
Embrace me
Give me your motherly caress,
Through all this suffering
You have not forgotten me.
You are the bearded iris that bakes its rhizomes
Beside the wall,
Your scent flushes with loveliness,
Sherbet, pure iris
Lovely and intricate.
I am the child who stands by the wall
Not much taller than the iris.
The sun covers me
The day waits for me
In my funny dress.
Death, you heap into my arms
A basket of unripe damsons
Red crisscross straps that button behind me.
I don’t know about school,
My knowledge is for papery bud covers
Tall stems and brown
Bees touching here and there, delicately
Before a swerve to the sun.
Death stoops over me
Her long skirts slide,
She knows I am shy.
Even the puffed sleeves on my white blouse
Embarrass me,
She will pick me up and hold me
So no one can see me,
I will scrub my hair into hers.
There, the iris increases
Note by note
As the wall gives back heat.
Death, there’s no need to ask:
A mother will always lift a child
As a rhizome
Must lift up a flower
So you settle me
My arms twining,
Thighs gripping your hips
Where the swell of you is.
As you push back my hair
– Which could do with a comb
But never mind –
You murmur
‘We’re nearly there.’

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