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Wednesday, March 18, 2009


by Peter Branson

How does it work?

We flout the rules:
afraid our privilege
will be found out,
distort the truth
where there is scope for doubt.
Secret cabals,
meetings behind closed doors,
witch hunt our enemies,
settle new scores,
corrupt the law-
maker, march with the lout.

What do we do when things
flip inside out?

Mouth what’s appropriate,
sympathise, frown;
hope it won’t last,
a temporary blip,
then, when the coast is clear,
quietly jump town.
What happens when the rich
cats leave the ship?
Slowly we tire,
go under, some folk drown.

Peter Branson is a creative writing tutor. Until recently he was Writer-in-Residence for "All Write" run by Stoke-on-Trent Library Services. He began writing poetry seriously about five years ago and has had work published by many mainstream poetry journals, including Acumen, Ambit, Envoi, Iota, 14, Fire, The Interpreter's House, Poetry Nottingham, Red Ink and Other Poetry. In the last two years he has had success in several competitions including a first prize in The Envoi International, a second place in The Writing Magazine Open and a highly-commended in The Petra Kenney. His first collection, The Accidental Tourist, was published in May 2008.