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ED WHYMAN

CAMDEN 

Vietnam, which you opposed, has come and gone
The bishops in their anger
Condemning you to serve here your penance
An exile already from your Ireland
With disgust each time you return here
—— You, the symbol of that dominating class
Since you wear its colour like a badge.

When you again see Camden —-
Abandoned shipyards where not a stone
Remains upon a stone
Where so many blind eyes
Gaze out from empty homes
Full of accusation —
"If Jesus would have wept” —— you say
"For Jerusalem destroyed
He would surely scream
If he saw Camden”

Walt Whitman is buried here
Neighbour to all this refuse
Camden’s only wealth
Scrap piled to the sky
The booming industry —
"When they want to make a buck or two
They go and wrench out something
From one of those decaying buildings;
And you see them walking back
Like hunters with their trophies
Dragging behind them
The entrails of a once proud city."

So each Sunday they bring their food in parcels
Those guilty parishioners
Who walk by on the other side
And say——"how terrible"
In this America so bountiful
That this should never
Be left to happen here —— but will
—— "When they flush the toilets in Philly
They send it all straight to us."

 

POTEMKIN 1989.

"The people are the water and the ruler is the boat: the water can support the boat but it can also sink it."

HZUN-TZU Chinese Philosopher (c. 300-235 BC).

Against which wall were you shot,
Beijing citizen of the Fourth of June;
Where your scene of massacre
Your state's revenge ?

The Communards taken from the barricades
—— The first 'communists';
And you singing the Internationale -—
Clenched fists of Barcelona
——"Fascism will not Pass". 

The Party wrapping itself in the shame
That even Chang Chai-Chek did not dare
—— The striking workers massacred,
Shanghai nineteen-twenty-seven ——
For they were only One-Hundred!

Yellow hordes ——who said
Words were the opium of the people ?
Mao turn in your grave ——
The People's Army against the People,
Not allowed in the little red book!