THE GREAT ESCAPE. BREXIT POEMS
Us folk on the Isle of Man
We enjoy being between Éire and Britain
It gives us a place of in between
There is nothing like waking up on an island with the sea around you
Waking up to the sound of seagulls laughing and feeling the breeze, rain and sunshine filter through the closed or open windows and into the living room
I work in the local store in my village and I feel happy as I place the rice beside the sugar
It is thanks to me that everyone is well-fed and that the democracy of food and drink even exists in this honest village
When Mrs. Cornwall asks for eggs I can provide her and it is her smile that gives me hope as she receives them, still warm, in her wrinkled hands
When Mr. Williams desires a glass of sherry who am I stop him for doesn't a man deserve the choice of drink?
I am good with numbers and it is my daily exercise to calculate how much we have and how much we exactly need
The town needs bananas and oranges, flour, milk, all the glory of nutrition and diet and health and comfort and well-being
I am the unseen hero for how else would little Tommy or old Benster otherwise receive his daily supply of honey or lactose-free milk?
I am the provider of democratic information as I gather the newspapers form all over the nation, too
I need no fame, I need not my name to printed on some dusty encyclopedia or intangible Wikipedia article
I need no confirmation that what I do is valuable
I am a person of value unlike the big shots in London who call themselves persons of government
I believe in the democracy of stores which is honest
The democracy that voted Brexit was not honest
It was a pack of filths getting together to manipulate half a country into voting something which was not good for them
Boris should have run a store before became PM, a small humble store would have him taught him well
But Brexit isn't going to break my democracy
The virus is here too but I will continue to provide bread and butter
And if that runs out then potatoes and garlic
A Woman muses
I am a woman born in the dusk of the Second World War
I was born in a shed to a mother who had lost her first son in the coast of France and I was born to a father whose brother disappeared somewhere in the Wild West Pacific Ocean
It took me 36 hours for me get out of the womb and my dad would often joke later that I had never wanted to leave mother in the first place
Mother died when I was two but I can still remember the feel of her hands on my auburn head and her scent: daffodils
My father died a year later and my only surviving sibling left to become a priest in Kenya and I never heard back from him ever again
I married a man when I was 28 whose mother was always involved in our lives and I think that was a big reason why I married him
Not that I didn't love him dearly
We would make love everyday and every night and when he died two years later he left me his mum, a son and a small cottage
So I raised my child with my mother-in-law and we got a Shepperd, too
I remember this phase of my life dearly.
Now I'm in a nursing home in Essex
My son is a good man but he lives with his wife and two kids in Shanghai and I can't imagine myself eating dumplings everyday or picking up a new language at my old age
So I put myself in a nursing home and I have been treated well here
I play poker with my new friends
I go to mass every morning too even though I don't care for religion but it's the social aspect of it that I enjoy
The food is alright, too
I hear the UK is getting ready to leave the EU
What do I think of that?
Well, I don't think much about the future consequences in our already dire economy
But I do think about my mother who grew up in Vienna
And I think about my older brother lost somewhere in the French coast
And I think about my uncle lost in the Pacific
And I think about my husband who died of a heart attack and about my son with his new family in Shanghai
And I think things have become isolated enough as it is
And with this virus out there
We've become even more isolated
Pip down people I often say to the young ones when they get excited
But I hear Brexit is a thing mainly favoured by the elderly
So I've got to tell you all Mr. Farrages and Mr. Johnsons and Mrs. Mays
Pip down you old skunks!
My God, you're all making a horrible noise there, like teeth-bashing!
And stay in the EU, for crying out loud!
I've never heard such ridiculous nonsense in my life.
Whatever is needed to keep my town alive
For I am a hero in the dark
I am the Manx Shopkeeper.